No. 8 Arkansas (10-2 overall, 7-1 in SEC) vs. No. 4 Florida (11-1 overall, 7-1 in SEC)
Site: Georgia Dome, Atlanta.
Time: 5 p.m. (CST).
Radio/TV: The ARSN network will broadcast the game on radio affiliates. The game will be carried on national TV by CBS (locally on KTHV, Channel 11).
What James says: Against LSU we really didn’t have anything outside of an undefeated SEC season on the line, and we were ranked higher and that was a bull’s-eye. I thought we played exceptionally strong offensively and defensively Friday, we played with a lot of passion. We just lost the game on the one kickoff return. Now we sort of reverse rolls with the opponent. Florida is ranked higher, we’ve never won an SEC championship, they have. They’re coming off a big win, we’re coming off a loss. Both teams have injuries. But mainly I think Florida is a finesse football team and we play a hard-nosed running game and that will work favorably for Arkansas.
What to look for: Arkansas will try to offset some of Florida’s speed and quickness on defense with a shorter passing games, screen passes, and running the football consistently. Defensively we’re going to have to put a strong rush on Florida quarterbacks Chris Leak or Tim Tebow. It’s going to be a tight football game and will get down to the kicking game again, who makes the big play again or who misses the field goal.
Did the LSU game take too much out of the Hogs? Not at all. You have to understand, now you rebound. The pressure was on to stay undefeated in the conference. Now that’s off. Now you’re focused. Arkansas’s players are going to be told no team in school history has won an SEC championship. I just see them being as well focused as you can be. Our coaches won’t have to sell the players hard for this one.
The pick: 24-21, Arkansas.
Watch former Arkansas All-American defensive end Bruce James along with David Bazzel and host Steve Sullivan on KATV, Channel 7’s “SportsWeek” Sundays at 10:30 p.m.