Notes: Defense continues end zone habit

Ron Brooks and Kevin Minter produce non-offensive TDs -- LSU's third and fourth this season -- in a 52-3 romp past Ole Miss on Saturday

OXFORD, Miss. – No reason to let the LSU offense have the fun.

 

That’s got to be what the Tigers defensive players are thinking this season.

Ron Brooks: Interception and 46-yard return got LSU revved up

 

LSU scored two more defensive touchdowns Saturday, its third and fourth this season.

 

Cornerback Ron Brooks’ 46-yard interception return for a TD 28 seconds into the game gave the Tigers a 7-0 lead.

 

Then in the second quarter, middle linebacker Kevin Minter was in a perfect spot to smother Rebels’ quarterback Barry Brunetti’s fumble in the end zone for the 13th defensive score in coach Les Miles’ 88-game tenure.

 

“That is something that we strive for,” senior linebacker Ryan Baker said of the scores. “We felt like we could score just as many points at their offense can.”

 

Brooks’ pick-six was his second this season and third of his career, all for 28 yards or longer.

 

Minter’s fumble recovery for a TD was the first for LSU since Nov. 8, 1997, when Chuck Wiley pounced on an Alabama loose ball. It was the first fumble recovery and TD of Minter’s career.

 

Early onslaught, big bottom line

LSU’s 21 points in the first 15 minutes marked the third time it had scored that many points in a period this season. The others were the second quarter against Northwestern State and the third vs. Auburn.

 

The Tigers also had 35 points at halftime for the first time since Dec. 31, 2008, when they rolled to a 35-3 lead against Georgia Tech in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.

 

Saturday was the seventh time this season LSU has scored 40 points or more in a game. The only other time the Tigers did so was in 2007 and one of those was a 50-48 triple overtime loss to Arkansas.


Running back derby

The versatile LSU backfield was on full display against Ole Miss.

 

Terrance Magee ran for 55 yards on seven carries

Five different backs rushed for 50 yards or more: Alfred Blue with 74, Spencer Ware with 70, Kenny Hilliard with 59, Terrance Magee with 55 and Michael Ford with 50.

 

Blue broke off a 57-yard run, the Tigers’ longest this season and his personal-best. And Ware’s 35-yard touchdown run was the longest play of his career.

 

Ware and Ford both scored touchdowns to stay tied for the team lead with 7 apiece. Blue has 6 and Hilliard is inching closer after plowing in for his 5th against the Rebels. Ware also maintained a narrow edge for the team-lead in rushing yards with 650 to Ford’s 625.

 

Moving the chains

  • Tyrann Mathieu was among the Tigers’ captains for the first time since his suspension for the Auburn game.
  • 2011 World Series MVP David Freese of the St. Louis Cardinals was at the game and introduced during the first media timeout to a rousing ovation.
  • LSU free safety Eric Reid injured right quad in first quarter and did not return to the field. The Tigers were also without backup safety Craig Loston, which gave senior Derrick Bryant his most extensive playing time of the season and he responded with a career-best 8 tackles to lead the Tigers.
  • Tigers’ freshman Ronald Martin also saw time at safety after sitting out the first 10 games with the possibility of redshirting in mind. Martin recorded 3 tackles and a pass breakup in his debut.
  • With the busy and crowded backfield clicking, LSU’s 353 rushing yards were its most since piling up 360 against the Rebels on Nov. 20, 2004 – a game when Alley Broussard punished Ole Miss for a single-game school-record 250 yards.
  • Odell Beckham Jr.’s 36-yard punt return was the Tigers’ longest this season.
  • Jefferson climbs to the top of LSU's QB rushing list
    Jordan Jefferson took over the top spot on the school’s career chart for QB rushing yards with 26 yards Saturday. That boosts his career total to 955 and past Lee Hedges, who had held the mark at 938 yards since 1951. Jefferson also threw his 32nd career TD pass, climbing into a tie with teammate Jarrett Lee for sixth place on the Tigers’ all-time chart.
  • Six true freshmen started for Ole Miss against LSU – two on offense and four on defense. The Rebels have started nine true freshmen in at least one game this season.

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