Preview and prediction for Alabama vs Arkansas State

By Randy Belk
Sep. 07, 2018

Arkansas State will travel to Tuscaloosa Saturday to take on the number one ranked Alabama Crimson Tide. Arkansas State opened their season against Southeast Missouri from the FCS division and came away with a 48-21 victory. Last year Arkansas State finished 7-5 and played one FBS opponent. They were competitive in that game losing 36-43 to Nebraska. last week Alabama opened their season on national television defeating Louisville 51-14.

This is the third time these two teams have met over the course of history. Alabama defeated Arkansas State both times by a score of 34-7 in 1982 and 35-0 in 2008.

By the numbers;

Total offense; Alabama is ranked 34th with 519 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked 6th with 676 yards per game.

Rushing offense; Alabama is ranked 41st with 222 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked 64th with 179 yards per game.

Passing offense; Alabama is ranked 39th with 297 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked #1 with 497 yards per game.

Points per game; Alabama is ranked 23rd with 51 points per game; Arkansas State is ranked 30th with 48 points per game.

Total defense; Alabama is ranked 28th giving up 268 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked 35th giving up 285 yards per game.

Rush defense; Alabama is ranked 4th giving up 16 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked 48th giving up 122 yards per game.

Pass defense; Alabama is ranked 79th giving up 252 yards per game; Arkansas State is ranked 34th giving up 163 yards per game.

Points per game; Alabama is ranked 31st giving up 14 points per game; Arkansas State is ranked 56th giving up 21 points per game.

Starting lineup comparison using star ratings from 247 Sports.

Alabama projected starting lineup.

QB - Tua Tagovailoa - 5 star

RB - Damien Harris - 5 star

WR - Jerry Jeudy - 5 star

WR - Devonta Smith - 4 star

WR - Henry Ruggs III - 4 star

TE - Irvin Smith Jr - 3 star

LT - Jonah Williams - 5 star

LG - Lester Cotton - 4 star

C - Ross Pierschbacher - 4 star

RG - Alex Leatherwood - 5 star

RT - Jedrick Wills - 4 star

DE - Isaiah Buggs - 3 star

NG - Quinnen Williams - 4 star

DE - Raekwon Davis - 4 star

JACK - Anfernee Jennings - 4 star

SLB - Christian Miller - 4 star

MLB - Mack Wilson - 5 star

WLB - Dylan Moses - 5 star

CB - Trevon Diggs - 4 star

FS - Deionte Thompson - 4 star

SS - Xavier McKinney - 4 star

CB - Saivion Smith - 4 star

Arkansas State projected lineup.

QB - Justice Hansen - 4 star

RB - Warren Wand - 2 star

WR - Omar Bayless - 3 star

WR - Justin McInnis - NR

A-BAC - Kirk Merritt - 4 star

TE - Javonis Isaac - 2 star

LT - Lanard Bonner - NR

LG - Andre Harris - 2 star

C - Jacob Still - 2 star

RG - Marvis Brown - 3 star

RT - Nour-Eddine Seidnaly - NR

DE - Ronheen Bingham - NR

NT - Tukua Ahoia - NR

DT - Kevin Thurmon - 3 star

BANDI - William Bradley-King - 2 star

WLB - Caleb Bonner - 2 star

MLB - Tajhea Chambers - 3 star

NB - Justin Clifton - 2 star

CB - Jeremy Smith - 2 star

FS - BJ Edmonds - 3 star

SS - Darreon Jackson - 3 star

CB - Brandon Byner - 2 star

Arkansas State enters this game with a very respectable offense that is lead by 4 star quarterback Justice Hansen which leads the nation after week one in passing with 497 yards against FCS opponent Southeast Missouri. The Crimson Tide defense might actually get a stiffer test this week than they did against Louisville. On defense the Red Wolves will have a very hard time slowing down Alabama's high powered offense. Look for the scoreboard to get lit up in this one, but most of that will come from the Tua Tagovailoa led Bama offense. Arkansas State success in the passing game depends alot on the ability to run the ball enough to keep the Bama defense honest. Dont look for that to happen as Alabama's front seven should be able to shut down the run and put enough pressure on the Arkansas State quarterback to keep him uncomfortable in the pocket and limit his play making ability. The Red Wolves might put two or three drives together to score points but it will not be enough to keep up with the Crimson Tide offense that should be able to hang over 50 points from the visitors of Jonesboro, Arkansas. Alabama wins going away 58-17.