LSU football schedule and predictions takeaways:
- LSU faces the UCLA Bruins in Week 1 of the college football season.
- The Tigers’ bye is Week 9, and is set between SEC road matchups against Ole Miss and Alabama (Oct. 23 and Nov. 6).
- Sportsnaut predicts LSU will end the regular season with an 11-1 record.
The LSU Tigers are coming off a 5-5 record, but with several key players returning, you can bet they’re ready to overcome that national championship hangover and bounce back in 2021.
It’s not the easiest schedule for LSU this coming season, and the quarterback situation is still up in the air. However, expectations are always high in Baton Rouge, and there’s enough talent and experience on this roster to make a real push for the College Football Playoff.
Below is a complete breakdown of the 2021 LSU football schedule, with predictions for each game.
LSU football schedule predictions, roster outlook
Let’s take a look at the team’s complete 2021 schedule and make predictions for each game.
LSU football roster outlook
All our predictions are based on the Tigers starting these key players:
- QB – Myles Brennan / Max Johnson
- RB – Tyrion Davis-Price, John Emery Jr.
- WR – Kayshon Boutte, Trey Palmer, Koy Moore
- TE – Kole Taylor
LSU has a big decision to make at quarterback, and while Myles Brennan is believed to have the edge, Max Johnson is definitely making a push for the starting job. Johnson has more upside as a runner, whereas Brennan is a more polished passer at this point.
Whichever QB the Tigers decide on, they should be in good hands. Sophomore receiver Kayshon Boutte had an excellent freshman season with 45 receptions and 735 yards. He’s downright explosive, and LSU’s rushing attack should be improved from a season ago, with powerful tailback Tyrion Davis-Price leading the way.
Week 1 – @ UCLA Bruins
|Saturday, Sept. 4||8:30 PM||FOX|
- Spread: LSU -4.5 (via DraftKings)
- Moneyline: LSU -195; UCLA +150
This really isn’t going to be as easy of an opener as it might’ve been in years past. Say what you want about UCLA coach Chip Kelly, but he’s running it back with nearly every starter from last season, and that continuity has to count for something. Regardless, LSU should still manage to sneak out of Week 1 unscathed.
- Week 1 prediction: LSU 31, UCLA 27
Week 2 – vs. McNeese State Cowboys
|Saturday, Sept. 11||8:00 PM||SEC Network|
Whatever happens in Los Angeles to kick off the season, LSU can take solace in the fact that it’ll come back home for a tune-up game. If the winner of the QB derby isn’t as sharp as the Tigers hope, McNeese State is a good opponent to gain confidence against, as the talent gap here is massive.
- Week 2 prediction: LSU 51, McNeese State 0
Week 3 – vs. Central Michigan Chippewas
|Saturday, Sept. 18||7:30 PM||SEC Network|
The Chippewas posted a .500 record in the MAC last year. That’s not exactly the stuff that inspires anyone to make a bold prediction that an upset could be on the horizon, particularly at Tiger Stadium. LSU will have no problems handling Central Michigan in a dominant victory.
- Week 3 prediction: LSU 45, Central Michigan 10
Week 4 – @ Mississippi State Bulldogs
|Saturday, Sept. 25||TBD||TBD|
Much attention rightly goes to Derrick Stingley Jr., who’s projected to be a high first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. But the cornerback who starts opposite him is Eli Ricks. As a true freshman last year, Ricks ripped off four interceptions. Under the coaching of Mike Leach, the Bulldogs will be as pass-happy as any team in the country. Talk about a bad matchup for the hosts.
- Week 4 prediction: LSU 35, Mississippi State 14
Week 5 – vs. Auburn Tigers
|Saturday, Oct. 2||TBD||TBD|
- Spread: LSU -6.5 (via DraftKings)
- Moneyline: Auburn +185; LSU -230
So, we’re sold on either LSU quarterback trotting out and getting it done amid a difficult SEC schedule. There’s more certainty about both Brennan and Johnson on the same team than there is on Auburn’s Bo Nix. No one can deny Nix’s talent, yet he’s struggled to put it all together consistently. After losing 48-11 to this team in 2020, you can bet the home Tigers want to stick it to their conference adversary this time around in Death Valley.
- Week 5 prediction: LSU 38, Auburn 27
Week 6 – @ Kentucky Wildcats
|Saturday, Oct. 9||TBD||TBD|
Considering that the Wildcats lost their biggest defensive playmaker in Jamin Davis to the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, they have little chance of stopping LSU, even in front of their home fans. Kentucky’s run-centric offense is too one-dimensional to hold up against the Tigers’ superior players.
- Week 6 prediction: LSU 42, Kentucky 21
Week 7 – vs. Florida Gators
|Saturday, Oct. 16||TBD||TBD|
- Spread: LSU -1.5 (via DraftKings)
- Moneyline: Florida +100; LSU -121
Replacing pass-catchers like Kyle Pitts and Kadarius Toney isn’t going to be easy for the Gators. Pitts is an especially gifted player and was possibly the best tight end prospect in recent draft history before the Atlanta Falcons selected him No. 4 overall. Unless Florida QB Emory Jones is a Heisman Trophy-caliber, dual-threat revelation, LSU should prevail at home.
- Week 7 prediction: LSU 30, Florida 20
Week 8 – @ Ole Miss Rebels
|Saturday, Oct. 23||TBD||TBD|
It’s hard to really know what we’ll get out of Ole Miss signal-caller Matt Corral. He threw five interceptions against LSU last season, yet still gave the Rebels a chance in the end of a 53-48 loss. The Tigers’ defense is too talented to give up that many points again, and Corral has been too mistake-prone to trust in a big spot to date.
- Week 8 prediction: LSU 38, Ole Miss 34
Week 9 BYE
Week 10 – @ Alabama Crimson Tide
|Saturday, Nov. 6||TBD||TBD|
- Spread: Alabama -21.5 (via DraftKings)
- Moneyline: LSU +900; Alabama -2500
Stingley and Ricks will make it difficult on a Crimson Tide receiving corps that lost top-10 draft picks Jaylen Waddle and DeVonta Smith, not to mention quarterback Mac Jones. However, Alabama’s offense will be rolling at this point in the season, and in Tuscaloosa, hyped Jones successor Bryce Young will make enough plays with his legs to avert coverage sacks and hand LSU its first loss of 2021.
- Week 10 prediction: Alabama 27, LSU 23
Week 11 – vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
|Saturday, Nov. 13||TBD||TBD|
Arkansas returns a lot of players, and should at least show some improvement from last season’s 3-7 record. Although the Razorbacks hung tough in losing to the Tigers 27-24 in the last meeting, this LSU defense should take a big step forward with new defensive coordinator Daronte Jones calling the shots.
- Week 11 prediction: LSU 41, Arkansas 14
Week 12 – vs. Louisiana Monroe Warhawks
|Saturday, Nov. 20||TBD||TBD|
So, the Warhawks lost all 10 games they played in 2020. This final score projection is actually generous, and it’s more a consequence of the Tigers resting their stars before the regular-season finale.
- Week 12 prediction: LSU 56, Louisiana Monroe 0
Week 13 – vs. Texas A&M Aggies
|Saturday, Nov. 27||TBD||TBD|
Losing a four-year starter at quarterback in Kellen Mond is a big deal for the Aggies. They have plenty of talented players at multiple other areas, including defensive lineman DeMarvin Leal, offensive lineman Kenyon Green, tight end Jalen Wydermyer, tailback Isaiah Spiller and rusher/receiver hybrid Ainias Smith. That’ll keep this one close, but the edge goes to the hosts.
- Week 13 prediction: LSU 27, Texas A&M 24