FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — No. 20 Arkansas hosts Alcorn State at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, Ark., on Saturday.
The Braves — an FCS school — enter with a 1-2 record and coming off a 43-18 loss to Grambling State.
To get a better idea of what the Razorbacks can expect, SEC Country reached out to Daniel Paulling, who covers Alcorn State for The Clarion-Ledger.
Paulling joined the “Borderline Erotic Podcast” to break down the game earlier this week. Here is an abridged version of that conversation.
Q: What are reasonable expectations for Alcorn State in this game?
A: I had an opportunity to speak with one of the linebackers, Michael Hurns, and … I think it’s kinda gonna be as we all expect. It’s probably gonna be a blowout. But he said, ‘Look, we just want to execute. We want to perform our plays. We wanna do what we can do.’ That makes sense, because if you’re able to execute your plays and do your assignments and all that stuff against an Arkansas, then it becomes a little bit easier for you when you go against Alabama A&M the next week.
Q: The Braves won the last two SWAC titles but have started this season 1-2. Is this a down year for them, or do they still expect to get back in contention by the end of the year?
A: It’s definitely a down year for them. They’ve won the East Division two years in a row and they’ve won the SWAC championship two years in a row. The East Division is very weak … just compare it to the SEC East and the SEC West. They’ve been able to get through the SWAC East Division the last couple of years.
The team is still pretty solid. I think they’ll get to the SWAC title game, but I think they lose to the team from the West.
Q: After four successful seasons under Jay Hopson, Alcorn is under a new coach. Have there been any big changes under Fred McNair?
A: It hasn’t been too difficult. Fred McNair, the current coach, was the quarterbacks coach previously. I think there was only one change on the coaching staff. They’ve built this team around their offense with the quarterback play and skill-position guys. They’ve got Jaborian McKenzie from Vanderbilt. They’ve got Marquis Warford from Memphis. They’ve got a couple of other skill-position guys who transferred in. They do have some talented players who have fallen back from the FBS level.