LSU seeks to preserve top-10 rankings vs. Rice
Rice (1-10) at No. 10 LSU (8-2, No. 7 CFP), 7:30 p.m. EST (ESPNU)
Line: LSU by 43
Series record: LSU leads 37-13-5.
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
LSU wants to stay on track for a New Year’s Six bowl game and keep alive slim hopes of sneaking into a College Football Playoff spot — which could happen if three teams in front of the Tigers in the CFP rankings falter during last couple weeks of the regular season.
Rice’s four starting defensive linemen all are among the Owls’ top seven tacklers and represent the only hope of keeping the score respectable — if they can slow down a running game led by backs Nick Brossette and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Rice: WR Austin Trammel has caught 22 passes for 216 yards and two touchdowns in Rice’s last three games.
LSU: Brossette, a first-time starter in his senior season, is closing in on 1,000 yards rushing. He’s run for 792 yards and 12 touchdowns, with two regular season games and a bowl game remaining.
FACTS & FIGURES
Rice last defeated a team ranked in the AP poll on Nov. 11, 1997, when the Owls upended No. 21 BYU, 27-14, at Rice Stadium. ... The Owls’ last road win over a ranked team came on Oct. 12, 1991, at No. 8 Baylor. ... Rice is one of just two FBS teams on LSU’s 2018 schedule that currently have losing records, along with Arkansas, which LSU defeated last weekend. ... LSU is 5-1 at home in 2018, with the lone loss coming against No. 1 and unbeaten Alabama. ... LSU coach Ed Orgeron, who took over for Les Miles four games into the 2016 season, is 23-8 since. ... LSU is 6-0 when outrushing its opponent this season. ... LSU’s defense has 16 interceptions, which leads the SEC and ranks second in the nation.