Arkansas Football: How Tyler Wilson's Injury Will Affect Razorbacks

Nicholas GossCorrespondent ISeptember 9, 2012

LITTLE ROCK, AR - SEPTEMBER 8:   Tyler Wilson #8 of the Arkansas Razorbacks throws a pass against the Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks at War Memorial Stadium on September 8, 2012 in Little Rock, Arkansas.  The Warhawks defeated the Razorbacks 34-31.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The loss of Heisman-caliber quarterback Tyler Wilson could have a devastating effect on the Arkansas Razorbacks offense if he has to miss a game (or more) with an injury.

Wilson suffered an injury during Arkansas' shocking upset loss to Sun Belt school Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday night at home.

Here is the latest on Wilson's injury situation, according to ESPN's Joe Schad:

Tyler Wilson doesn't have a broken collarbone. Arkansas may have more injury information later.

— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) September 9, 2012

The good news for Wilson is that his collarbone isn't broken. However, since he's so crucial to the team's success on offense, Arkansas must take its time evaluating him so he returns to the field only when he's ready.

Arkansas' offense is heavily dependent on Wilson and the passing game, and not having the star quarterback will certainly be a tough loss. In the first two weeks of the year, the Razorbacks have rushed for an average of 130 yards per game, which ranks 89th in the nation. Arkansas cannot win games against talented SEC opponents if it has to rely on the running game to carry the the team.

Backup quarterback Brandon Allen was unimpressive in Saturday's shocking loss to Louisiana-Monroe. Allen completed just six of his 20 pass attempts for 85 yards, and he threw one touchdown and one interception. If the Razorbacks have to depend on Allen to lead their passing game at any point this season, they will be in trouble.

The Razorbacks' next opponent is the No. 1-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide at home. Starting Wilson against the best defense in the country would not be a smart move. However, a loss to Alabama would be Arkansas' second of the season, making the challenge of reaching a BCS bowl and earning a berth in the SEC championship game quite difficult.

The following week, Arkansas hosts Big East school Rutgers before traveling to Texas A&M and Auburn the two weeks after that.

Arkansas needs Wilson to have any shot of upsetting Alabama, but rushing him back too early would risk further injury. If that were to happen, the Razorbacks would have no shot at making a BCS bowl.