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Week 8: Arkansas vs. Auburn

Notes:

Arkansas is 3-2 against Auburn since 2011 and has won those games by an average margin of victory of 16.3 points per game. Last season, the Razorbacks picked up a 54-46 win in Fayetteville, Arkansas. 

Arkansas:

The Razorbacks are averaging 34 points per game and are rushing for 179 yards per game along with passing for 265 yards through the air. Arkansas is coming off of an impressive 34-30 win in Fayetteville over Ole Miss. The offense played very well and will need to duplicate the effort this weekend on the Plains in Auburn.

Quarterback Austin Allen is completing 63% of his passes for 1,861 yards with 18 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Allen has shown confidence in the system and is not afraid to stand in the pocket to deliver the football.

Arkansas will need to run the football against the front seven of Auburn in order to get the win. The Razorbacks love to work off of play action and roll Allen out outside the pocket to throw waggle routes. Running back Rawleigh Williams III leads the team with 785 yards averaging 5.6 yards per carry with 5 touchdowns. Williams is a big tough runner that can move the chains and keep the Arkansas offense on the field with ball control drives.

If Arkansas does have success early running the football, look for Allen to locate wide receiver Drew Morgan in the passing game. On the year, Morgan leads the team with 37 receptions for 378 yards with 2 touchdowns. Teammate Jared Cornelius has recorded 22 receptions for 448 yards with 4 touchdowns.

Defensively, the Razorbacks are allowing 27 points per game and are giving up 175 rushing yards to opposing offenses. The secondary is giving up 223 passing yards per game and will need to play better on the road for the Razorbacks to get the win.

Arkansas has recorded 15 sacks through seven games and will need to get pressure on Auburn quarterback Sean White to force quick throws into coverage. The Razorbacks have allowed opponents to convert 47% of their third down attempts and must record a better percentage against the Tigers this Saturday.

Arkansas has allowed 233 rushing yards per game in the last four games and will need to hold up against a physical offensive line in Auburn that will look to run early on their defense. The Razorbacks are +1 in turnover margin.

 

Auburn:

The Tigers are averaging 32 points per game and has a very balanced attack in 2016 rushing for 262 yards per game and passing for 216 yards through the air. Head coach Gus Malzhan has gone back to the running game this season and it has shown great success in recent weeks. Last year, the Tigers rushed for only 196 yards per game and 158 rushing yards in the team’s six losses in 2015. Compared to the previous two years under Malzhan, the Tigers rushing attack dropped off considerably. In 2013, Auburn rushed for 328 yards per game and 255 yards per game in 2014. This year, the offense is back on track and the dividends are starting to pay off in wins.

Quarterback Sean White is completing 69% of his passes for 1,187 yards with 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. White has shown confidence and poise in locating his wide receivers down the field.

Running backs Kerryon Johnson and Kamryn Pettaway have combined for 1,043 rushing yards with 9 rushing touchdowns.

Auburn’s offensive line has played very well opening up holes for the Tigers running backs. Auburn is averaging 254 rushing yards per game over the last four games.

Wide receivers Tony Stevens leads the team with 24 receptions for 408 yards with three touchdowns.
Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele has done wonders with the Tigers defense this season. On the year, the Tigers are giving up 16 points per game and only 147 rushing yards per game.

The secondary is giving up 199 passing yards per game and has shown a great ability to play man to man coverage this year on the outside.

Auburn is doing an excellent job of creating three and outs this year. In 2016, the Tigers are holding opponents to 31% conversions on third downs. If Auburn can force third down and long situations, they can utilize blitz packages on Austin Allen to force pressure.

On the year, Auburn has recorded 14 sacks through the first six games and is on pace for 28 this season. Last year, the Tigers recorded 19 total sacks which ranked 104th of 127 teams in FBS.

Auburn enters this game -1 in turnover margin.

 

LISTEN TO THE FULL PREVIEW OF THIS GAME SATURDAY MORNING AT 10-12PM EST:

                                                              WWW.FNTSY.COM/RADIO

 

 

 

 

 

About Joseph Lisi

Joseph Lisi is a member of the FWAA (Football Writers Association of America), the Maxwell Football Club and the National Football Foundation. He is the owner of the website: www.goforthe2.com and hosts a weekly college football radio show on SB Nation Radio and FNSTY Sports Radio from 10-12pm EST every Saturday morning. Listen live at: www.sbnationradio.com or www.fntsy.com/radio. Joseph is a former college football researcher for ABC Sports and has been featured on: SportsXRadio with Ken Thomson, ESPN Radio, Sirius XM Radio, FNTSY Sports Network, the Sid Rosenberg Show (640 AM Sports-South Florida), 1560 AM CBS Sports Melbourne, FL and multiple media outlets throughout the nation. Joe appears every Friday with Ken Thomson on SportsXRadio for the Football Fiasco in which every game on the college board is broken down during the show. Follow Joe on Twitter: @goforthe2

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