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NCAAF: LSU leans on passing game, breezes past Central Michigan

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Max Johnson threw five touchdown passes and host LSU raced to a 35-7 halftime lead on its way to a 49-21 victory against Central Michigan on Saturday night.

Johnson completed 26 of 35 passes for 372 yards and five touchdowns passes in less than three quarters of play. Freshman Deion Smith totaled 40 receiving yards and two scores. Kayshon Boutte caught his sixth touchdown this season. Freshman Jack Bech and junior Devonta Lee also hauled in touchdown passes.

Johnson threw a 21-yard touchdown pass to Lee to complete a nine-play, 93-yard drive on the Tigers’ first possession of the third quarter, increasing their lead to 42-7.

The Chippewas (1-2) answered when Devonni Reed intercepted Johnson and returned the ball 20 yards for a touchdown that cut the lead to 42-14 at the end of the third quarter.

Freshman Garrett Nussmeier replaced Johnson on the next LSU series, just as he did in the fourth quarter last week when a 34-7 victory against visiting McNeese State was similarly assured.

Daniel Richardson’s 18-yard touchdown pass to Joel Wilson pulled CMU within 42-21 before Corey Kiner’s 5-yard touchdown run for the Tigers completed the scoring with 7:19 left.

Johnson hit Smith with a 28-yard touchdown pass on the first possession of the game.

On the ensuing possession Andre Anthony returned a fumble 32 yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 Tigers lead.

The Tigers made it back-to-back takeaways when Major Burns intercepted Jacob Sirmon, but a fumble and two penalties pushed them backward until the punted.

Johnson and Smith teamed on a 40-yard touchdown pass and a 21-0 lead.

Sirmon bounced back with a 78-yard touchdown pass to JaCorey Sullivan that cut LSU’s advantage to 21-7 at the end of the first quarter. Sirmon completed 17 of 24 for 156 yards before giving way to Richardson late in the third quarter.

Johnson tossed a 2-yard touchdown to Boutte and a 20-yarder to Bech to increase the lead to 35-7 at halftime.

— Field Level Media

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