LSU drove 95 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with just over five minutes left and the defense made two key stands in the last 1:44 of play to upset No. 3 and previously undefeated Ole Miss, 10-7, in Southeastern Conference play Saturday at Tiger Stadium.
Quarterback Anthony Jenning shook off to two previous interceptions to lead the No. 24 Tigers on the game-winning drive that took 13 plays which he capped with a 3-yard touchdown pass to tight end Logan Stokes - the only pass on the drive.
LSU (7-2, 3-2) extended its win streak to three games going into an open date.
Ole Miss (7-1, 4-1) got the ball back after falling behind for the first time and picked up one first down but couldn’t maintain the drive when LSU, on fourth-and-one, stuffed quarterback Bo Wallace on a sneak attempt with 1:44 left.
The Rebels, who were limited to 314 yards, got one last possession with 1:19 showing at their own 25-yard line and eventually reached the Tigers’ 27-yard line with nine seconds to go.
On third-and-two, Ole Miss sent out placekicker Gary Wunderlich for a potential game-tying field from 42 yards but was whistled for a delay of game.
The Rebels offense came back onto the field where Wallace, who was 14 of 34 for 177 yards, rolled to his left and as intercepted by senior safety Ronald Martin Jr. at the 2-yard line with two seconds remaining.
LSU was continually plagued by poor field position in the second half – starting drives on its 4, 6, 4 and 5-yard lines – with the latter evolving into their first touchdown series of the game.
Senior Kenny Hilliard, who saw limited action through three quarters, saw extensive action on the drive with significant gains of 19 and 17 yards, respectively, to get the drive moving and into Ole Miss territory.
Freshman running back Leonard Fournette went 22 yards on first down to Ole Miss’ 13 and added a 7-yard carry, plus a 3-yard facemask penalty, moved it to the Rebels’ 3.
LSU rushed the ball 55 times for 264 yards with Fournette leading the way with 23 carries for 113 yards, helping the Tigers control the clock for 35 minutes.
After a mistake-filled first half LSU put together an impressive drive – 90 yards on 17 plays in just over 9 minutes – that reached Ole Miss’ 7-yard line before settling for Colby Delahoussaye’s 21-yard field with 2:47 left.
Delahoussaye uncharacteristically missed a 29-yard effort at the end of LSU’s first series – only the second miss of his career – to come up empty on a drive that an inadvertent whistle cost the Tigers a potential first-and-goal opportunity.
LSU got even closer on it second series of the opening quarter, driving from its own 30 to Ole Miss’ 3-yard line where Fournette, on first down, fumbled on the way to the turf where the ball squirted out into the end zone and was recovered by Serderius Bryant for a touchback.
Ole Miss took advantage and nearly scored two plays later on what would have been an 80-yard TD from Wallace to Jaylen Walton, who after a booth review, was said to have stepped out at LSU’s 37.
The Rebels dodged a bullet second-and-goal when cornerback Jalen Collins dropped what would have been an interception, keeping the door open later for a 15-yard TD from Wallace to Cody Core on fourth down.
What you need to know
1) LSU’s two first-half fumbles marked the same number of turnovers the Tigers had through their first four SEC games.
2) During its “Mustang”package on defense LSU utilized true freshman Sione Teuhema at noseguard to get more speed on the field to rush the quarterback.
3) LSU senior tight end Logan Stokes’ 3-yard TD with 5:07 left in the game was his first catch of the season.
4) LSU true freshman defensive tackle Davon Godchaux was ejected with 1:44 to play for a second unsportsmanlike penalty which occurred on the Tigers’ fourth-down stand.
5) LSU’s defense was credit with 10 pass deflections.