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Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Arkansas Razorbacks College Football Preview

Guest Handicapper Preview (Bang the Book)

Date/Time: September 15, 3:30 pm EST

Television: CBS

College Football Gambling Odds from Bookmaker

College Football Betting Favorite: Alabama -21

Total: 53.5



Alabama has been nothing short of completely dominant in the first two weeks. Their season opening 41-14 win over Michigan helped them jump to the top of the polls. Arkansas was expected to be a top contender in the SEC West as well, but they were stunned at home last weekend by Louisiana-Monroe. The Razorbacks fell all the way out of the Top 25 after the loss. Can Arkansas keep up with the defending champs in this one?

Game Overview:

Nick Saban has put together an amazing football program at Alabama. The Crimson Tide dominated in the BCS title game last year, and they look to have the team to win it all again this year if they stay focused each week. It is quite remarkable that a team could lose so many stars to the NFL and still be this good. That speaks to the job that Saban has done recruiting players over the last few years.

In the huge win over Michigan, Alabama averaged 5.7 yards per carry. Freshman T.J. Yeldon put his name on the map with a huge 111 yard game. There is no shortage of talented running backs at Alabama, and they benefit from running behind what may be the best offensive line in the nation. A.J. McCarron has a little more on his plate this year, and it seems he is more than ready. McCarron has thrown six touchdowns and no interceptions so far this season. The Crimson Tide defense lost all kinds of stars, but they have just reloaded. Alabama pitched a shutout last week against Western Kentucky.

John L. Smith was named the new coach at Arkansas after Bobby Petrino was ousted this summer. Many questioned the move at the time, and even more are questioning it now that this highly-ranked Razorbacks team has already been knocked off by Louisiana-Monroe. To be fair, the single biggest reason that Arkansas lost last week's game was star quarterback Tyler Wilson went down with an injury. Wilson remains questionable for this matchup due to a head injury. Wilson is one of the best quarterbacks in the nation, and it goes without saying that Arkansas needs him to play in this one to have a legitimate chance of beating the Crimson Tide.

Even without Wilson in the game for such a long period, it wasn't acceptable for Arkansas to lose a game to Louisiana-Monroe (who was a 30-point underdog). Arkansas failed to rush for 100 yards in the game. In addition, Monroe quarterback Kolton Browning racked up 471 yards of total offense against Arkansas' defense. In the end, Arkansas was outgained by almost 200 yards by Lousiana-Monroe. The Razorbacks defense has been questionable in the past, and they'll get another huge test against the tremendous Alabama offensive line this weekend.

Free College Football Pick:

If Wilson doesn't play, Arkansas really doesn't stand a chance here. It's still completely up in the air on his status. Regardless of whether he plays or not, I expect Alabama to roll up the points against this Razorbacks defense. The over looks like the best value.

Alabama 38 Arkansas 17






 

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