While very few people realistically expected the Huskies to head down to Baton Rouge and beat the Tigers, I think almost as few saw this kind of a beat down in the cards either.
The game began with an LSU fumble deep in UW territory, followed by a Husky field goal that made the score 3-0, but from that next possession on it was a one sided affair.
What stood out the most to me about the loss is how the Tigers did exactly what everyone expected them to do. There were no surprises. On offense, they pounded the ball with their seemingly endless stable of powerful backs and then picked apart a defense desperately trying to stop the run with crisp play action passing. On defense, they managed to put crippling pressure on Keith Price while only rushing four, allowing the other seven players to keep every single receiver well covered.
September 8, 2012; Baton Rouge, LA, USA; LSU Tigers defensive end Barkevious Mingo (49) against the Washington Huskies during the first quarter of a game at Tiger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE
The Husky offensive line, already destabilized by the loss of right tackle Ben Riva last Saturday, was thrown into chaos by a first quarter injury to Erik Kohler, one of the few veteran presences on the line. From that point on, Keith Price rarely had an opportunity to stand in the pocket and throw, and there were zero holes for the Husky running backs to take advantage of.
On defense, the Huskies were not nearly as inept, but it was still clear that they were physically outmatched. Even simple dives up the middle often produced eight or nine yards due to the outrageous push generated by the monster LSU offensive line.
This was not a pretty game, and it made it very clear that the Huskies are not ready to play with the elite programs of college football. More on the specific elements of the game, and what it means for the Huskies going forward, later tonight.