PREVIEW: LSU vs. Tulane - The Matchups

The Tulane is riding a wave of emotion after knocking off Mississippi State last weekend in Starkville. But things toughen up for coach Chris Scelfo's team this week when the Wave ventures into Tiger Stadium for a clash with LSU. Here's our call of the major matchups this weekend.

LSU rushing offense vs. Tulane rushing defense:


This may be just what the doctor ordered for the LSU rushing attack. The Tigers struggled mightily against Auburn last week generating just 42 rushing yards in the game. Tulane ranks 97th in the nation against the run surrendering 171 yards per game. Look for LSU to give the Green Wave a steady dose of Justin Vincent and Alley Broussard, but also get lots of reps for Charles Scott and Keiland Williams as well in preparation for the thick of SEC play.


Advantage: LSU



LSU passing offense vs. Tulane passing defense:


If you thought the Tulane rushing defense is bad, wait until you hear about the secondary. The Green Wave is giving up 314 yards per game through the air, that is bad enough for 115th in Division I-A. JaMarcus Russell started slow against Auburn last week, but heated up down the stretch completing 9 of his last 11 pass attempts ending the game with 267 yards. Look for Russell to play the first half and work on timing with his talented corps of receivers. But expect Flynn and Perrilloux to get plenty of work in as well.


Advantage: LSU



Tulane rushing offense vs. LSU rushing defense:


Tulane running back Matt Forte is a solid back that had plenty of SEC offers in his mailbox when he graduated from Slidell High. However, Forte will be running behind an outmanned offensive line and will find few creases against this talented LSU rushing defense. Tulane ranks 97th nationally running the ball, just 92 yards per game. For a team that just faced the likes of Kenny Irons, LSU's 17th national ranking is pretty respectable.


Advantage: LSU



Tulane passing offense vs. LSU passing defense:


LSU players and fans are quite familiar with Lester Ricard. Ricard came to LSU from Amite, La. and was a redshirt on the 2002 team. Heading into the 2003 championship season, Ricard was buried on the depth chart behind Matt Mauck, Marcus Randall and emerging freshmen JaMarcus Russell and Matt Flynn. Ricard left for Tulane where he has thrown for over 4,000 yards in two full season at the helm. But remember he is facing the best secondary in the nation.


Advantage: LSU



LSU special teams vs. Tulane special teams:


LSU's kickers have been more than capable this season. Tiger kickers have made every field goal attempted (2) and Chris Jackson is averaging 41 yards per punt. The return game hasn't been anything special thus far. Chevis Jackson has been average at best as a punt returner having not gotten a real chance to return a kick yet. Tulane has a talented freshmen kicker Ross Thevenot, but he is only 3 of 5 fon extra points and 0 for 2 on field goals.


Advantage: LSU





There is no doubt LSU is using the Tulane game as a chance to get lots of players in the game and get ready for their second SEC opponent in Mississippi State, which is subsequently the team Tulane defeated last Saturday 32-29. Tulane knows they have little shot at pulling an upset, but are catching LSU at a good time. The Tigers are coming off a tough loss and could be looking forward to Florida in two weeks. While it is likely this game will go about like that of ULL and Arizona, Tulane could make it interesting.


Advantage: Tulane

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