ESPN Saturday Night College Football Picks – Auburn @ Arkansas Odds and Predictions
Week 6 Free College Football Picks and Spreads: Auburn Tigers @ Arkansas Razorbacks 2011 NCAA Football Vegas Odds, Free Picks, and Expert Predictions on ESPN Saturday 10/8/11: There is no shortage of SEC teams ranked in the top 25 this season, and two of them will go head to head Saturday night when the 15th-ranked Auburn Tigers (4-1) go on the road to face the 10th-ranked Arkansas Razorbacks (4-1). Both teams played in a BCS bowl a year ago, and the winner of this weekend’s game will take a big step toward returning to a high-profile bowl in 2011-12. Both teams are battled tested as well this season, and even though the Tigers and Razorbacks are both coming off victories against ranked opponents, Arkansas is a 10-point favorite in Saturday’s showdown.
If last year’s meeting between the teams is any indication of what to expect this weekend, a shootout could be in the works. Arkansas gave the eventual national champion Tigers all they could handle, falling 65-43. Fittingly, the loss was actually the first chance current Razorbacks’ quarterback Tyler Wilson had to showcase his talent. He replaced an injured Ryan Mallett and promptly threw for more than 300 yards and connected on four touchdown passes. He nearly rallied Arkansas past the Tigers before Auburn QB Cam Newton took over.
In this weekend’s game, the Tigers won’t have their Heisman Trophy winner under center, but the Razorbacks will have Wilson. Fresh of a comeback win against Texas A&M where he threw for more than 500 yards, Wilson cold find himself grabbing some Heisman votes if he has another monster game and leads Arkansas to a win. Newton was the difference in last year’s meeting, but this time around, Wilson could be the deciding factor.
However, Arkansas will have to find a way to slow down Michael Dyer and the Auburn ground attack. The Razorbacks were torched by Alabama’s rushing attack in their lone loss on the year, and they were torched on the ground last weekend by the Aggies. Dyer was a breakout star as a freshman last year, and he has been even better as a sophomore. If Dyer can control the game on the ground and keep the Auburn defense well rested, the Tigers have a much better chance of slowing down the powerful Arkansas offense.
The X-factor could be Arkansas receiver Jarius Wright. He was unstoppable last weekend against the Aggies, piling up nearly 300 yards receiving. Auburn struggled in the secondary in their lone loss of the year against Clemson, and as good as Clemson’s passing attack has been, the Razorbacks have been even better. Averaging nearly 500 yards of offense a contest, Bobby Petrino’s team has been able to put up points on every opponent with the exception of Alabama.
Granted, the Tigers have had an incredible knack for finding ways to win. They have won in shootout fashion, and they won a defensive struggle against South Carolina last weekend. However, the Razorbacks are the most complete and explosive offense that Auburn will have faced this season. Last year, the Tigers had the best player on the field in Newton. This year, Wilson will be the top player. The Razorbacks have enough weapons to spread out the Auburn defense, and Wilson is as good as any QB in the SEC at distributing the ball. In the end, the Arkansas offense should prove to be too much for the Tigers.
Prediction: Arkansas Razorbacks (-10) Cover the Spread
Free College Football Picks and NCAAF Predictions: Arkansas -10 to cover the spread
|College Football: Auburn @ Arkansas
Time: 7 PM EST on ESPN
Vegas Odds - Favorite: Arkansas -10 | Total: Over/Under 64
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