SEC, BCS title pictures focus Friday with Arkansas-LSU

The SEC and BSC championship pictures will become much clearer Friday when No. 1 LSU welcomes No. 3 Arkansas to Death Valley in Baton Rouge.

An LSU win sends the Bayou Bengals to the SEC title game in Atlanta to face Georgia, while a victory by the Razorbacks would create a three-way tie with No. 2 Alabama atop the SEC West.

The highest ranked team in next Sunday’s BCS standings would represent the West in the GeorgiaDome, while No. 2 will be assured a spot in the national championship game.

After last week’s shuffling of the BCS puzzle, the only thing certain is that the SEC will once again be represented in the national championship game by at least one school.

Right now, it’s shaping up as an Alabama-LSU rematch, but No. 3 Arkansas will have something to say about that. The Razorbacks used last weekend’s chaos to jump up into third in the BCS standings.

Arkansas (10-1 overall, 6-1 SEC) will be playing with heavy hearts after backup tight end Garrett Uekman was found dead in his dorm room Sunday.

The Razorbacks’ loss came to Alabama way back on Sept. 24. Since then they have taken down three ranked teams, including a 44-28 win over then-No. 9 South Carolina on Nov. 5.

Arkansas has eclipsed 40 points in each of the last three games and boasts a passing attack that is averaging 316.9 yards – 10th best in the nation.

Tyler Wilson has 21 touchdowns and five interceptions and was named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week after putting up 365 yards and three scores in a 44-17 drubbing of Mississippi State last Saturday.

Aiming to stop that passing attack will be the Tigers’ No. 2-ranked scoring defense, which is holding opponents to 10 points. That defense is allowing only 158.3 yards through the air and has yielded a total of 11 touchdowns in 2011.

LSU (11-0, 7-0) has shown off its offense in the last two weeks, beating Western Kentucky and Ole Miss by a combined 94-12.

The time-share at quarterback between Jordan Jefferson and Jarrett Lee has not been an issue because the running game has accounted for 644 yards the last two weeks.

Friday will feature the highest-ranked matchup at Tiger Stadium since No. 1 LSU beat No. 3 Ole Miss in 1959.
3. Arkansas is ranked in the top three for the first time since Oct. 15, 1978.

TV: 2:30 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: LSU -12.5

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