LSU’s College Football Playoff hopes took a big step back last week when they fell at Alabama 30-16. Les Miles and company is not out of it, as the Tigers sit at (4-1) in the SEC, with the same amount of conference losses as Alabama. In order to stay in the hunt, LSU has to take care of business against a red hot Arkansas team that last week was the benefactor of one of the craziest endings of the season in their win over Ole Miss.
The Razorbacks will ride a three-game winning streak into Baton Rouge on Saturday, all due to the crazy 4th and 25 lateral in overtime that running back Alex Collins scooped up and rumbled for a first down. Followed, by a face-mask call on the failed two point conversion, which led to a successful game-winning attempt on a short run by quarterback Brandon Allen.
LSU’s weekend didn’t quite go as well, star running back Leonard Fournette had the worst game of his career, rushing for a mere 31 yards, as Alabama’s running back Derrick Henry looked more like the Heisman favorite. Henry had three touchdowns and 210 yards on the ground in Alabama’s 14 point victory.
On the season, Fournette still averages 173 yards rushing per game, with 16 touchdowns. Arkansas allowed over 220 rushing yards to Mississippi last week, so Leonard Fournette will have an opportunity to get back on track Saturday. Tigers head coach Les Miles says his running back will keep his head up, and focus on this game instead of dwelling on last week’s.
Both LSU and Arkansas have been involved in their share of high scoring games this season, with the Tigers averaging 36 points per contest, and the Razorbacks not too far behind with 34.8 PPG. While most people know that LSU leads the SEC in rushing, Arkansas has an underrated passing attack, led by Brandon Allen, who threw for 442 yards and 6 TDs against Ole Miss last week. Arkansas is third in the SEC in passing yards, behind only Mississippi and Mississippi State.
This game features one quarterback, Allen, who loves to fling the ball down the field, and one in Brandon Harris that is quietly having a pretty decent season. After starting the year averaging less than 100 yards passing per game, Harris has turned it around throwing for over 200 yards and two touchdowns in three straight games before his rough outing against the Crimson Tide. Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema says that Brandon Harris has been LSU’s biggest improvement from last year.
Kickoff from Death Valley is at 7:15 PM, and it’s worth mentioning that since 2009 LSU has only lost four games at home on Saturday nights. Three of them were to the #1 team in the nation, Florida in 2009, Alabama in 2012, and Mississippi State last season.