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BCS Title Game Observation 5: LSU’s Option Wasn’t

“And I’ll get on my knees and pray… We don’t get fooled again.”

The Who may have penned that line back in 1971, but obviously Nick Saban sent that same message to his team throughout bowl practice.  LSU’s option attack surprised Alabama in the team’s first matchup.  It was not going to surprise them again.

Back in November, Les Miles adjusted his offense mid-game.  Out went Jarrett Lee after tossing two picks and in came Jordan Jefferson.  With Jefferson came the option game.  The Tigers’ goal was to force the Tide’s linebackers to run from one side of the field to the other, wearing them out in the process.  It worked well enough for LSU to escape Tuscaloosa with a 9-6 overtime win.

Last night?  Not so much.  And while Jefferson didn’t do the best of jobs running said option, the Bama defense was ready for it when the Tigers called it.

On the night, Greg Studrawa called option plays on seven occasions.  The results:

1st Qtr:  RB ran up the middle on option for 3 yards
1st Qtr:  QB ran left on option for 2 yards
1st Qtr:  RB ran left on option for 0 yards
1st Qtr:  QB ran right on option for -1 yard
3rd Qtr:  RB ran right on option for -2 yards
4th Qtr:  RB ran up the middle on option for 3 yards
4th Qtr:  RB ran left on option for -3 yards

That’s seven option runs for a grand total of two yards.  Remarkably — as we mentioned earlier today — it appeared as though LSU had cooked up nothing new between November 5th and January 9th.  “Hey, the option worked last time,” appeared to be the thinking. 

Well, it sure didn’t work this time.




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