LSU Football Preview

Just how good have the Bayou Bengals been in recent years?

Well, LSU has won a grand total of 44 games straightup the past four seasons and that includes bowl wins against Oklahoma (2003 BCS Championship Game win in the Sugar Bowl), Miami (the 2005 Peach Bowl) and Notre Dame (last year's Sugar Bowl).

The odds are Les Miles' club won't exactly fall off the face of the college football map even though it lost QB JaMarcus Russell to the first overall pick in April's NFL Draft - to say nothing of having two star wide receivers get snapped up later in Round One (see Dwayne Bowe and Craig Davis).

P.S., note that LSU has not suffered a sub-.500  spread season since 1999 when that Gerry DiNardo-coached crew went 5-6 versus the odds and note the past four years have produced a 30-18-2 ATS record that's produced a .625 winning rate - go ahead and you won't find too many teams better than that cover-wise during this time frame.

There's talent galore in Baton Rouge where the QB Matt Flynn-to-WR Early Doucet tandem should make for some exciting times for a Tigers attack that is used to the high life after last year's unit scored 40-plus points on six different occasions.

In case you'd forgotten, the aforementioned Russell contributed 3,129 yards passing with 28 TDs and only 8 INTs while completing 68 percent of his attempted passes - now that deserves a wow! Plus, Bowe (65 receptions and 12 scores) and the oft-overlooked Davis (52 catches and a 15-yards-per-grab average) were monumental playmakers for that 11-win LSU outfit.

The here-and-now about LSU's offense says redshirt freshman RB Richard Murphy averaged 7.7 yards a rush en route to an 85-yard game in the spring and - as usual - there's a serious stockpile of starry running backs on hand that includes Alley Broussard. Expect a running backs-by-committee approach until and unless someone can break out of the pack and take the #1 job by the throat.

The LSU defense took some major hits in the secondary where a couple of stellar players - including top 10 NFL draftee LaRon Landry - are gone but defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey is back after a brilliant '06 season and LB Ali Highsmith has all the tools to become one of the SEC's best in due time.

No doubt that LSU's game this year against the Nick Saban-led Alabama Crimson Tide will be a "must see" affair on Nov. 3rd in Tuscaloosa and there will be plenty of Tigers ready/willing/able to make lots of noise in that game after Saban jumped ship on LSU following the 2004 season. Note that road teams are 8-1-1 spreadwise in the past 10 LSU-'Bama showdowns.

SEC Conference championship odds posted at have LSU clearly listed as the favorite at 1/2 odds to win the 2007 SEC Championship. That means if LSU was able to win the 2007 SEC title like everyone suspects they will, every $200 bet would only payout out $100.

If LSU doesn't get caught looking ahead to that early November tilt and can win the SEC Championship Game in December, then these Bengals might just make themselves a serious case to play in their second BCS title tilt in four years. Note that an Oct. 13th game at Kentucky could be a problem spot as it comes on the heels of LSU's home game against Florida and right before the Tigers' home game against Auburn ... you have been forewarned!

LSU has the second best chance to go all the way in 2007 behind USC according to oddsmakers. has made the LSU Tigers 4/1 odds of winning the 2007 BCS Bowl Championship Series National Title. With that small reward to bettors, you know the guys who set the lines think the Tigers have a pretty good chance of winning the title this year.

Did You Know? ... LSU is an electric 33-3 straightup at home since the start of the 2002 season with the only losses coming against Tennessee (a 30-27 setback in 2005 right after Katrina) and versus Florida (a 19-7 defeat in 2003).

by: Anthony White - - Email Us

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