REPORT CARD: Arkansas 50, LSU 48 (3ot)

In the 2007 season, Arkansas has lost to Alabama, Kentucky, Auburn, and Tennessee.

Whether LSU overlooked them is debatable, but the leader of the Tigers certainly disrespected them, and it certainly didn't go unnoticed.

After torching LSU for 206 yards and three touchdowns on 32 carries and completing 3-of-6 passes for 34 yards, including a 24-yard touchdown, Darren McFadden ended a quote while coming off of the field with, "It's Arkansas, baby!" In postgame interviews he stated, "I heard LSU on a couple of interviews was saying ‘Are-Kansas.' They weren't saying it right, so we wanted to let them know how to say it."

The one who was mispronouncing it, purposely, was LSU coach Les Miles in his Monday press conference prior to the game. He did so four times. Only once did Miles correctly pronounce Arkansas, and that was when he was deflecting a question about potentially leaving Baton Rouge for Michigan.

No, Miles' jabs at Louisiana's neighbor to the north didn't cause last Friday's loss – the fact that LSU's offense managed just six points in the first half after starting at the Razorbacks 25-yardline following a McFadden fumble on the opening kickoff and Matt Flynn's 7-of-22 passing performance for 50 yards, and injuries were the real culprits. But Miles' comments didn't help. They led Arkansas to believe he thought they were going to be little more than a footnote to the title. He may have sent the same message to his own team.

Blame it on the short week. Blame it on a lack of execution. Blame it on Arkansas' ability to execute. Blame it on the head coach who gave his opponent bulletin board material.

Regardless who's to blame, the "L" won't ever change into a "W", and LSU is now playing for a trip to New Orleans a week earlier than they had expected.


Matt Flynn was booed in the first half on Senior Day. Throwing behind receivers and out of bounds made for a 7-of-22 passing performance in the first half that helped net LSU a mere six points, despite Arkansas' inability to do anything offensively until the second quarter.

The first half was something reminiscent of the Tulane game. Flynn came out on fire in the second half, but by that point it was too late. The Razorbacks were hitting on all cylinders, and the offense had kept a dinged up Tigers defense on the field for too long.

For the game, LSU had only one scoring drive lasting over four minutes – the drive for the game-tying touchdown with 57 seconds left in the game.

Making matters worse, on a day when LSU was penalized a season-low four times for 35 yards, the bug hit with under nine minutes to go. On second down and three from its own 46 yard line, Flynn hit Jacob Hester on a pass that would have put LSU ahead, 28-21.

Instead, Early Doucet was flagged as an ineligible receiver because he didn't line up on the line of scrimmage. A batted pass and a holding penalty on Brett Helms followed. That second penalty negated a first down catch by Brandon LaFell. The Tigers punted and Arkansas went on to score to regain the lead.



LSU's battered and bruised defense was let down by the offense in the first half. With McFadden fumbling three times and losing it once, the Tigers had the opportunity to put Arkansas away early. When that didn't happen, the Razorbacks realized they had a chance, and that's all they needed.

McFadden and Peyton Hillis pounded away at LSU in regulation before a fresh Felix Jones finished the job in overtime. At the end of the day, the Tigers gave up 385 yards rushing with runs of 73 and 65 yards thrown in there. But that wasn't the unforgivable part.

Arkansas quarterback Casey Dick was given time to throw the ball with the Tigers only rushing four. Not blitzing allowed him to complete 10-of-18 passes. It allowed him to complete a pass for a first down on a fourth and 10 in the first overtime with LSU ahead.

After that, the Tigers looked like butter trying to stop a hot knife. Trying to decide when to gamble with so many players battered and bruised had to be difficult, but that should have been one of the times.



Colt David hit field goals of 32 and 49 yards. Patrick Fisher pinned Arkansas at its own three yard line. The kickoff team forced a fumble on the opening kickoff that resulted in points for the Tigers.

Other than taking the very last kickoff it received back to its own 48 yard line, Arkansas never started a drive beyond its own 34.



Miles attributed the offensive struggles in the first half to Arkansas' defensive scheme.

It's the second time this year after a loss he has stated that the other team's defense dictated what his offense could do. The ship was righted for the second half, but by that time it was too late. LSU's defense has given up over 1,000 yards of offense in its last two games alone.

Michigan talk may not have been a distraction for the players, but Miles motivational tactics last week only seemed to work for the opposing team.


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