Florida Postgame Wrap
Quotes and reaction from LSU’s locker room following disappointing loss
GAINESVILLE, Fla - It wasn’t completely shocking.
LSU navigated a fairly light schedule in September, earning victories but lacking style points in a big way. Saturday afternoon in the Swamp, every flaw on the squad was exposed as the Gators earned a 14-6 win over the Tigers in front of more than 90,000 in the stands and an entire country on CBS.
The LSU offense went an excruciating 45 minutes of game time without moving the chains, save two penalty aided first downs in the third quarter.
The Tigers ran for just 42 yards and finished with an anemic 200 yards of total offense. Florida, meanwhile, stuck to the new-look power running Game Will Muschamp desires, handing the ball to Mike Gillislee 34 times for 146 yards and two scores.
LSU turned the ball over three more times, one out of desperation, and committed eight more penalties for 83 yards.
The Tiger defense, namely Kevin Minter, did show up to play, shutting the Gators out in the first half and allowing just 47 total yards. They also forced a pair of turnovers. The unit simply ran out of steam in the second half as Florida finished with a decided 37:24 to 22:36 advantage in time of possession.
The aforementioned Minter finished the night with a jaw-dropping 20 tackles, 13 solo, two sacks and three tackles for loss. He was everywhere. Minter did have to hit the locker room in the third quarter because of some cramps, and Florida pounced on that opportunity by driving right down the field for a touchdown.
The LSU passing game continued to lay dormant. Junior quarterback Zach Mettenberger finished 11-of-25 for 158 yards and an interception. Fifty-six of those yards were fruitless as Odell Beckham Jr. coughed the ball up before being brought down.
Perhaps the sequence that changed the game came when Bennie Logan stripped Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel of the ball and the Tigers recovered at the Florida seven yard line with 2:02 to play in the first half.
LSU stalled and kicked a field goal to take a 6-0 lead at halftime. That was the last time LSU would threaten to score.
Les Miles said many of the same things he’s said all year. Mistakes have to be corrected, and the team has to execute. Even a loss didn’t change his tune. The fact is that the mistakes have not been corrected and the execution is poor. The players seemed a tad dejected, as you might expect, but none popped off or said anything stupid. Sam Montgomery said all of the team’s goals are still in front of them, and Minter said they might face Florida again in Atlanta. Mettenberger said the offense just has to “keep plugging away”, but he didn’t give any solution or alternative method of doing so. It was nothing like the BCSNC locker room. I don’t think a lack of focus will derail the season. Now getting beaten by better teams, that could.
Best of the Quotes:
“We played with great effort tonight, just execution of offense has got to get better. When they pin us deep we gotta fight our way out. This team has still got potential to be a great team.”
- LSU junior quarterback Zach Mettenberger
“(Florida was) definitely more physical than last year. You work on what your weakness was, and they clearly did that and came out and played a good ballgame.”
- LSU junior defensive end Barkevious Mingo
“(Florida) just threw the passing game out. It came down to pride as a man. The thing is, our guys have a lot of pride, but we had some injuries, we had some nicks, we had some nacks. Our guys stood in there, and we played hard.”
-LSU junior defensive end Sam Montgomery
“(Florida) just did a lot of misdirection. They caught us on our heels a little bit. To be honest, it was more on us. We just gotta get better. That’s all it is.”
- LSU junior linebacker Kevin Minter
“Well we probably throw it better than we showed, and we definitely run it better than we showed it. We need to execute. We lost Williford on the second series and put a guy in there that hasn’t taken as many reps, and that’s not really the reason, because I think he played pretty well. How do we fix it? We go back and work hard at it.”
- LSU Head Coach Les Miles
“We will make corrections and understand where we are at. I think our football team is sick, sick with knowledge that they could have played better.”