Everybody knows this, but the SEC West is simply loaded. Alabama is the top dog, supposedly, and the one everyone is supposed to be trying to catch. But, there are plenty of other schools in the mix that are just right there together.
The Aggies showed on Thursday night that they are still a force even without Johnny Manziel as they brutally beat down the favored South Carolina Gamecocks.
It’s never a good idea to overlook anybody but especially not anyone in the SEC West. Supposedly, the Arkansas Razorbacks are the weakest link in the West. But, I don’t think it’s a very good idea to look past the Razorbacks.
The Pigs have what could be the largest Offensive Line in all of college football and maybe the NFL as well. They are huge and they are pretty good.
They also have 3 of the better Running Backs around and what could be the best group of Running Backs in the nation. All three of them are talented with great speed, vision and all of the intangibles. They have an improving QB and a super Tight End, plus some talent at WR.
The defense is improved.
They have an excellent head coach in Bret Bielema and he brought in an excellent coaching staff and no doubt he will do well at Fayetteville.
The Razorbacks are going to surprise somebody this season. There are so many contenders besides the Aggies. The LSU Tigers are always good. The Ole Miss Rebels are threatening and so are their in state rivals Mississippi State.
There’s really not a single weak link in the SEC West and I hate to sound like Brent Mussburger. But, it’s true.
Auburn vs Arkansas threatened to be a shootout.
Nick Marshall was held out and did not start. It didn’t even matter with back up QB Jeremy Johnson and didn’t miss a beat. Johnson will not remind you of Marshall with his feet, but the man has a big, big, big time arm.
The Tigers have 2 big time RBs and a young freshman coming up that is going to be big time as well. They have one of the best set of WRs in the country, 2 top Tight Ends and a super Offensive Line.
The defense still has some room for growth.
Auburn ran down the field as if the Pigs had no defense at all. Then, the Hogs returned the favor. Unless you are a fan of defense only, this game was incredibly fun to watch.
The Auburn Tigers or War Eagles, or whatever you prefer to call them threatened to run off with this game but Arkansas has too much talent on offense. Left Tackle Dan Skipper is the best 6 foot 10 inch Offensive Lineman I have ever seen. A lot of tall guys are a little goofy, but this man has excellent feet and has great balance and a mean and nasty streak that you want in an Offensive Lineman. Denver Kirkland at Right Guard is a great one, too. These offenses are just hard to stop.
The Hogs drove the ball 93 yards right before half to tie the game up at 21. Lots of fireworks in this one.
The Arkansas Razorbacks struggled last season but that was due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control and this team could be really good.
Nick Marshall was suspended for the first half and entered in the 3rd quarter. But, back up Jeremy Johnson was very good playing in his spot. Actually, he threw for 311 yards in the first half of this game.
The second half started the way the first half began and ended, with a bang. Long kick off return by Corey Grant was called back clipping penalties before Nick Marshall entered the game.
It’s almost baffling why the media doesn’t give Nick Marshall the love that some others get. The man is a machine and a threat to score from anywhere at any time.
Game went into lightening delay in the 3rd quarter.
Marshall was only 4/6 for 50 yards and had 8 carries for 19 yards and 1 TD.
JC transfer Duke Williams had 9 catches for 154 yards and a TD and is every bit as good as I have been saying for months. He’s all world and will probably leave for the big show after this season.
Cameron Artis-Payne had 26 carries for 177 yards and 1 TD.
The Auburn Tigers won the game 45- 21. I still believe the Razorbacks are going to give some people some trouble this season.