LSU vs Arkansas: Betting Odds, Picks, and Predictions (3/2/22)

LSU vs Arkansas Betting Odds

After starting the season 15-1 and 3-1 in SEC play, no team has regressed more than LSU. The Tigers now stand at 20-9 overall and 8-8 in SEC play, adding up to just five wins in 13 games.

Meanwhile, the Arkansas Razorbacks are on the opposite trend. The Razorbacks looked broken in January, starting the conference season 0-3 after two non-conference losses to Oklahoma and Hofstra. Since then, the Hogs have won 13 of 14 and beaten the two best teams in the conference (Auburn, Kentucky).

The Hogs also wrecked LSU in Death Valley, beating the Tiers by 10 back on Jan. 15.

So, can the Tigers avenge the loss in Fayetteville on Wednesday? Or, will the hottest team in the conference continue to roll?

LSU Tigers Odds

The Tigers’ hot start was built on their defense. But it was also built on luck.

Through those first 15 games, LSU allowed a top-10 opponent 3-point rate, but those same opponents were hitting just 25% of the same 3-point opportunities. Nobody could hit an open jump shot against LSU, and it resulted in a lot of Tiger victories.

But the Tigers have lost track since. That 3-point number is up to 30% in conference play and the 2-point number sits at over 50%, the latter ranks ninth in the SEC.

LSU is still a good defense. The Tigers are filled with athletic, lengthy players who communicate well and defend aggressively. LSU is first in the SEC in defensive turnover rate, which includes second in steal rate and third in block rate.

Offensively, everything goes through Darius Days and Tari Eason, two wings that spend their nights downhill driving through opponent interior defenses. Eason comes off the bench in most games but leads the team with 16.5 points per game.

Sadly, Will Wade’s wing-dependent and interior-based offense hasn’t been very efficient. The Tigers are 12th in the SEC in offensive efficiency, including a dead-last ranking in offensive turnover rate.

LSU Tigers Projected Starting Lineup

  1. Xavier Pinson
  2. Mwani Wilkinson
  3. Brandon Murray
  4. Darius Days
  5. Efton Reid

Arkansas Razorbacks Odds

The Hogs are the hottest team in the SEC, if not the country.

Arkansas has flipped the season on its head, and it’s done it on the defensive end. Arkansas is the top defensive team in the SEC, pacing the league in defensive efficiency and ranking in the top-2 in effective field goal percentage allowed, 2-point percentage allowed, and 3-point percentage allowed.

On the other end, JD Notae is a stud offensively. He was the March Madness National Player of the Week last week for his role in two major Arkansas wins, scoring 30 against Kentucky and 22 against Florida. He also dished out 11 assists in the games.

For a stretch in the Kentucky game, Notae was unstoppable. He would drive down the lane and finish everything at the rim, then come back on the next possession and hit a deep step-back 3. Notae can do it all.

Arkansas has snuck up to a four-seed in my bracket projections. It could get much higher with an SEC Tournament win – something that is not above the Hogs’ heads.

Arkansas Razorbacks Projected Starting Lineup

  1. JD Notae
  2. Davonte Davis
  3. Au’Diese Toney
  4. Stanley Umude
  5. Jaylin Williams

LSU vs Arkansas Prediction and Pick

Arkansas should win this game, but this line is a tad high. KenPom has this spread at just Arkansas -3.

The Arkansas stock is also as high as it has ever been. The Hogs are 9-1 against the spread in its last 10-games. So, this sets up well as a sell-high opportunity on Arkansas.

LSU also desperately needs a win, as the team is slowly slipping down the bracketology rankings. So, coach Wade should fire up his team for this game.

I think Arkansas can win this game, but I’ll happily catch over five points with Eason, Days, and the Tiger defense.

Tanner joined Lineups to cover everything, but he has vast experience in, and unlimited passion for, Major League Baseball and NCAA Basketball. He’s a McGill University grad and former (Canadian) Division-I alpine ski racer who now spends his time drinking beer and betting home underdogs. Patrick Mahomes is a poor man’s Tom Brady.

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