Arlington, Texas — Nick Brossette ran for 125 yards with two touchdowns, grad transfer quarterback Joe Burrow won his first college start and No. 25 LSU made an opening statement with a 33-17 victory over No. 8 Miami on Sunday night.
Once the game started, the Hurricanes never really backed the bravado they showed in a feisty exchange of words and some shoving between the teams during warmups about 75 minutes before kickoff.
LSU led 27-3 by halftime after Jacob Phillips returned an interception 45 yards for a touchdown.
“Regardless of what’s out there and what people say, we believe in each other in that room, and we proved it tonight,” Tigers coach Ed Orgeron said about the perception that his team was the underdog.
Cole Tracy, a kicker last season at Division II Assumption College, made four field goals in his Tigers debut. His 54-yarder, which tied a school record, just skimmed over the crossbar and made it 33-3 late in the third quarter.
Miami, which has lost four games in a row since a 10-0 start last season, never got to celebrate with that gaudy turnover chain that comes out when the Hurricanes get a takeaway.
“We certainly had some things go well and some things not well,” said Miami coach Mark Richt, going into his third season at his alma mater. “A lot of self-inflicted wounds, not to take anything away from what LSU did. They beat us soundly.”
When LSU fumbled on the opening drive, receiver Dee Anderson managed to recover after taking a shot to the head and losing the ball briefly at the end of an 11-yard catch for a first down. The Hurricanes instead lost starting cornerback Trajan Bandy when he was ejected for targeting.
The Hurricanes thought they had a fumble return for a touchdown later in the first quarter, but a replay review determined it was an incomplete pass by Burrow instead of a fumble.
LSU went ahead to stay in the final minute of the first quarter after Burrow, who played in 10 games for Ohio State the past two years, changed a play at the line of scrimmage. Brossette then took an inside handoff and went untouched down the middle of the field for a 50-yard touchdown run that snapped a 3-3 tie.
“We saw it in camp, I thought he was our most physical back,” Orgeron said.
Burrow finished 11 of 24 for 140 yards.
“Execute, do what the gameplan says,” Burrow said “Really all that was on my mind was going out and playing with my brothers and executing at a high level.”
Brossette’s 1-yard run made it 17-3 on an 11-play drive when LSU twice converted fourth-and-1 — on a 2-yard gain by Brossette near midfield, and when Miami jumped offside. He had only 96 yards rushing all last season as a junior.
Alabama coach Nick Saban reportedly reached out to ABC reporter Maria Taylor to apologize for his terse response to her question during a postgame interview Saturday night.
Taylor caught up with Saban following his team’s 51-14 win over Louisville in the Camping World Kickoff Saturday in Orlando. She asked him to assess the play of his two quarterbacks especially that of Tua Tagovailoa, who started the game instead of incumbent Jalen Hurts.
“I still like both guys,” he told Taylor tersely on the ABC broadcast. “I think both guys are good players. I think both guys can help our team. So why do you continually try to get me to say something that doesn’t respect one of them. I’m not going to. So quit asking.”
According to author and Origins podcast host Jim Miller, Saban called Taylor to apologize for his handling of the situation. “Last night #NickSaban called and apologized to @MariaTaylor7 #RollTide #mariataylor.”
Saban was unhappy with the way his team performed during the game and said as much during his postgame remarks.
A Connecticut Superior Court judge is set to hear arguments about whether UConn football coach Randy Edsall should be allowed to retain his son as an assistant coach with the team. Edsall is appealing a ruling by the state’s ethics office that the school violated Connecticut’s ban on nepotism by hiring Corey Edsall in 2017 as the school’s tight ends coach.
... Notre Dame defensive tackle Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa is expected to miss about 10 weeks after he suffered a broken foot in Saturday’s 24-17 win against Michigan.