SEC West Division Has 1-2-3 In Nation

Five Southeastern Conference Western Division teams are ranked in this week's USA Today Coaches' and Associated Press polls with LSU, Alabama and Arkansas ranked 1-2-3 in both. South Carolina is 13th and Georgia is 14th while the Bulldogs are 13th and Gamecocks 14th in the AP poll.



Alabama and Arkansas are 10-1 overall and 6-1 in SEC games while LSU is 11-0 overall and 7-0 in the league. Bama's lone loss was to LSU and Arkansas's one setback was to Bama. Arkansas and LSU meet in Baton Rouge on Friday.

Alabama will close out regular season play Saturday at Auburn. Kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. with television coverage by CBS.

In the history of the AP poll, there has only been one other time that a conference had top three in the 75-year history of the poll. In the 1971 final rankings, the Big Eight had 1-2-3 with Nebraska, Oklahoma and Colorado. Arkansas has its best ranking in AP poll (3rd) since Oct. 16, 1978 when Razorbacks were also No. 3.

The Crimson Tide had an uncharacteristically poor defensive day in Saturday's 45-21 victory over Georgia Southern. Bama gave up the most points, most yards rushing (302), and most total yards allowed to an opponent this year. But the Tide continues to be best in the nation defensively,

In the latest NCAA statistics, Alabama leads the nation in pass efficiency defense (84.79 rating), pass defense (121.27 yards per game), rushing defense (74.64 yards per game), scoring defense (8.36 points per game) and total defense (195.91 yards per game). LSU leads the nation in turnover margin (+18) while Ole Miss leads the nation in punt returns (20.42 average).

The SEC's top three teams in the polls are also the top three in offensive drive efficiency in the SEC. LSU leads the SEC, scoring on 49.2 per cent of its offensive drives (38.1 per cent for touchdowns), Alabama is second, scoring on 45.9 per cent of offensive drives (33.8 per cent for touchdowns) and Arkansas is third, scoring on 45.8 per cent of offensive drives (33.8 per cent for touchdowns).

Alabama leads the SEC in holding opponents to three-downs-and-out, succeeding 48.9 per cent of the time (65 of 133). Georgia is second, holding opponents to three-and-out on 60 of 141 drives, a 42.5 success percentage.

Alabama's Trent Richardson is sixth in the nation in scoring (12.00 points per game), seventh in rushing (125.45 yards per game) and 10th in all-purpose rushing (160.73 yards per game).

Richardson's 20 rushing touchdowns this season is tied for second in SEC history for a single season with Cam Newton (Auburn, 2010). The SEC single-season record for rushing touchdowns is 23 by Tim Tebow (Florida, 2007).

Richardson's 22 touchdowns total scored this season is third in SEC single-season history behind Alabama's Shaun Alexander (24 in 1999) and Florida's Tim Tebow (23 in 2007).

Arkansas has outscored its opponents, 105-31, in the fourth quarter this season. The 74 point margin leads the SEC. Alabama's 72 point margin (90-18) is second and LSU's 70 point margin (98-28) is third in the SEC.

LSU's opponents have scored only eight points off of Tiger turnovers, lowest number in the SEC.  Alabama's opponents have scored only 10 points off of Crimson Tide turnovers, second lowest.

Georgia leads the SEC with 31 scoring drives of two-minutes-or-less while Alabama and LSU are tied for most 5+ minute scoring drives with 13.

This weekend's Arkansas-LSU game is the third closest series in the SEC since 2000. In the 11 games, the average scoring margin is 10.18 points, with eight games decided by 9-points-or-less. The Alabama-Auburn series is the fifth closest series in the SEC since 2000. In the 11 games, the average scoring margin is 11.09 points, with seven games decided by 9-points-or-less.

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