Anthony Jennings, No. 15 LSU escape upset threat by Arkansas
The only thing standing between Arkansas and a monumental upset of No. 15 LSU in Baton Rouge was 99 yards and a freshman quarterback.
No problem, said Tigers coach Les Miles.
Freshman signal-caller Anthony Jennings helped engineer a 99-yard drive capped by a 49-yard touchdown pass to Travin Dural with 1:15 left to play to spurn the Razorbacks’ upset bid on Friday, 31-27. The Tigers sacked Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen on the ensuing drive, forced a fumble and recovered the ball to seal the victory with 37 seconds to play.
As LSU faced a six-point deficit with under seven minutes left, quarterback Zach Mettenberger went down with an apparent knee injury that forced him to the sidelines. The freshman Jennings entered the game just before the Tigers knocked in a field goal to bring the deficit to three points. On Arkansas’ next possession, LSU forced a punt that the Hogs’ kicked all the way to the Tigers’ one-yard line.
The task at hand didn’t appear to bother Jennings. He marched LSU to midfield with three completions before he found Dural for the game-winning touchdown strike, the first-career scoring toss for the first-year quarterback.
Jennings’ performance helped LSU avoid its first home loss of the season and improve to 9-3 on the season. But Arkansas’ season hasn’t been as successful in Bret Bielema’s first year at the helm. The loss marked the Razorbacks’ first winless season in the SEC since 1942. After starting the season 3-0, the Hogs lost nine straight to close the year.