Arkansas Texas A&M Odds
Expect offensive fireworks this weekend when the Texas A&M Aggies and 11th ranked Arkansas Razorbacks meet in Arlington, Texas. The Aggies suffered their first loss of the season last Thursday night at Oklahoma State. A&M was up by two touchdowns at half, but made some costly mistakes in the second half that cost them the win. Arkansas has had two weeks to fume over their loss to top ranked Alabama. The Hogs enter the game with a 3-1 record. The line is set at 8.5 favoring the Razorbacks.
Texas A&M faced their first real test of the season last week and did not pass with flying colors. Mike Sherman’s squad was nearly flawless in the first 30 minutes of play, building a 21-7 lead. They gave up a late touchdown in the first half to OSU and that momentum carried over to the second stanza. The Aggies put up some gaudy offensive numbers in the loss, but need a better effort out of their defense if they are going to be successful. Jerrod Johnson has had a tumultuous start to his senior season. The dual threat quarterback has thrown for 1274 yards and 12 touchdowns with 8 interceptions. He has already matched his interception total from a year ago and threw four passes to the wrong team a week ago. Johnson had nearly a 4:1 touchdown to interception ratio in 2009. Sophomore Christine Michael is a big part of this offense and has shown that his outstanding freshman campaign was no fluke. He leads the team in rushing with 428 yards on 81 carries and three touchdowns. The Aggies are averaging 185 yards per game on the ground. Jeff Fuller is one of the best wide receivers much of the nation has not heard of. The junior has snagged 26 passes for 349 yards and five scores. Ryan Swope works the slot for A&M on offense and has 27 receptions for 282 yards. The offense is averaging nearly 40 points per game.
The Arkansas faithful were stunned at the way the Alabama game concluded in the fourth quarter. Star quarterback Ryan Mallett was intercepted three times on the day, including one with only a little over a minute left to play. Mallett’s Heisman chances were likely dashed against the Tide, but he must rebound quickly with key games ahead. On the year, he has thrown for 1438 yards and 10 touchdowns with 5 interceptions. Arkansas’s passing attack ranks 2nd in the country at 365 yards per game. They should be able to expose a suspect A&M secondary. The Hogs do run the ball from time to time. When they do, it is likely going to be Broderick Green getting the carries. He has a team high 134 yards on 42 carries. The receiving core on this team might be the most talented in the nation. Joe Adams and Greg Childs have distinguished themselves as the go to guys of the group. Adams has 19 receptions for 389 yards and two scores. Childs has 22 catches for 298 yards and three touchdowns. Three of Ronnie Wingo’s eleven catches have resulted in six points. The defense is much improved this year and returned seven starters from a year ago.
These two former SWC rivals met for the first time last year since 1991. The Razorbacks won going away 47-19 and have beat the Aggies 11 of the last 16 games. Both teams have extremely talented offenses, but are prone to making mistakes. I expect Arkansas to come out flat with a two week lay off and a disappointing loss still lingering. A&M will use that to their advantage and cover the 8.5 point spread.
Play: Texas A&M +8.5