Tulsa vs. Central Arkansas fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Saturday, September 1
Game Time: 7:00 pm ET
Venue: Chapman Stadium, Tulsa, OK
Tulsa (0-0) vs. Central Arkansas (0-0) Game Preview
After a miserable rebuilding 2-10 season, Tulsa has to come up with an easy win before going to Texas next week, and with three of the next four games on the road.
But first, it’ll have to fight through a dangerous Central Arkansas team – even with a new head coach – that went 10-2 last year with the most efficient passing game in the FCS, along with a devastating pass rush.
There’s a chance this could get into a bit of a shootout, and the very least, it needs to happen on the Tulsa side. The O that was 200 points worse than the 2016 version has to find what works again, and now the growing pains have to pay off.
One Reason Why Central Arkansas Will Win
Really, is Tulsa going to be any better at this whole defense thing?
The Golden Hurricane might get back seven starters on D, but the team allowed way over 500 yards per game finishing 127th in the nation.
The run defense was the biggest issue, allowing 265 yards per game, but that’s nothing new for Tulsa.
After allowing more than 190 yards per game on the ground, now it has to deal with a UCA running attack with Carlos Blackman and Kierre Crossley returning. Those two combined for 1,550 yards and 13 scores for a ground game that averaged close to 200 yards per game.
One Reason Why Tulsa Will Win
The Central Arkansas run defense is going to be good, and the pass rush will be great, but the Tulsa O line will take over at times. Four starters are back including a whole slew potential all-stars.
It might take a while before the quarterback situation is truly settled, but the receivers are going to be a killer. Justin Hobbs and Keenen Johnson are going to be able to stretch the field, and four of the top five targets are all back.
Tulsa’s skill guys are all going to get time to work, and while UCA will have its share of winning moments, finally, the O will be productive again.
What’s Going To Happen
Tulsa will start to look like its old self again, but it’ll look like its normal self defensively.
UCA’s offense will run amok, but it won’t be enough to keep up with a Golden Hurricane attack that will look night-and-day better. There will be several key drives to stay that thanks to the D that will struggle, but Tulsa will get the win.
After coming up with just two last season, it’ll be much-needed.