Arkansas vs. New Mexico: Game Prediction

Graphic: Flyer Staff
A patriotic Razorback logo will be painted at midfield inside War Memorial Stadium for the football matchup against New Mexico Sept. 10 in Little Rock.

Update: Congrats to xinamarie for picking the exact score, Hogs 52-3.

The College Football season has officially started and we’re already one week into the schedule. And, as if we didn’t expect it, the Hogs are 1-0 thanks to the beat-down we gave Missouri State last weekend. It was a fairly solid all-around game for the Razorbacks in all three phases (offense, defense and special teams), but there were a few missteps out there — running game, poor clock management in first series, missed PAT, and the fumble that led to us losing the shut-out. But, aside from those, the Hogs looked tough.

Now before you go and jump off a bridge because our running game didn’t fare so well, remember that over half of our line is new. You should also be aware that Missouri State’s defensive game plan was to take our running game away from us. Thirdly, Knile Davis and the Arkansas rushing attack didn’t do squat until game 5 last season. I’m not giving them a pass, per se. All I’m saying is that we need to give them time to adjust, tinker and figure out what’s going to work best for us this season. The running game will improve.

This week Arkansas faces another easy foe — the Lobos of New Mexico. Last weekend New Mexico was sacked 10 times and fumbled another 6 en route to losing at home to Colorado State 14-10. If you don’t think our defense is licking its’ chops right now, you’re crazy. And, yes, they were upset about missing out on a shut-out last weekend.

Offensively, expect the Hogs to try and establish the run moreso than last time out. Coach Bobby Petrino is a great offensive coach and will take what the defense gives him. Which means if New Mexico is keyed in on stopping the run like Missouri State, then we’ll have another 400+ yard, 80%+ completion game. If the Lobos play a balanced game, don’t be surprised to see Ronnie Wingo Jr. get over 20 carries (75+ yards) if he’s the featured back. Also, you’ll probably see more Greg Childs on the field, still probably no Dennis Johnson and some new wrinkles to the offense (Brandon Mitchell option anyone?).

Defensively, our buys are going to pin their ears back and go after the New Mexico quarterback. Which, could leave open some quick short yardage passes. Which means this could be a chance for our secondary to either be exposed or show how good they are.

Our special teams unit will be ready for another crazy game. But, as a fan, don’t expect the New Mexico punter (or any other punter this season) to put the ball anywhere near Joe Adams’ hands. It’s nice to know that while Adams may not spring another return for a TD this game, he has the ability to do so at any moments notice. Zach Hocker will be back on the mark this time around. I guarantee he was more upset about that missed PAT than anyone else out there.

Once again, this time in Little Rock on an extremely patriotic Hog, the Razorbacks will definitely win and will do so convincingly. My guess, Arkansas Razorbacks 45, New Mexico Lobos 3.

Let us know what you think the final score will be. If you’re the closest (see rules below), you’ll get a free t-shirt from Bearstate Supply.

How to enter

Leave a comment with your game prediction. If you want to add anything else, please feel free.

What you’ll win

One t-shirt of your choice (design, color, size) from the Bearstate Supply online store.

The rules

  • You only may enter this specific contest once.
  • Contests are open to anyone anywhere except staff of Fayetteville Flyer and their immediate family members.
  • The winning entry must pick the winning team and have the smallest combined difference from each team’s final score. Example: If the Razorbacks win by a score of 21-7, and your prediction was Razorback 20-10, your difference would be 1 + 3 = 4. In the event of a tie, a winner will be selected by a random drawing.
  • You must pick the score by 15 minutes before kickoff for each game.
  • Make sure you leave a valid e-mail address when filling out the comment form since that’s how we’ll contact you if you’ve won.

Good luck!