CRYSTAL BALL: Will Arkansas miss another bowl in 2013?

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Will anyone slow down Alabama’s reign at the top? Can Florida shake off preseason disrespect to challenge for the East? So begins @MrPalmettoSDS’s two-week, daily series with a look into the crystal ball on how each of the Southeastern Conference’s 14 programs will finish this season.

AT A GLANCE

Aug. 2: Kentucky
Aug. 3: Auburn
Aug. 4: Tennessee
Aug. 5: Mississippi State
Aug. 6: Mizzou
Aug. 7: Ole Miss
Aug. 8: Vandy
Aug. 9: Arkansas
Aug. 10: Florida
Aug. 11: LSU
Aug. 12: South Carolina
Aug. 13: Texas A&M
Aug. 14: Georgia
Aug. 15: Alabama

ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS (4-8, 2-6 in 2012)

Related: How fast can Bielema turn things around?

THE 2013 BATTLEFIELD

Aug. 31 vs. La-Lafayette (W) = Arkansas was 91st in the nation in points for last season (23.5) and 83rd in points against (30.4). Those numbers must improve this fall to avoid an embarrassing finish. A battle with the Ragin’ Cajuns should be a good start.
Sept. 7 vs. Samford (W) = Samford went 5-3 last season in the underrated Southern Conference against the likes of Appalachian State, Wofford and Georgia Southern. But this is the SEC …
Sept. 14 vs. Southern Miss (W) = Few teams had a more dreadful season than the Razorbacks last season but Southern Miss was one of them. Head coach Ellis Johnson (formerly South Carolina’s DC) is gone, but the Golden Eagles will continue their post-Larry Fedora struggles.
Sept. 21 at Rutgers (W) = This one’s difficult. Rutgers is usually a tough out at home and return dual quarterbacks Gary Nova and Chas Dodd. How did the Scarlet Knights win nine games in 2012? They had a defense that was fourth in the country in fewest points allowed. This will be a challenge for the Razorbacks. I think they get it done.
Sept. 28 vs. Texas A&M (L) = Picked seventh in the West at SEC Media Days, the Razorbacks go belly up in their conference opener.
Oct. 5 at Florida (L) = The Razorbacks need a playmaker to upset the Gators and it’s unlikely one will have emerged by the first Saturday in October.
Oct. 12 vs. South Carolina (L) = Some of the experts have picked Arkansas in this game and with the Razorbacks’ string of recent success against the Gamecocks, why not? Ryan Mallett is coming out of the locker room nor is Darren McFadden or Felix Jones. Steve Spurrier’s unit is safe.
Oct. 19 at Alabama (L) = At least the spread won’t be 52 points, the margin of last year’s beating in this rivalry series.
Nov. 2 vs. Auburn (L) = This one’s winnable at home, but Auburn wants to avoid a winless league season as well.
Nov. 9 at Ole Miss (L) = The Rebels tip the scales in personnel comparison and continue their late-season stride toward a respectable bowl invite.
Nov. 23 vs. Miss. St. (W) = Arkansas snaps a seven-game losing skid with a come-from-behind win over Miss. St. If this victory doesn’t come, the wheels would’ve fallen off with a nine-game skid to close out 2013. Yuck.
Nov. 29 at LSU (L) = This matchup’s been known to get a little funky in overtime, but an extra session won’t be needed this season. Les Miles and the Tigers close out the regular season with their 10th win.

PROJECTED FINISH: 5-7, 1-7 (7th in West)

Related: Bielema’s draft history should encourage fans

THE SKINNY: The Razorbacks will feel the after effects of last season’s misery with a tough schedule that begins Sept. 28 with a home date against Texas A&M. How can Arkansas lose Knile Davis, Cobi Hamilton and Tyler Wilson and expect to be better? The Razorbacks likely won’t and expectations should reflect that in Bielema’s first season. Defensive end Chris Smith should have gaudy numbers in his final season because Arkansas’ defense could be on the field a lot this fall. A 4-0 start ends with one victory over the final eight games.

Photo Credit: Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

REFERENCES

COMMENTS

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  • Keep barking against the Hogs. You make it sound like there is no talent on the field whatsoever other than Chris Smith. You hit a few of these correctly except that the chances are good for the Auburn and Ole Miss games. This team does make it to a bowl. I with coach B. It’s great to be such an underdog. WPS!

