Texas and Oklahoma are slated to join the SEC heading into the 2024 season after the two sides agreed to exit the Big 12 after the 2023-24 season. According to ESPN, Oklahoma and Texas have agreed in principle to pay the Big 12 a total of $100 million to join the SEC a year early. With this announcement coming a few weeks ago it will change the structure of the conference schedule going forward.
It is expected that the SEC will move to a three-six schedule, meaning that each school will have three permanent opponents and then the remaining six in the conference schedule will be random each year. The conference is going to want to protect specific rivals that is already in place including the Iron Bowl, Egg Bowl, Georgia-Florida, etc. Two of the schools permanent opponents will be classified from the top tier of the SEC and the remaining opponent will come from the bottom tier of the conference.
Here is a prediction of what LSU’s three opponents could look like once Oklahoma and Texas join the SEC:
LSU’s Permanent Opponent #1: Texas A&M
LSU and Texas A&M is starting to become a rivalry ever since the Texas A&M joined the SEC back in 2012. The rivalry started to heat up after the 7OT game back in 2017 where the Aggies pulled off their first win against the Tigers in SEC play, 74-72. There was post game antics on the field that started to lead to the bad blood in this rivalry and add that to the fact that the Tigers thought they had the game won in regulation since they dumped Gatorade all over Ed Orgeron.
LSU currently holds a 35-23 advantage over Texas A&M, but the Aggies got the best of the Tigers as Texas A&M controlled most of the game in College Station. Texas A&M was able to get the 38-23 victory at home over the No. 5 Tigers to dash the slim playoff chances LSU had after winning against Alabama and clinching the SEC West with a win over Arkansas.
LSU won six straight games over Texas A&M ever since the Aggies joined the SEC, but Texas A&M has been able to even up the series in the last four years the two teams met. The Tigers were able to bounce back the year after they lost that thrilling game in 7OT against the Aggies by dismantling Texas A&M, 50-7, in 2019. Texas A&M was able to get back at LSU by beating them 20-7 during the all-conference schedule in 2020 and then the Tigers were able to get their revenge on a walk-off touchdown by Jaray Jenkins as LSU stunned Texas A&M, 27-24.
LSU’s Permanent Opponent #2: Ole Miss
LSU and Ole Miss has had a historical rivalry that dates all the way back 1894. The yearly rivalry game between the two schools has become known as the ‘Magnolia Bowl’. The play that many LSU fans look back on when the two schools get together was Billy Cannon’s Halloween Run back in 1959. Cannon returned a 89-yard punt for a touchdown that provided the only touchdown scored in the game as the Tigers beat the Rebels, 7-3.
LSU currently leads the series against Ole Miss, 65-41-4. The Tigers have controlled the rivalry in recent history as LSU has won the last six of the seven meetings between the two teams. Ole Miss got the best of LSU during the 2013 and 2015 seasons, but after that the Tigers rolled off five straight wins against the Rebels. Ole Miss would be able to break the streak during the 2021 season as the Rebels led from start to finish in their 31-17 win over the Tigers.
LSU was able to get back at Ole Miss this past season in a 45-20 win. It wasn’t easy for the Tigers as the Rebels took a commanding 17-7 lead out of the gates, but a second-half surge led LSU to upset the No. 7 ranked Rebels. The win would be able to spark LSU into the bye week as they were able to take down Alabama and Arkansas in the following weeks.
LSU’s Permanent Opponent #3: Mississippi State
LSU and Mississippi State series history dates back to 1986 when the two schools met for the first time. The Tigers hold a 77-36-3 advantage over the Bulldogs in what has become an age-old rivalry against Mississippi State. The longest win streak LSU holds over Mississippi State is 14 games, which occurred during the 2000-2013 seasons.
Mississippi State was able to snap their 14-game losing streak to the Tigers during the 2014 season where the Bulldogs traveled to Tiger Stadium to take down LSU 34-29. Dak Prescott would have a dynamic performance in Mississippi State’s win over LSU in 2014 as he went for two touchdowns and had a 56-yard touchdown run. The win would vault the Bulldogs to reach No. 1 during that season.
LSU was able to get back at the Bulldogs the following two seasons before Mississippi State took down the Tigers in Starkville during the 2016 season. The Tigers would win the next two meetings, but the Bulldogs stunned the defending national champions in their season opener in 2020. LSU is currently on a two-game win streak against Mississippi State after defeating them 28-25 in 2021 and 31-16 in 2022.
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