Originally created 11/28/98

Arkansas beats LSU



LITTLE ROCK -- Clint Stoerner completed 19-of-25 passes for 232 yards in the first half as No. 13 Arkansas built a 21-point lead on its way to a 41-14 victory over LSU that completed a dramatic turnaround under first-year coach Houston Nutt.

The Razorbacks (9-2, 6-2 Southeastern Conference) earned a share of the Western Division title with Mississippi State after two straight 4-7 seasons. The Bulldogs are in the SEC title game with Tennessee because of a 22-21 victory over Arkansas last week. LSU (4-7, 2-6) had its first losing season in four years under Gerry DiNardo.

LSU went from a potential 14-14 tie to down 21-7 in a matter of moments.

From the LSU 12, Stoerner threw toward the left sideline. Mark Roman flashed in front of the potential receiver, but missed the interception with nothing but open field in front of him. On the next play, Arnold Miller blocked Todd Latourette's 29-yard field goal attempt and the ball caromed high. LSU's Aaron Adams tried to catch the deflection, but fumbled it and Arkansas offensive guard Brandon Burlsworth recovered at the 1.

Chrys Chukwuma scored his second touchdown two plays later.

LSU closed to 28-14 early in the third quarter, but Chukwuma broke a 37-yard run up the middle and set up a 45-yard field goal by Latourette. Chukwuma carried 17 times for 141 yards in the second half and finished with 29 for 166. Stoerner completed 27-of-38 for 334 yards.

Chukwuma's 5-yard run and Stoerner's 4-yard pass to Emanuel Smith gave Arkansas a 14-0 lead in the first quarter.

Chukwuma's first TD ended a 49-yard drive that included two big passes by Stoerner. On third-and-six, Stoerner fit a pass between three defenders and Michael Williams went high for a 17-yard gain. A sliding catch by Joe Dean Davenport was good for 18 yards and a first down at the 5. Chukwuma started right and was hit at the line of scrimmage by linebacker Charles Smith. Chukwuma wormed away from Smith, then shook off Adams and scored.

LSU created a gap on the kickoff and Mealey returned it 63 yards to the Arkansas 29. LSU quarterback Craig Nall -- a freshman making his first start because of an injury to Herb Tyler -- was too long on third down. On fourth down, he threw deep while Abram Booty ran a short pattern.

Stoerner completed 6-of-8 for 64 yards as Arkansas moved 72 yards in 12 plays for its second TD. Davenport moved into an area vacated by a blitzing defender and caught Stoerner's pass for 20 yards. On third-and-10, Williams was open in the middle for 13.

After twice running a pitch sweep right on a quick count, the Razorbacks went on the quick count and Stoerner faked the pitch. He rolled left and threw 9 yards to Smith. From the 4, cornerback Fred Booker went for the interception and missed and Smith caught the ball in the end zone.

On the Tigers' next possession, they used Kevin Faulk at quarterback and he made some big plays. On third-and-two, he ran the option left and kept for 15 yards. He ran the same play from the 2 and scored easily -- an SEC record 53rd touchdown for his career, breaking Herschel Walker's record at Georgia.

For their fourth TD, the Razorbacks covered 62 yards in eight plays. Tailback Madre Hill slipped by a blitzing linebacker and caught Stoerner's pass for 21. A bullet to Anthony Lucas was good for 12 and Hill followed Marvin Caston's block into the end zone.