College Football Pick
In another Conference these teams could maybe be a little more relevant and near the top of the standings. Instead, playing in the SEC, both Ole Miss and Arkansas have struggled to two-loss records, yet both remain ranked in the top 25. Despite that, the Rebels, playing on the road, are a -7.5 point favorite as seen at 5 Dimes Sportsbook.
The line is a bit interesting considering how each team has played thus far and how last year’s tilt went. The Razorbacks won 53-52 after going for two in overtime on the road. The funny thing was that both teams scored the same amount of points in each quarter (except for overtime). The teams battled back and forth with neither defense giving much resistance.
As for this season, the Rebels have the higher ranking, mostly because they have won their last two Games after falling to Florida State and Alabama in two of the first three weeks. Arkansas maybe isn’t any worse but its two losses have come in recent weeks (to Texas A&M and ‘Bama) after the Hogs won their first three Games of the year.
So which team is better and why are the Rebels such a big favorite? Most of that reasoning has to fall to recent blowout wins against Georgia and Memphis. In addition, Chad Kelly is the more experienced quarterback and he absolutely went off in this meeting last year, throwing for 368 yards and three touchdowns to go with 110 rushing yards and three more TDs. Maybe that won’t happen again, but there’s no reason to think this Arkansas defense can stop Kelly.
For starters, the Hogs haven’t really stopped anyone. They gave up 38 points to TCU in that win, then 45 to A&M and 49 to Alabama last weekend. With how Kelly and the Rebels are moving the ball right now, this is headed for another high-scoring Game.
But can Ole Miss stop Arkansas from scoring? While the Rebs held down Georgia and Memphis, those two offenses aren’t as good as year’s past.
In addition, Austin Allen has been just as good as brother Brandon Allen was a year ago for the Razorbacks and he threw six touchdowns against Ole Miss last season. Maybe that won’t happen again but Austin just threw for 400 yards against the Tide last weekend and could easily do the same against this Rebels defense. Plus, Rawleigh Williams III has been solid at running back, although struggled against the Tide. Of course, Ole Miss does not have the same defensive front as ‘Bama.
The worry here for Arkansas backers is that the Hogs are coming off a grueling contest against the Tide, while Ole Miss had a week off. That said, giving the home team more than a touchdown in this Game is interesting.
If Allen and Williams can move the ball, which they should, this Game should be similarly close to last season.
The Rebels have covered in Four straight SEC Games, but are just 1-4 ATS in their last five road Games. The Razorbacks are 14-6 ATS in their last 20 home Games vs. a team with a winning road record and 9-4 ATS in their last 13 following a straight-up loss.
Our Pick – This series has seen some close Games over the last 7 or 8 years, none closer than last years OT Game won by Arkansas 53-52. As a result, Our inclination would be to side with the SEC home dog. However, Our model likes Ole Miss by 2 TD’s. We’ll defer to the model here but hold out for -7 or better. Ole Miss -7 or better.