Colorado State Heads To SEC Country For Third Year In A Row
Rams Look To Make It Two Straight Over The Hogs
WEEK 3: Colorado State Rams (1-1) at Arkansas Razorbacks (1-1)
WHEN: Saturday, September 14th — 2:00 PM MT/3:00 PM CST
WHERE: Donald W. Reynolds Stadium; Fayetteville, Arkansas (76,000)
TV: SEC Network
RADIO: Colorado State radio broadcast on KARS (FM 102.9) | Arkansas broadcast on TuneIn
ODDS (via OddsShark): Colorado State +12.5
FEI PROJECTION: Arkansas by 12.7
SP+ PROJECTION: Arkansas by 13.3 (78% win probability)
Three Keys to a Colorado State Victory
1. Hang On
Colorado State has got to hold on to the football. The Rams have fumbled seven times in two games and lost four of those. Drop in two Collin Hill interceptions vs Colorado and Colorado State has give its opponents the ball six times. SIX over two games. That’s not a good strategy to get back to a bowl game. On a hot, humid, late afternoon day in September in northwest Arkansas and you bet the ball pops loose a few times for both sides. The Rams need to be on the plus side of the turnover game.
Mike Bobo‘s bunch also has to keep it close early. Not just from a confidence point of view but also from a play calling point of view. Bobo has a tendency to start calling pass after pass when the Rams get behind by more than a score. Hang in there and stick to the game plan. The longer the Rams hang with the Razorbacks, the more confidence they’ll gain and chances improve for a victory.
2. Keep Being Wright
It shouldn’t shock anybody that Dante Wright has been getting the ball. That needs to continue but, this time, Wright will need to get north and south faster. If Wright and the Rams think that they can get outside on Arkansas on a repeated basis, well, go ahead and roll the dice and see if it works but odds are it won’t. Despite Arkansas being at the bottom of the SEC, they are still an SEC school with SEC-level talent on the defensive side of the ball.
3. Take Solace
Colorado State was down 27-9 in the fourth quarter a year ago to Arkansas and still found a way to win the football game. Granted, that game was in Fort Collins and this one is in Fayetteville but, nevertheless, that should give the Rams plenty of confidence going into this one.
The Rams can also take solace that upsets are the norm this year. Boise State took out Florida State, Nevada beat Purdue, Hawaii outlasted Arizona, and Tennessee lost to Georgia State. It’s pretty well documented that just because you’re a Group of 5 school, that doesn’t mean that you can’t beat a Power 5 school.
Another thing to keep an eye on is that Arkansas will be starting a new quarterback this week. Junior grad transfer Nick Starkel takes over for grad transfer Ben Hicks under center. Starkel played for a few years at Texas A&M before moving to Arkansas, and he played well last week in relief of Hicks at Ole Miss.
Alas, the fans can take solace in knowing that we get to see a player with perhaps the best name in college football. Arkansas sophomore linebacker Bumper Pool will anchor the Razorbacks defense once again this season. Expect him to play a major role in trying to shut down Marvin Kinsey and the Rams running game.
Despite all of this, I still think Arkansas finds a way to get it done due in large part to the fact that Colorado State cannot hold on to the ball. It’s closer than the experts think, though.
Arkansas 27, Colorado State 24