Bo Nix is the Auburn quarterback again, and No. 22 Auburn finally has a win at LSU this century – 24-19 in front of 102,321 at Tiger Stadium Saturday night.
Nix, a starter since his freshman season in 2019, was benched last week during a near loss to 1-2 Georgia State and was benched again Saturday early in the second quarter after starting in Baton Rouge, but he came back with a vengeance.
Scrambling like Archie Manning, Nix completed 23 of 44 passes for 255 yards and a touchdown and ran as if he was Bo Jackson, leading his team in rushing with 74 yards on 12 carries with a 5-yard touchdown to get his Tigers within 19-17 with 14:16 left in the fourth quarter.
Auburn (4-1, 1-0 SEC) won at LSU for the first time since a 41-7 victory on Sept. 18, 1999, in an SEC opener for new coach Tommy Tuberville. LSU (3-2, 1-1) had won 10 straight at home over Auburn, including 27-23 in 2017 in which Auburn led 20-0 in the second quarter.
LSU led this one, 13-0, in the second quarter. There were no earthquakes or fires as in past LSU-Auburn games, but this was a wild one.
Auburn never led until late in the fourth quarter. Tailback Jacquez Hunter set up the winning touchdown with a 44-yard run, then scored on a 1-yard run with 3:11 to play to put Auburn up 24-19.
Auburn safety Bydarrius Knighten sealed the win when he intercepted LSU quarterback Max Johnson with 1:09 to play after LSU had reached midfield. Johnson finished 26-of-46 passing for 325 yards with one touchdown around three sacks.
T.J. Finley, who transfered from LSU last spring, replaced Nix last week and threw the go-ahead touchdown on fourth and goal with 45 seconds left in a 34-24 win over Georgia State. He replaced Nix with 13:31 to go in the second quarter Saturday with Auburn trailing 10-0 and Nix 4-of-8 passing for 45 yards with 21 yards rushing on four carries.
Finley completed a 35-yard pass to start, but did nothing after that, finishing 1-of-4 passing.
With LSU up 13-0 with 8:38 left before halftime, Nix returned. On fourth down, he avoided four tacklers on a mad scramble to complete a 24-yard touchdown to tight end Tyler Fromm with 4:53 to go in the second quarter to get Auburn within 13-7.
“I just came out here and wanted to be the best competitor on the field,” Nix told ESPN after the game. “I just wanted to leave everything on the field, and that’s what our team did. It’s unbelievable. War Eagle!”