Auburn, AL. - The Tiger Bowl is in unfamiliar territory this year with both teams unranked. Halloween afternoon is a great opportunity for either team to stretch their winning streak and continue their midseason momentum.
Coming off a late game Rebel Homecoming spoiler, Auburn returns to Jordan-Hare Stadium to defend their home turf. Gus Malzahn and his Tigers came away from Oxford victorious after a late Seth Williams touchdown, who ended up winning SEC Co-Offensive Player of the Week. The 35-28 win was much needed after some early season struggles.
LSU returns to Auburn for the first time since their last second field goal win in 2018. The difference now is they are unranked and sitting at a .500 record. Auburn has suffered heartbreaking losses to the Bayou Bengals three years in a row. A giant lead in Baton Rouge was lost in 2017 by Auburn, a game winning field goal in 2018 and a three point loss last year to arguably one of the greatest teams ever. The home team Tigers will for sure have a salty taste in their mouth this season.
Head Coach Ed Orgeron and his squad had their contest against Florida postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak in the Gators locker room. Orgeron led his team to a dominant win over South Carolina at home last week 52-24. Auburn lost in Columbia to the Gamecocks just under two weeks ago 30-22.
TJ Finley the freshman quarterback got the start in Death Valley, due to an injury to Myles Brennan. Finley had a great debut, throwing for 265 yards, two touchdowns and completed 17-21 of his passes. Terrace Marshall Jr., the leading receiver for LSU, racked up 88 yards on six catches and scored twice. Look for these two to try and connect many times on Pat Dye Field Saturday afternoon.
Defensively for LSU is where they have struggled in their two losses this season. In those two losses they gave up an average of 44.5 points and 609 yards.
JaCoby Stevens has had the spotlight through their first four games on defense. He has 29 tackles and 2.5 sacks so far. The safety will definitely be someone Auburn offensive coordinator Chad Morris will design his game plan around.
For Auburn, last week was a solid week for them to find their rhythm offensively. Quarterback Bo Nix completed 76.66% of his passes, totaled 238 yards in the air and threw for a score. The sophomore looked more comfortable with the offense and statistically had the best road game of his career.
The big takeaway for Auburn was once again Tank Bigsby, who was named the SEC Freshman of the Week. Bigsby had 129 rushing yards and scored twice. He is ranked third nationally and leads the SEC in all purpose yards with 163.2 per game. He is someone Auburn has tried to emphasize in their game plan and it is something to look out for.
Seth Williams had his third career game winning touchdown last Saturday with his 58 yard touchdown reception to seal it. The junior has battled through numerous injuries and has been looking better as of late.
For Auburn's defense, the young guys continue to step up. Zakoby McClain is sixth in the SEC averaging 10.6 tackles per game, while his counterpart Owen Pappoe ranks tenth with 9.4.
Up front in the trenches, Colby Wooden is increasing his playing time and is impressing with 6.5 tackles for a loss. The pass rush will be a big key for Auburn as they look to disrupt a freshman quarterback, starting in his first road game.
A key note to point out is Auburn offensive lineman Brandon Council is out for the season after a leg injury. Keiondre Jones will replace him at the right guard position.
LSU leads the all time series 31-22-1, however Auburn does lead at home 12-8.
Saturday's Halloween matchup is set for a 2:30 CST kickoff on CBS. This is sure to be a scary matchup.