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Tigers Down Paladins Despite Sloppy First Half

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Odell Beckham Jr. scores one of his two touchdowns against Furman on Saturday evening. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images.
Odell Beckham Jr. scores one of his two touchdowns against Furman on Saturday evening. Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images.

Despite a sloppy first half, LSU pulled away from the pesky Paladins to earn their seventh victory of the season. Evidently, the Tigers already were looking ahead to their mammoth showdown in Tuscaloosa in two weeks. By the time the contest against Furman began, Alabama had already dispatched Tennessee to solidify its No. 1 ranking.

Listed below are five key takeaways from last night’s win:

Poor Start

LSU’s first possession ended with a Zach Mettenberger interception returned 74 yards for a touchdown. Some of the other low-lights of the first half include an Odell Beckham Jr. fumble on a punt return that led to a Furman field goal, a personal foul on LSU that resulted in another field goal and a missed field goal and extra point by the Tigers. LSU didn't seem focused to start the game.

Don’t Blame The Defense

Coordinator John Chavis’ defense didn’t allow an offensive touchdown and shut out Furman in the second half. The defense also held Furman to less than 200 total yards (198) despite the Paladins holding the ball for more than 35 minutes. LSU allowed a measly 2.6 yards per rush while Furman converted just 25 percent of its third down opportunities.

Big Three Put Up Big Numbers

Mettenberger finished with 328 yards passing with three touchdowns and two interceptions. It was Mettenberger’s third 300-yard passing game this season. Beckham Jr. was Mettenberger’s favorite target, catching six passes for 204 yards and two touchdowns. Jeremy Hill led all rushers with 14 carries for 143 yards and two touchdowns.

Forty-Five And Counting

The 48-16 victory against Furman gave LSU its 45th straight win against a non-conference opponent during the regular season. This is by far the longest active streak in the FBS, and also the longest streak of any FBS team since 1978.

Redemption

If there’s one thing that can make Tigers fans forgive LSU for its two losses, it would be a victory over Alabama. A victory in Tuscaloosa would also give LSU an outside chance to play in Atlanta for the SEC Championship. This will be the seventh regular-season contest between Les Miles and Nick Saban with the record even at 3-3 during those matchups. LSU won in 2007, 2010 and 2011, while Alabama emerged victorious in 2008, 2009 and 2012.