7 things to know about LSU’s Week 2 matchup against Southern

·4 min read

On Saturday, LSU will face Southern University in Tiger Stadium.

A.W. Mumford Stadium, where the Jaguars play, is a 20-minute drive from Tiger Stadium. Despite the proximity, this will be the first time the programs have met.

Among fans of Louisiana football and within the city of Baton Rouge, this game is being anticipated more than your average SEC vs. FCS game. On the field, LSU will be the heavy favorite, but Saturday will be a significant cultural event for the city.

It will also serve as a chance for LSU to work on some of the issues that plagued the Tigers in the loss to Florida State. Here are seven things to know about the matchup.

This is the first time the schools have met

Southern began playing football in 1916. LSU began in 1893. Despite playing in the same city, the two programs have never met. Saturday will mark the first meeting.

It will also serve as the first time LSU has played an HBCU. Both schools have a storied football history in a city and state that really care about football. There will be nothing short of a city-wide party in Baton Rouge on Saturday.

Weekends like this are what make college football special.

Southern is coming of an 86-0 victory

Southern is 1-0, and that win was an emphatic one, winning 86-0 against NAIA Florida Memorial University. Southern racked up 30 first downs compared to FMU’s 11. Southern ran for 396 yards while holding FMU to just 31.

In the air, Southern held FMU to just 2.2 yards per attempt. It was as much of a beatdown as you’re going to see in this day and age.

Players to know

Against Florida Memorial, Southern’s rushing attack was a three-headed monster. Braelen Morgan led the Jaguars with 85 yards while Jerodd Sims and Kendric Rhymes each added 84.

The three combined for five touchdowns. QB Beseasn McCray went 7/12 through the air for 79 yards and two touchdowns, but was a factor with his legs as well, adding 78 yards and a score on the ground.

Offensive lineman Dallas Black is expected to be one of the best at his position in the SWAC. Jeremiah Stanford and Brian Williams are also worth watching on the offensive line.

On defense, Southern is strong up front with a defensive line led by Jason Dumas and Jordan Lewis, who both were on the preseason all-SWAC team. Lewis is the active sack leader in the FCS.

Southern's biggest strength

I mentioned Southern’s deep rushing attack, which includes a stable of running backs and a dual-threat quarterback. In 2021, Southern eclipsed 2,000 yards rushing and was the only team in the SWAC to do so.

The backs run behind an offensive line that should be one of the best in the SWAC and across HBCU football. Southern averaged 26.4 points/game in 2021, which was fifth in the conference.

Southern was projected to win the SWAC West

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Prior to the season, Southern was voted the favorite in the SWAC’s western division, edging out Alcorn State. Southern went 4-7 in 2021 and third in the SWAC West. The Jaguars last appeared in the SWAC title game in 2019.

Deion Sanders and Jackson State are the overall favorites in the conference.

Southern hasn't played a Power Five team since 2018

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It’s been a while since the Jaguars have faced an opponent of LSU’s caliber. The last time Southern saw a Power Five team was in 2018 when it played TCU.

The Jaguars were handed a 55-7 loss by the Horned Frogs. The last time they faced an SEC team was in 2015. Georgia won that game 48-6.

The Human Jukebox

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Southern’s marching band is universally respected as one of the best in the country. Known as “The Human Jukebox,” the band was founded in 1947. Since that time, the band has performed at events as big as the Super Bowl and Rose Bowl Parade. On Saturday, the band will be in Tiger Stadium.

Story originally appeared on LSU Tigers Wire