Published August 24, 2010 - 2:46pm
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LSU opens up in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome. LSU fans are excited to see how their team performs against a very good defensive team in UNC. Here are five things about the game you need to know:
1. The SEC vs. ACC Matchup: North Carolina will try to avenge last year’s opening game where Alabama dominated Virginia Tech in the same venue. Year after year, the SEC has the distinction as the best conference with the fastest players, and not to mention the best coaching in the entire country. SEC vs. ACC bowl statistics give a good indication of how dominant the SEC has been historically, with the SEC leading all time with 33 wins and 13 losses and a .710 winning percentage. Those are gaudy numbers, and UNC looks to prove the ACC is worthy of being mentioned with the SEC in the same breath.
2. LSU fall camp has been one of the most physical in last few years. Les Miles wanted to make this year’s camp more physical than in the years past to toughen his guys and to make his players feel a sense of urgency, unlike years past. Miles is trying to send a message to his guys: it has to be now. The hard fall camp is over and LSU is preparing for this one in the Georgia Dome.
3. UNC defense is worthy. UNC has three potential first-round picks on defense in Marvin Austin, Robert Quinn, and Bruce Carter. The Heels finished 6th overall in total defense and 10th in rushing defense. It will be interesting to see if LSU’s offensive line can get established against the Tar Heels front.
4. Could be a game of kickers. LSU returns a very good place kicker in Josh Jasper. This could be a defensive struggle type game where field goals and field position is of most importance. Jasper hit 17 – 20 field goals last year. He is 19 – 22 in his career, including 6 field goals of 40 yards or more. His career longest, a 52 yarder, came last year against Louisiana-Lafayette. LSU has a clear edge in the place kicking battle and I figure it to be an important stat in this game.
5. Les Miles is looking to prove himself once again. If the Tigers lose game one against an ACC team, the LSU faithful will be very upset and will likely put Coach Miles on the hot seat to start the season. He is already on the hot seat among most of college football, but if he loses this one to the Heels, he will most definitely start to feel the pressure.