The Arkansas Razorbacks will play their first home game in three weeks when the Ole Miss Rebels come to town Saturday, Oct. 17.
Both squads have 1-2 records and are coming off losses to ranked opponents, despite showing their most productive offensive efforts to date. Even though the Rebels’ lowest point total exceeds the Razorbacks’ highest by 13, ESPN’s Football Power Index gives the Hogs a 57.4% chance to win.
Before this battle to get back to .500 in the highly-competitive Southeastern Conference West Division, here are the official Traveler staff score predictions for this week.
Robert Stewart, Sports Editor
This one has “shootout” written all over it. I think this is going to play out similarly to the matchup between these two from 2015, when the Razorbacks converted the 4th-and-25 in overtime. We should be in for back-and-forth action as both offenses are trending in the right direction. Ole Miss has not scored fewer than 41 points in any game this year, and Arkansas hung 28 points on a stout Auburn defense in the final 36 minutes last week. Trelon Smith gained 159 yards from scrimmage last week in Rakeem Boyd’s absence, so expect production to increase even more with Boyd’s return against a lackluster defense. This should be a fun game for the Razorback offense.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 45, Ole Miss 41
Mason Choate, Football Beat Writer
This will be a very interesting game that could easily decide the fate of each team's season. Ole Miss has an offense that had its way with Florida, Kentucky and Alabama. The Rebels are averaging over 40 points and 500 total offensive yards per game. Arkansas’s defense is good, but with players like Bumper Pool, Montaric Brown and Jerry Jacobs all questionable, it will be quite difficult to hold Ole Miss. The Razorback offense found its groove against Auburn last week and should get Rakeem Boyd and Treylon Burks back this week. I see this game being close, but the better defense will prevail.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 41, Ole Miss 35
Arianna Morrison, Sports Reporter
After putting up 28 points and a fight against Auburn’s defense last week, the Hogs have made it evident that they have the offense to score in high volume. Rakeem Boyd should be back to play after his injury and I think he will most likely score two touchdowns because of his drive to perform well. Feleipe Franks should have a good game as well, since he has found his groove and is connecting well with the wide receivers, especially with De’Vion Warren. Ole Miss and Arkansas are in the same boat with first-year head coaches, so this upcoming game should be interesting.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 27, Ole Miss 14
Braden Sarver, Sports Reporter
Feleipe Franks has gotten better every game and Ole Miss’ defense just got torched by Alabama for over 700 yards, so Franks and the offense should have their best game of the year. Ole Miss had a quick-striking offense against Alabama so it will be a tough test for the defense, and I think it will be a pretty high-scoring game.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 38, Ole Miss 34
Jackson McAfee, Sports Reporter
With Arkansas coming off a loss in controversial fashion, the team is going to be fired up to play a bitter rival. Considering that the game is also in Fayetteville makes the odds a whole lot better. As for Ole Miss, on Wednesday, head coach Lane Kiffin announced that a few players tested positive for COVID-19. He said that he's been having to move around a lot of guys. The inexperience of some of the new faces on the field could prove costly for the Rebels. Meanwhile, the Hogs’ chemistry as a team has become radioactive in how they connect on the field.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 30, Ole Miss 16
Andrew Joseph, Sports Reporter
This matchup will come down to how well the Hogs’ defense can handle the Rebels’ offense which ranks first in the SEC in total yards. After seeing what Barry Odom did to neutralize the Mississippi State air raid, I like the Razorbacks’ odds. Rakeem Boyd’s return to the lineup will give the Arkansas offense a boost and I expect him to run for more than 100 yards in the win.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 31, Ole Miss 24
Isaiah Rand, Sports Reporter
Arkansas faces a high-powered offense this week. Ole Miss scored over 40 on Alabama, so the Arkansas defense will have its hands full this week. Stopping the Rebels’ offense will be tough, and the Hogs will want to keep them off of the field as long as possible. I think Arkansas can control the time of possession, limiting the big play drives for the Rebels. Feleipe Franks had one of his best career games last week in my opinion. If he does the same this week, Arkansas could win.
PREDICTION: Arkansas 40, Ole Miss 37