Arkansas Vs.Texas A&M: Complete Game Preview
The Arkansas Razorbacks will visit College Station, TX this Saturday to take on Texas A&M in the Southwest Classic.
It will be the first meeting of the two teams since Texas A&M joined the SEC, and the fourth since the rivalry between the schools was renewed in 2009.
The Aggies are coming off two wins where they put up big points over unranked teams and are looking to continue their win streak and get a foothold in the SEC West standings.
The Razorbacks are hoping to salvage what they can of the season and will look for a win over a rival to energize the team and revitalize a disappointed fan base.
Game Day Information
Who: Arkansas Razorbacks vs. Texas A&M Aggies
When: Saturday, Sept. 29, 12 p.m. EST
Where: College Station, TX
Stadium: Kyle Field (Capacity: 82,589)
TV: SEC Network
Radio: KEZA FM 107.9 (Fayetteville, AR)
KABZ FM 103.7 (Little Rock, AR)
KZNE AM 1150 (College Station, TX)
Depth Chart for Arkansas: Offense
QB: Tyler Wilson, Brandon Allen
RB: Knile Davis, Dennis Johnson
WR: Cobi Hamilton, Javontee Herndon
WR: Brandon Mitchell, Julian Horton
WR: Mekale McKay, Demetrius Wilson
TE: Chris Gragg (questionable), Austin Tate
OT: David Hurd, Chris Stringer
OG: Luke Charpentier, Tyler Deacon
C: Travis Swanson, Mitch Smothers
OG: Alvin Bailey, Luke Charpentier
OT: Brey Cook, Jason Peacock
FB: Morgan Linton, Grady Ollison
Depth Chart for Arkansas: Defense
DE: Trey Flowers, Austin Flynn
DT: Byran Jones, Alfred Davis
DT: DeQuinta Jones, Robert Thomas
DE: Chris Smith, Colton Miles-Nash
OLB: Jarrett Lake, Daunte Carr
MLB: Alonzo Highsmith, Tenarius Wright
OLB: Terrell Williams, Alonzo Highsmith
CB: Kaelon Kelleybrew, Davyon McKinney
S: Ross Rasner, Alan Turner
S: Eric Bennett , Rohan Gaines
CB: Will Hines, Darius Winston
Depth Chart for Texas A&M: Offense
QB: Johnny Manziel, Matt Joeckel
RB: Ben Malena, Christine Michael
WR: Mike Evans, Derel Walker
WR: Uzoma Nwachukwu, Sabian Holmes
WR: Ryan Swope, Malcome Kennedy
TE: Michael Lamothe, Nehemiah Hicks
OT: Luke Joeckel, Germain Ifedi
OG: Jarvis Harrison, Shep Klinke
C: Patrick Lewis, Mike Matthews
OG: Cedric Ogbuehi, Ben Compton
OT: Jake Matthews, Joseph Cheek
Depth Chart for Texas A&M: Defense
DE: Julien Obioha, Gavin Stansbury
NG: Kirby Ennis, Jonathan Mathis
DT: Spencer Nealy, Ivan Robinson
RUSH: DaMontre Moore, Tyrell Taylor
OLB: Steven Jenkins, Donnie Baggs
MLB: Jonathan Stewart, Justin Bass
OLB: Sean Porter, Michael Richardson
CB: Deshazor Everett, Dustin Harris
CB: De’Vante Harris, Tremaine Jacobs
S: Steven Campbell, Johntel Franklin
S: Steven Terrell, Toney Hurd
What Happened to Arkansas Last Week?
The Razorbacks had another down week, contributing to their tragic downfall this season.
The Arkansas defense allowed 525 total yards and five passing touchdowns against Rutgers.
Knile Davis’ troubles continued with another week where he could not get his game started. He rushed for 17 yards on 10 carries and was outperformed by Dennis Johnson, who had 47 yards on 6 carries.
Tyler Wilson had his first appearance since his injury in Week 2. Wilson had a solid performance, but threw two untimely interceptions that cost the Hogs the win.
What Happened to Texas A&M Last Week?
The Aggies blew out South Carolina State last week by a score of 70-14.
Quarterback Johnny Manziel gave a strong performance, completing 15-of-20 passes for three touchdowns and running in two scores himself.
The Aggies also allowed only 34 rushing yards during the game and demonstrated the kind of defense necessary to be successful in the SEC.
Texas A&M has outscored its opposition 118-17 in the last two games, dominating unranked opponents in the manner that Arkansas was supposed to dominate Jacksonville State and Louisiana-Monroe.
What It Means for Both Teams
Arkansas is still looking for redemption. A victory would be a huge boost to the program and its fans. Defeating Texas A&M would also improve Arkansas' standings in the SEC West.
Texas A&M is looking for its first win as an SEC team after suffering a close loss to Florida in the season opener. If the Aggies win on Saturday against Arkansas and Kentucky pulls an upset over Mississippi State on October 6, the Aggies will move up to the top half of the SEC West standings.
The game (known regionally as “The Southwest Classic”) is the fourth meeting between the teams since the rivalry was revived in 2009 after an 18-year hiatus.
Arkansas has won the previous three meetings.
Key Player for Arkansas: Dennis Johnson
Knile Davis has failed to help Arkansas establish any kind of run game so far this season. This creates an opportunity for a player like Dennis Johnson to step into the role of primary ball carrier and make an immediate impact for the Razorbacks.
Johnson averaged 7.8 yards on six carries for the Hogs in the loss to Rutgers last week.
Look for Johnson to be the key running back as Arkansas attempts to establish the run for the first time this season.
Key Player for Texas A&M: Johnny Manziel
Johnny Manziel has the potential to be the complete package for the Aggies. He has a 67.4 completion percentage and averages 6.9 yards per carry when he runs the ball.
He passed for three touchdowns last week against South Carolina State and ran in two TDs.
If Manziel continues to make his throws and run the ball the same way as he has in previous weeks, he’ll have no problem tearing the Hogs’ defense apart.
Arkansas Will Win If...
They can contain Johnny Manziel
Defense has been Arkansas' biggest weakness through the first four weeks of this season.
The Razorbacks' loss to Louisiana-Monroe was due to their inability to contain the Warhawks' dual-threat quarterback Kolton Browning.
If the Razorback defense can cover the A&M receivers while keeping Manziel to less than 50 rushing yards, they have a decent chance of leaving College Station with a win.
Texas A&M Will Win If...
They keep doing what they've been doing.
The Aggies have punished lackluster defenses in their two previous games. They can pass the ball, establish a run game early and have the quarterback at the center of both attacks.
Arkansas will continue to struggle to establish a run game (unless John L. Smith surprises us by giving Dennis Johnson more carries) and rely too much on receiver Cobi Hamilton in the passing attack.
If the Hogs were playing SEC-caliber football going into this game, it would be a different scenario.
However, with the Razorbacks struggling on both sides of the football, the Aggies will be able to dominate the Hogs in the same fashion as their previous unranked opponents.
Texas A&M comes into the game as a 14-point favorite, but with the way the Razorbacks have been playing defense this season, it will probably be an even more definitive win.
The Aggies are looking to shift the momentum of this rivalry in their favor and put in a performance that will garner national attention when the polls come out next week.
They are also looking for their first official SEC victory. They will find it this weekend.
A&M wins 41-17.