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Florida Wins Florida Citrus Sports Shootout, 96-70

This season, pick who you think will win the Capital One Bowl Game of the Week and WIN! Answer the question on the Capital One Bowl Facebook page before Saturday’s game. If you pick correctly, you’ll be entered into a drawing to win two tickets to the Capital One Bowl on January 2, 2012!

LSU leads series 34-20-2 (last meeting: November 27, 2010: Arkansas 31, LSU 23)

The No. 1 LSU Tigers (11-0, 7-0 SEC) and the No. 3 Arkansas Razorback (10-1, 6-1 SEC) clash in Baton Rouge in the final week of the regular season. The implications of this game have only increased throughout the season, as both teams remain in the hunt for the West Division title and a possible spot in the National Championship game. A loss could land one of the teams in Orlando in January. This matchup will be a test between LSU’s aggressive secondary and Arkansas’s talented offensive skilled players.

The Hogs have crept their way up to the top three in the BCS rankings after their seventh consecutive win last week. Led by emerging star quarterback Tyler Wilson, the Razorback offense will be one of the toughest the Tigers have had to face this year. They are No. 1 in the conference in scoring offense (39.3 points per game) and 10th in the country in passing yards (316.9 yards per game). In the 44-17 win against Mississippi State, Wilson broke the school’s completion record after throwing 32 (in 43 attempts) for 365 yards and three touchdowns. Wide receivers Jarius Wright, Joe Adams, Cobi Hamilton and tight end Chris Gragg create one of the most dangerous receiving units in the country. The Hogs lead the conference in total offense with 463.3 yards per game.

The Tigers are 7-0 in SEC play for the first time in school history after a 52-3 victory against Ole Miss last week. They rank just behind Arkansas in scoring offense with 37.9 points per game and their rushing attack ranks second in the conference with 209.5 yards per game. Sophomore running back Spencer Ware leads the Tiger offense, ranking 8th in the conference with 65 yards per game. Their defensive attack, however, is the most intimidating in the league. Through 11 games, the Tigers is second in the nation in scoring defense (10 points per game) and total offense (247.9). They rank third in the SEC in passing defense, allowing 158 yards a game and have given up a league-low of five touchdowns through the air.

Extra points: This game will feature the highest-ranked teams in Tiger Stadium since 1959 when No. 1 LSU beat No. 3 Ole Miss, 7-3, on Halloween Night.

This is the first time in the BCS era that three teams in the same conference are the top three contenders in the national championship race.

The Tigers are playing their eighth straight game as the nation’s No. 1 ranked team – the longest stretch for the team since 1959.

Expert Picks

Michel Champagne Michel Champagne currently serves as Chairman of Florida Citrus Sports, where his duties include leading Team Selection Committee. He is the Vice President of Operations and General Manager, Orlando Region for Bright House Networks.
Pick: LSU
Season Record: 13-7
Greg Warmoth Greg Warmoth spent 11 years as the weekend sports anchor for WFTV Channel 9 in Orlando before switching to the news desk in 1997. He currently anchors Eyewitness News Daybreak, Eyewitness News This Morning on TV-27 and Eyewitness News at Noon.
Pick: LSU
Season Record: 12-8
Marc Daniels Marc Daniels hosts The Beat Of Sports on ESPN 1080 AM in Orlando every weekday morning from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m. Daniels has over 20 years of experience on the air and is most well known as “the Voice of the UCF Knights” for all football, men’s basketball and baseball games on the UCF ISP Sports Network.
Pick: LSU
Season Record: 13-7
Jerry Greene Jerry Greene spent 33 years as a sportswriter at Florida Today, the Pensacola News Journal and the Orlando Sentinel before retiring in 2009. He now co-hosts The Beat of Sports with Daniels and contributes to ESPN.com’s Page 2 section.
Pick: Arkansas
Season Record: 7-13
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