The SEC West and a potential College Football Playoff berth were on the line in Death Valley, and No. 2 LSU did its best to remain alive in both by prevailing over No. 9 Auburn, 23-20, behind a strong second-half effort that saw the Bayou Bengals dominate the vast majority of the latter two quarters. LSU nearly doubled Auburn in its offensive output (501-285) on Saturday afternoon and got another efficient effort from quarterback Joe Burrow, who completed 32-of-42 passes for 321 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
What kept this game closer than the box score alone suggested it should be were a couple of LSU turnovers. Derek Stingley fumbled a punt in the first half that set up Auburn’s first touchdown to give Auburn a 10-7 lead. Later, in the third quarter, Joe Burrow threw an interception at the goal line that would have given LSU a 17-10 lead.
Auburn’s offense was stagnant all afternoon. It finished with 130 yards rushing in the game, but even that total was a bit misleading as 70 of those yards came on a D.J. Williams run. The Tigers managed only 60 yards rushing on their other 32 carries. Auburn’s second touchdown drive didn’t come until the final minutes when it was trailing by 10 points. Bo Nix completed just 15-of-35 passes for 157 yards with a score and a pick.
LSU’s win was its 10th straight at Tiger Stadium and made sure Auburn remained winless in this venue since 1999.
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