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LSU - One of the best teams in the last 10 years

posted Feb 18, 2012, 12:45 PM by Daniel Fugitt
The 2011 LSU Tigers had an outstanding season and have the statistics to cement themselves as one of the top five teams of the last 10 years.  It's unfortunate for them, and a rare occurrence, that one of the best teams in a decade is NOT the best team that year.  Even with a LSU win in the regular season over the Tide in Tuscaloosa, Alabama gets the nod as a better team (and I dont think it's that close, Alabama had of the best college defenses ever this year).  The 9-6 OT win for LSU was a game that should have been won 18-6 by Alabama, and the 21-0 domination two months later in the Superdome by Bama should erase any doubts.

That one blemish, however, doesnt take away from a historic Bayou Bengal Season.  LSU beat eight ranked teams this year, by an average score of 36-14. In three games against top three teams (#3 Oregon, #2 Alabama, #3 Arkansas), the Tigers topped 40 twice.  What is even more impressive about those scores was that the Tigers did it with an abysmal passing game.  Jarrett Lee was adequate filling in for the more athletic Jordan Jefferson (suspended at the beginning of the season for beating the shit out of someone at bar), but neither QB was equipped to lead a championship caliber offense.  LSU succeeded with a punishing ground game and an outstanding defense.  Three separate RBs averaged atleast 50 yards a game and LSU scored a total of 35 TDs on the ground.  Defensively, an amazing defensive line and an opportunistic defensive backfield (boosted by Heisman candidate Tyrann Mathieu) terrorized opponents en route to the #2 overall defense in the country (Alabama was #1).  

Take out Alabama from this year and LSU would have had a title team that easily rivaled all but perhaps 2002 Ohio State and 2005 Texas.  I really only include those two teams because of the terrible QB play.  A solid QB puts this team #1 over both.