LSU Will Limp to Atlanta, Hoping to Rebound in the SEC Championship Game After Shocking 38-23 Loss to Texas A&M
Da Boot Sports/Fanboy Publication
By: Terrill J. Weil
COLLEGE STATION, TX - The 5th ranked LSU Fighting Tigers took their five game winning streak into College Station to battle the struggling Texas A&M Aggies in the regular season finale.
But unfortunately it was LSU who ended up playing like the problemed ball club as the Aggies shocked the Bayou Bengals with a 38-23 upset win.
The Aggies surprisingly ran the ball at will all game long against a tough LSU defense, finishing with 274 total rushing yard.
A&M running back Devon Achane had a huge night as he finished with 215 yards on 38 carries and two touchdowns.
The loss puts an end to the SEC West Champions' college football playoff hopes. Now LSU will need to put this disappointing defeat behind them quickly and get ready to face #1 ranked Georgia next weekend in the SEC Championship Game.
The Aggies drew first blood, driving 90 yards in 15 plays with Devon Achane taking it into the end zone from ten yards out giving A&M a 7-0 lead with 4:54 left in the first quarter.
The LSU offense answered the Aggies score on the next possession as John Emery Jr. scored on a physical four yard touchdown run to culminate the 12 play, 75 yard drive to even the game at 7-7 with 14:00 left in the second quarter.
Freshman quarterback Connor Weigman lead the Texas A&M offense on a nice scoring drive on their next possession to regain the lead 10-7 as Randy Bond kicked a 25 yard field goal.
The first half shoot out continued as LSU again answered the A&M score driving, moving 59 yards on ten plays before having to settle for a Damian Ramos 34 yard field goal to tie the score at 10-10 with 5:38 left in the first half.
Once again the Aggies would take it right back to the LSU defense, easily driving 72 yards on nine plays, scoring on a three yard touchdown pass from Weigman to Donovan Green to give A&M a 17-10 lead with 1:10 left on the clock.
Trailing 17-10 at the half, the Tigers took their first possession of the third quarter and drove 71 yards in nine plays, with John Emery Jr. scoring on a 19 yard touchdown run to tie the score at 17-17 with 9:40 left in the quarter.
With the LSU defense forcing back to back three and outs, it was the A&M defense that would make a huge play to give the Aggies the lead back when Damian Richardson scoop up a Jayden Daniels fumble and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown. 24-17 A&M with 7:03 left in the third period.
The defensive Texas A&M score totally changed the momentum of the contest as the Aggies increased their lead to 31-17 on the first play of the fourth quarter when Weigman found Moose Muhammad III in the end zone for a 21 yard touchdown to finish an eight play, 83 yard drive.
Things continued to spiral out of control for the Tigers as the offense continued to struggle since the huge turnover, as the upset minded Aggies smelled the opportunity to put the 5th ranked Bayou Bengals away, and that they did.
A&M once again dominated the line of scrimmage, as they made it look easy moving the ball up the field on their next offensive possession. They drove 77 yards in eight plays, as Achane turned out the lights on the Tigers with a ten yard touchdown run. LSU now trailed 38-17 with only 7:46 left in the contest.
LSU's offense finally started to show a sense of urgency, picking up the tempo, striking quickly for a score as they went 75 yards in six plays in only 1:25. John Emery Jr. scored his third touchdown of the game from three yards out as the Tigers now trailed 38-23 after a failed two point conversion attempt.
The Tigers had one more drive left in them, going 38 yards in six plays, but ended up turning the ball over on downs after an apparent Jaray Jenkins 27 yard touchdown catch on 4th and 15 was ruled incomplete, killing any comeback.
With the loss the Tigers finish the regular season 9-3 overall, 6-2 in SEC play.
Next up LSU will face probably their toughest opponent of the season as they travel to Atlanta to take on top ranked Georgia in the SEC Championship Game, Saturday, December 3rd. Kickoff is set for 3:00pm CST and the game will be televised on CBS.
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