Eight digital Lamar Advertising billboards in Baton Rouge will have special messages for visiting South Carolina fans this weekend: “Geaux GAMECOCKS!”
Lamar announced Thursday that it’s using space on its board to display two messages: “Geaux GAMECOCKS! We stand STRONG with you!” and “Geaux GAMECOCKS! Make yourself at home!”
The messages will be displayed through Saturday.
It’s one of many examples of LSU and Baton Rouge welcoming South Carolina in for its game Saturday against the No. 7 Tigers (4-0) at Tiger Stadium. The game will officially be Carolina’s home game after massive flooding in the Palmetto State forced the game’s relocation from Columbia, South Carolina, to Baton Rouge.
There are plenty of other examples.
A 737 United charter plane — which was originally supposed to take LSU to South Carolina — is now doing the opposite, LSU spokesman Michael Bonnette said. The plane will bring the Gamecocks from Columbia to Baton Rouge.
LSU contacted United when the game was moved to complete the deal. South Carolina is footing the bill for the flight.
On game day, the LSU student government association will ceremonially give the keys to Tiger Stadium to South Carolina’s student government. LSU will also host a tailgate for fans of both teams from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday on the Parade Ground, where free food and nonalcoholic beverages will be available.
According to an itinerary on game day, LSU will run out of the tunnel after South Carolina. The home team normally runs out first. The Tigers will also have a pregame moment of silence for flood victims.
The LSU band will play South Carolina’s alma mater before that of LSU’s.
ESPN shuffles lineup
Leonard Fournette has the power to run over linebackers, race past defensive backs and make a multibillion-dollar sports network change its schedule on short notice.
ESPN will air the relocated contest between LSU and South Carolina.
The global sports network bumped the Minnesota at Purdue game out of the afternoon time slot on its main channel and over to ESPNU to make room for the Tigers and their Heisman Trophy favorite.
ESPN shifted six games to air LSU against South Carolina, according to a news release from Tulane, one of the schools affected by the schedule shuffle. The network originally planned to air the game in Columbia, South Carolina, at 11 a.m. CDT.
Fournette has rushed for more than 200 yards and at least two touchdowns in each of the past three games. The sophomore running back is the overwhelming favorite to take home the Heisman at 1-to-2 odds. Because of the game’s relocation and time change, Fournette said he didn’t care where it would be played.
“At the end of the day, we’re trying to go out there for victory,” he said. “Ready to get out there with my boys again — another Saturday.”
Orth to start
For the second time in three weeks, the Tigers will face a third-string quarterback. Former junior college transfer Perry Orth will start for the Gamecocks (2-3, 0-3 SEC) this Saturday, South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier told reporters on Thursday.
True freshman Lorenzo Nunez suffered a shoulder injury in a 24-10 loss at Missouri last week, and starter Connor Mitch is still out with a separated shoulder and deep thigh bruise. Though Orth will start, Spurrier said Nunez “should be ready to do something, too.”
Earlier this week, Spurrier anticipated Nunez would be the starter.
Orth has started one game this season and played in all five, throwing for 283 yards on 23-of-47 passes. He has thrown one touchdown to two interceptions coupled with a rushing score.
Injuries forced Syracuse to turn to its third-string quarterback Zach Mahoney against LSU (4-0, 2-0 SEC), which beat the Orange 34-24 on Sept. 26.
Malachi Dupre has a little extra motivation going into this weekend’s showdown against South Carolina.
The sophomore receiver is eager to line up across from Gamecocks sophomore cornerback Al Harris Jr., who he played against in high school.
Harris’ St. Thomas Aquinas team fromm Fort Lauderdale, Florida, snapped defending national champion John Curtis’ 29-game winning streak with a 27-13 win in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Sept. 13, 2013.
Despite his team’s loss, Dupre said he “had a pretty successful game” against Harris.
He said he thinks he’ll have a chance to face Harris one-on-one again, but the receiver is even more excited to see what the Tigers offense can do against South Carolina’s 12th-ranked SEC defense.
“I know they’ve been susceptible to the pass this year. That hasn’t been one of their strengths, stopping the pass,” Dupre said. “But with the great running backs that we have, they better be on top of their game.”