The Arkansas Razorbacks couldn’t have asked for a better start to their season under new head coach Bret Bielema. Arkansas beat a very good Louisiana-Lafayette team on Saturday 34-14, and now has their sights on winning in Little Rock this weekend against the Samford Bulldogs.
- Following Arkansas impressive win from the weekend, the Razorbacks received one vote in the Associated Press poll and 12 votes in the USA Today Coaches Poll. That would put Arkansas ranked around 35th in the country. This is a huge improvement from where they started and good national recognition after just one game. Arkansas definitely impressed.
- Sophomore quarterback Brandon Allen was ranked as the top quarterback in the SEC and 13th in the country according to ESPN’s QBR rating. The Hog’s signal-caller was 15-of-22 for 230 yards and 3 touchdowns. Allen will have to play with this type of efficiency every time he steps onto the field.
- Junior defensive end Trey Flowers earned SEC defensive Lineman of the Week after his performance against Louisiana-Lafayette. Flowers recorded 2.0 sacks in the game along with 3.0 tackles for loss. The junior also had a huge forced fumble and two quarterback hurries.
- Running back Jonathan Williams suffered a shoulder injury last game, but is expected to start for the Hogs this game.
- Safety Rohan Gaines is dealing with a knee injury from last game as well. It does not seem to be too serious of an injury as he is listed questionable for this game.
- Former injuries include wide receiver D’Arthur Cowan (foot), linebacker Otha Peters (arm), and tight end Austin Tate (shoulder). All are expected to be able to play by October.
Knowing your opponent:
- Samford University is located in Homewood, Alabama and is part of the Southern Conference. The Bulldogs are a member of the NCAA Division 1 FCS and coached by former Auburn Heisman trophy winner Pat Sullivan. Samford posted a record of 7-4 last year and had back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in twelve years. Returning starting quarterback Andy Summerlin will be leading the offense after passing for 2,269 yards last season. The Bulldogs won their opening match up against Georgia State 31-21.
- Bret Bielema’s team looked incredible in their first outing last Saturday. Essentially dominating every aspect of the game and running the ball at will. This game should be no different. Jonathan Williams and Alex Collins will most likely each have over 100 yards rushing again this game, as the offensive line should overpower Samford’s defense. The defense did have some struggles last week, but overall played well against a mobile quarterback. The Samford offense is not nearly as high powered as Lafayette’s and should be no problem for the Razorback defense to handle. The defensive line should have an all out field day against the Bulldogs and be in the backfield all night long. Look for the second and third string guys to get some playing time in the fourth quarter as the Bulldogs shouldn’t be any trouble for the Razorbacks. The last time Samford played an SEC opponent was last season when they lost to Kentucky 34-3. No, that’s not a typo and I’m not talking about basketball. Even Kentucky blew out the Bulldogs last year, so Arkansas has a good shot at dominating this game. However, the last time the Hogs were a big favorite in Little Rock, Louisiana-Monroe came to town and shocked the college football world by beating the 8th-ranked Razorbacks last year. This shouldn’t be a problem with Bielema’s team and the Hogs should get the victory. For what it’s worth, Vegas has Arkansas as a 32.5 point favorite.
Kickoff for Saturday’s game is set at 6 p.m. in Little Rock’s War Memorial Stadium.