No. 5 LSU braces for No. 22 MSU’s SEC-leading run game

No. 5 LSU braces for No. 22 MSU’s SEC-leading run game
Mississippi State quarterback Nick Fitzgerald throws a pass against Ole Miss in 2016.

JACKSON, MS (AP) - No. 22 Mississippi State (4-2, 1-2 SEC) at No. 5 LSU (6-1, 3-1), 7 p.m. ET (ESPN)

Line: LSU by 6½.

Series record: LSU leads 73-35-3

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

LSU needs to win to keep pace with Alabama in the SEC West and keep College Football Playoff hopes healthy. Mississippi State is trying to climb back up the AP Top 25 poll and build the best possible bowl resume. The Bulldogs can still win the West, too, but would likely have to win out.

KEY MATCHUP

Mississippi State's SEC-leading running game, which averages 240.7 yards per game, against an LSU defensive front that proved last week it could contain Georgia's potent ground game.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Mississippi State: QB Nick Fitzgerald, who accounted for 264 yards of total offense and two TDs in his previous game, a victory over Auburn two Saturdays ago. He has 2,999 yards and 40 touchdowns rushing in his career.

LSU: LB Devin White ranks No. 3 in the SEC in tackles with 66, including a sack, along with a forced fumble, two fumble recoveries and three passes defended. He’ll be a central part of LSU’s effort stop the Bulldogs' ground game.

FACTS & FIGURES

Mississippi State is coming off an open date ... Last season, MSU recorded its most lopsided victory ever over LSU, 37-7, in Starkville. ... The Bulldogs lead the nation in scoring defense, allowing 12.7 points per game. Mississippi State also ranks eighth in total defense with 289.7 yards allowed per game. ... MSU DE Montez Sweat has 18 sacks in 19 career games. ... The Bulldogs have not lost a fumble yet this season. ... LSU is 15-0 under coach Ed Orgeron when the Tigers feature a 100-yard rusher, including 4-0 this season. ... LSU RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire rushed for a career-high 145 yards vs. Georgia last week. ... LSU's six FBS opponents are 30-11 combined with LSU being responsible for five of the 11 losses. ... LSU has held opponents to fewer than 100 yards rushing 13 times under third-year defensive coordinator Dave Aranda and is 13-0 in those games.

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