Two teams headed in opposite directions square off Friday, when red-hot Missouri visits Arkansas in a Southeastern Conference clash. Missouri has won five straight games – all by at least 28 points – while Arkansas has dropped two straight and five of its last six.
The Tigers have dubbed their comeback from a 1-5 start the “Keep It Rollin’ Baby Tour,” and they have kept it rolling in impressive fashion. Missouri is coming off a 45-17 win at Vanderbilt, which marked its closest contest during the winning streak and made the Tigers bowl-eligible for the first time since 2014. The Razorbacks’ only wins since the start of October were a pair of one-point victories over Ole Miss and Coastal Carolina, although they gave No. 16 Mississippi State a scare last week before losing a 28-21 decision. The game could be the last at Arkansas for coach Bret Bielema, who has posted an underwhelming 29-33 record in five seasons with the school.
TV: 2:30 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Missouri -10
ABOUT MISSOURI (6-5, 3-4 SEC): Although quarterback Drew Lock leads the nation with 38 touchdown passes – two shy of the SEC single-season record, it has been a resurgent running game that has re-ignited the Tigers’ offense. Missouri has topped 175 rushing yards in five straight games, with senior Ish Witter (822 yards, four touchdowns) and freshman Larry Rountree III (577, six) leading the way. The defense has undergone a dramatic turnaround as well, holding five straight opponents under 400 total yards after doing so only once in the first six games.
ABOUT ARKANSAS (4-7, 1-6): The Razorbacks have been hurt by injuries, and the offense has been hit especially hard. Arkansas has topped 400 total yards only twice in SEC play and has not surpassed 300 passing yards in any game this season with Austin Allen and Cole Kelley splitting time under center. The defense has been torched at times but kept the Razorbacks in the game against Mississippi State with nine tackles for loss and four sacks, and it will need to get pressure on Lock to give the secondary a chance.
1. Lock has thrown at least three touchdown passes in seven straight games.
2. Arkansas is 14-1 under Bielema when rushing for at least 250 yards, a total Missouri has allowed twice this season – to Georgia and Auburn.
3. Missouri freshman TE Albert Okwuegbunam has nine touchdown receptions, tied for the most in the nation by a tight end.
PREDICTION: Missouri 41, Arkansas 27