LSU / Auburn Recap

I”m not the type to throw blame around at others when LSU loses. I catch a lot of shit for the blame I often throw at Leslie – in losses and wins – but I always write what I see, not what I want to think as Tiger fan.

And yesterday, we were fucked. Repeatedly. The calls made in Auburn”s favor looked bad in person, but when I re-watched the game last night and dug in to the game stats, I was shocked at how bad the officiating was and the effect it had on the game. – In the first quarter, Jabob Hester clearly catches a 4th-down pass and fumbles out of bounds. Field call of catch, fumble, first down reversed. Killed a 39-yard drive at the Auburn 30 when LSU was effectively taking apart Auburn”s defense.

- At the end of the second quarter, Brandon LaFell was clearly interfered with in the end zone. No call. Very likely took 6 points off the board; helped stop the drive and LSU settled for a field goal to end the half.

- And, of course, 4th quarter with 2:43 left Early Doucet was tackled on a 4th-down pass play to the end zone before the ball arrived. Field call of pass interference reversed on the field because another defender tipped the ball. The replay clearly showed the tackle started before the tip. Not reviewable, but the officials decided to overturn a critical penalty on a shaky judgment call.

There were other no calls such as Hester getting a helmet-to-helmet shot on the sideline that played a part in the loss, but the three big ones had dramatic negative effects on LSU. We were simply fucked.

I”m sick of the national coverage this morning touting Auburn”s defense in the win. Clearly those writers were watching Notre Dame / Michigan instead of our game. LSU ran an effective offense – although we stuck with an ineffective set of running plays too long – but time after time we were done in by bad calls.

JaMarcus wasn”t sharp, and he gets some blame for that. Our pass protection was outstanding, and he should have completed more throws. And how he hasn”t learned late-game management – the sack he took with under a minute to go was inexcusible – is beyond me. It goes without saying that the game-ending pass was a poor decision. We clearly don”t know how to execute in late-game situations.

But LSU had six drives of 30+ yards; two of which were killed by bad calls. Overall we did what we needed to do on offense to win.

Our defense was strong and physical. Auburn managed only two drives of 30+ yards (the missed field goal and the 80-yard touchdown drive). The LSU defense also did what it needed to do to win.

The game was a classic SEC battle. It”s unfortunate that the game wasn”t decided by how it was played.

Elsewhere in the SEC, the Mississippi schools let me down. With the LSU loss, I was 5-3 for the week; 25-3 for the season

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