Saturday, Oct. 4, Davis Wade Stadium, Starkville, Miss., 7::30 p.m. ET
The Razorbacks’ 3-2-6 defensive scheme worked for a half in the 37-10 loss to Georgia last week, helping the Hogs’ to a 7-5 lead at the halftime break. But it couldn’t last, and offensive struggles eventually led to the defense folding. Florida transfer Feleipe Franks was effective at times, completing 19 of 36 passes for 200 yards but the Hogs started most of their drives deep in their own territory. Franks was picked off twice with Georgia returning one interception for a touchdown.
The Hogs rushed for only 77 yards with Trelon Smith accounting for just about half that (78 on six carries). Treylon Burks had seven catches for 102 yards with a 49-yard touchdown reception giving the Hogs the lead at the break. Grant Morgan (13) and Bumper Pool (11) combined for 24 tackles to lead the defense.
It would be hard to script a more impressive debut for Stanford transfer K.J. Costello, who passed for 623 yards in the Bulldogs’ 44-34 win at LSU. Kylin Hill, last year’s leading rusher in the SEC, looks to have an expanded role in the passing game in first-year coach Mike Leach’s “Air Raid” offense after catching a team-high eight passes for 158 yards, including a 75-yard touchdown reception.
Four Bulldogs caught at least six passes with Osirus Mitchell recording seven receptions for 183 yards and two touchdowns. The defense chipped in with three players — Shawn Preston Jr. (11), Aaron Brule (10) and Erroll Thompson (10) — in double digits in tackles and Esaia Furdge and Emmanuel Forbes recording interceptions.
Arkansas Razorbacks at Mississippi State Bulldogs Betting Pick
The Razorbacks’ showed some hope on defense in slowing Georgia for a half last week, but they need a running game to kill more clock and keep Mississippi State’s offense off the field. The Hogs rushed for only 77 yards last week, however, and Mississippi State held LSU to a similar number (80).
Arkansas Razorbacks at Mississippi State Bulldogs Betting Pick: Bulldogs (-18) 52, Razorbacks (+18) 14
Arkansas Razorbacks at Mississippi State Bulldogs Best Bet
Arkansas has lost 20 consecutive SEC games but did show a little life last week against Georgia. Franks will need to be more consistent to give his offense a chance. First-year coach Sam Pittman said the emphasis will be to get his quarterback to look over the defense to see how to attack it after he spent much of the opener making sure that everybody on his offense was lined up correctly.
Arkansas Razorbacks at Mississippi State Bulldogs Best Bet: Bulldogs to COVER