Athleticism & Overall Depth Makes Arkansas -21.5 the College Football Pick Over Toledo

Ross Benjamin

Saturday, September 12, 2015 11:19 AM GMT

Saturday, Sep. 12, 2015 11:19 AM GMT

We’ll be examining Saturday’s college football matchup between Toledo and Arkansas. Our insightful betting preview article on this contest is concluded with a point spread pick.

Rockets Test the Waters versus ranked SEC Foe
Arkansas will host Toledo on Saturday in a somewhat intriguing non-conference contest. The opening kickoff at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, Arkansas is set for 4:00 PM ET. According to current (9/11) College Football Betting Odds at major sportsbooks, #18 Arkansas is a consensus 21.5 point favorite.

 

Pretty Darn Good MAC Team
The Toledo Rockets are coming off a successful 9-4 season in 2014, culminating with a 63-44 win over Arkansas State in the GoDaddy.com Bowl. Toledo is considered to be one of the favorites in the Mid American Conference this season. They attempted opening the season last week against Stony Brook and led 16-7 after two quarters. After two severe lightning delays that lasted a combined three hours, the contest was called off after Midnight ET, and won’t be rescheduled. They will be without star running back Kareem Hunt who will miss the Arkansas game due to suspension. Hunt lead the Rockets last season with 1631 yards rushing, averaged a robust 8.0 yards per carry, and ran for 16 touchdowns. His absence versus a nationally ranked opponent on the road is extremely hurtful in regards to Toledo’s upset chances. Toledo has gone 0-3 SU&ATS in their last three non-conference away games, and lost by an average of 15.3 points per contest.

 

Razorbacks Primed for Success
Arkansas opened the season last Saturday with a workmanlike 48-13 home win over UTEP, and managed to cover as a 31.0 point favorite. After going 3-9 during Bret Bielema’s first year as head coach at Arkansas, the Razorbacks bounced back with a 7-6 campaign a season ago. They concluded that successful turnaround with a dominating 31-7 bowl game win over Texas. They also recorded regular season upset wins over then nationally ranked LSU (17-0) and Ole Miss (30-0) near the tail end of the year. Starting quarterback Brandon Allen returns for his senior season. Allen threw for 20 touchdown passes against just 5 interceptions last year. He picked up right where he left off in the season opener against UTEP, throwing for a career high 308 yards, and tossed 4 touchdown passes while not being intercepted. Arkansas is 4-0 SU&ATS in their previous four non-conference home games, and had a large +27.5 point per game differential in those contests.

 

Final Analysis

I would certainly like Toledo’s chances of covering this game if Kareem Hunt was indeed available. Although I think the prospects of a good season for Toledo are highly probable, they’ll have a tough time matching up with the speed, overall depth, and athleticism of a quality SEC opponent like Arkansas. I’ll have a small lean toward the home favorite for one of my College Football Picks on Saturday.

College Football Pick: Play on Arkansas -21.5 (-115) at Bookmaker.

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