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Ole Miss Pummels LSU on the Ground in 31-17 Rout in Oxford

Tigers offense completely shut down after strong start to game

Old habits die hard and for LSU some of the season long issues were a problem Saturday afternoon against Ole Miss.

After a strong start, LSU was completely outmatched for most of the game, losing in Oxford 31-17 and snapping a five game Tigers win streak. 

The first half was a tale of two quarters as the Tigers dictated the momentum for the first 25 minutes of the game or so. LSU found success early on offense by finding balance with its offense as the Tigers averaged 4.3 yards a carry in the first quarter, rushing for 47 yards while Max Johnson was really able to get off to a hot start through the air. 

LSU's offense marched right down the field on the opening drive and scored a touchdown on nine plays behind that balance, highlighted by a perfectly placed ball from Johnson to Trey Palmer for 44 yards. The Tigers seemed poised for another touchdown on the very next drive but poor execution down on the goal line resulted in an interception on fourth down, completely swinging the momentum. 

From that point on it was all down hill on both sides of the ball. Ole Miss would score 17 unanswered in the second quarter, highlighted by trickery, explosive plays down field and a few lapses in communication. After starting off so strong, allowing just 16 yards on two drives, Ole Miss would pick up 231 yards on three straight scoring drives.

Outside runs and misdirection constantly fooled the LSU defense while the offense mustered just 39 yards of offense in the second quarter. 

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It was a first half ending reminiscent of last week's game against Florida, LSU needed to find some early momentum to start the third quarter. Instead a three and out from the offense and an ensuing touchdown drive from Ole Miss pushed the lead even further away 24-7.

Johnson would finish the day with 146 yards passing, an interception and lost two fumbles as the Tigers' offense mustered up just 24 total yards during a five drive stretch in the second and third quarter as Ole Miss made its move. 

On the other end, Matt Corral and the Ole Miss offense would find its rhythm by attacking the Tigers on the ground, mustering up 266 total yards rushing, including multiple third down conversions on delayed handoffs that took all the wind out of the LSU defense. That came to a head with a third-and-12 run from Jerrion Ealy in the third quarter as he scored from 36 yards out on a delayed handoff.

Midway through the third quarter, the Tigers had lost all three of its starting defensive backs in Dwight McGlothern, Cordale Flott and Sage Ryan, only piling on to the Tigers' myriad of issues.

Freshman quarterback Garrett Nussmeier would lead two scoring drives in the fourth quarter to make it look a little better than the game actually played out. He would complete 7-of-12 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown.

It was a game defined by many of LSU's consistent issues occurring all at once as the Tigers couldn't get out of their own way en route to another disappointing conference loss.