Already TSD has provided a detailed look at the Syracuse offense under coordinator/quarterbacks coach Tim Lester.
Today we're turning our attention to the Orange defense that LSU will face on Saturday. A group that's stopped the run very well through three games, Syracuse takes its defensive cues from third-year coordinator Chuck Bullough.
What follows is a projected starting lineup and the most relevant defensive notes on Syracuse.
SYRACUSE STARTING DEFENSE
DE: Donnie Simmons Jr. (Sr., 6-2, 264)
NT: Kayton Samuels (R-Fr., 6-0, 300)
DT: John Raymon (Sr., 6-5, 308)
DE: Ron Thompson (Jr., 6-3, 255)
SLB: Parris Bennett (So., 6-0, 216)
MLB: Zaire Franklin (So., 6-0, 230)
WLB: Marqez Hodge (Jr., 5-11, 221)
CB: Julian Whigham (Sr., 6-1, 200)
SS: Antwan Cordy (So., 5-8, 175)
FS: Rodney Williams (R-Fr., 5-10, 196)
CB: Corey Winfield (So., 6-1, 181)
Notable Backups: DE Luke Arciniega (Jr., 6-4, 243), FS Chauncy Scissum (So., 6-2, 207), CB Juwan Dowels (R-Fr., 5-10, 177)
Coordinator Chuck Bullough brings plenty of NFL experience to Scott Shafer's staff as he served as a position coach for the Chicago Bears in the early 2000s and the Cleveland Browns from 2011-12.
Three games into the 2015 campaign, Bullough's defense is building a reputation for two things - stuffing the run and blitzing plenty.
The Orange rank third in the nation versus the run, giving up only 46.7 yards a contest and a meager 1.52 yards per carry. With Syracuse expected to gang up near the line of scrimmage to counter LSU back Leonard Fournette, it will be an interesting chess match to see how effectively offensive coordinator Cam Cameron spreads the 'Cuse out to open up running lanes.
Syracuse's three primarily tacklers cleaning up plays are linebackers Parris Bennett and Zaire Franklin and strong safety Antwan Cordy. The trio has combined this fall for 51 tackles, including nine stops for loss.
The pressure behind the line has been constant for Bullough's troops, too. Syracuse has amassed 29 tackles for loss and nine sacks while staking claim to nine turnovers (five interceptions, four recovered fumbles).
The chief pass-rushing forces, aided by regular blitzers around them, are junior defensive ends Luke Arciniega (five tackles for loss, four sacks) and Ron Thompson (four tackles for loss, three sacks, two forced fumbles).
Aricniega, like LSU's Arden Key, typically doesn't start. But he'll be a major focal point for Tiger offensive tackles Jerald Hawkins and Vadal Alexander, the latter of whom is the reigning SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week.
Syracuse has been one of the country's top teams in turnover margin and will be opportunistic should quarterback Brandon Harris miss his marks or make mental mistakes.
His mental toughness, along with how much traction Fournette gains early, should tell the tale of how the matchups go between LSU's offense, which wants to run, and Syracuse's defense, which to date has excelled stopping the ground game.