Arkansas vs. Louisiana Monroe Predictions
Tyler Wilson looked very sharp in last week’s victory over Jacksonville State. He finished the game 19-27, with 367 yards and three touchdowns. Senior Chris Gragg stepped up with seven receptions for 110 yards and two touchdown catches. Louisiana-Monroe returns leading passer Kolton Browning along with senior receiver Brent Leonard and will look to spread the ball around. With the return of senior Cobi Hamilton and emerging playmakers, the Hog’s passing offense is still too much to handle.
Knile Davis looked very healthy, quick and strong in last week’s performance. I look for Davis to only get better every week. ULM will put forth returning leading rusher Jyruss Edwards, as well as their versatile quarterback Browning, who can run. Arkansas also has depth with Ronnie Wingo, Dennis Johnson and goal-line specialist Kody Walker. With Wilson spreading the ball down the field, the running backs should have plenty of lanes to run.
Arkansas was a little susceptible to the pass against Jacksonville State, particularly in the first half. Arkansas seemed to shore up some things in the second half, only allowing a 49-yard field goal. ULM is relatively young in the secondary with only one senior on the depth chart for the game. Despite some of the Hog’s secondary struggles, Arkansas’ offense puts the Warhawks at a huge disadvantage.
Arkansas was very effective against the run last week. Led by Southeastern Conference co-Defensive Linemen of the Week Chris Smith, the Hogs held Jacksonville State to 95 yards rushing on 44 attempts. ULM has not played a game yet this season, but they will field a primarily young defensive front. ULM is looking to see where they stand, while Arkansas looks to continue stopping opponents running game.
Zach Hocker was a perfect 7-7 on field goals last week, and was also very strong on kickoffs. Dennis Johnson continues to climb on the all-purpose yards records with another strong performance in kickoff returns. Coach smith would like for the special teams to be better, but so far the Hogs have done what they needed to do. ULM returns their kicker who had a 95 percent field goal conversion last season, but Arkansas has more playmakers and a little more size than ULM as a whole.
Interim head coach John L. Smith stayed true to his word and let the coordinators coach. Smith kept his thumb on some fourth down calls, but coaches Paul Haynes and Paul Petrino orchestrated both sides of the ball. ULM is led by head coach Todd Berry, offensive coordinator Steve Farmer and defensive coordinator Troy Reffett. I look for Arkansas’ coaches in Little Rock to be very sharp and precise.
Arkansas is hoping to be better with their ball control, and impose their will defensively to make a statement before facing Alabama Sept. 15. ULM will be playing their first game of the season, and will use this game as a measuring stick for where they stand so far. I look for Arkansas to start fast and make a statement before they begin their rigorous SEC schedule.
I predict the final score to be 56-10.