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It is amazing to see how the perception of a football team can change in one week.
Coming into Week 9, LSU was a team riding high after a 52-24 victory over South Carolina. The defense had turned the corner and the offense was in good shape, regardless of who was at quarterback.
On the other hand, Auburn was viewed as a team fortunate to be 3-2 after a couple of lucky breaks against Arkansas and Ole Miss. Bo Nix and Seth Williams were seen arguing on the sidelines against South Carolina, and everything was falling apart.
As those teams exit the weekend, LSU now looks like a pretender while Auburn may have turned a corner. Gus Malzahn’s squad dominated Ed Orgeron and the Tigers en route to a 48-11 win. That moves Auburn to 4-2 while LSU drops to 2-3.
The quarterback duel wasn’t even close.
A week after an efficient, effective performance with no turnovers against South Carolina, true freshman T.J. Finley coughed the ball up on three separate occasions that Auburn turned into 21 points.
Nix and the rest of the Auburn offense was spectacular. The sophomore totaled 380 yards (299 passing, 81 rushing) with four total touchdowns. He completed 75 percent of his passes and averaged 12.5 yards per attempt. His record at home has now moved to 9-1.
Wide receiver Anthony Schwartz was even targeted deep, and the play was surprisingly effective.
— OutKick (@Outkick) October 31, 2020
This was a team win. Offensively, defensively and even special teams (Anders Carlson and his tackling ability) all contributed to the dominate performance. The question now becomes can Auburn keep it up.
Auburn and LSU both have open weeks coming up, so it will be interesting to see how each team responds following the time off. LSU will take on Alabama at home on Nov. 14, and Auburn will go on the road to take on Mississippi State the same day.
These two sets of Tigers are heading in opposite directions.
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.