Hello Tiger fans! I’m counting down the days until LSU faces Notre Dame in the Citrus Bowl! This will be a well-matched game. Neither team has anything to lose. It’s the season ending game, the defining game, and the game that we’ll be thinking about for a whole off-season. Come ‘on Tigers!
Notre Dame wants this bad. Even though they won our last meeting, LSU is still one up on them.
If their offense plays mistake-free football, we are in trouble. Their offense is up-tempo and thrives on big plays. Their quarterback, Brandon Wimbush, has eyes that are always probing downfield. Our defense needs to play smart and force them to rely on short passes.
Notre Dame loves to run outside and are effective at it. We need Arden Key to play but that doesn’t seem very likely since he hasn’t been practicing lately. Whoever turns out to be on the edge cannot let them run outside of him. They will win if it’s a shootout or if we can’t set the edge. The formula for success is by sacking him repeatedly if he holds the ball and scrambles for time (which is a common scenario) and also forcing turnovers to slow them down. Hopefully Aranda keeps a spy on Wimbush to take away his run threat. Against Alabama we deployed Corey Thompson and we could see him used this way again on January 1st.
Notre Dame loves the zone defense and are known for snagging interceptions. So far, they have 10 interceptions this season. Their linebackers are fast and agile. Their pass defense is misleading, so Danny Etling has to keep his eyes disciplined. If a receiver isn’t open, he’s not open, and he should not force his throws. Honestly, that has been a strong suit of Etlings all season, so I don’t expect that to be a problem in the Citrus Bowl.
On the other hand, Etling has been prone to hold the ball too long. The Irish pass rush is very strong, so this aspect of the game does raise some concerns. Danny Etling can’t hold the ball and accept a sack; he has to throw it away.
We need Derrius Guice to play big once again in Orlando. He is able to make that one move to get into the open. After he breaks that first layer, he will be staring down a safety. We all know that a safety is child’s play for Hurricane Guice! We just need Guice to get out of the backfield and into open space.
This is an important fight! Let’s win it Tigers!