Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Arkansas Razorbacks: NCAA Football Betting Pick

Jose VasquezArticles, College Football, Football

In a display of two schools that prefer to run the football, Coach Nick Saban and the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide (+34.5) will be taking the field against their SEC rival Arkansas Razorbacks at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. ESPN has the TV rights and the game’s scheduled to kick off at 12:00 p.m. ET.

Betting Preview: Alabama Crimson Tide at Arkansas Razorbacks

Alabama is the heavy road favorite and is currently giving up 34.5 points to Arkansas. Oddsmakers have placed the over/under (O/U) at 60.5 points. If one side finds paydirt early, it’ll likely generate a decent in-game betting opportunity.

With the game’s O/U initially placed at 62, the the early action has apparently leaned toward the under.

The Crimson Tide are 3-2 against the spread (ATS) and have recorded 0.0 units so far in 2018. The team’s recorded an O/U mark of 4-1.

The Razorbacks have been a disappointment to moneyline bettors this season, losing 10.6 units. The team is 2-3 ATS and has an O/U record of 0-4.

The Crimson Tide have gone 5-0 straight up (SU), including 2-0 SU against SEC opponents. The Razorbacks are 1-4 SU overall and 0-2 SU in conference play.

The Tide are hoping to stay unbeaten following a 56-14 victory over Louisiana last week. the Crimson Tide completed 13-of-16 passes for 340 yards and four touchdowns. Tua Tagovailoa went eight-for-8 for 128 yards and two touchdowns while Jalen Hurts completed four-of-six for 118 yards and one touchdown. Brian Robinson Jr. (65 rushing yards on 12 attempts) and Najee Harris (73 yards on 11 carries, one TD) led the ground attack while Henry Ruggs III (five receptions, 116 yards, two TDs) and Jaylen Waddle (three catches, 138 yards, two TDs) manned the receiving duties in the win.

Arkansas just fell 24-17 to Texas A&M. Ty Storey completed 14-of-26 passes for 193 yards, one touchdown and one interception. Storey (1 yards on 10 rush attempts) and Rakeem Boyd (47 yards on 10 carries) handled the running game while Boyd (four receptions, 33 yards) and Cheyenne O’Grady (three catches, 77 yards) led the pass-catching corps in the loss.

Alabama has run the ball on 60.7 percent of its offensive plays this year, including 54.1 percent across possessions in conference play. Arkansas has an overall rush percentage of 54.5 percent, and has carried the ball 52.0 percent of the time when playing SEC opponents. The Crimson Tide have produced 217.4 rush yards per game (including 159.5 per game against Southeastern opponents) and have 12 scores on the ground this year. The Razorbacks are totaling 141.8 rush yards per game (102.0 in conference) and have six total rushing TDs.

If the numbers so far this season are any indication, then the Crimson Tide could own an edge along both the offensive and defensive fronts, as their offensive line has allowed only 27 sacks while the D-line registered 40 sacks. The Razorbacks, on the other hand, have given up 35 sacks and their defense has sacked opposing QBs just 19 times.

The Tide offensive scheme has averaged a stout 335.8 yards in the air overall (360.5 per game against conference opposition) and has 20 passing scores so far. The Razorbacks have put up 207.0 pass yards per outing (167 against SEC foes) and have seven total pass TDs.

Alabama should possess the upper hand when it comes to limiting the pass. The team has allowed opponents to run for an average of 126.8 yards and pass for 190.8 yards per game. The Arkansas defense has given up 247.0 yards per game to opposing passers and 105.8 yards per game on the ground. The Tide are allowing an adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A) of only 3.01 to opponents, while the Razorbacks have given up a 5.84 ANY/A.

Tagovailoa likely has the advantage over Storey in this one, as his adjusted net yards per pass attempt sits at 16.02for the season and 16.71 over the last two games. Storey’s ANY/A is 6.72 for the year and 3.44 over his past two games.

When these two programs met last year, Alabama won soundly 41-9.

Alabama Crimson Tide at Arkansas Razorbacks Betting Prediction

SU Winner: Arkansas, ATS Winner: Arkansas, O/U: Under

Team Betting Trends

  • Alabama was favored by 48 points in its last game and the O/U going into it was 69. The over cashed and Alabama failed to cover in the 56-14 win over Louisiana.
  • As a team, Alabama has produced 4.97457627118644 yards per carry across its past three outings and 5.1 over its last two.
  • Arkansas has averaged 3.4 yards per carry over its last three games and 3.2 over its last two.
  • Arkansas has lost one fumble this season while Alabama has lost three.
  • Over its last three matchups, Alabama is 1-2 ATS and the over cashed in two of those three.
  • Arkansas was favored by 19 points in its last outing and the Over/Under was 56.5. The under cashed and Arkansas failed to cover in that 24-17 loss to Texas A&M.
  • Over its last three contests, Arkansas is 1-2 ATS and the under cashed in each of those three.
  • The Crimson Tide offense has recorded nine pass plays of 40 or more yards, while the Razorbacks have accounted for five such plays.
  • The Alabama defense has allowed two pass plays of 40+ yards, while Arkansas has given up three such plays.
  • The Alabama offense has created six rushing plays of 20 or more yards, while Arkansas has created four such runs.
  • The Crimson Tide defense has allowed seven rushing plays of 20 or more yards, while the Razorbacks have given up two such runs.
  • The Alabama defense has sacked opposing quarterbacks 18 times this year. Arkansas has produced just 12 sacks.