Arkansas (2-9, 0-7) will travel to Columbia to play conference rival Missouri (7-4, 3-4) in the annual Battle Line Rivalry on Friday, which will serve as the Hogs’ last game of the season.
The Hogs lost a close game to the Tigers in Fayetteville last year with Missouri winning 48-45 after a last-second field goal in the final game before former coach Bret Bielema’s dismissal.
For the last time at Faurot Field, Mizzou will be led by senior quarterback Drew Lock, who is one of only six quarterbacks in the SEC to pass for over 11,000 yards in a college career and is in second place for all-time passing yards in the conference with 11,599 yards. This season, Lock has thrown for 2,094 yards and 23 touchdowns. Behind Lock, the Tigers’ pass offense is third in the SEC and No. 26 in the country, passing for 275 yards each game.
In addition to the deadliness of Lock, Mizzou also has two reliable running backs to hand the ball off to: sophomore Larry Rountree and junior Damarea Crockett. Rountree has rushed for 893 yards and Crockett has ran for 709 yards. Combined, they have both scored 17 touchdowns.
Lock also has been able to rely on dependable receivers. Missouri has four receivers who have over 400 yards receiving. Redshirt senior Emanuel Hall leads with 603 yards and redshirt sophomore tight end Albert Okwuegbunam has made the most touchdowns with six.
Both defenses are about equal in the conference, with Arkansas’ total defense ranked No. 12 and Missouri ranked No. 10.
Mizzou’s junior linebacker Cale Garrett leads the Tiger defense with 98 tackles and leads the conference in 58 solo tackles. Senior linebacker Terez Hall has four sacks on the year and junior cornerback DeMarkus Acy leads with tree interceptions.
Razorback junior linebacker De’Jon Harris leads the SEC with 110 tackles and senior defensive lineman Armon Watts has made seven sacks on opposing quarterbacks.
The Arkansas defense will have to adjust without two key players. Junior cornerback Ryan Pulley and sophomore safety Kamren Curl were suspended by coach Chad Morris following inappropriate behavior when they were seen flirting with Mississippi State dance team members during warmups before the Hogs’ game against the Bulldogs on Nov. 17. Pulley leads the team with three interceptions and has made 37 tackles, three of which resulted in loss of yards.
For Arkansas junior quarterback Ty Storey, he is going up against the weakest point Missouri: its pass defense, which is ranked near the bottom of all teams, averaging 267 yards a game. Storey has thrown for 1,560 yards and has thrown 11 touchdown passes.
While the pass defense is near the bottom statistically, Mizzou’s rush defense is fifth in the conference and No. 29 nationwide, allowing only 129 yards per game. Razorback sophomore running back Rakeem Boyd has rushed for 729 yards.
Junior tight end Cheyenne O’Grady has made six touchdown receptions and junior receiver La’Michael Pettway leads the roster with 470 yards caught.
The Battle Line Rivalry is set for kickoff at 1:30 p.m Friday. The game will broadcast on CBS.