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Stat Watch: Arkansas

Stat Watch looks ahead to the Razorbacks

Vanderbilt v Arkansas Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Normally in this space I’d recap how the numbers fared during last week’s game and how LSU performed relative to what I expected based off those numbers. At this point, I have no further interest in discussing last week’s game, so I’m going to skip over that and look ahead to Arkansas and see how the advanced stats rate the Razorbacks.

This Season:

A note on these stats: The offensive and defensive S&P+ marks are calculated as adjusted scoring averages and for the situational ratings, above 100 is good and below 100 is bad. Links to an explanation on the various stats here, here and here:

Stat Watch

Data Arkansas LSU
Data Arkansas LSU
S&P+ Percentile 44.2% (79th) 82.0% (22nd)
Off. S&P+ 29.6 (62nd) 28.6 (74th)
Off. Passing 91.9 (109th) 99.8 (69th)
Off. Rushing 101.0 (57th) 95.4 (95th)
Def. S&P+ 30.5 (83rd) 17.5 (13th)
Def. Passing 97.0 (92nd) 124.4 (3rd)
Def. Rushing 100.5 (75th) 110.8 (26th)
FEI -.058 (84th) .193 (8th)
F/+ -12.5% (82nd) 40.9% (13th)

LSU got absolutely shelled in the rankings after last week, falling from 13th to 22nd in S&P+, 8th to 13th in Defensive S&P+, and 67th to 74th in Offensive S&P+. Even still, this is still a team that should be way, way too much for Arkansas. The Razorbacks offense is not a bad unit and has had some solid games on the season, but their weakness is passing through the air and that’s a bad weakness to have against LSU, the #3 defense in Passing Defense S&P+. This could be similar to the Mississippi State game, a team that mostly succeeds on the ground being forced to put up a bad passing attack against LSU’s elite secondary. As much as LSU has had it’s ups and downs on offense, Arkansas is a weak defense and one that gives them a chance to make some plays through the air and help out a really struggling run game, and therefore hopefully lead to a big day. This game has a history of getting hairy for LSU when it seems like it shouldn’t, but the numbers show this one should be a comfortable win for the Tigers.