LSU vs UNC: A Fan's View

The weekend started on Friday for us and didn't stop until Monday night after the Boise State vs Virgina Tech game. The highlight, of course, was the Chick-fil-A game in Atlanta at the Georgia Dome. The fans were rabid, the food was hot, and the beer was cold. Here are a few things that I took away from the game Saturday night.

LSU fans travel well, and boy, do they know how to tailgate

After arriving at the GA Dome, we headed to the Atlanta LSU Alumni group's tailgate. Our friend Bart Wood was so kind to have us as guests. There was food everywhere, beer everywhere, and GREAT people everywhere. The mood was festive and full of anticipation for what the season would bring. Not being able to contain our excitement any longer, we said our good-byes and headed into the Dome.

We Had Great Seats

We got to our seat in time for warm-ups and soon realized that Renee had done us a great service by putting our names on the the list for tickets very early. We quickly made friends with the people around us and got strapped in for what would, in just a few hours, go from what looked like a LSU runaway win, to a 'hold on to your hat' nail bitter.

The 1st Half

Patrick Peterson did just what I have been saying all pre-season, and chants of his name echoed through the Dome. He set a school-record 257 return yards (157 punt/100 kickoff), including an 87-yard touchdown as part of 23-0 LSU run. Russell Shepard didn't disappoint either. He scored LSU's first two touchdowns of the season, including a 50-yard run after a Peterson kickoff return to midfield. Jordan Jefferson had two touchdowns in the first half including a 50+ yard bomb. It was 30-10 at halftime and all seemed well. Alas, how could we forget that with Les Miles at the helm anything could happen, and did.

The 2nd Half

I found it disturbing that Peterson and Sheppard both had issues with cramps in the 2nd half. Since Miles has been at the helm, problems with conditioning have been a recurring theme. There is no excuse, in my opinion, for athletes at this level to not be prepared to be able to go 4 quarters in IDEAL conditions. UNC got back in the game when Boyd got behind the LSU defense for a 97-yard touchdown catch to pull them to 30-17. UNC's T.J. Yates had a career-high 412 passing yards, 261 in the 4th quarter. Had it not been for 2 dropped passes in the end zone at the end of the game the outcome would have been a Tar Heel win, not a Tiger one. A win is a win, I keep hearing, but this team is not as improved as Tiger fans had wished for. I don't think Les Miles took any advances toward getting off of the hot-seat he is on, but it's game one so I'll reserve judgement, for now.

The Shout Outs

I would be remiss if I did not give shout outs to some of the people who made this such a GREAT weekend: Micheal Felder from, Cesar and Nat, Shawn Smith, Norry, Scott and Britt Williams, Doug, John and Megan Williams (the other Williams family), Bart Wood, Dane Monic (and awesome LSU fan and student), the entire ESPN Game Day Live crew, Rapid Taxi of Atlanta, The Holiday Inn Select at Turner Field and Momler and Dadler Ledford for watching Tino for us.

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