Head Coach: Nick Saban (5th year at LSU)
| 2003 National Coach of the Year
(Career: 82-39-1| At LSU: 39-13 | Pac-10 record: 2-3 | Home openers: 7-3)
Current Ranking: No. 4 in the AP, No. 3 in ESPN/USAToday | Picked to win the SEC by the media
Last year's record: 12-1, 7-1 in SEC
Bowl game: Defeated Oklahoma 21-14 in the Sugar Bowl
Streak: Have won their last seven home openers...have an eight-game winning streak (fourth longest in the country) dating back to October of 2003.
Last time LSU and OSU met...Sept. 18, 1983:
The christening of freshmen tailbacks Dalton Hilliard and Garry James was one of the most spectacular debuts in college football, and LSU celebrated with a 45- 7 rout of Oregon State.
|2004 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE|
Hilliard pranced 133 yards on 18 carries and scored three touchdowns on short
runs. He had bursts of 17 and 13 yards to set up the Tigers’ first TD,
and the 5- foot-8 darter had a total of six runs longer than 10 yards. James
yards on 12 carries and displayed his explosive speed with jaunts of 33 and 37 yards. Altogether the Tigers rushed for 371 yards against an Oregon State team that would finish 1-9-1.
Quarterback Alan Risher fired TD passes of 31 yards to Eric Martin and 27 yards to Junius Dural, and Martin’s 26-yard dash on an end-around preceded his scoring catch by three plays. LSU mounted a 515-yard offensive while the defense relied upon five quarterback sacks, interceptions by Jeffrey Dale and Liffort Hobley, and a fumble recovery by Ramsey Dardar.
Series history (LSU leads 3-0):
(1976: LSU, 28-11 Sept. 18 at Baton Rouge | 1981: LSU, 27-24 Sept. 19 at Baton Rouge
1982: LSU, 45-7 Sept. 18 at Baton Rouge)
Teams will play for just the fourth time and first time since 1982 … LSU is 3-0 all-time against Oregon State with all three wins coming in Tiger Stadium…the teams last played in 1982 when the Tigers posted a 45-7 win…first meeting came in 1976 in Baton Rouge with LSU winning by a 28-11 count.
Players to watch:
WR/PR/KR Sklyer Green (5-9, 190)
One of the most dangerous players in the game...can influence the game with his presence on special teams and on offense...the Beaver cornerbacks will receive a good test trying to lock down this talented player...must contain him on special teams if the Beavers are to stay in the game.
QB Marcus Randall (6-2, 224)
Has the arm and mobility to stretch the defense...a lot of pressure to perform well...his play will dictate if LSU can run and pass.
DE Marcus Spears (6-4, 295)
One of the better ends in the country...Doug Nienhuis will have his hands full with Spears, but he will receive help from his teammates...Spears prefers to bull rush which Nienhuis is more comfortable with...on several preseason award watchlists.
CB Corey Webster (6-0, 197)
Lockdown corner with good instincts...will most likely cover Mike Hass...looking to move up his school's career interception list with another good year...on several preseason award watchlists...could also contribute on the offensive side of the ball.
- LSU is expected to be at full strength come Saturday.
In the past four years LSU is...
- 34-2 when leading at halftime
- 32-2 when leading after three quarters
- 36-3 when scoring 20 points or more
- 34-0 when scoring 25 points or more
- 3-10 when scoring under 20 points
- 10-2 in games decided by 7 points or less
- 4-1 in games decided by 3 points or less
- 25-1 when holding opponents to fewer than 100 team rushing yards
- 19-0 when having a player rush for 100 yards.
- 23-5 at home
- 6-2 versus Top 25 teams
- 15-3 against non-conference teams
Miscellaneous Tiger Notes:
- The Tigers have their highest preseason ranking since 1959.
- Forty-one letter winners and 15 starters return from last year's championship squad.
- The Oregon State/LSU match-up is the sixth straight sellout at Tiger Stadium. It is the first sellout for a season opener at home since the 2001 season.
- Saban's 39 wins in his first four years are the most every by an LSU coach.
- ESPN College Gameday is making its fourth visit to the LSU campus for a football game (LSU is 2-1 when Gameday is on campus).
- LSU has not lost a non-conference game in Tiger Stadium since the 2000 season.
- The Tigers have at least one player mentioned on a preseason watch list for nine different awards.
- More than 85,000 fans have attended each of LSU's last 27 home games.
- Since 1960, LSU owns a 87-62-4 (.747) record in traditional Tiger Stadium night games. On the other hand, the Tigers are just 16-21-3 (.438) at home during the day in that span.
- Death Valley is the sixth largest on-campus stadium in the nation holding 91,600 fans.
- LSU has 82 players on its roster from the state of Louisiana.