LSU vs Texas A&M: The ‘Tale of the Tape’ for the season finale

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Saturday night in Death Valley could very well be the last time we see head coach Ed Orgeron on the sideline. Should the Tigers lose and miss bowl season, his era as the head coach will officially come to an end.

It will be an emotional game for the native from Louisiana. He came home to lead the LSU Tigers to a national championship in 2019. Plenty of speculation has been with Jimbo Fisher potentially coming back to the Bayou. He is adamant that he isn’t leaving College Station but that hasn’t stopped anyone from talking about it.

As far as the actual game on the field, the Aggies are looking for their ninth win of the season and secure their spot as the No. 3 team in the SEC West. In the grand scheme of things that doesn’t mean much but it would give them a better bowl destination.

The Tigers are looking to avoid their first losing season since 1999. Can they do the unthinkable and pull off an upset at home against their border rivals? ESPN’s Football Power Index has the win probability for the Tigers at 38.4%.

So you’re telling me there is a chance?

Let’s take a look at the tale of the tape in this one.

Zach Calzada vs Max Johnson

Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Breaking down the quarterback matchup

Calzada

vs

Johnson

6-3

Ht

6-5

205

Wt

219

Sophomore

Class

Sophomore

164

Comp

203

192

Att

335

56.2

Comp %

60.6

1,943

Yards

2,508

6.7

YPA

7.5

14-9

TD-INT

24-6

Edge: Max Johnson

It is clear that the LSU Tigers throw the ball more than the Aggies do. Johnson has been asked to carry the load for the team on offense. He has thrown it 143 more times than Calzada. Johnson also throws fewer interceptions, if the Tigers want to upset Texas A&M they need a clean game from their starting quarterback.

Isaiah Spiller vs Ty Davis-Price

Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports

Breaking down Isaiah Spiller and Ty Davis-Price

Spiller

vs

Davis-Price

6-1

Ht

6-1

215

Wt

232

Junior

Class

Junior

168

Att

192

984

Yards

919

5.9

YPC

4.8

6

TDs

6

6

100-yard games

4

616 (3.69/car)

Yards After Contact

533 (2.78/car)

Edge: Isaiah Spiller

Spiller has been the more consistent running back of the two. Davis-Price has come on strong as of late but Spiller is the real x-factor to slow down for the LSU defense. Can a depleted unit slow him down?

Jalen Wydermyer vs Jack Bach

Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Breaking down Jalen Wydermyer and Jack Bech

Wydermyer

vs

Bech

6-5

Ht

6-2

255

Wt

207

Junior

Class

Freshman

11

Games

10

65

Targets

65

36

Rec

42

55.4

Catch %

64.6

491

Yards

478

13.6

YPR

11.4

4

TDs

3

Slight Edge: Wydermyer

These two tight end/wide receiver hybrids are very close in their numbers. The Aggies’ tight end gets the nod for one extra touchdown and his yards per reception despite having a lower catch radius. Both players could be key in determining who walks away the winner and who goes home empty-handed.

When LSU has the ball

Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Ranking Comparison (FBS Ranking)

LSU vs Texas A&M

Passing Offense

260.3 (40th)

182.4 (11th)

Passing Defense

Rushing Offense

109.7 (117th)

137.5 (46th)

Rushing Defense

Total Offense

370.0 (90th)

319.8 (17th)

Total Defense

Scoring Offense

27.1 (74th)

14.9 (2nd)

Scoring Defense

Points Per Play

0.366 (70th)

0.217 (3rd)

Points Per Play

When Texas A&M has the ball

Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports

Ranking Comparison (FBS Ranking)

Texas A&M vs LSU

Passing Offense

205.5 (94th)

234.3 (72nd)

Passing Defense

Rushing Offense

194.7 (34th)

144.8 (57th)

Rushing Defense

Total Offense

400.3 (70th)

379.1 (69th)

Total Defense

Scoring Offense

28.9 (58th)

25.5 (61st)

Scoring Defense

Points Per Play

0.411 (50th)

0.377 (62nd)

Points Per Play

Who gets the edge?

Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

The edge in this one goes to the Aggies by a tally of 3-2. They have the better running back and top pass catcher. Not to mention their defense is one of the best units in college football while the Tigers offense has been dreadful this year overall. LSU’s defense has been better as of late but they might need to set up the offense with scoring opportunities to pull this one off.

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