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LSU Basketball Drops to No. 13 in AP Poll Following Loss to Arkansas

Tigers head into a critical week of conference schedule with back to back road games

Following a gut wrenching loss to Arkansas on Saturday, the Tigers have slightly dipped in the most recent AP top-25 rankings. 

The Tigers (15-2, 3-2) fell one spot to No. 13 in the latest rankings while also dropping in the NET rankings to No. 7 after consistently being in the top five the last handful of weeks. As impressive as beating Florida on the road was for this team, it was equally hard to swallow a loss to the Razorbacks where LSU led by eight with seven minutes to go.

The schedule won't get any easier for the Tigers this week as LSU faces two teams in Alabama and No. 24 Tennessee desperate for conference wins. Both programs are off to 2-3 starts in conference play after being top 25 teams for most of this season. The Crimson Tide are coming off back-to-back losses to Auburn and Mississippi State while Tennessee was blown out by Kentucky on Saturday.  

These are two teams that Will Wade and LSU undoubtedly believe are better than the records show and coming off a blown lead to Arkansas, there will be a sense of urgency to get back in the win column. LSU was able to handle its second true road test fairly well in Gainesville last week but have struggled in Tuscaloosa over the years to pull out wins.  

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LSU's offense completely stalled in the final seven minutes of that Arkansas game, scoring just two points to allow the Razorbacks to pull off the comeback attempt. Offensive lulls have been far too common with this team, particularly since conference play has heated up. 

Getting senior guard Xavier Pinson back into the rotation could help with some of those issues, especially in two tough SEC road environments with schools opening back up for the spring semesters and students back in town. 

While it's too early to call these must win games for the purple and gold, if they want to stay in the SEC race with Auburn, there needs to be some sense of urgency in picking themselves up after the most recent loss.