The Troy Trojans will be rolling into Fayetteville this Saturday to take on a high-riding Arkansas Razorbacks team. Let's be honest, Troy does not stand a chance.
The Trojans are furious. They are on a seven game win streak, and they're undefeated in their conference, with convincing wins over several conference archenemies.
Troy has a powerful offensive attack that has the potential to put up a few points against the Razorbacks. But when one looks a little bit closer at the stat book for the Trojans, it's going to become clear that Troy has a single weakness, for the sake of being true to the story we'll call it an Achilles' heel, that is dooming them before the game even starts.
A horrible pass defense.
Troy has been giving up, on average, 256.3 yards per game through the air. Against Sun Belt opponents.
That's just not going to do against Bobby Petrino and his pass-happy Razorbacks.
Arkansas' Ryan Mallett absolutely torched the Number 3 pass defense in the country for 329 yards last Saturday. When you stack Ryan Mallett's arm, which is arguably the best in all of football, against a Sun Belt rival who has significant difficulty defending the pass, and then sprinkle a little home field advantage into the mix, what you get is a blowout win for the Razorbacks on Saturday.
Troy is coming into this game as an underdog, and no one expects them to win. They're happy about that. They want to deal a loss to a big name team like Arkansas to give their 7-2 record a little more respect.
That's great, but it just isn't going to happen.
The Razorbacks need one more win in order to become bowl-eligible, and Troy is the fodder for that goal. Petrino is itching to get the hogs into a New Year's Day bowl game, and Troy is unfortunate enough to be between him and that goal.
Arkansas' next two opponents are Mississippi State and LSU. Let the record reflect that Arkansas should win the game against Mississippi, and then go on to face the Bayou Bengals at home with a 7-4 record.
The Hogs have taken the Tigers down during both of their last two match-ups, including the win in 2007 when the Tigers were Number One in the country.
Troy's a respectable Sun Belt team, with a great offense. But Ryan Mallett is going to blast their weak pass defense to the point of embarrassment.
The Trojans could come to Fayetteville in a big wooden horse, but they won't be able to hide from a crushing defeat to the Razorbacks.
Arkansas 42, Troy 17