Lightning cancels LSU's season opener

Game canceled after nearly four-hour delay, will not be rescheduled.

LSU only got five minutes into its season opener before it came to an end.

A lightning delay went into effect with 10:08 left on the clock in the first quarter, 6:50 p.m. local time. Heavy rains and frequent lightning persisted for almost the next four hours, until the decision was announced at approximately 10:35 p.m. to cancel the game.

Athletics Director Joe Alleva said LSU will still honor its financial obligations to McNeese State as part of the game contract. He said no decision has been made regarding reimbursements to fans who purchased tickets.

"I'm sorry we didn't get a chance to play, but it boiled down to player safety," said Alleva. "We have to be concerned about their welfare."

The game will not be rescheduled.

LSU's only open date does not coincide with McNeese State's. Alleva said playing the game Sunday was never an option.

"It just didn't seem quite worth it," said LSU coach Les Miles.

LSU only had one offensive and defensive series each before the delay went into effect. Both possessions ended in a punt.

LSU finished with 11 yards of offense on five plays and picked up one first down before punting. Leonard Fournette had two carries for 11 yards.

Brandon Harris completed one of his two passes, and that went to freshman Derrius Guice and lost four yards. His incompletion came on an underthrown deep ball to Malachi Dupre. He'll now enter an SEC contest next week without much game experience this season.

"He would've loved to have [this start]," Miles said. "That's not possible. We can't go back, it's done. He'll have to play with the preparation of this game."

Defensively, LSU forced a three-and-out, including a sack by Rickey Jefferson and Tashawn Bower.

LSU lost a valuable opportunity for experience though in advance of the SEC opener next week. The Tigers will travel to Mississippi State next week in what will essentially be LSU's first game of the season.

Miles said LSU will not alter its practice schedule despite the canceled game. LSU will not practice Sunday, and Miles said they'll look at what little film they have. The Tigers will return to practice Monday.

Miles said the cancellation will "not hinder us."

"They'll enjoy the freshness with a weekend off," Miles said. "We prepared well for this team, and that'll help us."

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