The Tennessee Volunteers travel to Arkansas to face the Razorbacks in an SEC matchup at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday. The Vols are heading into the weekend with three consecutive losses. Meanwhile, Arkansas is recovering from a big loss to No. 8 Texas A&M last Saturday. Both teams will look to level their matching records of 2-3.
Tennessee opens as a three-point favorite at Arkansas on Saturday.
— David Ubben (@davidubben) November 1, 2020
Thus far, in the season, Arkansas has dropped critical games against ranked opponents. They took their third loss of the season after being defeated by Texas A&M and now sit at 2-3 overall.
Arkansas will look to improve their secondary and get it back to the consistency it showed at the beginning of the season. In the past four games, it has allowed around 200 yards. Yet in the season overall, they have been able to force 13 turnovers which shows that the talent is there.
In addition, the team will need to prioritize protecting their quarterback Felipe Franks. Franks sits as the second most sacked QB in the SEC at 14. Felipe Franks has only transferred to Tennessee last year and secured a leadership position almost immediately. Arkansas Head Coach Sam Pittman explained that he watches Franks improve each week.
Tennessee Looks To Comeback
The Tennessee Volunteers are coming off a bye week and three consecutive losses. The Vols suffered beatings from Georgia (44-21), Kentucky (34-7), and Alabama (48-17). The break-in their schedule could be the refresher they needed or perhaps make things worse.
One of the issues the Vols have been facing is converting third downs. This season, their third-down conversion rate is only 26.1%. Head Coach Jeremy Pruitt said during Wednesday’s SEC Teleconference how they needed to start taking care of the football and putting themselves in manageable third downs.
“When you start having to convert third downs over and over and over again, odds are against you as far as putting long drives together. There are a couple of things with that that we need to improve on,” said Pruitt.
Many see that a simple solution to the several issues the team is experiencing is to start putting younger guys in and changing players on the field to inspire new dynamics. Although, Pruitt explained that he needs players to prove themselves before doing that.
Coach Pruitt explained that through the last three losses that have been simply out beat by the opposing talent. Pruitt sees potential in the players in his team and is willing to be patient as they develop.