LSU vs. Tennessee: 4 Halftime Adjustments for the Tigers to Win

Aron GlatzerAnalyst IOctober 15, 2011

KNOXVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 15:  Tyrann Mathieu #7 of the LSU Tigers warms up prior to facing the Tennessee Volunteers at Neyland Stadium on October 15, 2011 in Knoxville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The LSU Tigers (6-0, 3-0 in SEC) are looking to secure top-dog status when the initial BCS rankings come out. To do so, they'll have to handle business on the road today at Tennessee (3-2, 0-2 in SEC).

Neyland Stadium is an intimidating place, but it's the Tigers defense that really strikes fear into the opposition. For the Tigers to stay ahead of Alabama and Oklahoma in the initial polls, here is what they'll need to do in the second half.


4. Play action to set up the run

The Volunteers are using an eight-man attack in the box to try and slow down LSU's excellent ground game. LSU can't abandon the run, but needs to be creative in its passing attack to keep Tennessee honest. Play action before targeting Reuben Randle downfield is a great way to take advantage of Tennessee's aggressive D. Once Tennessee needs to worry about the pass, it will open up the ground.


3. Blitz Matt Simms

Tennessee has a very mediocre quarterback stepping in for the injured Tyler Bray. LSU has the corners who can hold their own on an island. Based on that trust, the Tigers can unleash the dogs, and get into the Tennessee backfield at will to force Simms into poor decisions and more turnovers.


2. Sprinkle in Jordan Jefferson

Jefferson gives LSU a different look, since he can throw and run instead of Zach Lee's one-dimensional passing approach. Putting Jefferson in from time to time gives the Tennessee defense more to think about, which will open up options for LSU's offense.


1. Win the special teams game

LSU has done a nice job of starting with nice field position. Tyrann Mathieu is one of the most dangerous return men in college football, and a couple big returns from him will give another advantage that the Volunteers will have trouble in overcoming.