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No. 6 LSU opens against Georgia Southern

August 29, 2019
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FILE - In this April 6,2019, file photo, LSU coach Ed Orgeron, left, gives freshman cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. (24) a pat on the head after talking with him briefly after Stingley fielded a punt during the NCAA college football team's spring scrimmage n Baton Rouge, La. Stingley was the nation’s No. 1 prospect in his class according to Rivals and was rated third according to the 247Sports Composite. Travis Spradling/The Advocate via AP, File)
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FILE - In this April 6,2019, file photo, LSU coach Ed Orgeron, left, gives freshman cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. (24) a pat on the head after talking with him briefly after Stingley fielded a punt during the NCAA college football team's spring scrimmage n Baton Rouge, La. Stingley was the nation’s No. 1 prospect in his class according to Rivals and was rated third according to the 247Sports Composite. Travis Spradling/The Advocate via AP, File)

Georgia Southern (10-3 last season) at No. 6 LSU (10-3), Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Line: LSU by 27 1/2.

Series record: First meeting.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

LSU aims to affirm its status as a national contender with a convincing performance and otherwise keep starters healthy in advance of a highly anticipated Week 2 visit to No. 10 Texas. Georgia Southern seeks to consolidate gains made last season and deliver a competitive showing against a major opponent on the road in advance of their Sun Belt Conference schedule.

KEY MATCHUP

LSU’s deep and talented secondary, led by returning starters Grant Delpit and Kristian Fulton, against an efficient Georgia Southern passing game that finished last season without one interception.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Georgia Southern: Junior Wesley Kennedy III plays running back and receiver as well as kick and punt returner. He had 1,306 all-purpose yards last season, including 495 yards rushing, 182 yards receiving, 529 yards on kickoff returns and 100 yards on punt returns.

LSU: Cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. is making his much-anticipated debut. The 6-foot-1, 190-pound freshman was among the highest rated recruits at any position in the nation last year.

FACTS & FIGURES

The Eagles, who made the jump from the second-tier Football Championship Subdivision to the Football Bowl Subdivision in 2014, have never defeated a ranked FBS team on the road. ... Chad Lunsford is in his second full season as Georgia Southern coach. In his first, the Eagles became just the fourth FBS program to go from double-digit losses to double-digit wins in successive seasons. ... Georgia Southern runs the triple option and averaged 266.2 yards rushing and 79 yards passing in 2018. Quarterback Shai Werts rushed for a Sun Belt quarterback record 15 scores and passed for 987 yards and 10 TDs last season. ... LSU’s Joe Burrow returns as starting quarterback after passing for 2,894 yards and 16 TDs last season and rushing for 399 yards and seven TDs. ... Ed Orgeron is 25-9 at LSU as he enters his third full season as Tigers coach. ... Delpit was a unanimous All-America selection last season after leading the Southeastern conference with five interceptions to go with his team-leading five sacks.

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