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Matt Flynn may be the 80th-ranked quarterback in the nation out of 120 in passing efficiency and seventh in the Southeastern Conference out of 12, but the fourth quarter has been his of late.
Matt Flynn completed 8 of 14 passes with no interceptions for 122 yards and a 32-yard touchdown pass to Early Doucet on fourth-and-4 that tied Alabama 34-34 with 2:49 to play Saturday in a 41-34 LSU victory. On the game-tying drive, Matt Flynn completed 6 of 9 passes for 84 yards.
Against Auburn on Oct. 20, Matt Flynn completed 8 of 10 passes with no interceptions in the fourth quarter for 92 yards and touchdown passes of 5 yards to Jacob Hester with 12:55 to play and 22 yards to Demetrius Byrd with one second left for a 30-24 victory. On LSU's game-winning drive, Matt Flynn completed 2 of 3 passes for 23 yards and rushed three times for 19 yards.
Against Florida on Oct. 6, Matt Flynn completed 3 of 5 passes with no interceptions for 19 yards with a 4-yard touchdown pass to Byrd with 10:15 to play. On the game-winning drive, Matt Flynn completed 1 of 2 passes for 14 yards and rushed once for 15 yards as the Tigers scored with 1:09 to go on a Jacob Hester 2-yard run for a 28-24 win.
"It's just an attitude that has been bred here since I was a freshman," Matt Flynn said. "People here expect to win in the fourth quarter. The players believe it. The coaches believe it. We're going to win in the fourth quarter. You can do things like that when you believe you can. It's just part of being in this program. When it comes down to when we have to make a play, this offense is unbelievable."
"If the opponent has 12 opportunities to beat you, and we make the 13th opportunity, that's key," Miles said. "Matt Flynn has that. He finds ways to win. He showed leadership, poise."
Doucet said the short pass that he turned into a 32-yard touchdown on fourth-and-4 was perfectly thrown by Matt Flynn.
"He's just a clutch player," Doucet said. "He's becoming a great quarterback, but I always knew he would."
Matt Flynn's heroics in the win over Alabama redeemed himself after he threw three interceptions in the second quarter alone that led to 10 Crimson Tide points and helped swap a 17-3 LSU lead for a 20-17 deficit. He finished 24-of-44 for a career-high 353 yards with three touchdowns, but in that second quarter he threw an interception every third pass.
"He was trying to make plays that weren't there," offensive coordinator Gary Crowton said.
"I wish I had those back," Matt Flynn said. "I shouldn't have tried to make a play on a couple of those. I should've taken a sack."
Matt Flynn, who has recovered from an early-season high ankle sprain, has thrown eight interceptions on the season, which is the second most in the SEC and brings down the efficiency rating. He has completed 130 of 234 passes for 1,619 yards and 11 touchdowns for a 122.3 rating.
"But you've got to remember this is his first year as a starter, even though he's a senior," Crowton said. "He's growing into the position, and that high ankle sprain did hold him back for awhile."
Florida's Tim Tebow leads the SEC in efficiency with 151 completions in 223 attempts for 2,228 yards and 21 touchdowns with only four interceptions. Tim Tebow, though, has three losses. Matt Flynn has one.
"In the second quarter, there were some throws that he could not have made, and he won't make those again," Miles said. "Yet as we come out for the second half, Matt Flynn makes no more mistakes and plays really an excellent half. I think it's a sign of a quality quarterback and a leader of your team to be able to start slowly and then finish well. I think that speaks well for the future of our quarterback position at LSU. I think we got a pretty good quarterback. I don't think there's anybody that sees it any other way, to be honest with you."
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