This Saturday will determine the post season future for two teams. The Arkansas Razorbacks will head into Death Valley and try to improve the bowl game resume'. The Louisiana State Tigers will host the Hogs and try to salvage their season. The Hogs come in wielding a four game winning streak. LSU comes off of a disappointing loss to Ole' Miss. Although Arkansas has won the past two meetings between the two, Les Miles has had less than ample time to focus on the upcoming game, due to criticism from his poor time management decisions. Arkansas (7-4) and LSU (8-3) will face off for the Golden Boot, which has resided within the state of Arkansas the past two years after a 50-48 win in 2007 and a 31-30 comeback win in 2008. Ryan Mallet looks to continue his success against the no. 16 defense in the nation. However the Hogs have the no. 13 offense in the nation averaging 445.2 yards per game and 38 points per game. The Tigers come in averaging 308.2 yards per game and 24.8 points per game. The Hogs will come into the game and try to test the LSU run defense. But if the Razorbacks can't get the running game off the ground, don't fret Hog fans...with Ryan Mallet under center there will be a passing game. Game after game Ryan Mallet has proven time and again that he is by far the most impressive and breathtaking quarterback in the SEC.
Wielding a stable of running backs that have improved in pounding out the short yards over the course of the season, has allowed the Hogs to reap great benefits. With the season ending hamstring injury of Micheal Smith, the Hogs are shy one running back. But if the Hogs desire explosive runs they have the option of Ronnie Wingo Jr., Knile Davis or Dennis Johnson. If they need a bull run for a few short yards they can hand the ball to Broderick Greene, Van Stuman or DeCurtis Anthony. And if they decide to air the ball out, where do I start ? I could start with Greg Childs or Joe Adams, who in my opinion has shown more heart than any player in recent history when he returned to the field three weeks after a MILD STROKE! Then you have Lucas Miller, London Crawford, Colbi Hamilton, oh and there's a guy named D.J. Williams, you may have heard of him. At any rate the Arkansas Razorbacks have more than a fair amount of offensive weapons. The only question is if the LSU defense can rise to the challenge. Following the past two weeks one is left to wonder. After a dismal performance against Louisiana Tech and a less than impressive outing against Ole Miss and the over achieving Dexter McCluster.
How will LSU stop Arkansas' offense ? If LSU thinks they can blitz Ryan Mallet off the edge, they will suffer yet another loss at the hands of an SEC foe. If Les Miles is worth half as much as he's getting paid he should know that the only way to disrupt the Hogs passing game is to pressure the A and B gaps. Alabama put continuous pressure on Mallet through the A gap and threw Mallet off play after play. If Les Miles sends pressure around the end, Ryan Mallet will step up in the pocket and pick the LSU secondary apart. Although I question Les Miles time management, I hope for his safety in Baton Rouge and the Tigers face value, that he has picked up on this obvious information and the defensive line can execute. If not the Hogs will be headed to Dallas with a match up with a big 12 team.