LSU vs #20 Arkansas Road to March Madness

LSU vs #20 Arkansas Road to March Madness | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

Written by on February 26, 2021

Big game in the SEC on Saturday in terms of conference tournament seeding as LSU visits No. 20 Arkansas, with the Hogs as home favorites on the NCAAB odds. Both teams will make the NCAA Tournament, with LSU priced +5500 to win the national title and Arkansas +10000.

How to Bet LSU at Arkansas NCAA Basketball Odds & TV Info

Last Meeting

On Jan. 13, LSU beat visiting Arkansas 92-76 when neither was ranked. Trendon Watford scored 23 points and Cam Thomas added 17, combining for 24 points in a dominating first half. The Tigers made six 3-pointers and shot 50% (18 of 36) in racing to a 51-31 halftime lead with Watford scoring 13 points and Thomas 11. LSU shot 55% in the second half (16 of 29) to maintain the lead. Arkansas, which finished at 34% from the field, going 8 of 31 from 3-point range, never challenged in the second half.

Why Bet on LSU? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Tigers (14-7) had a three-game winning streak snapped in a 91-78 loss at Georgia on Tuesday. The Dawgs’ Sahvir Wheeler became the first player in Georgia history to earn a triple-double. He had 14 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds. His triple-double was only 28th is SEC history. Six of those 28 came from Shaquille O’Neal during his time as an LSU Tiger.

The contest started with an early lead by the Bulldogs. Back-to-back jumpers by Tye Fagan and Justin Kier contributed to a 10-0 run over the Tigers. Toumani Camara ended the half with a buzzer-beating layup, bringing the score to 45-29 at the half.

LSU shot 10-of-30 in the opening 20 minutes, compared to 16-of-38 (42.1 percent) for Georgia. LSU had several empty possessions, committing eight turnovers in the first half.

“So many times, our guys got the rebound,” said Georgia coach Tom Crean. “We got out ahead, and we didn’t have too many live-ball turnovers in the first half, which made a huge difference to us.”

LSU pulled to 79-67 with five minutes to play but did not get closer. Cameron Thomas had his seventh consecutive game of 20 points or more with 21 points on 7-of-19 shooting, 2 treys and an uncharacteristic 5-of-8 at the free throw line for LSU. Javonte Smart hit 3 treys and 6-of-6 at the line with 19 points with three assists. Trendon Watford had back-to-back double doubles, finishing with 13 points and 10 rebounds.

Why Bet on Arkansas? | 2021 NCAA Basketball Expert Analysis

The Hogs (18-5) won their fifth in a it was a very impressive 81-66 home win over No. 6 Alabama on Wednesday. The Razorbacks used a big run midway through the second half and went 27-of-43 from the charity stripe, compared to 3-of-8 free throws by the Crimson Tide, to secure the 15-point victory.

After the Tide’s 8-0 run to begin the second half, the Razorbacks outscored Alabama 42-20 over the remaining 18:02. The 43 free throw attempts by Arkansas and 32 fouls called against the Crimson Tide were both high marks in a game this season.

Arkansas would shoot 25 second half free throws compared to only two by Alabama, with both of those coming from a technical foul, to hold on to a double-digit lead and secure its eighth-straight SEC win. It is the best conference win streak by the Hogs since winning 11 straight to close the 1993-94 season

Hogs star Moses Moody finished with a game-high 24 points, making 16-of-19 at the free throw line, with a career-high four assists and a career-high three blocked shots. The 16 makes at the free throw line tied Tommy Boyer for sixth-most made by a Razorback in a game – and were third-most by a Hog in an SEC game. The 19 attempts tied for seventh-most by a Razorback in a game – 3rd most by a Hog in an SEC game.

Jalen Tate had 12 points, four assists and a career-high four blocked shots. JD Notae scored 12 with three assists and two steals. Jaylin Williams, who was +30 in his 22 minutes played, scored 12 of his 13 points in the second half and he pulled down all eight of his rebounds in the period.

The 15-point win over a top 10 program is the fifth-largest margin of victory by the Razorbacks all time.

Arkansas is now 398-144 when the Razorbacks are ranked. Arkansas is 100-154 when facing a ranked team. This is the first time Arkansas has beaten two top 10 teams in the nation in the same season since the 2008-09 season, taking down #4 Oklahoma, 96-88, on Dec. 20, 2008, and #7 Texas, 67-61, on Jan. 6, 2009.

Expert Prediction

  • Arkansas 82, LSU 79
 
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