For the first time since 2012, No. 8 Texas A&M will host Arkansas at Kyle Field on Saturday, Oct. 31.
The Aggies enter this matchup after a 28-14 win over Mississippi State on Oct. 17, while the Razorbacks sit at 2-2 on the season.
Since moving to the SEC in 2012, the Aggies have accumulated an eight-game win streak against the Razorbacks.
“Arkansas and A&M have played for so many years, they know each other so well,” A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said. “It means a lot to the alums and everybody else that it just becomes that game.”
Last season, the Aggies came out on top with a 31-27 win over the Razorbacks. Senior quarterback Kellen Mond went 23-of-35, passing for 251 yards, and senior safety Keldrick Carper led the team with a career-high 10 tackles.
Offensively, Mond said he is proud of the progress A&M has made.
“I think each week that we continue to critique ourselves and look back on the film, just how many plays were left on the field, and whether it’s chemistry, or just lack of focus, or a missed throw, or a missed route by a couple of feet, that can change a whole entire game,” Mond said. “I think we’ve played really well but we have so much more room to grow and a lot more potential.”
Arkansas senior quarterback Feleipe Franks leads the Razorbacks with 974 passing yards this season and eight passing touchdowns.
“Feleipe Franks is a big, strong, athletic guy who can get the ball so vertical,” Fisher said. “He has a cannon. Knew him in high school, he grew up right there below Florida State in Tallahassee at Wakulla High School. Strong, athletic, hard to get him on the ground, makes a lot of plays.”
Arkansas has 10 interceptions so far this season, and Fisher said Mond should be cautious of this, but it is not something to constantly bring up.
“I mean you make him aware of what they do well, these guys play the ball well, they see the ball with their eyes very well, they see the quarterback very well, they understand routes, they match routes,” Fisher said. “You don’t scare a guy but you’ve got to make him aware of what that team does, how they play, how they’ll play him and why they’re having success on the plays and which they’re having it on, and what you’ll do to counter that.”
Mond said the A&M passing game is continuing to improve every week.
“With Caleb Chapman going down and then us getting a bye week, we’re able to get some guys back healthy and then also continue to build that chemistry,” Mond said. “Having Hezekiah Jones back, giving some guys a breather and just adding more depth to that receiver room, and also playmaking ability, is going to be big for us. I’m excited about this weekend and continuing to grow with those guys and I’m looking for them to have another big-time weekend.”
Senior offensive tackle Dan Moore Jr. said Arkansas’ defense is very disciplined.
“I see a team that fights to the last whistle,” Moore said. “They’re physical, for sure, and they play as a team. So, it’s gonna be huge this week for us to rally and be able to execute.”
A&M will face the Razorbacks on Oct. 31 at Kyle Field in College Station. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m., and the game will be televised on the SEC Network.