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As we march towards the first game of the season, we take one more look at how the LSU Tigers are viewed heading into the opener. LSU will get their first taste on the road against a team they have never played. This is the first trip ever to the Rose Bowl Stadium. They have played in 53 bowl games and not once has it ever been in Pasadena, California.
Recently CBS Sports released their predictions for the SEC, with the Tigers being projected as the No. 3 team in the west. They have Alabama and Texas A&M just ahead of them. Only Barrett Sallee has any faith in the Bayou Bengals, as he projected them as No. 1 in the SEC West. He also views them as the most underrated team of the conference.
Please, can we get over the notion that LSU is a complete disaster and will fold like a cheap tent in 2021? Coach O told me at SEC Media Days that he learned from his mistakes from last season — specifically loyalty to offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger and his decision to go old-school with Bo Pelini as his defensive coordinator. The struggles that the young players went through will help this year. With almost exclusive five-man protection and playmakers in space on offense, and a much more cohesiveness on defense, the Tigers should improve. LSU is Alabama’s biggest threat in the West. In fact, it’s on Alabama’s level and will separate itself from Texas A&M. — Sallee
Not everyone sees the Tigers in the same light. Sallee might be on an island alone. Not just in the media but even with his own colleagues. Dennis Dodd and David Cobb believe that LSU is the most overrated team in the SEC.
There is too much that can potentially go wrong. OK, so Myles Brennan probably wasn’t going to win the job? Well, now you’ve got no experience past Max Johnson. Alabama, Texas A&M and possibly Auburn are better … to the point that I don’t know if 9-3 takes pressure off Ed Orgeron. Chasing the ghost of Joe Brady by hiring a guy who worked with him at the Panthers (Jake Peetz) seems strange. Watch that September schedule. If LSU doesn’t take care of business against UCLA in the opener, things could get ugly real quick. — Dennis Dodd (also David Cobb)
Not a shocking development to see analysts viewing one particular team on each side of the spectrum. The Auburn Tigers were also viewed in both categories for CBS Sports. That makes a ton of sense given they have a new head football coach in Bryan Harsin. The team also has one of the top running backs in the country with Tanks Bigsby and an inconsistent quarterback in Bo Nix.
These two teams are set to matchup in Death Valley on Oct. 9.