Arkansas’ running game has been one of its greatest strengths this season, but it’s one thing to run the ball well against Tennessee and Texas A&M.
Moving the ball on the ground against Alabama, well, that’s another animal entirely. Arkansas knows it, the fans know it and coach Bret Bielema certainly knows it.
“A defensive front that’s comparable only to the NFL,” said Bielema when discussing Alabama’s defensive line, according to the the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s Thomas Murphy. “They look the same, like there’s some machine that makes them.”
The Razorbacks have been held under 180 rushing yards just once this season and boast junior running back Alex Collins, who is ranked No. 3 in the SEC in rushing. Collins is averaging 131.2 yards per game to go along with six touchdowns. The numbers are there for Collins, but the junior rushed for only 13 yards against Alabama last year (granted, it was on six carries).
Arkansas’ big boys up front will have their hands full trying to open up holes for their running backs, as the Crimson Tide rank No. 1 in the SEC in rushing defense, allowing just 84 yards per game
It’s not just the rush defense that Arkansas has to worry about though, as the Crimson Tide are tied for third in the SEC in sacks (13). The Razorbacks have been strong against the pass rush this season, allowing just two sacks on the year.
The box score says the matchup of the lines should be a battle. We’ll see how it plays out.
Bret on Bama D-line: A defensive front that's comparable only to the NFL. They look the same, like there's some machine that makes them.
— Thomas Murphy (@TomMurphyADG) October 5, 2015