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Arkansas-LSU Rivalry
"The Battle for the Golden Boot" since 1996
LSU text logo.svg Arkansas text logo.svg
LSU (34) Arkansas (19)
1901 1907
1908 1912
1913 1915
1916 1919
1920 1921
1926 1930
1931 1932
1933 1934
1935 1936
1953 1954
1955 1956
1966* 1994
1995 1996
1997 1999
2001 2003
2004 2005
2006 2009
1909 1910
1911 1914
1917 1922
1923 1924
1925 1927
1928 1929
1992 1993
1998 2000
2002 2007
2008
Ties (2)
1906 1947*
*Cotton Bowl Classic

The Arkansas–LSU rivalry, now known as The Battle for the Golden Boot, is the annual college football sports rivalry game between the teams of the University of Arkansas, the Razorbacks, and Louisiana State University, the Tigers. Although the first game between the two teams occurred in 1901, the rivalry between the teams intensified after Arkansas' entrance into the Southeastern Conference (SEC) in 1992, and later in 1996 with the first awarding of the "Golden Boot" and the official titling of the game "The Battle for the Golden Boot". The game is now generally played on the day after Thanksgiving (in the United States).

The two teams have played 53 times since 1901, and as of the 2009 contest, 18 consecutive times after Arkansas' induction into the SEC. During that time, Arkansas has won 19 games of the series while LSU has won 33, including the latest meeting in 2009, between the two teams. Arkansas and LSU have twice ended the game in a tie, in 1906 and the 1947 Cotton Bowl Classic.

Contents

History

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Pre-Golden Boot era

Arkansas and LSU began playing each other in 1901, when LSU claimed a 15-0 victory in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Between 1906-1936 (with the exception of 1918) and 1953-1956, the two teams played each other during regular seasons on a yearly basis. In addition, the two teams have played each other at the end of the regular season in the Cotton Bowl Classic twice, on January 1 of 1947 and 1966, the former being the second tie in the series while the latter ended in a 14-7 LSU victory.

In 1992, LSU and Arkansas resumed their annual rivalry when Arkansas joined the Southeastern Conference after leaving the Southwest Conference. The teams played each other four times in the conference before the introduction of the Golden Boot trophy in 1996.

Golden Boot era

The Boot measures approximately 4 feet (1.2 m) tall and has the outline of many major rivers and lakes in Arkansas and Louisiana.

Beginning in 1996, the victor in the rivalry between Arkansas and LSU received the Golden Boot, a trophy that weighs approximately 175 pounds and is generally considered the heaviest "trophy" awarded in all of college football.[1] The trophy itself stands a little over 4 feet tall, is molded out of 24-karat gold, and resembles the outline of the states of Arkansas and Louisiana connected, thus making a boot shape. Since 1996, the game has been set on the day after Thanksgiving, and has been played on alternating years in Little Rock, Arkansas at War Memorial Stadium, which is the secondary home stadium for the Razorbacks, and in Baton Rouge, Louisiana at Tiger Stadium. The series has generally represented an important battle in the SEC Western Division, with either Arkansas or LSU representing the division in the SEC Football Championship Game in many seasons.

LSU won the inaugural "trophy meeting" in 1996, 17–7, and for the next six years, the trophy changed hands every meeting, beginning with LSU in 1997. After Arkansas' "Miracle on Markham" victory in 2002, LSU won the rivalry and the Golden Boot four consecutive times from 2003 to 2006.

The trophy returned to Arkansas' possession on November 23, 2007 when the Razorbacks beat then top-ranked, and eventual BCS National Championship game winner LSU 50-48 in three overtimes in Baton Rouge; The victory was the first for former Razorback coach Houston Nutt in five tries in Tiger Stadium. Arkansas successfully defended the Golden Boot again in 2008 with a spectacular come-from-behind victory in the last minute of gameplay.

