Ole Miss vs. LSU today, Where to watch and keys to the game

Published 9:10 am Saturday, September 30, 2023

LSU comes to town in a top 25 battle. No. 20 Ole Miss Rebels (3-1, 0-1 SEC) take on No. 13 LSU Tigers (3-1, 2-0 SEC). The game will be broadcast today at 5 p.m. CDT on ESPN.

The game is also known as the Magnolia Bowl, a trophy that LSU has won six out of the last seven times. The Tigers lead the all-time series 65-42-4, but the Rebels have vacated one win and LSU has vacated two.

Coming off a loss last week to Alabama, the Rebels face a team that has two SEC wins this season with a tough offense. LSU’s Jayden Daniels has thrown for 1,237 yards and 12 touchdowns with only one interception in four games. He has a pair of talented receivers in Malik Nabers (32 catches, 507 yards, six touchdowns) and Brian Thomas Jr. (25 catches, 394 yards, four touchdowns).

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Rebels quarterback Jaxson Dart, has passed for 1,044 yards and nine touchdowns with three interceptions. He also has a knack for running the ball, with 78 yards and two scores on the ground. His favorite targets are Dayton Wade (22 catches, 373 yards, three touchdowns) and Dontario Drummond (19 catches, 291 yards, four touchdowns).

The key to the game could be which defense can slow down the opposing offense. LSU ranks fifth in the SEC in scoring defense (25 points per game) and sixth in total defense (360.3 yards per game). The Tigers have a formidable front seven led by defensive linemen Mekhi Wingo and Maason Smith and linebacker Harold Perkins Jr., who have combined for nine sacks and 18 tackles for loss. Ole Miss ranks eighth in the SEC in scoring defense (18.5 points per game) and seventh in total defense (351.8 yards per game). The Rebels have a solid secondary anchored by cornerback Keidron Smith and safety Jake Springer, who have three interceptions and two forced fumbles between them.

This game could have major implications for the SEC West race, as LSU is tied with Alabama for first place and Ole Miss is looking to bounce back from its loss to the Crimson Tide last week. Both teams have high-powered offenses that can light up the scoreboard, but the defense that can make some stops and force some turnovers could make the difference.