Pick with Analysis
Never underestimate Nick Saban and Alabama, that much we know. The Crimson Tide were underdogs last week at Georgia, but didn’t look like it in a dominating 38-10 win. They’re back to being favorites this week, a position they haven’t covered in for three straight Games. against Arkansas, they are a -17 point home favorite at 5 Dimes Sportsbook.
Even with their loss, Alabama still has a solid shot of making it to the playoff, but that’s a long way away. A road Game at No. 9 Texas A&M waits next weekend, as well. It was the perfect result for the Crimson against Georgia, with everyone underestimating them. Some of it came as a surprise; a solid pass defense and efficiency from quarterback Jake Coker were unexpected positives. And while the Bulldogs found room on the ground, their QBs threw three interceptions and Bama had their way on the offensive end.
With the win, it may just be the spark that the Crimson Tide needed after losing at home to Ole Miss a couple weeks ago. Their Schedule isn’t that difficult the rest of the way and it starts with this Game.
After three straight losses, Arkansas came up with a big win at Tennessee last weekend. The Volunteers have seemingly fallen apart and the Razorbacks took advantage of that by going back to last year’s strategy of running straight down the opponent’s throat. They finished with 275 yards on the ground in all and will need to have the same success this week.
Arkansas has struggled, but this team still has the talent to stay competitive against a team like Alabama. That was the case last year when Arkansas almost pulled out an upset, losing just 14-13.
They’ll need a similar performance in this one and it wouldn’t be surprising for them to do that. Even without wins, the Razorbacks have fought against teams, granted one of them was a loss to Toledo. Alabama can still be challenged, especially if Arkansas can move the ball on the ground.
Running back Alex Collins has been rolling the last few weeks against good defenses, surpassing 150 yards in three straight Games to go with Four touchdowns over that period. If Collins can find room, that could leave some open looks for Brandon Allen and the passing Game.
On the other end, Derrick Henry will probably have success running the ball because it’s Alabama. Even in losses, the Crimson Tide find room to run due to a dominant offensive line and a top running back. But if Jake Coker can play mistake free and hit open targets when his name is called, then Bama could run up the score.
Even though the Razorbacks have three losses, it wouldn’t be wise to sleep on them just yet.
The under has now hit in six straight SEC Games for Arkansas, while Alabama is just 1-6 ATS in its last seven Games following an ATS win. In this meeting, the home team is 5-1 ATS and the Crimson Tide are 5-2 ATS in the last seven.
Our Pick – This is a dangerous Game for Alabama. Arkansas has it’s bacl against the wall like a wounded animal. Nothing to lose. Bama coming off a huge blowout win on the road at Georgia has to guard against a possible letdown.
No question Alabama is the superior team, however, this was a one point Game a year ago and Arkansas is the team in this matchup that returns more starters from a year ago. Arkansas +17