Game results

Arkansas victories are shaded ██ red. LSU victories shaded in ██ purple. Ties between the two teams aren't shaded.[2][3][4]

Pre-SEC

Year LSU Arkansas Location
1901 LSU 15 Arkansas 0 Baton Rouge, LA
1906 LSU 6 Arkansas 6 Baton Rouge, LA
1907 LSU 17 Arkansas 12 Baton Rouge, LA
1908 LSU 36 Arkansas 4 Little Rock, AR
1909 LSU 0 Arkansas 16 Memphis, TN
1910 LSU 0 Arkansas 51 Little Rock, AR
1911 LSU 0 Arkansas 11 Little Rock, AR
1912 LSU 7 Arkansas 6 Little Rock, AR
1913 LSU 12 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1914 LSU 12 Arkansas 20 Shreveport, LA
1915 LSU 13 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1916 LSU 17 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1917 LSU 0 Arkansas 14 Shreveport, LA
1919 LSU 20 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1920 LSU 3 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1921 LSU 10 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1922 LSU 6 Arkansas 40 Shreveport, LA
1923 LSU 13 Arkansas 26 Shreveport, LA
1924 LSU 7 Arkansas 10 Shreveport, LA
1925 LSU 0 Arkansas 12 Shreveport, LA
1926 LSU 14 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1927 LSU 0 Arkansas 28 Shreveport, LA
1928 LSU 0 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1929 LSU 0 Arkansas 32 Shreveport, LA
1930 LSU 27 Arkansas 12 Shreveport, LA
1931 LSU 13 Arkansas 6 Shreveport, LA
1932 LSU 14 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1933 LSU 20 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1934 LSU 16 Arkansas 0 Shreveport, LA
1935 LSU 13 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1936 LSU 19 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1947^ LSU 0 Arkansas 0 Dallas, TX
1953 LSU 9 Arkansas 8 Little Rock, AR
1954 LSU 7 Arkansas 6 Shreveport, LA
1955 LSU 13 Arkansas 7 Little Rock, AR
1956 LSU 21 Arkansas 7 Shreveport, LA
1966^ LSU 14 Arkansas 7 Dallas, TX
^: The teams met in the Cotton Bowl Classic which was held on January 1.

SEC: Pre-Golden Boot

Year LSU Arkansas Location
1992 LSU 6 Arkansas 30 Fayetteville, AR
1993 LSU 24 Arkansas 42 Baton Rouge, LA
1994 LSU 30 Arkansas 12 Little Rock, AR
1995 LSU 28 14 Arkansas 0 Baton Rouge, LA
The game was moved from Fayetteville to Little Rock starting in 1994.

Battle for the Golden Boot

Year LSU Arkansas Location
1996 19 LSU 17 Arkansas 7 Little Rock, AR
1997 17 LSU 31 Arkansas 21 Baton Rouge, LA
1998 LSU 14 13 Arkansas 41 Little Rock, AR
1999 LSU 35 17 Arkansas 10 Baton Rouge, LA
2000 24 LSU 3 Arkansas 14 Little Rock, AR
2001 LSU 41 24 Arkansas 38 Baton Rouge, LA
2002 18 LSU 20 Arkansas 21 Little Rock, AR
2003 3 LSU 55 Arkansas 24 Baton Rouge, LA
2004 14 LSU 43 Arkansas 14 Little Rock, AR
2005 3 LSU 19 Arkansas 17 Baton Rouge, LA
2006 8 LSU 31 5 Arkansas 26 Little Rock, AR
2007 1 LSU 48 Arkansas 50 Baton Rouge, LA
2008 LSU 30 Arkansas 31 Little Rock, AR
2009 15 LSU 33 Arkansas 30 Baton Rouge, LA
†: Represented the SEC West in the SEC Championship Game that season.

Noteworthy games and events in the series

1901 - First Meeting

LSU 15 - Arkansas 0

In the initial meeting between the two teams during the 1901 season, LSU came away with the victory, shutting out Arkansas completely. The game was played in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and was one of the first ever played by either school's football team.

1947 - The "Ice Bowl"

1 2 3 4 Total
Razorbacks 0 0 0 0 0
Tigers 0 0 0 0 0

LSU 0 - Arkansas 0

The 1947 Cotton Bowl Classic was played as an end to the 1946 college football season for both teams, and was the first matchup between the rivals since 1936. The game was named the "Ice Bowl" due to the ice, sleet, snow, rain, and sub-20 degree (Fahrenheit) weather which produced horrid playing conditions. The Tigers only accepted the invitation after considering themselves snubbed by the Sugar Bowl, and entered the game with a record of 9-1.[5]

