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Kickoff is at 8:10 p.m. CT on ESPN
Photo by: LSUsports.net, LSU Athletics Publications
It's GameDay: LSU Football Opens 2014 vs. Wisconsin
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Published: August 29, 2014, 04:05 PM (CT)
Updated: August 30, 2014, 04:24 PM (CT)
by Kent Lowe (@LSUkent), Sr. Associate SID

HOUSTON -- The long days and weeks of preparation are now behind them. The work on the field and the study in the video room is complete. Kickoff is finally at hand.

The LSU Tigers, ranked No. 13 in both the Associated Press and USA Today/Coaches polls, travel here to open their 2014 season Saturday night against No. 14 (AP/USA Today) Wisconsin in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff at the NRG Stadium.

Kickoff is scheduled for shortly past 8 p.m. CT and the game will be televised by ESPN and WatchESPN.com with Sean McDonough, Chris Spielman and Todd McShay on the call. Jim Hawthorne, Doug Moreau and Gordy Rush will have the broadcast on the LSU Sports Radio Network affiliates and in the Geaux Zone at LSUsports.net beginning at 6 p.m.

The game will be played with the roof closed on artificial turf with a better than 50 percent chance of showers outside at kickoff.

The Tigers are coming off a 21-14 win over Iowa of the Big 10 in their last start in the Jan. 1 Outback Bowl, while Wisconsin lost to South Carolina in the Capital One Bowl, 34-24. This is the first of a neutral site series between the two teams in the school's home areas. Houston has one of the larger alumni bases for LSU, while the 2016 rematch will be played at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The Tigers are coming off a 21-14 win over Iowa of the Big 10 in their last start in the Jan. 1 Outback Bowl, while Wisconsin lost to South Carolina in the Capital One Bowl, 34-24. This is the first of a neutral site series between the two teams in the school's home areas. Houston has one of the larger alumni bases for LSU, while the 2016 rematch will be played at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

LSU GameDay Info

#13 LSU (H) vs. #14 Wisconsin
Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014
8:10 p.m. CDT
NRG Stadium
Seating Chart | Bag Policy
Houston, Texas

LSU's Ticket Will Call opens at 5 p.m. CT near the Amegy Gate at the SE Corner of NRG Stadium. General Will Call opens at 10 a.m. (Located inside Budweiser Plaza)

Gate Information:
Pedestrian Gates: Opens at 2:30 p.m.
Budweiser Plaza: Opens at 6 p.m.
Premium Gates: Opens at 6 p.m.
Stadium Gates: Opens at 6:30 p.m.

As the designated home team, LSU will wear white jerseys and will occupy the east sideline.

TV: ESPN (National) | WatchESPN
Radio: 98.1 FM in Baton Rouge | Affiliates
Audio: Geaux Zone Live | Mobile App
In-Stadium Frequency: TBD on GameDay (will be posted to social media).

Kickoff: 8:10 p.m. CDT (w/ 5 min. slide)
Conditions: Indoor (Roof Closed)
Forecast:
Thunder Storms
High: 91°
Low: 77°
GameTime: 85°
Rain: 60% chance
Humidity: 83%
Wind: SSE 9 mph
Forecast
Sunrise: 6:58 a.m. CDT
Sunset: 7:46 p.m. CDT

Driving Directions (Baton Rouge to Houston, Texas -- 277 mi.; 4h, 10m)

Full-Game Replays on SEC Network:
Mon., Sept. 1, 6:30 a.m. CT
Wed., Sept. 3, 11 a.m. CT

Watch/Listen: WatchESPN | Listen Live | Radio Affiliates

It will be LSU's first appearance in Houston for a game since a 24-10 win at Rice Stadium over the Owls in 1983. LSU leads the series, 2-0, winning the first meeting, 38-28, in 1972 and then a year later, 27-7, in Tiger Stadium.

Twitter Updates: @LSUfball | @LSUbonnette | @LSUJake

It marks the second-straight year and the fourth time in five seasons that LSU will open the season with a neutral-site contest. A year ago, the Tigers beat TCU, 37-27, in the Cowboys Classic at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Les Miles will open his 10th season as the LSU head coach while Gary Andersen (9-4) will open his second season as the head coach at Wisconsin.

Miles is 123-45 in 13 seasons as head coach (including four at Oklahoma State) with a 95-24 mark with the Tigers. He enters as the second winning coach in LSU history.  Miles is 9-0 in season-openers at LSU and the Tigers have won a school-record 11 straight season-openers heading into the Wisconsin game. LSU currently has the nation's longest regular-season, non-conference winning streak at 45 straight games (35-0 under Miles).

Although on the other side of the field, Wisconsin has won 16-straight openers.

After his practice on Thursday, Miles said: “I like what we've accomplished. I like where we are at. (Thursday) was a practice where it was mental rep. Our guys got it right.”

Of his two young quarterbacks -- Anthony Jennings and Brandon Harris -- and keeping them in the proper frame of mind for the contest, Miles said: “The best way thing for them to do is to focus on the things we've asked them to do and not be taken over by what is the perimeter of the game. We just ask them to be teammates and ask them to do the things we asked them to do. If they do that, we'll be great.”

Jennings is a sophomore while Harris is a true freshman. LSU has never had a true freshman quarterback start a season opener and the last time a sophomore started a season opener at that position for the Tigers came in 2009 (Jordan Jefferson vs. Washington).

Miles at Monday's media luncheon said he knew which of the pair would start at quarterback but that is expected to be a game-time announcement for the media and the large contingent of Tiger fans that will make the trek here from Baton Rouge.

LSU to Enhance Social Media Offering to Huge Fan Base

The quarterbacks will have a veteran offensive line to play behind as LSU returns 4-of-5 starters. LSU's offensive line is the most experienced unit on the field as six players have combined to start 75 games. Senior left tackle La'el Collins leads all players with 25 starts (13 at LG, 12 at LT).

The Badgers and Tigers are among the nation's leaders in wins, winning percentage and production of NFL draft picks over the last five seasons. Since the start of the 2009 season, LSU has won 80.3 percent of its games, while Wisconsin is at 73.1. LSU has had 16 top 75 picks over the last four NFL drafts, while Wisconsin has had 10 selections. LSU has won at least nine games in 9 of the last 10 seasons, one of just two teams nationally with more nine-win campaigns than the Badgers 8 of that 10-year span.

The game will be the first for both teams in the new College Football Playoff era that will lead to the selection of four teams for semifinals on Jan. 1 prior to the first championship game in AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on Jan. 12, 2015.

LSU will return home for its first of seven home games in the newly expanded Tiger Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 6, at 6:30 p.m. against Sam Houston State in one of six games on that day to be televised by the new SEC Network.

Follow LSU Football on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/LSUfootball and on Twitter @LSUfball.

 

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