Alabama is still waiting to be challenged and it won’t be in this Game against an Arkansas team that hasn’t won since beating Eastern Illinois in the opener. The Crimson Tide are destroying weaker teams and this will be another of those even though Nick Saban referred to it as “a little bit of a trap Game.” Conveniently for him, the Tide were -34.5 point road favorites for their trap Game as of Tuesday at YOUWAGER Sportsbook.
There is some hope for Arkansas in that it battled against Texas A&M last week in a 24-17 loss. Of course, this is the same team that lost 44-17 at home against North Texas and only scored three points against Auburn. Looking at how this offense has performed and what happened in last year’s meeting (Alabama won 41-9), the Razorbacks may have trouble reaching 10 points again. On the positive side, Chad Morris is improving his team every week and should have his players ready for this Game, at least as much as they can be ready.
Ty Storey took over for Cole Kelley at quarterback the last two Games and he hasn’t looked much better completing 50.6% of his passes for Four touchdowns and Four interceptions. It’s hard to get much going in the passing Game when the Hogs are averaging just 3.8 yards per carry as a team and top running back Devwah Whaley is questionable to play because of a concussion. Arkansas is at home, but moving the ball and reaching the end zone will be difficult.
When these teams met last year, Arkansas managed just 27 rushing yards on 29 carries (sacks included), while Kelley threw for 200 on 43 pass attempts. Alabama’s defense may not be as good as that group was, but that doesn’t mean the Razorbacks will carve them up. Alabama is still an elite group that can bottle up mediocre offenses and the Bama offense has more than enough firepower to cover the Game.
The Tide ran for 308 yards in last year’s meeting and while that could happen again with Najee and Damien Harris, the bigger problem is Tua Tagovailoa, who is completing 75 percent of his passes for 14 touchdowns and no interceptions. He’s added another element to the offense and that could be an issue for the Arkansas defense as its biggest problem has been against the pass. If Tagovailoa continues the tear he’s been on, another 50 points for the Tide isn’t out of the question.
And even though this is on the road, playing early in the day won’t have the same affect for Arkansas. In this matchup two years ago, Alabama won 49-30, but it’s hard to see Arkansas scoring that much this time around as Austin Allen was at least a potent quarterback for the Hogs. Either way, betting against Alabama is never a good idea especially after it goes up 28-0 in the first quarter like it did against Louisiana last weekend.
The Crimson Tide are 1-5 ATS in their last six SEC Games, but have covered in their last six on field turf. The Razorbacks are 1-6 ATS in their last seven following an ATS win and 2-7-2 ATS in their last 11 home Games. There aren’t any major trends between these teams, though Arkansas has covered three of the last Four.
Our Pick – OVER 61