During the time period in which the game was played, the bowl game was still considered an accomplishment due to the tickets that were sold out weeks in advance and the attendance of the game, which was around 38,000 despite the weather. It is argued that LSU had the upper-hand most of the game in terms of offensive production, holding a 15-1 edge over the Razorbacks in first downs and a 271-54 advantage in total yardage, led by quarterback Y.A. Tittle. The Arkansas defense kept the Tiger offense out of the end zone from the Arkansas 1, 6, 7, and 8 yard lines, but Arkansas could not capitalize on any of the stops. The final two plays proved the cold did not stop the teams from having a flair for the dramatic, as Razorback Clyde Scott (a future College Football Hall of Famer) tackled LSU receiver Jeff Odom at the Razorback one, preserving the tie. The Tigers then attempted the go-ahead field goal, but a bad snap ended the game on the final play. Due in large part to the weather, the game ended in a 0-0 tie, marking the second (and last) time the two teams tied.[6]

1966 - Cotton Bowl Classic with National Championship implications

1 2 3 4 Total
Razorbacks 7 0 0 0 7
Tigers 0 14 0 0 14

LSU 14 - Arkansas 7

The two teams played each other on January 1, 1966 in the Cotton Bowl Classic to end the 1965 college football season. Arkansas had won the national championship the previous year, for the 1964 season, and came into the game with a 10-0 record (and an overall 22-game winning streak on the line) after winning the Southwest Conference title for 1965, looking to again win the national championship. Arkansas had the number one scoring offense coming into the game, averaging 32.4 points per contest.

Arkansas took the ball to the end zone on the opening drive, capped by a 19 yard toss from Jon Brittenum to All-American end Bobby Crockett. Running back Joe LaBruzzo then ran in from three yards out for the Bengal Tigers to tie the game at 7. Razorback QB Brittenum then left the game after suffering a shoulder injury and the Hogs fumbled the ball three plays later. LaBruzzo again scored, this time from one yard away, giving the Tigers a 14-7 halftime lead.

Neither team scored in the second half, and Arkansas ended the game on the LSU 24 yard line. Razorback Bobby Crockett set a bowl record with 10 catches for 129 yards, but it was not enough as the Tigers edged out the win by one touchdown, 14-7, to move to a record of 8-3, while the Razorbacks dropped to 10-1 for the season.[7]


1992 - Arkansas joins the SEC

1992 was the first year that Arkansas played a football season as a part of the Southeastern Conference. (after previously playing in the now defunct Southwest Conference) Arkansas joined the SEC in 1991, along with the South Carolina Gamecocks to bring the league up to the 12 current teams, and begin a system in which there was an SEC Championship Game on a yearly basis between the winner of the Western division and the Eastern division. The Razorbacks won the initial SEC contest between the teams 30-6 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. This was the first of the now annual meetings between the two teams. The Golden Boot trophy was not awarded in the initial four SEC meeting between the two teams.

1996 - First Golden Boot awarded

LSU 17 - Arkansas 7

In 1996, which was the first year the Golden Boot Trophy was awarded, the LSU Tigers were able to take home the trophy. The 19th-ranked Tigers won the game by a score of 17 to 7.[8] For the Tigers, running back Kevin Faulk rushed for 138 yards and a touchdown and quarterback Herb Tyler threw for 191 yards. LSU coach Gerry DiNardo was quoted after the game as saying, "Obviously it was a great win. I feel we had a terrific first half. In the second half the defense didn't play as well as it should and the offense didn't score."

Initial reaction to the awarding of the trophy was mixed, but in the intervening years it has come to represent a ratcheting up of the rivalry.

2002 - "Miracle on Markham"

1 2 3 4 Total
#18 Tigers 7 3 7 3 20
Razorbacks 0 0 7 14 21

Arkansas 21 - LSU 20

The 2002 contest between the two teams is now referred to as the "Miracle on Markham"[9][10] by most Arkansas fans and those in the media. (Markham Street being the main street that runs by War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock where the game was played)

Trailing 20-14 with 34 seconds left, the Razorbacks (9-3, 5-3 SEC) got the ball at their own 19 yard line. Arkansas quarterback Matt Jones completed a 50-yard pass to Richard Smith on the first play. After the game Jones was quoted as saying "I couldn't believe Richard Smith got behind that guy. Our play wasn't designed to go to Richard, but they let him get behind them. If I could have thrown the ball about 10 yards further we would have scored on that play."

After one pass incompletion, Jones threw a 31-yard touchdown pass to DeCori Birmingham, who lept over LSU defensive back Randall Gay, with nine seconds left on the game clock. Arkansas was penalized 15 yards for excessive celebration, moving the go-ahead extra point to the 35 yard line. Arkansas kicker David Carlton barely made the long extra point (which was long enough, but curved left) to give Arkansas a 21-20 win over LSU and the opportunity to go to the 2002 Southeastern Conference Championship Game[11]. After the game, Houston Nutt said that when he was sharing with Jones the plays to run Jones simply said, despite completing only two passes up to that point, "I've got it."[9] LSU would have clinched the SEC Western division title (thereby advancing to the 2002 SEC Championship Game) had it not been for the loss. The finish is considered similar to the Bluegrass Miracle, and is considered one of the all time greatest finishes to a game in Razorback history.


