At #9 in our top 25 countdown, we have the Arkansas Razorbacks. Arkansas had a very rough off-season, unless of course you are a Penn State fan. They lost their Head Coach Bobby Petrino in an embarrassing scandal. Petrino was caught red-handed (and red-faced) cheating on his wife with a football department employee who apparently was in charge of doing the coach. He then tried to cover the whole mess up. So he was let go.
Taking his place is former Louisville and Michigan State Head Coach John L. Smith. Smith is a capable Head Coach and he inherits a boat load of talent. He’s got Tyler Wilson coming back at quarterback , Dennis Johnson at running back, Alonzo Highsmith at linebacker and will get star running back Nile Davis back from injury. But Smith is not Petrino. In a division that features LSU, Alabama and Auburn, it is clearly the toughest division in college football. Is John L. Smith equipped to do battle with the likes of Nick Saban, Les Miles, Gene Chizik and Dan Mullen, all of who have recently won national championships as either a head coach or offensive coordinator? Our guess is he is probably not.
As usual, Arkansas’ schedule is going to be brutal. After a couple of tune-up games with Jacksonville State and Louisiana Monroe before Alabama comes to town. Then Rutgers comes in after that in a tough non-conference game. After that they have two road games at Texas A&M and Auburn. The schedule slacks up a bit from there for the next month with Kentucky, a bye week, Ole Miss and Tulsa all at home.
They finish with road games at South Carolina and Mississippi State and a home fame against LSU. Looking objectively, there are six possible losses on the schedule. If the Hogs split them, and they should do at least that well, they are 9-3. We like the Hogs to finish at 10-2, losing to Bama and either LSU or Auburn.
Bovada has Arkansas’ stats from last year listed. They won four of their last five against the spread.