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The Sports Troll: 5 Takeaways from LSU’s opener

Wasn’t Saturday’s game a little weird?

Under Les Miles, LSU football games were like a stress test or a cardiac exam. By the time the four hours of the game were through, you’d experienced highs, lows, anxiety, stress, relief and most of the time victory.

But Saturday’s game was different. LSU didn’t struggle, nor did they leave any doubt.

They dominated.

Without stress. Without hiccups.

They dominated.

That was a sight to see and a great start to Coach Ed Orgeron’s tenure as the Tigers’ full-time head coach.

Analysis are flying around from everyone with an opinion, so here are my thoughts in exchange for your penny.

Below are five takes from the LSU game against BYU.

  1. Matt Canada has ‘the sauce’ – Matt Canada is the real deal. I know the negative LSU fan will talk about how the Tigers ran the ball all game long and were super conservative. But that was the bland gumbo. There will be a lot of spice added later when the Tigers are in need. BYU had zero chance to score in Saturday’s game. So why show off any of your tricks? I support being super conservative. Keep the element of surprise going for as long as possible.
  2. Etling has made strides – Boy, it’s amazing what being able to feel one’s legs can do on the football field, eh? After struggling with injury last season, Danny Etling looked razor-sharp on Saturday, posting the most efficient day for an LSU quarterback in many, many years. Etling was calm, accurate and knew where he wanted to go with the football right away. He wasn’t a Heisman Trophy candidate, but as we’ve said here many times, he doesn’t need to be. Simply being serviceable is good enough.
  3. Defense has a bright future – The LSU defense is super young and many predicted a setback in production because of the lack of juniors and seniors and several key positions. But at least through one game, the youthful Tigers showed that they have some bite. LSU’s defense dominated BYU, continually forcing short drives and keeping the Cougars from crossing the 50-yard line. When Arden Key gets back, look out. That’s scary to think about.
  4. Special teams … bleh? – I had a big concern about LSU’s special teams going into the opener and nothing really happened in Saturday’s game to change my opinion – for better or worse. LSU’s coverage units were mediocre and the kicker missed a short field goal. Nothing disastrous happened, but nothing particularly good did, either. So we proceed through to another week with caution.
  5. The Coach O accents/imitations are getting old fast – ESPN did an entire segment showing opposing coaches doing impersonations of Coach O. Each announcer then did their own – all while the game was being played. I get it. The dude has a crazy sounding voice. I get it. The game was a blowout and there wasn’t much drama on the field to talk about. But by the middle of the season, can we find something else to talk about? This whole topic is getting old pretty fast.

Image: LSU Athletics Creative Services

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