1. Alabama Football holds the Arkansas offense to 10 points or less
Even with Rocket Sanders back in the lineup, I don’t think Arkansas has the offensive firepower to score a lot of points against the Alabama defense. A big play or two could result in points for the Hogs, but it’s difficult to envision this unit sustaining drives against the Tide. Barring any special teams or defensive touchdowns, I think the Razorbacks struggle to reach double-digits in this one.
2. Alabama Football averages over 4.5 yards per carry
It feels like I have made a prediction of some kind insinuating that Bama gets the run game on track almost every week this season. The inconsistency of the ground game has hindered other aspects of the team, and must eventually be straightened out.
By Bama standards, 4.5 yards per carry does not feel like a lofty goal, but the Tide has averaged just 3.7 yards per carry as a team this season. Additionally, it has yet to go over 4.5 YPC against an SEC opponent.
Bama opened the year with a 5.1 YPC performance against MTSU before producing just 3.1 YPC in a loss to Texas. It appeared to get back on track in the second half at South Florida, finishing that game with 4.8 YPC. However, it came back home and generated just 2.9 YPC against Ole Miss.
Alabama went on the road and averaged 4.5 YPC in a decisive win over Mississippi State, but then bottomed out against A&M with a season-low 23 yards on 0.9 yards per carry (including 3.0 YPC on traditional running plays to the backs).
When you look at these numbers, surpassing 4.5 YPC against a physical SEC opponent suddenly seems like an optimistic aspiration. Still, I feel like the Tide will keep it on the ground early and often. This is an opportunity for Bama’s vocal offensive line to actually make a statement on the field.
3. Alabama Football: Ty Simpson gets 4th quarter reps
I’m not very confident in this prediction, as I have a lot of respect for the Arkansas football program, but that’s what this series is for.
This Alabama Football team has shown sky-high potential in virtually every facet of the game, but has yet to put together a complete performance. Like many other Bama fans, I don’t think there’s a limitation on how good it can be when the gears are turning and the wheels are greased.
If the Crimson Tide finally delivers that elusive complete game, it is very possible that we see Ty Simpson and the rest of the second-teamers get some experience in an SEC game against Arkansas.
Perhaps I am willing it to happen. Roll Tide!