    • You are correct. Look at their last 8 games. That is brutal. Arkansas has a good a chance as anyone. They will do well and i say finish maybe with two loses max. Not sure who. I do know that many Bama fans, me included would rather play A&M than Arkansas. The onlt drawback I see is the coach. He will not last at Arkansas. He will be the Francione of them. His mouth and attirude will get him canned within 3 years. He’ll back up north where mouths like his are acceptable.Then Arkansas will get someone that fits better in there. As you can see I am a Bama fan but Arkansas is my 2nd/3rd fave team.

      • this is not the first post of yours that i see bashing CBB. Let’s get a season under our belt before throwing all the rocks. Some of us think it won’t be as bad as some others think.

  • I’d switch the Auburn and Rutgers games around. Of course those are still toss-ups. Doesn’t help that they play almost all the top SEC teams but I think they just miss a bowl game this year.

  • I finally made an account on SDS because of the ignorant opinions expressed in the articles. It does not help that this guy is unable to count. He has 4 wins to start when going over the games and then in his “The Skinny” lists 3 wins to start the season. Same counting issue with the losing streak, he shows 6 losses in a row up top then says we snap a 7 game losing streak. I’m not saying that the hogs are going to be great, but where did they get the writers for this website? Total garbage. Most of the crap on this site is re-posted and the personal opinions are biased.

    • Often times the reader has no clue what goes on behind the scenes ie the editing process, final product etc. I originally had Arkansas at 4-8 w/ a loss to Rutgers (hence the 3-0 start and losing streak line), but that was changed.

      Thanks for reading and there’s your clarification.

      • Brad Crawford, your a douch.. You say that your an SEC fan stuck in the wrong Carolina?? Arkansas has OWNED South Carolina and you give them no chance against SC? Arkansas has owned your team with and without D-Mac and Felix Jones and with and without Ryan Mallet!

  • LOL!! Obviously an article done by someone who has his head stuck way up in that SEC rectum. My friend UL is going to go into Fayetteville and kick the Hogs in the crotch. Always hilarious to read these prognostications by folks who are clueless! Geaux Cajuns!!

  • I have no idea how a team that loses at home, by 17 points in one year, (in a game that was even less close than the 17 point margin implies) goes to being a road favorite this year.

  • People forget Arkansas was ranked in the top ten last year before the season started, The reason Arkansas had a bad year last year was the hiring of John L Smith, He destroyed a real good football team. The team this year has a lot of talent, better than last year’s team. Arkansas is going to better than what all these sport guru’s are predicting, Arkansas will be a dangerous team for everybody this year, Don’t be shocked to see Arkansas in a BCS bowl game, this team has a chip on their shoulders…….

    • Winko, dont want to hurt your feelings pal, but UL is gonna kick the Razorbacks in the crotch. Overlook the Cajuns at your own risk

      • Your repeating yourself and sound like your in the 10th grade I’m not on the wagon saying we will run the table I’m conference play or shock Bama and LSU but your Cajuns aren’t strong in depth for even a lowly SEC team

  • Hahaha. Arkansas fans going off. So, the man gives a 5-7 prediction and y’all go off because it’s not good enough. 6-6 would be a HUGE year. Ain’t happenin tho. 5-7 looks right.

    • Pretty easy to pop off and toss grenades at another team’s fans. Can I take it you are realistic about your Gators because they are not as good as most Gator fans thing either. What’s wrong with fans being hopeful and enjoying the anticipation and hope? I’m sick of negative nellies on messages boards.

    • MADGator, why you mad?? B/C your little lizards got SMOKED by a big east team in the sugar bowl?? Florida got so damn lucky all year long! Your team EASILY could have went 5-7 or worse last year!

    • and your luck completely ran out against Louisville! THEY EMERASSED THE STATE OF FLORIDA AND THE WHOLE SEC FOR THAT MATTER!

      • @Corndog – You want to talk about embarrassing. Come on. Just having some fun.

        • Mann that a low blow lol! It’s cool everyone has a shitty season in our case we have had I fair share of them. I’m sure we will at least make it to a bowl game. I dissagree with this we will beat Auburn and South Carolina they both beat us like every three years

  • Overhyped I like the Cajuns, I hope they win the rest of their games after Arkansas beats them….