Tiger Bites: Polls, poses and perfection


General Sam Houston won the Battle of San Jacinto in 18 minutes. On Saturday, LSU needed about two minutes to seize victory.

Though the Bearkats marched down the field on the opening possession, the Tigers turned the tide with a pair of big plays. After cornerback Dwayne Thomas reeled in an interception, Anthony Jennings found Travin Dural for a 94-yard strike. LSU followed with an effective 59-yard drive, capped by the second of Dural’s three touchdowns. By the time the dust settled, the Tigers had registered 13 points and 153 yards in an anemic 1 minute, 58 seconds.

The powerful first-half effort culminated in a 56-0 blowout in front of a record crowd of 100,338 fans. For all the fuss over Sam Houston State’s potent offense, the Bearkats barely cleared 200 yards on the night. Their closest trip to the end zone came on a blatant offsides penalty during a muffed point-after attempt.

The Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks come to town this week, featuring an aggressive quarterback and dependable running game. (More on that soon.) Until then, here’s a look at the news and notes following the Tigers’ resounding victory:

LSU recap: Freshmen help Tigers pound Bearkats

Everyone joined the party on Saturday as 25 freshmen took the field. Four of the Tigers’ 17 true freshmen scored touchdowns, a first in school history. That includes quarterback Brandon Harris, who scampered 46 yards and shook off several tackles to find the end zone. Harris has plenty of upside, especially out of the read-option package, but Jennings picked up more ground in the battle for the starting job.

The win was the Tigers’ first shutout victory since November 13, 2010 — against ULM — and the most lopsided LSU victory since a 58-0 torching of Western Carolina on September 2, 2000.

If you couldn’t see the game live (and somehow forget about the SEC Network’s replay at 11:00 a.m. Wednesday), this should catch you up.

Tigers move to Top 10 in AP, Coaches polls

A string of high-profile losses pushed the Tigers into the Top 10 in both national polls. LSU marked its third straight week of improvement in the Amway Coaches Poll, joining four other SEC representatives in the Top 10 with a ninth-place ranking. USC’s win over Stanford carried the Trojans over the Tigers in the latest AP Poll, but LSU’s 10th-place position is their best since November 9.

Michigan State, Ohio State and Nebraska tumbled out of the Top 10. Looking ahead, conference opponents Mississippi State and Florida are receiving votes.

Advocate: Jennings, Dural connection keeps paying off

To say that Anthony Jennings and Travin Dural are clicking would be an understatement. Take this tweet, for starters:

Dural kept his good luck going on the next catch, a slick 18-yard catch to extend the Tigers’ lead to 26-0. So step back and give that some thought: Travin Dural has caught 13 passes and all of them have been productive. Of those 13 receptions, six have been touchdowns.

From early indications, this play is the bread and butter of the Jennings-Dural sequence. To make a long story short, they’ve been practicing it for a while:

Lawrence Barreca and Ross Dellenger have the story.

Reveille: Leonard Fournette’s Heisman pose misguided

“Until (Leonard) Fournette plays for the name on the front of the jersey rather than the one on the back, he’ll continue to lose the respect of the LSU fan base.”

Trey Labat, The Daily Reveille

Trey Labat lambasted LSU’s freshman running back in a Monday column for the university’s student newspaper. Late in the first quarter, Fournette charged into the end zone on a four-yard run for his first touchdown at the college level. He then struck a Heisman pose, drawing the ire of head coach Les Miles and pundits nationwide.

However, Labat holds several parties accountable for Fournette’s actions, pointing the finger at a fan base that enpowered the freshman and his Buga Nation brand. Labat also seems wary of the way Les Miles addressed the incident after the game.

They’re strong words, and I’ll let Labat speak for himself.

In case you forgot

LSU will be playing in prime time next weekend. Make it four evening broadcasts of Tiger football, including three in the new and improved Death Valley.

Pregame video at Tiger Stadium


Les Miles press conference: Quip of the week

“I’m really not familiar with the team that Shakespeare coaches.”