The Arkansas Razorbacks (3-8) travel to play the #17 LSU Tigers (8-3) on Friday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Kickoff in Tiger Stadium is set for 2:30 p.m. and the game will be televised on CBS.
The tradition of the Battle of the Golden Boot being played on the Friday after Thanksgiving is coming to an end after this season, but the rivalry between the teams will continue. This year’s game however, doesn’t set up too well for the Razorbacks on paper.
LSU has a new, revamped offense like they have never had before. With the offseason acquisition of offensive coordinator Cam Cameron from the NFL, the Tigers have an offense that can put up points quick and often.
Quarterback Zach Mettenberger should certainly go over 3,000 yards passing on the year during this game as he needs only 74 more yards to reach the mark. The senior has 22 touchdowns on the season with only seven interceptions which is a major improvement from last year.
The good numbers for Mettenberger this year have been a great result of the tremendously talented receivers for LSU.
Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry both have just over 1,000 yards receiving for the year. Beckham has 8 touchdowns and averages 19.7 yards per catch while Landry has hauled in 10 touchdowns on the season. Beckham also returns kickoffs and punts for the Tigers where he can be very dangerous in the open field.
Running backs for LSU are by committee with Terrence Magee, Kenny Hilliard and Alfred Blu , but Jeremy Hill as completely emerged as the Tiger’s featured back. Hill is third in the SEC with 1,040 yards rushing on the year along with 13 touchdowns.
The defense for the Tigers lost many players to the NFL last season, and although it is not as dominant as years past, it’s still very effective. In last weekend”s game against Johnny Manziel and the Aggies, the Tiger defense completely shut down the Heisman contender for the second straight year. Even Alabama couldn’t contain Manziel so this defense is one that will cause fits for the Hogs.
Arkansas is coming off of a heartbreaking loss to Mississippi State in overtime, a game that they should have won. It has been eight games since the Razorbacks have won a game, but they get one last chance to end the season on somewhat of a good note Friday if they can somehow find a way to pull the upset.
Mettenberger and the Tiger’s offense should have absolutely no problem scoring on the secondary of the Hogs as Arkansas’ offense has continued to struggle. It’s hard to find any reason at all for Arkansas to pull off an upset, but there’s always a chance.
Last season, the four win Razorbacks took the highly-ranked Tigers all the way to the last play, but came up short losing by a touchdown.
Two years ago, every eye in the college football nation was on this game as the #3 Razorbacks took on the #1 Tigers in a fight for an SEC championship and possibly national title bid. The Tigers prevailed with a 42-17 win, and went on lose in the National Championship in the rematch with Alabama, while the Razorbacks beat Kansas State in the Cotton Bowl.
This game has lost much of its luster from that game and in years past, but it seems to always be entertaining.
The Razorbacks will more than likely just be glad that the terrible season is over and goes into offseason with a nine game losing streak.
Arkansas-10 LSU- 49
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