4. Yeah, it stinks that UCF didn’t have McKenzie Milton …
But LSU was missing most of its defensive starters – down eight guys at one point – didn’t have any defensive back depth left for more than a half, was missing a few receivers, and was hardly the same team that was rocking and rolling in the middle of the season.
It would’ve been an exhausting argument had UCF won this.
At the end of the day, the American Athletic champion more than held its own. It showed off the speed, the heart, and the skill to stay in this game throughout, but there were too many dropped passes, too many misfires, and too many missed opportunities to pull this off.
Darriel Mack did what he could in place of Milton after doing such a great job at the end of the year, but he only completed 11-of-30 passes for 97 yards and a score – again, the receivers had a lot to do with that.
The defensive front managed to hold up well – to a point.
LSU cared about this game, and it showed.
The Tigers only finished with three yards per carry and ran for 161 yards, but it held on to the ball for 44:31. The SEC talent on the Tiger line wore down the the UCF line, kept grinding out the clock, and kept the depleted defense off the field. And …
NEXT: Joe Burrow came through