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What To Watch For: Ole Miss

Will Matt Corral play??

NCAA Football: Louisville at Mississippi Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Well now we get to the game I circled. I absolutely love what Ole Miss does. I think it is a blueprint to follow for what modern offense looks like. I know this is bad of me, but I will take a bit of a smug satisfaction watching Ed Orgeron’s commitment to a dated style of defense get absolutely torn up by the space age, cheat code offense his buddy Lane Kiffin and (Future LSU?) OC Jeff Lebby have constructed.

If Matt Corral plays.

For Ole Miss

GOLDEN CORRAL

IS HE GONNA PLAY?!?!? That’s really the question here. That’s a thing to watch for. If he doesn’t, Ole Miss loses a ton of firepower. This is an offense that takes SO MUCH processing off of his plate, he doesn’t have to make difficult reads at all. He does, however, have to make impressive throws and push the ball down the field. This offense isn’t reliant on his mind, but it is reliant on his arm. If their backup plays, a lot of the wheels and pop passes off play action that have, and are again going to give LSU hell, are still very much on the table. They lose the ability to really terrify you over the top though with the vertical passing Corral is so good at. It’s tougher to throw those sideline verts, those posts, those deep overs, etc that they just love to assault cover 1 teams like LSU with. If he’s out, expect a similar passing gameplan to Kentucky and Florida, attacking LSU with wheels and pop passes off of PA. Of course, they can still kill LSU with that and their run game alone.

For LSU

Countering counter

Okay, yes, LSU can really run counter. Finally. What’s their plan if Ole Miss takes it away? LSU blocking inside zone even against favorable fronts has been a tire fire this year, and LSU blocking outside zone has been even worse. Arkansas was able to have a lot of success running on Ole Miss’ unique front structure by using outside zone, can LSU do the same if they run into a wall with the counter schemes they’ve come to lean on? Ole Miss loves to drop 8 in coverage, so if they can take away your run game while doing that, well, we have a repeat of the Auburn game.

Cover 1

Ole Miss is going to kill you if you just play straight cover 1 and cover 3 without elite corners. Will LSU have the flexibility to adjust? Doubt it! The season’s more than half over and they haven’t. If Corral plays, it may be a bloodbath in pass defense.