Why he’s good
No Tre Mason? No problem for the Auburn run offense. When Cameron Artis-Payne stepped in behind Mason on last season’s depth chart, he made an immediate impact, rushing for 610 yards and six touchdowns as a junior-college transfer. This season, though, Artis-Payne is the main man in the backfield. He currently ranks No. 4 in the SEC in rushing yards — he’s rushed 86 times for 468 yards and five touchdowns, averaging 117 yards per game and 5.4 yards per carry.
LSU couldn’t be traveling to Jordan-Hare at a worse time. Two weeks ago, Mississippi State gashed LSU at the line of scrimmage, dropping the Tigers to No. 12 in the conference in run defense. Now that same defense will have to travel to a hostile environment to match up against Auburn, which has the fourth-best rushing offense in the SEC. Add on the fact that Artis-Payne has averaged 6.33 yards per game at home, and it could be a long day for LSU’s front seven.
Auburn has deftly used Artis-Payne in short-yardage situations this season. On third down and fewer than 3 yards to go, he has 13 carries for 50 yards, averaging 3.9 yards per attempt. Artis-Payne has picked up the first down on 10 of those carries.
“I have given virtually not a second’s thought on that piece. I think there have been lots of wonderful opportunities for me to have success here at LSU ... so I’ve given little thought to that. I really don’t want to talk about it any further.”
— LSU coach Les Miles on possibly getting his 100th LSU win Saturday against Auburn
By the numbers
7 — Touchdowns scored by LSU’s true freshmen running backs Leonard Fournette (four) and Darrel Williams (three)
73 — Brandon Harris’ completion percentage. He has completed 22 of 30 pass attempts.
162 — Rushing yards per game LSU’s defense has allowed through five games, ranking No. 12 in the SEC.