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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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June 16, 2024

5 things to watch for during A&M-Arkansas

Southwest+Classic
Photo by Photo by Carlie Russell
Southwest Classic

1. Arkansas’ quarterback struggles

Arkansas head coach Chad Morris had a rough start in Fayetteville. After losing former quarterback Austin Allen and former head coach Bret Bielema last year, the Hogs have been trying to work out the kinks with new faces at quarterback. It’s safe to say that there is still work to be done going into week five. Sophomore quarterback Cole Kelley and junior quarterback Ty Storey have both started this season with little success, putting up a combined 817 passing yards, six touchdowns and seven interceptions. Storey replaced Kelley as starter last week against Auburn, but the results have remained similar. Arkansas has scored only 35 percent of the time in the red zone this season.

2. Better game from Kellen Mond

Mond undoubtedly had a rough game last week against Alabama, but this matchup will present its own set of challenges. Unlike Alabama and Clemson, Arkansas does not have a great secondary. However, the Razorbacks have the seventh best rushing defense in the nation, according to the NCAA. Unless there is an open field available to Mond, there won’t be much to his run game on Saturday. The biggest issue for the Arkansas secondary is predicting how Mond will throw. He has proven to throw bullet passes in small windows, see the right pass and bust coverages. Mond will have a much better week this Saturday in Arlington.

3.) A&M continuing the streak

 

In recent years, this matchup has been challenging for both sides. Even when Arkansas was below average, they were able to give the Aggies a hard fought game. This year, both teams have new head coaches and different offenses. Fisher and A&M have been the only ones performing remotely well with this change. It will be very tough for Arkansas to break the streak this year with the struggles they’ve been having across the board. In addition, the Hogs have lost three games in a row, one to Colorado State and two blowouts by North Texas and Auburn. 

4.) Receiving corps creating separation

Arkansas has been getting torched by wideouts all year, and this week won’t be any different. The A&M corps has gradually improved every week, with no same receiver leading the unit each game. Morris and the Hogs will have a hard time planning around A&M’s offense and its multiple weapons surrounding Mond. Fisher’s system has been great in that regard and will truly show this week.

5.) Aggies defense creating turnovers

Arkansas has thrown picks and fumbled the ball every week. During a home game against North Texas, the Hogs threw six interceptions and no touchdown passes. A&M has been looking for their breakout game on defense, and there’s no better game to do that than this one. The Aggie secondary needs a break after these past three weeks of tough competition. This game should be the week for A&M players to get some picks on defense.

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