LSU’s defensive tackles took another hit.
Redshirt freshman Frank Herron was injured in an off-the-field incident and did not dress out, team spokesman Michael Bonnette confirmed before Saturday’s game against New Mexico State.
LSU coach Les Miles had said earlier this week that one of LSU’s three redshirt freshman defensive tackles had suffered an injury. He would not reveal who was hurt, though.
Miles touted Herron during preseason practice as a guy who would play substantially. He actually has been a little-used third-stringer.
Quentin Thomas, who injured his left arm against Mississippi State last week, did not dress, as expected. Thomas’ injury is not considered serious, and he could return next week at No. 5 Auburn, Miles suggested this week.
LSU has struggled at defensive tackle and has depth issues at the position, too. Thomas is playing with a torn biceps in his right arm, and the Tigers moved 255-pound Lewis Neal from defensive end to help the group.
LSU defensive back Dwayne Thomas, the Tigers’ starting nickelback, injured his right knee in the second quarter and was seen heading into the locker room on crutches.
His status was not immediately available, but he did not return to the game. Thomas, a sophomore who went to O.P. Walker High School, appeared to be replaced in the nickel formation by freshman Jamal Adams.
Thomas injured the knee while making a cut during a blitz. Trainers iced his knee on the sideline before taking him into the locker room.
LSU’s offense, which had just four turnovers in the first four games of the season, had four in the first 13 minutes, 51 seconds Saturday night.
Quarterback Anthony Jennings fumbled the ball away on the Tigers’ first possession and threw interceptions on two of the next three series — giving them three giveaways on their first 10 snaps — before Kenny Hilliard lost a fumble late in the period.
New Mexico State wasn’t immune to the turnover bug. Quarterback Tyler Rogers threw two interceptions in the first quarter, and the Aggies also lost a fumble in the second quarter to push the turnover count to seven for the teams in the first half.
When LSU middle linebacker Kendell Beckwith intercepted a Rogers pass late in the first quarter and returned it 29 yards for a score, it was the 14th defensive touchdown for the Tigers under defensive coordinator John Chavis.
LSU is 10-1 when it scores a defensive touchdown since Chavis was hired in 2008.
The guest captains for the game were two members of the 2013 LSU team who are now playing in the NFL: running back Jeremy Hill and linebacker Lamin Barrow.
Hill, a former Redemptorist High star, was a second-round pick of the Cincinnati Bengals. Barrow was chosen by the Denver Broncos in the fifth round. Both the Bengals and Broncos have byes this week.
0 for 4
Mike VI is 0 for 4.
LSU’s bengal tiger stayed in his habitat Saturday, failing to come out for his pregame parade to Tiger Stadium for a fourth time in as many home games.
LSU’s tiger used to appear at each home game, but trainers no longer force Mike into his cage for the pregame ritual.
LSU extended the nation’s longest nonconference regular-season winning streak to 49 games. The last time LSU dropped a nonconference regular-season game was in 2002, when the Tigers fell to Virginia Tech in the season opener. … LSU is 24-1 under Miles following a loss, and the Tigers haven’t lost back-to-back games since 2008 (Ole Miss and Arkansas). LSU has not lost consecutive games in Tiger Stadium under Miles. They improved to 44-4 under Miles in night games at Tiger Stadium. ... Freshman receiver Malachi Dupre got the first start of his career. … Terrence Magee got his first touchdown of the season, scoring from 11 yards to give LSU a 7-0 lead with 2:07 left in the first quarter. … Early in the second, officials needed another yard marker after the original one broke. There was a short delay while they brought the backup marker into the game.