LSU vs. Mississippi State

LSU football sophomore placekicker Cade York (36) kicks the ball Saturday, Sep. 26, 2020 during LSU's 44-24 loss against Mississippi State in Tiger Stadium.

The Tigers, 2-3, return to the field after a three week hiatus to face the 3-4 Arkansas Razorbacks away.

LSU football looks to turn things around following a three-week hiatus

After previous doubts and concerns regarding if the game would occur following many Arkansas players testing positive, the Tigers and Razorbacks are set to kickoff at 11 a.m.

LSU has beaten the Razorbacks in their last four outings. However, the Tigers will have to find some form of fire on the defensive side to prevent the outcome of two weeks prior against Auburn. Feleipe Franks, Arkansas' starting quarterback, is statistically a better passer and playmaker  than any quarterback the defense has played thus far, despite the Razorbacks' poor record.

LSU-Arkansas preview: Feleipe Franks and the Tigers have history.

On offense, starting at quarterback will be TJ Finley with Max Johnson waiting on standby in case things begin to look bleak for the former. Some depth to the offensive line was revived earlier this week when left tackle Dare Rosenthal returned to the team after an indefinite suspension.

The Tigers' defense will have to find their former glory on the gridiron and the offense must remain calm in the face of another strong SEC opponent to gain another win on the road.

Quarter One:

LSU and Arkansas traded punts at the start of the game, Finley and the run game not getting much progress for the Tigers offense. The Razorbacks are missing six of their starting defensive line yet continually pressure Finley and his receivers. LSU did finish one of their drives with a field goal by Cade York. However Arkansas would return with a score of their own after the Tigers secondary gave up a wide open passing touchdown from Franks. LSU would return after the score but Arkansas' dominant defense would leave the Tigers in a fourth down predicament at the close of the quarter. 

LSU: 3 | Arkansas: 7

Halftime:

At the start of the second quarter, LSU converts the fourth down and continues on their drive to counter Franks’ previous score. As the run game pried at the Razorback defensive front, Finley opened the passing game with a 30-yard touchdown pass to Racey McMath. On the defensive end, the pass rush by LSU has put Franks on his toes and eliminated any possible run game early. Placed back on the field, the Tigers get a break after a reversed fumble recovery call, however, the Razorbacks get another chance at a turnover and get the ball back from the driving Tigers. Following Arkansas’s offense return to the field, true freshman Eli Ricks was disqualified after a targeting call. LSU’s defense would bounce back to force a punt, but fumbling remains an issue for the Tigers as Finley takes the field again. The LSU offense begins to struggle to get any motion running the ball and passing the deep ball, exiting the field without much of a drive. The Tigers defense returns with life after an interception by Jabril Cox and returned to the one yard line, followed by a score from Tyrion Davis-Price. Franks would return with a rushing score of his own after torching the LSU secondary with his passing ability. Finley would return with the ball afterward and deliver the Tigers in close proximity for another York field goal to close the half.

LSU: 20 | Arkansas: 14

Quarter Three: 

At the start of the half, LSU begins their drive consistent but cannot keep it up and are forced to punt. The Tigers defense goes on the field and starts with a three and out. Thus far, Arkansas has not had a drive that has lasted longer than four plays, showing both the fortitude of the front seven and the confusion of the secondary. Finley and the offense have controlled the amount of time on the field and extended the drives more by going on fourth downs. However, the Tigers stop short after a penalty and would be forced to punt. Franks returns to again torch the secondary, specifically sophomore cornerback Cordale Flott, as LSU's man-to-man coverage gives up another score by the Razorbacks' offense. The Tigers return but still have struggle connecting any distant offensive gains as Franks continues to wreck the LSU defense to close out the third quarter.

LSU: 20 | Arkansas: 21

Final: 

LSU holds out Arkansas to improve to 3-3 on the season. Finley fronted a comeback late after a targeting call against Arkansas which would turn into a touchdown pass to Jaray Jenkins. The LSU defense was exploited again, however, they were able to withstand the dominance shown by Franks throughout the game. The Arkansas quarterback had 339 passing yards but can only get in field goal range for a clipped 44-yard field goal by Jay Ward. On the other side, Finley improved his passing ability against another tough SEC opponent, throwing for 271 passing yards, 2 touchdowns and no turnovers. LSU will look to continue their charge next week against Texas A&M, arguably a tougher SEC opponent, on the road at 6 p.m. CT.

LSU: 27 | Arkansas: 24

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