A game tied 10-10 at the half quickly became a rout as Lousiana State exploded for 28 points in just 10 plays of the third quarter to post a 45-10 win over the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles.
It was the second impressive win for LSU interim head coach Ed Orgeron.
Derrius Guice got the third quarter started as he took a hand-off from quarterback Danny Etling and the Tigers’ beefy offensive line ran over the smaller Golden Eagles as Guice raced untouched for a 61-yard score.
LSU had taken a lead 17-10 and given a hint of what was to follow.
Five plays later, USM’s George Payne had the ball butted out of his hands. The Tigers recovered, and Guice veered to the left sideline for yet another touchdown.
Southern Mississippi spent the remainder of the third quarter lunging after purple-and-gold glory-bound Tigers and falling short in defensive size, speed, and scheme.
It was the second consecutive blow-out loss for USM and the third time the Golden Eagles’ lack of size on the defensive front has been painfully apparent.
It was a sad end to a bright start after Southern Miss had marched 65 yards in 18 plays in its opening drive to take a 7-0 lead. The Golden Eagles used six early passes to get the ball across midfield and once it was there, they ran eight running plays to score. In all, USM controlled the ball for the entire first eight minutes of the game.
LSU scored three minutes later and the teams traded field goals to tie the score at halftime and give fans the notion that the second half would be as competitive as the first.
That notion lasted all of 90 seconds before Guice got loose and the Tigers quickly put the game away.
Southern Mississippi’s strong running game was ground to a halt and netted just 81 yards among five ball-carriers.
USM’s Nick Mullens continued to show that he has settled down from his early-season woes and he was 25/36 for 161 yards with no interceptions. Unlike those earlier games, he also had no touchdown passes.
Guice finished the game with 162 rushing yards and two touchdowns for LSU in relief of Heisman Tropy candidate Leonard Fournette whose date of return is still unknown.
LSU is now 4-2 (2-0 under Ed Orgeron) and will be at home next week to play Mississippi, 3-2 (1-1), while Southern Mississippi is 4-3 and has next week off.