Setting the stage
Week 11 represents the 70th all-time meeting between Florida and LSU including the 36th matchup in Baton Rouge.
- Whoever wins this matchup gains the edge in the all-time series, as it is currently tied at 33-33-3.
- The Gators are 12-9 on the road vs. LSU across the last 21 meetings dating back to 1981 despite being 2-7 since 2005.
- Over the last four meetings with LSU, Florida is averaging 487.3 yards per game and 330.0 passing yards per game.
- The Gators have rushed for 100-plus yards vs. LSU in seven-straight games and in 11 of the last 12 meetings.
- In Florida’s last trip to Death Valley in 2021, the Gators came up short in a 49-42 shootout that saw UF total 498
yards. QB Anthony RIchardson threw for 167 yards and three touchdowns.
Florida has scored in 33-straight trips to the red zone (25 TD, 8 FG), ranking ninth in the FBS with a 94.4% conversion rate. The Gators have converted on every trip to the red zone across their last eight games.
QB Graham Mertz has completed 73.9% of his passes (221-for-299), which leads the SEC and ranks fifth nationally. Mertz has thrown multiple touchdown passes in five-straight games including notching his first-career 400-yard passing game in Week 7, throwing for 423 yards and three touchdowns at South Carolina. Mertz has not thrown an interception in his last 188 pass attempts, which is the second-longest streak in program history behind Tim Tebow’s 203 from 2007-08. Mertz has been picked off just once in his last 284 attempts dating back to Week 1.
WR Eugene Wilson III leads all FBS true freshmen in receptions per game (6.4) and ranks third in receiving yards (416) and receiving yards per game (59.4). He has 19 catches for 165 yards and three touchdowns in the last three games.
In year one under DC Austin Armstrong, Florida ranks 32nd in the P5 and 44th in the FBS in total defense with 350.4 yards allowed per game (-91.0 YPG vs. 2022). Through nine games last year, UF had allowed 441.4 yards per game. Florida boasts the fifth-best passing defense in the SEC (209.2), ranking 44th in the FBS and 23rd in the P5.
The other side
LSU (6-3, 4-2 SEC) returns to Tiger Stadium on Saturday, hosting Florida (5-4, 3-3) at 6:30 p.m. in the first of three straight games in Death Valley to close out the regular season. LSU is coming off a 42-28 loss to No. 8 Alabama. Last year, LSU beat the Gators, 45-35, in Gainesville in what was the first of five straight wins for the Tigers. LSU enters the contest ranked No. 18 in the AP poll and No. 19 in the Coaches poll.
The Tigers – behind the play of Heisman Trophy candidate QB Jayden Daniels – continue to have the nation’s most high-powered offense attack as LSU leads the country in total offense (544.6 yards per game) and ranks No. 3 in scoring (45.2). The Tigers are the only team in the FBS to rank in the Top 10 in both passing (No. 3 at 332.2) and rushing (No. 8 at 212.2). LSU continues to lead the nation in pass efficiency, and third-down conversions (56-of-99, 57 pct.), while they are No. 2 in passing TDs (28) and total first downs (238), and No. 3 in offensive TDs (53).
LSU had its streak of 7 consecutive 500-yard games snapped vs. Alabama, but the Tigers’ 200-yard game rushing streak remains intact at 5-straight. Daniels leads the nation in total offense with 386.8 yards per game as he’s topped the 400-yard mark 4 times in 2023. He’s No. 1 in the nation in pass efficiency (199.85 rating) and yards/attempt (11.3), No. 2 in passing TDs (27), TDs responsible for (33), and rushing yards by a QB (684) and No. 5 in passing yards/ game (310.2). In 9 games, Daniels has connected on 178-of-247 passes for 2,792 yards, 27 TDs, and only 4 interceptions.
LSU’s offense features the nation’s leader in receiving yards (Malik Nabers with 1,152) and receiving TDs (Brian Thomas with 11). Nabers has 66 receptions for 1,152 yards and 10 TDs, while Thomas has 45 catches for 768 yards and 11 scores. LSU RB Logan Diggs is No. 7 in the SEC in rushing at 79.4 yards per game (635 yards, 6 TDs in 8 games). Diggs is questionable for the game against Florida.
Overall, LSU is allowing an average of 171 yards per game on the ground. They rank 102nd in the country and 13th in the SEC. The Tigers have the worst 3rd down conversion rate on defense in the SEC and is ranked 122nd in the country, giving up 46% on the season.
LSU has won 10 straight night games in Tiger Stadium and the Tigers are 8-0 under Brian Kelly in Death Valley at night.
Time: 7:30 PM
Location: Tiger Stadium – Baton Rouge, LA
Channel: SEC Network
Radio: ESPN Gainesville – WRUF | The Varsity Network | SiriusXM
On the call
Play-by-Play: Tom Hart
Analyst: Cole Cubelic
Reporter: Alyssa Lang