Keys to Alabama’s win over Arkansas
The setting for Alabama’s fourth game is Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, Ark.
Alabama cruised to a 52-3 victory in their 2020 meeting against the Razorbacks on the road en route to a college football playoff national championship. Since then, Arkansas has changed the culture of its program under Sam Pittman. The Razorbacks finished last season at 9-4 and are 3-1 at the moment. Arkansas and his fans think he can win any game on his schedule.
The last time Crimson Tide and Hogs had a close game in Fayetteville was in 2014.
The weather conditions were horrible, but Blake Sims and Alabama’s defense pushed him to a 14-13 win. Arkansas wants to keep this game close so their fans stay engaged. Many factors should play a role, but the keys to Alabama’s victory are below.
Arkansas fans are ready for the game against Alabama.
After suffering a loss to Texas A&M, Razorback fans enter the contest with renowned energy and motivation.
Texas fans entered their Week 2 game with the Crimson Tide under a lot of hype and expectation. Longhorn fans created noise and caused frustration among Alabama players. The Tide had 15 penalties and couldn’t move the ball on offense against the ‘Horns. Alabama needs to get the Arkansas crowd out of the game with long drives, big plays and effective execution on offense.
Defensively, he has to stop KJ Jefferson and Razorbacks.
Both Alabama and Arkansas want to control the tempo of the game.
Sam Pittman doesn’t want much of Bryce Young and the Crimson Tide’s offense on the field, but Nick Saban can’t let KJ Jefferson and the Razorbacks milk the clock. Possession time can be a meaningless statistic; however, this game will show it as important. Whichever team controls the stream and the trenches will win the game. Alabama must impose its will on Arkansas.
The effectiveness of the third down is crucial for Alabama.
Offensively, he must put together long drives to wear down Arkansas. Defensively, the Crimson Tide must leave the field on third down. Alabama’s defense excelled in this category, allowing opponents to convert 18.6 percent on third downs.
The Tide is good at moving chains offensively, but needs to be consistent against the Razorbacks.
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Stephen M. Smith is editor-in-chief and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can “like” it on Facebook or “follow him” on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.