Kansas St. Wildcats vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
The Kansas State Wildcats face the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Cotton Bowl at Cowboys Stadium Friday. The Razorbacks are -8 point favorites over the Wildcats with an over/under point total set at 62.5.
Bill Snyder and Kansas State look for a program tying eleventh victory and a rebound from a 36-34 defeat to Syracuse in the 2010 Pinstripe Bowl. With only 343 total yards, the Wildcats offense was #96 but got quite a bit of mileage with 33 points per game led by the rush which produced 194 yards (#27). It wasn’t that quarterback Colin Klein was a complete disaster through the air because he was a viable passer, completing 145 of 251 throws for 1,745 yards with 12 touchdowns and five interceptions. Klein’s favorite target was Chris Harper with 39 catches for 536 yards and five touchdowns with Tramaine Thompson and Tyler Lockett each had 18 receptions for a combined 527 yards and four TD’s. John Hubert (23-193), Andre McDonald (8-133) and Sheldon Smith (17-127) round out the top receivers. If Klein had any shortcomings in the air attack, he made up for them with his legs in the ground game by leading the team with 1,099 yards on 293 carries with 26 touchdowns although his 3.8 yard average was hardly impressive. John Hubert rambled for another 933 yards on 188 totes with three trips to the end zone with the remainder of the team accounting for 350 yards. The K-State defense gave up 399 yards (#74) and nearly 28 points but were #39 versus the rush, allowing 132 yards per contest.
The high powered Razorbacks had the misfortune of facing both Arkansas and Alabama and those were the only two games where the offense scored less than 29 points and their only defeats of the season. The Arkansas offense piled up the real estate to the tune of 446 yards to rank #25 in the country. This unit averaged 37 points and was led by the 13th ranked passing attack that averaged 308 yards per contest. Quarterback Tyler Wilson had a productive and mistake free year under center by completing 257 of 407 passes for 3.422 yards with 22 touchdowns against just six interceptions. Jarius Wright was the receiver of choice with 63 catches for 1,029 yards and eleven touchdowns while Joe Adams caught 49 balls for 630 yards three scores. Cobi Hamilton and Chris Gragg combined for 71 receptions and 1,008 yards with five TD’s to give Wilson four top notch options. Arkansas didn’t run the ball often but they were effective in limited tries. Dennis Johnson was the best runner with 637 yards on 101 carries with three scores while Ronnie Wingo adding 440 yards on 95 totes with another three TD’s with eight others combing for 600 yards. The Razorbacks defense didn’t get a lot of notoriety but allowed 371 yards and only 23 points with the #26 passing D that gave up 197 yards.
Interesting match up that might favor Arkansas and their passing going against a suspect secondary but Kansas State faced a ton of pass happy Big 12 squads. The Razorbacks D could be run on which would favor the Wildcats run first offense so neither team should have a whole lot of issues moving the chains. I think the safest bet is the points in what might be high scoring.
Kansas St. Wildcats +8 Arkansas Razorbacks