2003-2006

The LSU Tigers won the Golden Boot Trophy four consecutive times between the 2003 and 2006 contests, while also staying at or near the top of the SEC West; Winning the 2003 SEC Championship Game[12] (while going on to win the national championship after winning the 2004 Sugar Bowl[13]), and also going to the 2005 SEC Championship Game[14], while Arkansas went to the 2006 SEC Championship Game even after losing to LSU in the Golden Boot game. Previous to this four year run by LSU, the trophy had changed hands on almost a yearly basis since its inception.

2007 - Houston Nutt's final game

1 2 3 4 OT 2OT 3OT Total
Razorbacks 0 7 14 7 7 7 8 50
#1 Tigers 6 0 15 7 7 7 6 48

Arkansas 50 - LSU 48 (3OT)

Coming into the November 23, 2007 game which was played in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, LSU was ranked number one in the country in the BCS, and most major polls. The Razorbacks outlasted the Tigers in a grueling three overtime game to win the game in which star running back (and 2007 Heisman Trophy runner up) Darren McFadden rushed for 206 yards and three touchdowns, and threw for one touchdown to lift Arkansas to a 50-48 victory in front of 92,606 people (the official attendance) at Tiger Stadium.[15][16] The "Wild Hog" formation (Arkansas' name for the Wildcat offense) was run prominently in the game, led by McFadden, in which he was a triple threat to run, hand off, or throw.

The game was played after Tigers coach Les Miles famously mispronounced Arkansas as ar-Kansas, as in the pronunciation of the state of Kansas, (see the "Arkansas" entry at List of words of disputed pronunciation for more information) in the week preceding the game. This was thought to act as a motivator for Arkansas in the game, because after the game McFadden was quoted as saying, "They weren't saying it right so we wanted to let them know how to say it."

LSU went on to represent the West in the 2007 SEC Championship Game against the Tennessee Volunteers, and after winning the contest went on to win the 2008 BCS National Championship Game against the Ohio State Buckeyes, becoming the first ever team to win the BCS National Championship with 2 losses. This game ended up being the last that Houston Nutt coached at Arkansas, resigning a few days later and announcing himself as new head coach of Ole Miss. (see Arkansas–Ole Miss rivalry#Houston Nutt controversy and Houston Nutt#Resignation)


2008 - Miracle on Markham II

1 2 3 4 Total
Tigers 3 20 7 0 30
Razorbacks 14 0 7 10 31

Arkansas 31 - LSU 30 (OT)

In 2008, Arkansas quarterback Casey Dick threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver London Crawford on a fourth-down (with one yard to go) situation with only 22 seconds remaining on the game clock to give the Razorbacks a 31-30 victory over the Tigers at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.[17]. Coincidentally Crawford caught it in the same corner in the same endzone Decori Birmigham had scored the game winner six years earlier against LSU. The Razorbacks had trailed by a score of 30-14 early in the third quarter when Casey replaced his younger brother, Nathan at quarterback; LSU incurred several penalties which aided Arkansas in the comeback ending in the winning drive which included converting twice on fourth down.[18]

Prior to the game, both teams had been unranked and out of the running for the SEC West title. LSU finished the 2008 season ranked 3rd in the Western division of the SEC (behind Alabama and Ole Miss) and bowl bound. Arkansas finished the year ranked 4th in the division and out of contention for a bowl.

Because of the similarities between this outcome and the Miracle on Markham, some, such as Fayetteville-based The Morning News, have taken to calling this game the "Miracle on Markham II".[19] Other columnists and news sources, citing less of the impact or flair of the Miracle on Markham, have suggested other titles, such as "Madness on Markham".[20] Quarterback for the Razorbacks at the time, Casey Dick, reluctantly stated, “That’s fine with me,” when asked about the "Miracle on Markham II" title for the game.[21]

2009

1 2 3 4 OT Total
Razorbacks 3 3 14 10 0 30
#15 Tigers 10 7 7 6 3 33

LSU 33 - Arkansas 30 - OT

In 2009, Arkansas' Alex Tejada missed a field goal to the right in overtime to give LSU the victory.

References

External links


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