STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Six weeks into the schedule, LSU's offense appears here to stay.
Zach Mettenberger continued his brilliant season on Saturday night as No. 10 LSU walloped Mississippi State 59-26 in Starkville, completing 25 of 29 for 340 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
He had plenty of help. Odell Beckham Jr. caught nine passes for 179 yards and two touchdowns, while Jeremy Hill rushed for 157 yards and two touchdowns. The Tigers piled up 563 total yards in another dominant offensive performance.
For an LSU team that has traditionally leaned on a bruising defense and deliberate offense, it's a bit of a change. But it's one that veteran coach Les Miles is growing to appreciate.
Now if the Tigers can just stop someone, a Southeastern Conference title could be in reach.
"Offensively, we continue to throw the football efficiently and for big plays," Miles said. "It becomes very difficult for defenses to have extra guys hanging around the line of scrimmage. They back them up and we can run the football."
LSU's defense was again shaky, especially in the first half. The Tigers led just 28-26 midway through the third quarter, but scored 31 straight points down the stretch to turn a tight game into a blowout.
LSU gave up 468 total yards, but tightened considerably in the second half.
"Honestly, we got going a little slow," LSU defensive tackle Anthony Johnson said. "But we went in there at halftime and said, 'You know what, it stops here.' We came out and played our tails off and had a great game."
It was a good sign for the Tigers, who face challenging games ahead. The Tigers (5-1, 2-1 Southeastern Conference) host No. 17 Florida (4-1, 3-0) on Saturday before a road game against Mississippi the following week.
"We will certainly build on this," Miles said. "I think the defense will improve. I know we only allowed three points in the back half of the game and outscored them 31-3. Defensively, I thought we were much improved."