LSU football has arrived. The Tigers will kick off their 2021 season against UCLA at 7 p.m. in what promises to be an exciting non-conference matchup.
The purple and gold were able to engage in some prep work before flying out to Los Angeles on Thursday after a last-minute evacuation to Houston due to Hurricane Ida. Ed Orgeron stated that the team’s thoughts are with the people of Louisiana this week, but that the team’s focus has switched to its first opponent.
“The players and coaches have done a fantastic job,” Orgeron remarked. “We had a tough journey to get here, but we were able to rest on Sunday. It’s like a bowl; our team has been concentrated, everyone has been attending meetings, and we’ve created our own safe haven here, so it’s been nice.”
Notes for the Game
-This will be the first football meeting between LSU and UCLA. It will also be the Purple and Gold’s debut appearance in the famous Rose Bowl Stadium.
-The Bruins are coming off a 44-10 season-opening victory over Hawaii, in which they rushed for 244 yards. On just six carries, Zach Charbonnet rushed for 106 yards and three touchdowns, making him the game’s leading rusher.
-A few key players for LSU, including veteran defensive tackle Glen Logan and freshman running back Armoni Goodwing, are out for this game. Derek Stingley, Tyrion Davis-Price, and the Tigers’ offensive line have only recently returned to practice this week.
-After going 2-0 as a freshman with wins against Florida and Ole Miss, Max Johnson will make his third career start for the Tigers. Johnson passed for 674 yards and six touchdowns in the two games, while also rushing for 97 yards and two scores.
-For both teams, running assaults will play a crucial factor in this game. The majority of the evening will be spent with Tyrion Davis-Price, John Emery, and Corey Kiner, and it will be interesting to see how those shots are distributed. The Tigers’ front seven will be focused on stopping the run after UCLA carried for 244 yards against Hawaii.
-The purple and gold are expected to be well-represented in the Rose Bowl game, as the athletic department not only sold out of the 10,000 visiting tickets available, but also expects another five to 10,000 fans to purchase tickets on the secondary market.