Seeking their first big victory of the season, the LSU Tigers clash with the Florida Gators Saturday afternoon at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.
No. 4 LSU overcame four fumbles and an early scare from Towson last week in a 38-22 home victory, struggling to close out a lesser opponent for the second straight week.
LSU nearly suffered their first loss of the season against Auburn on Sept. 22, needing three straight stops in the fourth quarter as the offense failed to build on their lead.
Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger was responsible for two of the fumbles, but weathered a Towson 9-7 lead with two touchdown passes of 27 and 53 yards to receiver Odell Beckham. Mettenberger went 15-for-26 for 238 yards and the two scores, and Beckham totaled five receptions for 128 yards.
Towson was able to hold LSU’s 18 th ranked rushing attack to 158 yards, and it was the first time this season that a Tigers running back failed to gain at least 90 yards. Wide receiver Russell Shepard led the team in rushing and recorded LSU’s longest run with a 78-yard touchdown scamper in the first quarter.
The Tigers will face their toughest test of the season thus far against Florida’s 10th ranked defense.
By forcing three interceptions and allowing only 219 total yards, the No. 10 Gators shutout Kentucky 38-0 last week.
Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel went 18- for-27 for 203 yards and a touchdown, and added a one-yard rushing score in the Gators 26th straight win over the Wildcats.
The Gators were in control the entire game and put Kentucky down for good in the second quarter when junior defensive back Jaylen Watkins picked off Wildcat quarterback Morgan Newton and ran back 26 yards for a touchdown and a 17-0 lead
Betting Odds: LSU is favored by 3 points.
Over/Under: 42 points
Prediction: Mettenberger has been turnover prone and the Tigers offensive line has struggled as of late. Florida will have to control the clock with their running game, and Driskel may have to escape LSU’s pass rush and make plays with his legs. The Tigers should regain their rushing attack, and pull out a close win.
Predicted Score: LSU 24, Florida 21