Gus Malzahn explains why he's worried about John Chavis' Arkansas defense
Auburn is a heavy favorite this week at Arkansas — listed with a current 19.5-point spread — as Gus Malzahn returns to his home state coming off of a bye week.
Malzahn, an offensive guru, has faced Arkansas defensive coordinator John Chavis 10 times in the last 14 years. Malzahn has won 6 times, but in 3 of the 4 losses his teams have struggled.
“He’s good,” Malzahn said, according to AL.com. “He’s one of the best. He’s proven over the course of time that he’s one of the best. He does what he does, but he always has a wrinkle or two and puts his guys in really good positions to be successful.”
Reporter Tom Green pointed out that Auburn’s worst offensive performance of 2018 came during the Tigers’ win against the Razorbacks. Despite Auburn’s 34-3 win against Arkansas last season in Jordan-Hare Stadium, the Tigers generated just 225 total yards of offense, including just 91 yards rushing, and averaged 3.88 yards per play.
“They did a great job, I thought, defensively last year,” Malzahn said. “Got after us pretty good. We scored points but they got after us. We had some short fields too that helped with that. We know we’re going to get their best and we know we need to play good, clean football. Anytime you’re on the road in this league, you’ve got to play good football. You’ve got to protect the football, you’ve got to play good offensively, defensively, special teams. It’s a challenge anytime you go on the road in this league.”
The game is set to kick off at 11 a.m. local time on Saturday on the SEC Network.