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LSU Vaults to #2 Ranking Behind ‘Unbelievable’ Offensive Line Performance

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Photo courtesy of LSU Tigers

The LSU offensive line entered Saturday night’s top 10 primetime clash vs. Florida with ample motivation. In last season’s 27-19 defeat at The Swamp, they allowed eight quarterback pressures, five sacks and 11 tackles for loss.

The tables were turned and payback was certainly earned when the SEC rivals slugged it out in Death Valley.

This time, LSU (6-0) didn’t give up any sacks while paving the way for 511 offensive yards in the 42-28 victory against Florida (6-1). With the win, LSU vaults to No. 2 in the AP Top 25 as they strive for the program’s first national title since 2007.

“We were a motivated group tonight after last year,” LSU center Cushenberry told CST. “We tried to make that clear that we couldn’t let that happen again. We were motivated all week to come to work and it all came together tonight.”

The offensive line paved the way for the LSU rushing attack to amass an impressive 293 yards. LSU running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire finished with 134 yards and two touchdowns.

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow gave a ton of credit to the offensive line. Behind the flawless line play, Burrow completed 21 of his 24 passes for 293 yards and three touchdowns.

“That’s one of the best offensive line performances I’ve ever seen,” Burrow told CST. “They were unbelievable. That’s the best game I’ve ever seen them play… They were all on point the entire night. I was so proud of them.”

Cushenberry says this is the expectation every time the offensive line takes the field.

“That’s our goal every game. Come out and set the tone early,” Cushenberry told CST. “Keep 9 [Burrow] clean and make those receivers and backs make plays.”

Making the showing even more impressive is the fact that Florida entered with 26 sacks and 50 tackles for loss, which were both top-five national rankings. LSU coach Ed Orgeron raved that allowing no sacks was “the biggest stat of the night”.

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“Excited about the play of the offensive line. Zero sacks against a very, very good rush unit. Zero turnovers. We ran the football, we gave time for Joe (Burrow) to throw the football,” Orgeron said. “I’m excited about the play of our tackles. I thought Austin (Deculus) and Saahdiq Charles had their best game. After watching film, the interior was very solid.”

Even though the passing game has largely led the way in this undefeated start, Edwards-Helaire remained confident LSU has the ability to run the ball efficiently whenever that option is called upon.

That confidence was backed up with actions on Saturday night.

“We always knew that we had it,” Edwards-Helaire told CST. “It’s an RPO offense so when it came available we run the ball and we do what we do.”

LSU raced out to a 5-0 start last season but finished 5-3 the rest of the way. With the painful lesson of last season at the forefront of his mind, Burrow is imploring his teammates to not be content with merely being good.

For LSU to claim the ultimate prize, they’ll have to display the consistency of a champion week in and week out. The next step in that journey is this Saturday in the rowdy confines of Mississippi State (3-3).

“LSU standard of performance. That’s what you want your leader to do. I told him jokingly, I said, I’m glad you’re not the head coach, we’d be practicing tomorrow morning. He was kind of PO’d, but I like that. That’s true leadership,” Orgeron said. “Joe knows where we want to go. We all know where we want to go. We got to do it one date at a time.”