Staff Predictions for Alabama vs Arkansas
Saturday will mark the 27th meeting between the Tide and the Razorbacks, with Alabama currently leading the series 19-7. Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema is looking to end the Hogs nine-game losing streak to the Crimson Tide while Nick Saban and company look to continue on the path to the program's 17th national championship.
Alabama opened up as 13 point favorites over the Razorbacks in Las Vegas, and in most places that line has moved up to 14 points. Will the Tide take care of business like the experts in the desert think, or will the Hogs pull the big upset and hand Alabama their first loss of the season?
Martin Houston, Host of The Morning Blitz
It's an old school football match-up and the 2016 Tide is excited to face the challenge! Look for Alabama to play its most complete game in all three phases of the game. This is not your typical Bret Bielema coached team. They are balanced with a decent running game and nice passing game, highlighted by elite TE play. Expect the 'Hogs to come out early with a lot of emotion, but the overall talent level of Alabama will prove to much, as the Tide pulls away from in the later part of the third quarter. Alabama 41, Arkansas 13
Wimp Sanderson, Co-Host of Inside the Locker Room
Look for Alabama defense to cause Arkansas a lot of problems Bama will get early lead and cruise to victory. Alabama 24, Arkansas 3
Barry Sanderson, Co-Host of Inside the Locker Room
Bama will be focused and click on all phases this weekend. Look for the running game success, which will open up a couple of big plays in the passing game. Alabama 27, Arkansas 13
Gary Harris, Host of The Gary Harris Show
I really like Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema and think he has done a nice job with the Razorbacks. Arkansas is built in his image. This is a tough, physical football team. One problem for the Hogs though... Alabama still has more good football players. Alabama 33, Arkansas 13
Travis Reier, Host of Southern Fried Sports
Welcome to the time of the season when we hear more and more about how "it's our time" where challengers to Alabama's throne are concerned. With that in mind, this is the moment Bret Bielema pointed to after taking over at Arkansas four years ago. Well removed from the scrapheap he inherited in 2013, the Arkansas team that will take the field against Alabama tomorrow night will be unabashedly Bielema. The problem for the Razorbacks (and most others), is that it never seems to be a right time to take on a Nick Saban-coached team. Alabama 31, Arkansas 16
Aaron Suttles, Host of The Suttles Approach
Another major road test for the youngster Jalen Hurts. The key to the game is Arkansas' offensive line isn't what it was and it won't be able to hold up for four quarters against that Alabama front seven. Alabama 31, Arkansas 18
Ryan Fowler, Host of The Game
Lane Kiffin is one of the best in the country at taking advantage of an opponents weakness. Arkansas's rush defense is currently ranked 10th in the SEC. Look for Alabama to take advantage of this opportunity. Also, the Razorbacks offensive line will be a problem and Alabama's defense will harass Allen all evening.
Alabama 42, Arkansas 13
Ben George, Digital Managing Editor
After losing by a combined 104-0 in 2012 and 2013, Arkansas has closed the gap on Alabama under Bret Bielema. The Razorbacks have climbed to 16th in the polls and have a lot of confidence at home this weekend. But do they have enough to beat the Crimson Tide for the first time since 2006? The Hogs will try to control the clock, limit mistakes, and try to win the game in the fourth quarter. However, Arkansas gives up an SEC-worst six yards per play and allows opponents to convert third downs nearly 50% of the time. That defense will have a hard time holding up against Lane Kiffin’s offense. Alabama 31, Arkansas 17
James Hardy, Producer
The close calls in Fayetteville in 2010 and 2014 have shown that fans should not take this game for granted. While Arkansas has a run oriented identity under Brett Bielema, it's been the passing game that has carried the Razorbacks offensively in 2016. Alabama needs success on first down to take pressure off Jalen Hurts in second and third down situations. Also look for the pass rush on Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen to be a key for Alabama. Alabama 24, Arkansas 16
Ryan McMunn, Producer
Through five games, Alabama still doesn't have a true identity on offense, trying to figure out who will be the bell cow in the running game, trying to figure out how to integrate freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts into the game plan, and showing inconsistent production on the offensive line. However, they've still scored the most points in the SEC, and let's not forget that this defense is nothing shy of nasty. Arkansas is a pretty decent team, but in reality they aren't as good as Alabama head coach Nick Saban has built them up to be over the course of this week. The Tide come away the victors, and head to Tennessee next week for what could be the biggest match-up of the season in college football. Alabama 31, Arkansas 10