LSU Tigers vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
Two of the top teams in the nation meet as the LSU Tigers host the Arkansas Razorbacks. The Tigers are -14 point favorites over the Razorbacks with an over/under point total set at 52.
For Les Miles and his LSU Tigers the formula is simple, a win and they clinch the SEC West and then a win in the SEC Championship Game and they play for the BCS National Title. While LSU has had strong teams in the past, this may be the most dominating teams they have ever had as we just don’t see them opening the door to their opponents to leave the outcomes of games to any kind of chance. Jordan Jefferson has taken over as the starting QB and while he hasn’t thrown much he has been efficient completing 7 of 7 passes last game against Ole Miss and for the season completing 65.9 percent of his passes with four touchdowns and no interceptions while averaging 4.2 yards per carry and scoring twice on the ground. Spencer Ware has been a force on the ground averaging 4.1 yards per carry for 650 yards and seven touchdowns and Michael Ford has gained 625 yards and scored seven touchdowns while averaging 5.9 yards per carry. Rueben Randle is a NFL talent with 39 catches and eight touchdowns and Odell Beckham has 33 catches and two touchdowns. LSU defense has been dominating with 15 interceptions, nine fumble recoveries, and 27 sacks for a remarkable plus 18 turnover margin. Brandon Taylor has 61 tackles and Eric Reid and Tyrann Mathieu have 58 while Sam Montgomery has seven sacks and Maurice Claiborne has four interceptions. LSU looks like a team on a mission but they are anything but in the clear for their quest for a Championship.
The Arkansas Razorbacks have a chance to throw a monkey wrench into the SEC West race and the National Championship race as Bobby Petrino’s team heads into Baton Rouge on Friday. Tyler Wilson doesn’t get a lot of press but he is having an outstanding season completing 63.1 percent of his passes for 3,215 yards with 21 touchdowns and five interceptions. Dennis Johnson has taken over the Arkansas running game averaging 6.7 yards per carry with three touchdowns while catching 20 passes for two more touchdowns. Jarius Wright has 61 catches for 1,002 yards and 10 touchdowns, Joe Adams has 46 catches and three touchdowns, and Chris Gragg has 38 catches and two touchdowns. The Hogs’ defense has 10 interceptions, seven fumble recoveries, and 20 sacks. Jerry Franklin leads the Razorbacks’ defense with 87 tackles and Tremain Thomas 73 tackles and four interceptions while Jake Bequette has eight sacks. Arkansas has beaten LSU three of the last four times they have met with several of those as an underdog so they know while the task at hand is difficult, it isn’t impossible.
LSU is 5-0 against the spread in their last five SEC games, 5-1 against the spread in their last six games overall, and 5-11 against the spread in their last 16 home games against a team with a winning road record. Arkansas is 16-5 against the spread in their last 21 SEC games, 0-4 against the spread in their last four road games, and 15-6 against the spread in their last 21 games against a team with a winning record. The road team has covered five of the last seven in this series.
While we have plenty of solid players at the skill positions, this game will be about ball control and defense and I look for it to come in under the total.