One of the top matchups for this upcoming week 7 of the 2010 college football season will be this Saturday (3:30 pm ET) when the number 12 ranked Arkansas Razorbacks travel to Auburn to take on the number 7 ranked Tigers in an SEC matchup with potential BCS implications. Arkansas, which shellacked Auburn 44-23 in last year’s meeting in Fayetteville, comes into the contest with a 4-1 record after disposing of Texas A&M 24-17 last week. Auburn is 6-0 and had another squeaker of a game against Kentucky last week, pulling out a 37-34 victory in Lexington after leading 31-17 at the half. This was the Tiger’s third win by three points this season, and they have yet to play a complete game all year long.
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The Auburn offense is led by QB Cameron Newton, a true dual threat signal caller who leads the team with 672 yards rushing and 9 TDs in addition to 1138 yards passing with 12 TDs and an excellent 64.8% completion percentage. Newton is a load at 6’6” and 250 lbs. and is quickly rising up the list of Heisman trophy contenders. Junior Darvin Adams is Newton’s top target through the air with 21 receptions for 385 yards and 2 TDs on the season, but the focus has to be on Newton himself for as he goes so goes the Tiger’s offense.
Arkansas’ offense is led by QB Ryan Mallett, who came into the season a top contender for the Heisman and who ranks second in the nation with 358 yards passing per game. Despite Mallett’s gaudy numbers, the offense has struggled lately to put up points, including last week when they won despite only scoring 3 points in the second half for the second consecutive game. Part of the problem has been Mallett’s increasing tendency to turn the ball over; he threw his 6 INT of the season last week, after only throwing 7 picks last season. Taking care of the football will be a key this week, as any turnovers can quickly be converted into points by Newton and the explosive Tiger offense.
Auburn has lost 3 of thee last 4 meetings to Arkansas, including last season’s blowout loss, but that was before Newton entered the picture. Arkansas comes into the contest 5-0 ATS in their last 5 conference games, and 7-3 ATS in their lat 10 games overall. Auburn is 3-8 in their last 11 games overall as the favorite. The over is 4-1 in Arkansas’ last 5 games on grass, and the over is 11-4 in Auburn’s last 15 games as a favorite. Arkansas is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings with Auburn.
Arkansas vs. Auburn Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Arkansas Razorbacks +4
@ Auburn Tigers -4
Over 60 (-110)
Under 60 (-110)
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Arkansas vs. Auburn Predictions for Week 7 Betting:
Spread Prediction (Top Play) – Arkansas owns Auburn over the last few years, the Tigers have a more explosive offense under the dynamic playmaker Newton, but they have a nasty habit of letting teams stay in the game too long. That will come back to hurt them this week as Mallett and Co. right the ship on offense and turn their production into points. Auburn can not put away a quality opponent, or even a decent one and that is a recipe for disaster in the tough SEC. They will eventually get burned, and the bet here is that their luck runs out this week.
Over/Under Prediction – Take the over here, Auburn has specialized in shootouts so far this season and Arkansas’ defense is not capable of shutting down Newton, especially on the road. Both teams will put points on the board, and this game could very well be close to the end or even go into overtime. Arkansas has been in an offensive funk lately, but expect that trend to break here against an Auburn team that lacks the killer instinct to finish off an opponent.