LSU Football: The most important game on the Tigers’ 2021 schedule

LSU Football QB Myles Brennan (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
LSU Football QB Myles Brennan (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /

LSU football‘s 2021 schedule was officially revealed on Wednesday by the SEC.

The Tigers are set to open the season on the road against UCLA, before playing a couple of non-conference games. Then the Tigers jumped into SEC action, playing seven straight conference opponents before getting a bit of a reprieve against ULM on November 20.

LSU will then finish the season at home against Texas A&M.

On Wednesday, I gave my way-too-early prediction for how the Tigers’ 2021 season will paly out (which you can find here).

What’s the most important matchup on LSU football

Every year when the SEC schedule is released, I always take a moment to figure out what I think is the most important matchup on the schedule.

There are several different things I consider. When the matchup is in the season, the expected outcome of the matchup, and what LSU’s record could possibly be at that point in the season.

When I looked at the Tigers’ 2021 schedule, it didn’t take me long to circle what I think is the most important game of the season.

It’s the Auburn game on October 2.

Here’s why:

By the time LSU plays Auburn, they should either be 4-0 or 3-1 (that UCLA game could go either way). Starting with the game against Auburn, LSU has a very tough five-game stretch that will likely make or break the season.

After playing Auburn, the Tigers play Kentucky (not the same old Kentucky team of the past), Florida, Ole Miss, and Alabama.

The potential for a lengthy losing streak is there.

Of all those games, the Auburn matchup is the game that LSU absolutely has to win.

The Tigers can’t lose to an Auburn team that has a new head coach in Bryan Harsin. Look, Harsin is a good coach. He did great things at Boise State. But the SEC is a lot different than he’s accustomed to seeing.

I have LSU going 8-4 next season and I have them beating Auburn. But if they lose that matchup on October 2, it could potentially set off a five-game losing streak. At that point, LSU would be looking at a 6-6 or 7-5 season. I wouldn’t be surprised if some hot-seat chatter around Ed Orgeron started if that ends up being the scenario.

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LSU has to beat Auburn on October 2. I think it’s the most important matchup of the season. It will absolutely set the tone for the second half of the season.

Lose that game and things and could ugly real fast.