You could see it on Ed Orgeron's face following the Tigers' loss to Arkansas. LSU let another prime opportunity to earn a season defining win slip right through its fingers as lack of late game execution on offense ultimately led to an overtime loss.
Orgeron said multiple times throughout his postgame press conference how badly the locker room was hurting after hanging tough with the Razorbacks until the end. The defense played its heart out in the hopes that the offense could string together just one successful fourth quarter or overtime drive.
But a common theme from Orgeron really all season has been coaches needing to "put players in better position to have success." Because performances like the last two weeks on defense show what happens when the coaching evolves and adapts to what the players do well, something the offense has really struggled to do.
"We've got two games left, we gotta regroup. That's a hurting group in there right now," Orgeron said. "
One example Orgeron gave that he wished the team could get back was the drive in the first half where LSU got close to the redzone, tried to go Wildcat with Tyrion Davis-Price and ultimately fumbled, keeping the team from going up potentially two scores.
It was the start of a really strong momentum swing in Arkansas favor, with Orgeron saying in the postgame press conference that the offense hadn't practiced that specific play all year. Orgeron said after the game that all he could really say to the team was to put the loss on him, something he hasn't shied away from in his time as coach.
"We gotta get them better. Let's look at the film, look at the plays where we had a chance," Orgeron said. "It doesn't always come down to one play, there's a lot of chances that we had to make plays, to win this football game but you gotta find a way to do it."
"It obviously hurts. We had more than enough chances to win the game, this week and last week," center Liam Shanahan said. "I feel bad for everybody, especially the defense. They laid everything on the line. It sucks to be the ones holding us back from getting a couple wins that could've been really big for us."
There were a number of plays the players said they wish they could have back. Freshman quarterback Garrett Nussmeier mentioned his two interceptions but particularly the one in overtime that if LSU kicks a field goal, still has a chance to force another overtime.
Linebacker Damone Clark wished that he could get back the touchdown in the second half on a busted coverage, a play where LSU got pressure on KJ Jefferson but just couldn't bring him to the ground. But with two games remaining, the LSU locker room is staying united and positive, something that wasn't the case last year when things went wrong.
"One day at a time, one game at a time. Everything happens for a reason," Clark said. "At the end of the day we just have to go back and watch the film. We missed a couple of plays that we usually don't. I missed the sack at the quarterback, that one ate me up.