LSU football has rebounded from an opening weekend loss quite nicely. The Tigers are on a three-game winning streak with victories over Southern, Mississippi State and New Mexico. While the victories over these particular opponents may not be too impressive, it’s the way in which Brian Kelly’s team has won that speaks volumes.
The Bayou Bengals look like a force to be reckoned with thus far. LSU is no Alabama or Georgia, but the team does deserve a lot more respect than it’s getting right now. While the AP Top 25 Poll voters may not be open to the idea of ranking the Tigers, Las Vegas oddsmakers remain impartial. The opening line for LSU’s trip to Auburn was released on Sunday morning, and this bit of betting information was surprising to many around the country.
The opening betting line for LSU football vs. Auburn is very surprising
When the Tigers have collided historically, it’s led to some of the most memorable SEC matchups in recent years. From incredible comebacks to defensive standoffs to walk-off kicks, it’s truly unpredictable when these two teams get together. LSU has won more games against Auburn all time, but Bryan Harsin’s program has taken the last two from the Bayou Bengals.
Regardless, the Tigers—purple and gold, not navy and orange—opened up as the early odds favorite at Jordan-Hare Stadium on Saturday. The opening spread for the game was LSU -6.5 points on the road. However, by Sunday night, the line had shifted again. As it stands, FanDuel Sportsbook has the visiting Tigers as -7.5 favorites.
This comes as a huge surprise to many seeing as Kelly’s program was touted as one of the SEC’s worst before the season began. LSU is supposed to be in the midst of a rebuild. A 3-1 start for the Tigers may suggest otherwise, but there are potentially dark days ahead. The toughest stretch of the season begins with a trip to Alabama to face the Crimson Tide’s little brother.
Auburn has not been a kind host to LSU over the years, despite the previous comment. The Bayou Bengals have only won twice on the Plains since 2010, with both victories coming by two points or less (12-0 in 2012; 22-21 in 2018).
These two teams never seem to be far apart, except for the one-off game every once in a while. Both of the programs’ record wins over one another (48-11 for Auburn in 2020; 45-10 for LSU in 2011) have come recently. Even during LSU’s 2019 National Championship season, it was Auburn who came the closest to defeating the Tigers (23-20).
Therefore, why is this line favoring the visitors so drastically? It’s easy, Auburn is bad.
Harsin’s team has been horrendous this season, especially on the offensive side of the ball. This plays right into LSU’s hands as the Tigers have one of the conference’s best defenses. The Bayou Bengals have enough weapons on offense to power past their hosts, as well.
Regardless, LSU fans cannot count their chickens before they hatch. Auburn away is always one of the toughest games on the schedule. The Tigers are having a down year, whereas their same-name neighbors to the west are riding the wave of a winning streak right now. Though if this rivalry has taught us anything over the years, it’s that nothing is guaranteed.