LSU Football Countdown to Kickoff Day 3: Tough Game Trio


There are only three days left until the start of the 2016 LSU football season, and Death Valley Voice is counting you down to the season opener versus the Wisconsin Badgers.

No. 3 – LSU’s three toughest games of the upcoming season.

In order for LSU to make it through this regular season; they are going to have to go through a gauntlet of opponents which provide its three toughest games.  These are going to be the most difficult games that they will need to win in order to garner steps towards attending the playoffs.

No. 3: at Arkansas

During his tenure at LSU, Les Miles has compiled a record of 6-5 against Arkansas.  The average margin of victory between the two is under nine points during that span.  However, the last two meetings Arkansas has won by an average of 16.  Although LSU returns 18 starters, compared to Arkansas’ 13, these games have been as predictable as the weather in Southeast Louisiana.  If LSU expects to have a special season, they must find a way to fix the “Arkansas Jinx” on the road.

By the time they meet in Week 11, Bret Bielema’s seven new starters on offense, including the QB and RB, should be settled.  Conversely, LSU should be fully adjusted to Dave Aranda’s new 3-4 defensive scheme.  Six of LSU’s eight returning starters on offense are going into their 3rd season playing together; which should mean that the bulk of the Razorbacks’ returning starters (9 – defense) should not pose a threat.  The third toughest hurdle for LSU this regular season will be a road game at Little Rock, AR on November 12th.
No. 2 – Ole Miss

The next team that LSU will have to beat, of their three toughest games, will be the Ole Miss Rebels.  Unlike Arkansas, LSU has faired better against the Rebels, amassing a 7-4 record, winning four of its last six versus Mississippi.  In the “what have you done for me lately” culture of college football, the 38-17 loss last season at The Grove left a bitter taste in a lot of Tiger Fans’ Mouths.  It also continued a downward spiral that started two weeks prior, which almost cost Miles his job.

More from Death Valley Voice

This season LSU gets to face Ole Miss at home.  Although their roster is void of three first round draft picks, the Rebels do return their most potent player on offense in QB Chad Kelly.  The reason to feel optimistic there is the fact that 10 of LSU’s returning 18 starters reside on the defensive side of the ball.  By Week 8, LSU’s Defense will have faced five spread offenses, including 3 in the SEC.  This should give their 3-4 defense a chance to adjust Ole Miss’ base scheme.  The 105th meeting of the Magnolia Bowl takes place on October 22nd, and starts the sandwich of a tough three game stretch for the Tigers.

No. 1 – Alabama

Lastly, the Crimson Tide!  The best thing I can say about this game is that it will be at home after the bye week.  The Good: LSU has 18 returning starters, including the QB, to Alabama’s 11 – excluding the QB.  The Bad: The past 11 seasons under Coach Miles the Tigers have a 5-6 record versus Alabama.  The Ugly: Alabama is 5-0 in the last five games against LSU played them.  So why even show up on November 5?

Here’s why: The last time LSU beat Alabama, the Tigers eventually ended up playing for a National Title.  Also, of those five losses, the games that were played in Baton Rouge were swing games, with a 21-17 victory during the closing seconds in 2012, and a 20-13 OT loss in 2014.  Four of the last five regular season meetings between the two resulted in an SEC Title, and a 2-1 record in the National Championship Game.

Although this may be the hardest challenge of LSU’s three toughest games, if you believe as I do in this season’s possibilities, you will want to be in Tiger Stadium to storm the field after this epic battle.

The rest of the countdown…

No. 4 – Championship History

No. 5 – Crimson Five

No. 6 – Brandon Harris Must Break Out

No. 7 – The Legend of Leonard

No. 8 – Lewis Neal is a sack machine

No. 9  – Rickey Jefferson & DBU

No. 10  – Ten Win Season

No. 11 – Bowling Destinations

No. 12 – Games of 2016

No. 13  – Brandon Harris TDs

No. 14 – Championship Bound

No. 16 – Danny Etling

What do you think is LSU’s toughest game this season? Sound off in the comments below!