PREVIEW: LSU-Tulane -- The Matchups breaks down the uit by unit comparisons for Saturday's LSU-Tulane in the Louisiana Superdome.

LSU rushing offense vs. Tulane rushing defense


It is a similar story this week in relation to last week's game. Against South Carolina, the Tigers ran free for 290 yards on the ground. Jacob Hester ran for a career-high 88 yards and a touchdown as did Trindon Holliday, who totaled 73 yards on just six carries. Tulane is statistically better than the Gamecocks against the run (82nd nationally), but look for the Tigers to rip off as many yards up the gut as they'd like in this one. Everybody who wants a carry should get one on Saturday.


Advantage: LSU



LSU passing offense vs. Tulane passing defense


There is no bright spot with the Tulane defense. As bad as the Green Wave is against the run, they are that much worse against the pass. Tulane is giving up 268.4 yards passing each game, which ranks 96th in Division I-A. LSU struggled throwing the ball last week. Matt Flynn managed just eight of 19 completions for 70 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Flynn was visibly off his game, which begs the question:  Will he even play against Tulane? Look for a lot of Ryan Perrilloux and Andrew Hatch in this one.


Advantage: LSU



Tulane rushing offense vs. LSU rushing defense


If you check out Tulane's Player to Watch on page 20, you'll see Matt Forte is a very talented running back. Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of talent around him to help pave the way. Forte, a native of Slidell, did run for 303 yards last week and three touchdowns and is now averaging over 100 yards per game. However, he will be going up against the nation's best rushing defense, which is allowing a stingy 26.8 yards each game on the ground. Last week, LSU held South Carolina to 17 yards on 27 carries. It's going to be a long day for Forte.


Advantage: LSU



Tulane passing offense vs. LSU passing defense


Shaun King, Patrick Ramsey, J.P. Losman, Lester Ricard… Scott Elliott? There seems to have been an extreme dropoff in talent at the quarterback position for the Green Wave. Elliott has completed just 33 of 73 passes for 396 yards, one touchdown and four interceptions. In his last two outings, Elliott completed nine of 23 passes (vs. Houston) and nine of 24 passes (versus Southeastern). Elliott likely won't play versus LSU, until the second half that is. He was replaced midweek by coach Bob Toldeo in favor of Chris Scelfo. Expect Elliott to see action, though, that is if LSU's assault on opposing team's starting quarterbacks continues. Look for the Tigers to get their pass defense numbers back in line after giving up 244 yards to South Carolina.


Advantage: LSU



LSU special teams vs. Tulane special teams


Tulane kicker Ross Thevenot is a good place-kicker, but he has struggled punting the ball. Speaking of punting woes, "punt ugly" reared its head last week as the Tigers got a punt partially blocked versus the Gamecocks. Plus, Colt David missed a field goal. But you have to cut the Tigers some slack considering the condition of the field in Tiger Stadium last weekend. Punt returns continue to be interesting with Early Doucet sitting on the bench. It doesn't matter, though.


Advantage: LSU

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