Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#155 Colorado State 59.5 vs.
#156 Arkansas -10
Saturday, September 14, 2019 at 4:00pm EDT
Written by Chris Kubala

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#155 Colorado State University
#156 University of Arkansas
1-1
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34
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It’s a non-conference matchup on the gridiron as the Mountain West travels to face the SEC in week 3 action coming to you from the Razorback State. The Colorado State Rams are on the road as they make the trip to face the Arkansas Razorbacks Saturday afternoon. Colorado State rolled past Western Illinois 38-13 at home last Saturday to get in the win column for the first time this season. Arkansas was dumped 31-17 on the road by Ole Miss in their conference opener last Saturday. The Razorbacks lead the all-time regular season series 3-1 but it was the Rams taking a 34-27 victory in the last matchup, which came at home on September 8, 2018.

Colorado State Rams Looking to Build Off Victory

Colorado State overcame being trounced in their season opener by Colorado as they bounced back with a victory over Western Illinois. The Rams now try to earn their second straight win overall and down Arkansas for the second straight season. Colorado State was up 14-3 after the opening quarter and didn’t let the Leathernecks closer than eight the rest of the way. The Rams took the lead on the first play from scrimmage and didn’t look back. Colorado State rolled up a 582-215 advantage in total offense, racked up 25 first downs while allowing 12 and owned a 30:28 to 29:32 advantage in time of possession. That helped offset committing two turnovers and forcing just one takeaway in the contest.

The Rams are putting up an impressive 383.5 yards per game through the air while adding 160 yards per contest on the ground this season. Colorado State is 53rd in the FBS in scoring offense as they put up 34.5 points per game while the team has sputtered defensively, ranking 110th in scoring defense by allowing 32.5 points per contest. Collin Hill has hit 55 of 78 passes for 738 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions on the year. Patrick O’Brien completed his lone pass attempt for 29 yards. Marvin Kinsey Jr. leads the team on the ground with 25 carries for 130 yards this season. Dante Wright (four carries, 92 yards, two TD), Jaylen Thomas (12 carries, 56 yards) and Marcus McElroy (seven carries, 31 yards) are also in the mix. In the passing game, Warren Jackson leads the team with 15 grabs for 142 yards plus a score. Wright (10 catches, 180 yards, two TD), Kinsey Jr. (seven grabs, 160 yards, two TD) and Trey McBride (seven receptions, 75 yards) are solid targets. Braxton Davis hit his lone extra point attempt and is one of two on field goals with a long of 41. Max Poduska is eight of eight on extra points while he is one of three on field goal attempts with a long of 42 this season.

Last year, CSU shocked Arkansas, 34-27 at home. They’ll need more from the running game this season to get a repeat. Quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels threw for 389 yards to lead the team to a huge comeback win.

“I don’t think we can repeat our performance of last year, where it was basically K.J. (Carta-Samuels) and (his receivers),” said head coach Mike Bobo.

“Our run game was nonexistent until that last drive (when) we spit out one run on a zone….We have to find ways to run the ball. We have to be balanced. We have to get first downs.”

Arkansas Razorbacks Trying to Bounce Back

Arkansas came up on the short end in their SEC opener as they were rolled over by Ole Miss on the road last week. The Razorbacks now try to bounce back from that defeat and get back in the win column in this contest. Arkansas trailed 10-3 at the half and was within 17-10 less than two minutes into the fourth quarter before giving up the next two scores to put the game out of reach. The Razorbacks were outgained 483-361, lost the first down battle 23-18 and saw Ole Miss control the clock by a 32:28 to 27:32 margin. Arkansas did force two turnovers, including a scoop-six, while committing just one in the game.

The Razorbacks average 245.5 yards per game through the air this season and run the ball for 132.5 yards per contest. Arkansas is 106th in the FBS in scoring offense with 18.5 points per game and 57th in the nation in scoring defense by allowing 22 points per contest. Nick Starkel has hit 21 of 29 passes for 249 yards with a touchdown and an interception this season. Ben Hicks has completed 21 of 45 throws for 241 yards with no touchdowns or picks while Rakeem Boyd completed his throw for a one-yard gain. In the ground game, Boyd is the leader with 35 carries for 181 yards plus a score. De’Vion Warren (four carries, 49 yards), Devwah Whaley (11 carries, 23 yards, TD) and Chase Hayden (10 carries, 22 yards) are next in line. Mike Woods leads the team with 11 receptions for 114 yards this season. Trey Knox (seven catches, 126 yards) and Treylon Burks (five grabs, 80 yards) are the next options in the passing game. Connor Limpert has hit all four extra points and three of four field goal tries with a long of 36 on the year.

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Arkansas has struggled on the offensive side of things this season and that could prove problematic in this one. Colorado State has been extremely effective on that side of the ball as they can slice opponents up through the air or on the ground. Hill has been terrific in the first two games of the season and the dynamic Kinsey Jr. can do damage on the ground or as a receiver. We saw the Razorbacks struggle to contain Ole Miss in their conference opener. The Rams are explosive: they scored two 75-plus yard touchdowns in the first quarter against Western Illinois. Look for Colorado State to get the win on the road here as you can’t put a ton of faith in Arkansas right now.

Prediction: Colorado State Rams +10

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Colorado State has shown an ability to move the ball with reckless abandon this season. The Rams do have to be better defensively than we’ve seen in the first two games of the season though. Colorado State has not picked off a pass as of yet: they’ve recorded only one takeaway while turning the ball over six times. Arkansas is on the plus side of the giveaway/takeaway ratio but they haven’t been overly impressive. The Razorbacks edged Portland State by seven at home in their opener before losing at Ole Miss. Seeing how Arkansas struggled against a FCS program at home already, can they find a way to get a win here?

The under is 4-0 in the Rams’ last four in September, 5-1 in their last six non-conference games, 4-1 in their last five overall and 4-1 in their last 5 games after accumulating less than 100 yards rushing in their previous game. Arkansas has seen the under go 4-0 in their last four non-conference games, 5-0 in their last five in September, 14-3-1 in their last 18 games after accumulating more than 280 yards passing in their previous game and 4-1 in their last five overall. Arkansas has been solid defensively: between that and their offensive struggles, this one falls short of the mark.

Prediction: Under 59.5
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.