The Arkansas Razorbacks and No. 14 Ole Miss Rebels will face off at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
The Razorbacks lead the Rebels in the all-time series 37-28-1. Under head coach Sam Pittman, the Hogs were 1-1 against Ole Miss. Last season’s game was a shootout that resulted in a 52-51 victory for the Rebels.
The Rebels are -2.5 points favored over the Pigs (BetSaracen).
Here’s how the HawgBeat team thinks the game will play out on Saturday:
Mason Choate – Managing Editor
My mind kept taking me back to November 22, 2014, when a 5-5 team in Arkansas defeated an 8-2 team and an 8-ranked Ole Miss team 30-0 in Fayetteville.
The Rebels are coming off an emotional 30-24 loss to Alabama and Arkansas just played its game of the year on defense.
All week I’ve been telling people Ole Miss is going to win this. If the Hogs win back KJ Jefferson, as I expect them to, I think they will thrive on having their captain at the helm of the offense.
Ole Miss has the edge in most important statistical categories, but Arkansas has the edge in the “must win” category. The Razorbacks will likely know they need a win this weekend to qualify for a trophy, because they don’t have a stellar winning history in Columbia, Missouri.
Arkansas 21, Ole Miss 20
Robert Stewart – Staff Writer
The SEC’s leading rusher will be playing in Fayetteville this weekend, and his name isn’t Rocket Sanders. With Quinshon Judkins leading the three-headed monster rushing Ole Miss offense, the Razorbacks will certainly have a hard time stopping the run.
On the flip side, it’s no secret that Sanders has been quiet lately. He’s destined to make a big show, especially after he handed the express crown to Judkins. I wouldn’t be surprised to see teams gather 500 yards on the ground.
This rivalry tends to create high-scoring games each year, and if KJ Jefferson is healthy, the Hogs should be competitive in this year’s repeat. While I expect a much better attacking effort than what we’ve seen in the last couple of weeks, it won’t be enough to get us into 14th. Tournament eligibility will have to wait another week.
Ole Miss 35, Arkansas 31
Daniel Fair – Staff Writer
It’s been nearly two months since the lights were used at Razorback Stadium, as the Hogs played their game last night against Missouri State. The Hogs are still fighting for bowl eligibility at 5-5, and welcome to an Ole Miss team that came off a tight loss to Alabama a week ago.
With KJ Jefferson likely to return, Pittman said earlier this week that he felt the team was as healthy as they can be this late in the season. My main question mark lies with the crime. They’ve been underperforming the past two weeks, but with Jefferson back, I expect things to look more in sync than they have in the past weeks.
Ole Miss has a solid offense, so the defense will be full, but I think the Hogs pull off a late prom night thriller.
Arkansas 42, Ole Miss 38
Jackson Collier – Basketball recruiting analyst
Arkansas battled hard with second and third string quarterbacks in the cold weather, but ultimately came up short against LSU in a 13-10 loss. The outcome would probably be different with a healthy KJ Jefferson, but you know what they say about “ifs.”
Looks like KJ is doing well to go this weekend against his local school. Last year, Jefferson played the game of his life, but ultimately failed on a two-point conversion attempt.
I fully expect the offense to get back on track this week with Jefferson Slim, but the biggest concern is whether the defense can build on its success of the past two weeks and slow down Ole Miss’s offense.
The Rebels boast a solid running game with a dual-threat quarterback in Jaxson Dart and freshman quarterback in Quishon Judkins. Dart has also shown that he can stretch the field as well.
While Arkansas’ defense has improved, I’m afraid they will face a team with a strong, well-balanced offense. If they can pull off a number of turnovers, Arkansas should win the game, but that’s a lot easier said than done. I don’t quite think the defense has enough talent to stop this attack. It will be another penalty shootout.
Ole Miss 45, Arkansas 40
Kevin Bohannon – Baseball Recruitment Analyst
Arkansas’ defense has played well in the last two games allowing only one touchdown in the past four quarters. If it wasn’t for this unit, the hogs would have been blown away in the past two weeks.
If KJ Jefferson comes back healthy and is able to put up the numbers like he did at BYU, the Hogs have a chance. A lot is going on at Oxford right now, with Kiffin supposedly the number one target for Auburn, while the Rebels snatch an emotional loss for Alabama. It’s Senior’s night on the hill and you have to think that’s a better performance than Homecoming a few weeks ago.
Ole Miss has a promising young running back in Quinshon Judkins who has recently gotten more attention from Rocket Sanders, and Sanders should take that personally and want to get back on track with a big game.
As always, anything can happen in this game. We’ve seen 7 other players, Henry Heff, shooting high points and other crazy stuff like walking around to get three picks in one game. The freezing temperatures slow the runners down enough and the Hogs play well with their backs to the wall for the qualifying bowl.
Arkansas 30, Ole Miss 27
Mason: 8-2, 6-4 ATS
Robert: 8-2, 5-5 ATS
Daniel: 7-3, 7-3 ATS
Jackson: 7-3, 6-4 ATS
Kevin: 5-1, 4-2 ATS