Arkansas faces stern challenge against TCU
For the third straight year, the Razorbacks will meet a Big 12 foe early in their nonconference schedule. But is Bret Bielema’s squad truly ready for the challenge?
This week, Arkansas travels to the Lone Star State to take on the 15th-ranked Horned Frogs. Gary Patterson’s troops are currently 7.5-point favorites in the eyes of online sports book BetDSI. The over/under sits at 58.5.
While TCU racked up 59 points in Game 1, the Hogs had to rally for a 21-20 victory over Louisiana Tech. Junior Austin Allen led Fayetteville’s finest 67 yards midway through the fourth quarter, spotting tight end Jeremy Sprinkle in the back corner of the end zone for the winning touchdown. Yet the signal-caller’s pair of first-half interceptions almost threatened the Razorbacks’ cupcake opener.
Such mistakes won’t fly at Amon G. Carter Stadium. TCU has captured its past 10 home tilts vs. unranked programs. Patterson’s obviously found the perfect successor to Trevone Boykin, too, in Kenny Hill. The former Texas A&M quarterback threw for 439 yards and two scores against South Dakota State.
Nonetheless, the Horned Frogs’ defensive effort last Saturday left much to be desired. Chad Glasgow’s unit allowed 461 yards to the Jackrabbits. If Bielema’s smart, he’ll give sophomore Rawleigh Williams III 25-plus carries and limit the hosts’ possessions.
Of course, TCU specializes in consistently moving the ball downfield. Unless Arkansas’ inexperienced O-line can do a reasonably good job of protecting Allen, we’re looking at a potential blowout. Award this battle to Fort Worth.
SATURDAY NCAA FREE PICK: TCU HORNED FROGS -7