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2022 Mercari Texas Bowl Preview

2022 Mercari Texas Bowl Preview

The 2022 Mercari Texas Bowl Preview features the 6-6 Baylor Bears against the 7-5 Kansas State Wildcats. Here is the 2022 Mercari Texas Bowl preview.

LSU Tigers (6-6)

It was one of the worst seasons in recent history for the former 2019 National Champions. This season saw a change at the helm with the firing of Ed Orgeron and the hiring of Brian Kelly. The Tigers just couldn’t get it done against better opponents with five of their six losses coming against ranked teams. They did however scrape a late win against No.15 Texas A&M to earn bowl eligibility.

The LSU offense was one of the worst in the SEC, particularly in the run game where they averaged just 109.5ypg. The passing game made up for it however, coming in at 4th in the conference at 264.1ypg. A flurry of opt outs and transfers could spell disaster in the bowl game.

The main component of the offense Max Johnson has already announced intentions to transfer and isn’t expected to play. Backup Garrett Nussmeier would have to burn a his redshirt to play so he isn’t expected to take the field. Which leaves the Tigers only with walk on quarterbacks or a converted position player to take snaps. In addition, leading carrier Tyrion Davis-Price has declared for the NFL Draft and opted out.

Defensively the Tigers ranked towards the bottom of the conference in most categories. To make matters worse, two of the top defensive players left available have opted out in Damone Clark and Neil Farrell Jr. They’ll have one player in the secondary with meaningful starting experience this season in Jay Ward.

Kansas State Wildcats (7-5)

Third year head coach Chris Klieman had another mediocre year with Kansas State. The Wildcats finished with a 4-5 conference record but without any really stellar wins on the schedule. Some coaching changes have been made for next season which will include a new offensive coordinator, wide receivers coach and tight ends coach.

Kansas State should be at full strength with no expected opt outs. They’re also expecting back starting quarterback Skylar Thompson who missed the final game of the season against Texas. The Wildcats are a little lacking offensively coming in at eighth in the Big 12 in scoring offense and 9th in passing with just 194.2ypg.

Defensively Kansas State is much stronger. Felix Anudike-Uzomah is a monster up front with 11 sacks on the season, good for second in the conference. Russ Yeast is the leader of the secondary with a team leading three interceptions and 10 passes defended, also good for second in the Big 12.

Prediction

With one team having no opt outs and another not even sure who’s playing quarterback, the safe pick is going to be with Kansas State. Interim offensive coordinator Collin Klein has reportedly already made strides with the offense. A depleted LSU defense will be a good way to test those changes out. The Wildcats might not be able to score a lot but their defense is very good and it’s difficult to see where LSU will get their scoring from.

LSU Tigers: 10, Kansas State: 17

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