LSU has tough road to BCS Title Game
The Tigers face Arkansas and potentially Georgia the next two weeks.
By: Patrick Snow | 11/22/11, 2:52 PM EST
The LSU Tigers clearly have the best resume in college football and of course are ranked No. 1. But after watching top team after top team fall over the last month, you have to wonder if Les Miles’ bunch can finish the season with a perfect record and head to the BCS Championship Game. It seems like most of the college football world is already assuming the Tigers will cruise to the national title game, but they face the No. 3 (Arkansas) and — potentially in the SEC Championship Game — the No. 13 (Georgia) teams in the BCS rankings over the next two Saturdays. After watching college football get an O-face (Oklahoma State, Oregon, Ohio State and Oklahoma all lost) last weekend, another upset seems very possible.
Does LSU beat both Arkansas and Georgia?
Mitch Light (@AthlonMitch)
My first thought was that LSU will not beat both Arkansas and Georgia. But after thinking it over — and taking another look at the Tigers’ stats — I changed my mind. LSU is simply playing at such a high level right now, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Amazingly, the Tigers have allowed 11 points or less in all seven of their SEC games to date. I realize that this league isn’t loaded with top-flight offenses, but that is still an incredible accomplishment. Arkansas, with one of the nation’s top passing attacks, will test the LSU defense, but the Hogs have yet to prove that they can be as formidable on the road. Georgia is playing well, but keep in mind that the seven SEC teams the Dawgs have defeated have a combined record of 12–39 in league play. LSU is too good to stub its toe before the BCS title game.
Braden Gall (@AthlonBraden)
First up, the Arkansas Razorbacks. While I do think that they have the formula to challenge an LSU defense — incredibly deep receiving corps, mad genius designing plays and a capable quarterback who can get the ball down the field — I am not sure I have seen anything from the Hogs to suggest that they are not the exact same team that didn't belong on the field with Alabama. Especially since they would have to go into Baton Rouge and beat the Tigers with the entire college football world focused on Death Valley. Thus, your LSU Tigers are SEC West champs and have the unenviable task of facing one of the hottest teams in the nation. The Georgia Bulldogs, if they can topple rival Georgia Tech, will have won 10 straight games since losing to two teams ranked in the Top 12 of the BCS. Quick, who is the No. 2 rushing defense in the nation? Nope, it's not LSU, it is Georgia. Quick, who leads the SEC in sacks and tackles for a loss? Not LSU or Alabama, but Georgia. The Dawgs have the best quarterback in the league and will get a slight home-field advantage in the Georgia Dome. So if UGA beats Tech, I will be the first to stand up and call for the upset in the SEC title game. If they stumble against the Jackets, I will say that the Bayou Bengals will be taking the short trip south to the Superdome in early January.
Patrick Snow (@AthlonSnowman)
It will be difficult to get past both Arkansas and Georgia on successive Saturdays, but I think LSU does it. There’s just something about this bunch of Bengal Tigers — besides being talented and well-coached — that seems to have them destined for a BCS Championship Game berth. The Razorbacks present a big concern with their passing game, especially after West Virginia threw for a ton of yards against LSU. However, the Mountaineers only scored 21 points in that game. Oregon had to score a touchdown with 13 seconds to go just to cut it to 40-27 against the Tigers. Every other team on the LSU schedule has scored 11 or fewer points against a defense that ranks No. 2 in the country. I think the top threat to LSU’s perfection is the team with the nation’s No. 1 ranked defense, Alabama, and the country’s two best teams seem to be on a collision course for a rematch in January.
Steven Lassan (@AthlonSteven)
Considering the chaos that college football provided last weekend, nothing would surprise me over the next two weeks. I’ve gone back and forth on this question. No one is invincible this year and LSU could certainly lose to Arkansas or Georgia. Out of those two games, I think the Bulldogs are the bigger obstacle to an undefeated season. The defense is capable of shutting down the Tigers’ rushing attack, while Aaron Murray and Isaiah Crowell would be a challenge for LSU’s defense. Despite the upset possibilities in the SEC title game or against Arkansas, I’m going to guess the Tigers will find a way to win both games and play for the national title with a 13-0 record.
Most Popular Articles
Sign Up For Our Newsletter
Get the latest news and find out what our Athlon Sports experts have to say each week.
Contests & Promotions
Athlon Sports Fantasy Racing!
Enter the Athlon Sports Fantasy Racing game. Just head over to athlon.myfantasyracing.com and register for your chance to win a chance to watch a 2014 race from the grandstands. You'll also have a chance to win other amazing prizes such as an autographed Kyle Busch helmet.