The final home game for LSU's winningest senior class was anything but pretty, but end result was familiar for a team that has won 39 games the past four years as well as the 2003 BCS national championship and two SEC titles.
The Tigers trailed 24-17 in the third quarter, but LSU held the Rebels scoreless the rest of the way and rallied for a 27-24 victory.
"We struggled all week to get our players to have the right mindset about playing this game," LSU coach Nick Saban said. "It's been a thing with this team that I can't explain. We will get ready to play one week, and we do not have the same mental intensity to go attack the next week in terms of preparation, practice and all that.
"It changes on both sides of the ball. I thought the offense was outstanding this last week in terms of how they prepared and how we played physically up front, and it showed in the game. That was the difference in the game: our ability to control the line of scrimmage and run the football."
JaMarcus Russell and senior Marcus Randall both continued to struggle throwing the ball, so the 14th Tigers (8-2, 5-2 SEC) hopped on the back of sophomore tailback Alley Broussard, who rushed for a school-record 250 yards and scored three touchdowns. As a team, LSU rushed for 360 yards and got two interceptions in the final four minutes from defensive back Jessie Daniels to secure the victory.
The Tigers close out their regular season on Friday against Arkansas in Little Rock, where the Razorbacks are 17-0 under coach Houston Nutt.
Copyright (C) 2004 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.