We came out of the tunnel scared Saturday night. We could all see it on the faces of the Auburn players.
A promising first drive resulted in a fumble on a miscommunication between Nick Marshall and Cameron Artis-Payne led to a very quick LSU touchdown. A mishandled punt snap led to another, and Auburn was quickly out of contention. You don't spot a national title contender 3 touchdowns on their home turf at night and expect anything but a loss. Unfortunately, Auburn behaved mentally like many feared they would in the first quarter.
Then something strange happened.
Auburn showed signs of life in the 3rd quarter, and after a quick score, we continued to watch, unlike most of the 'rabid' LSU fans who decided to sit through a rainstorm but leave after things cleared up. By the end of the game, the stadium was half empty, and those that stuck around might have been reaching for the Maalox had the booth review not screwed Auburn.
The bottom line is: if Auburn had come out in the first quarter like they did in the third, the outcome might have been very different.
So will Auburn come out struck with fear/awe of surroundings again? I really do not think so, because the road games down the schedule are not nearly as daunting, aside from the trip to College Station. And even then, Auburn, especially on offense should fare much better against a (being kind) questionable offensive line. Arkansas is always a tough place to play, but Auburn should be pretty seasoned by then, and Tennessee looks pretty manageable, even before they get tenderized by an impossible October schedule.
In a loss in Baton Rouge, this team grew up before our eyes, and future opponents should be on notice that if they sleep on Auburn, they will regret in. Other random thoughts....
--Montravious Adams needs to play more. I know for a true frosh he plays quite a bit, but the defensive line plays better with him in there. He raises the level of those around him. He will be a star in this league pretty soon.
--Get well soon Chris Davis. Auburn needed him as a run stopper and pass defender Saturday.
--Get well Craig Sanders-Auburn needed Sanders Saturday night against the run. We'll need him against the Freeze attack. He3's a firey emotional guy who can make a difference.
--Get well soon Jaylon Denson. Likely not until next season, though. The injury was unfortunate on so many levels, because 1) we need his run blocking 2) if his knee doesn't buckle he probably catches the pass for a first down. 3) He's a good kid who does the little things well.
--LSU read the weather report. Mettenberger threw with a wet ball all week. I''m not saying it helped but you could obviously tell it bothered Nick Marshall.
--Jake Holland. Err...nevermind, the kid has been skewered enough in the twitterverse in the last few days.
So chin up, you orange and blue. We have an extra week to get ready for the