The Auburn Tigers were one big completion and field goal away from pulling off a shocking upset of then #2 LSU Saturday night. And while the players were happy to escape raucous Jordan-Hare Stadium with a 12-10 triumph, LSU knows they must improve quickly.
"We're about to hit the real meat of our schedule," says junior linebacker Kevin Minter, "We gotta step it up. We can't have another Auburn. I don't think my heart can take it."
His defensive teammate agrees wholeheartedly.
"We needed a test like that (Auburn), to get us ready for the next couple of weeks," says LSU sophomore defensive tackle Anthony ‘Freak' Johnson, " It's going to be a rough October. I'll tell you that right now."
LSU plays host to their final rent-a-win of the season this Saturday night in Tiger Stadium, as the Towson Tigers from the Colonial Athletic Association come to town. The game is so lightly regarded, there's no betting line for the game. But after that, LSU travels to #11 Florida, then hosts #6 South Carolina before a trip to Texas A&M. And yes, November begins with a visit from Nick Saban and the #1 Alabama Crimson Tide.
"I don't think he (Johnson) could've put it any better than that," agrees LSU junior quarterback Zach Mettenberger, "Our toughest part of the season is coming up. We've got to get a lot better ... quick. We definitely have the caliber of athletes and character we need to be a good team. We just have to clean up the way we've been playing. If we do that, we'll be just fine."
There was little fault to find with the LSU defense, which held Auburn to a measly nine first downs and 183 yards of total offense. It was Mettenberger and the Tigers' offense that provided the most disappointment, scoring only one touchdown and losing two costly fumbles. Mettenberger had just 136 yards passing late in the contest, before a big 33-yard gain on a somewhat dangerous throwback to running back Spencer Ware. The down field passing game didn't materialize much, as LSU was also hit with 9 penalties for 80 yards.
"We made a lot of bone-headed decisions, "says senior wide receiver Russell Shepard, "We had a lot of penalties. This team is better than that. If we do some of those things against other opponents, we're not going to win."
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