No turnovers

LSU doesn’t hand opponents points

<p class="indent">When Miami traveled to Fort Worth, Texas, to play LSU, the Hurricanes might as well have left their famed Turnover Chain back at the beach.

<p class="indent">To the best of anyone’s knowledge Southeastern Louisiana doesn’t even have one. But no matter. The Lions wouldn’t have had any use for it either.

<p class="indent">Two games into the season and LSU is one of six teams in the country that hasn’t turned the ball over.

<p class="indent">That’s nothing new.

<p class="indent">It was always a pet peeve of former head coach Les Miles, who hated turnovers with a passion.

<p class="indent">Head coach Ed Orgeron is continuing the tradition.

<p class="indent">Last season the Tigers tied an NCAA single-season record with eight turnovers — and four of those came in a single game.

<p class="indent">Maybe not coincidentally, that was the season’s low point in the shocking 24-21 upset loss to Troy.

<p class="indent">In the other 12 games, the Tigers committed four total turnovers, or one every three games.

<p class="indent">“It’s huge,” Orgeron said of turnovers. “It’s something we work very hard on.”

<p class="indent">In fact, Wednesday’s LSU practices are named No Turnover Wednesday, as Orgeron likes a theme for every day of the week.

<p class="indent">“That’s something I got (as an assistant coach) from Pete Carroll at USC,” Orgeron said. It’s a mind-set, and I have to give our coaches some credit.”

<div class="float"><div class="Lead">

A lost fumble on the first play of last year’s Texas A&amp;M game was LSU’s lone turnover in the last six games.

</div></div><p class="indent">This year the Tigers have forced five turnovers — three interceptions, two recovered fumbles — which has been an increased point of emphasis this season.

<p class="indent">As well as Matt Canada’s defense normally plays, last year the defense forced a relatively few 18 turnovers to end up plus-10 in turnover margin, less than one per game.

<p class="indent">The current margin is plus-2.5 per game, which is best in the Southeastern Conference and seventh in the nation.

<p class="indent">Ironically, this week’s showdown at No. 7 Auburn (2-0) returns No. 12 LSU (2-0) to the scene of one its biggest turnover fiascos.

<p class="indent">In 1994 LSU surprisingly led an 11th-ranked Auburn team 23-9 heading into the fourth quarter.

<p class="indent">But the Tigers threw five interceptions in the fourth quarter, three of which turned into pick sixes as Auburn rallied for a 30-26 victory.

<p class="indent">Auburn scored 21 points in the quarter without its offense picking up a first down.

<p class="indent"><strong>• TEMPORARY MOVE:</strong>

Orgeron clarified on the SEC teleconference Wednesday that safety JaCoby Stevens’ move from safety to outside linebacker this week probably isn’t permanent.

<p class="indent">He said Stevens (6-2, 216) can play the spot, but he also said the versatile talent can play safety and the nickel back spot.

<p class="indent">The move, Orgeron said, is partly due to K’Lavon Chaisson’s season-ending injury at the buck linebacker and partly due to thinking that Stevens can be effective there against a lot of what Auburn likes to do.

<p class="indent">“That’s something we’ve done with our guys,” Orgeron said. “We think he’ll be very good at it.”

<p class="indent">Stevens had the long fumble recovery late in the Southeastern Louisiana game that preserved the Tigers’ shutout and set up their final touchdown.

<p class="indent"><strong>• PERMANENT MOVE:</strong>

Orgeron said he expects the move of Darrin Rosenthal from defensive end to offensive tackle to be permanent.

<p class="indent">The freakishly athletic 6-foot-8, 340-pound freshman played played both ways at Ferriday, where Orgeron began recruiting him in the ninth grade.

<p class="indent">But he wanted to play defense in college and LSU gave him that opportunity before convincing him that his future was on offense.

<p class="indent">“Obviously his length,” Orgeron said of why he likes Rosenthal on the offensive side. “He gives us some length there. He’s a very good athlete and he’s very tough. I think he’s going to be an outstanding left tackle.”

<p class="indent">Orgeron said, however, that Rosenthal is a long way from seeing the field at his new position right now.

<p class="indent">“He’s got to learn his plays and learn his skills. I don’t know how much we’re going to do with him this year, but we’re going to try.”

<div class="float"><div class="Lead">LSU at Auburn 2:30 p.m. Saturday CBS</div></div>

””<p>Auburn defensive lineman Dontavius Russell (95) recovers a fumble from LSU running back Leonard Fournette (7) during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Sept. 24, 2016, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)</p>Butch Dill


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