Arkansas State Red Wolves 2016 College Football Preview, Schedule, Prediction, Depth Chart, Outlook
2015 Record 9-4
Arkansas State Red Wolves 2016 Preview
The fast and athletic Arkansas State Red Wolves are legitimate Sun Belt contenders in 2016.
Overview: Third year head coach Blake Anderson has one of the top recruiting classes in the Sun Belt and plenty of skilled transfers to replace some of their lost talent to make the Red Wolves an automatic challenger in the conference…again.
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Offense: ASU loses quarterback Fredi Knighten so the first thing on the list is decide on a signal caller between Justice Hansen or Chad Voytik (Pitt). Who wins the job won’t have JD McKissic and Tres Houston to throw to but Dion Pascal (28-541) is ready to step in as the top option with transfers Cameron Echols-Luper (TCU) and Kendall Sanders (Texas) along with several three star recruits give the Red Wolves potential. Potential describes the Arkansas State rushing attack with Michael Gordon and Knighten taking over 1,600 yards with them but Warren Wand (117-707) and Johnston White (99-616) showed explosiveness when given the opportunity. Every starter on the O-Line returns including All Sun Belt RG Colton Jackson and LT Jemar Clark.
Defense: The Red Wolves tended to give up some big plays but were an effective defense in getting their explosive offense the ball. The ASU front seven has plenty back and depth as well beginning with the line that gets back ten of 10-12 with DE Ja’Von Rolland-Jones and Chase Robison combining for 20 TFL with the former recording 8.5 sacks. The ASU linebacking crew gets back four of their top five with Khari Lain and Xavier Woodson-Luster combining for 13 TFL, three sacks and three interceptions. The Red Wolves secondary returns eight of eleven and this group was adept at getting their hands on the ball a year ago and there is no reason to believe things will be different in 2016.
Special Teams: Arkansas State needs to find a punter but JD Houston hit 12-14 field goals and all 45 PAT‘s. Blaise Taylor and Cameron Echols-Luper are fantastic punt returners and hopefully one will prove competent at bringing back kicks.
Outlook: The Red Wolves defense appears unchanged for the most part but a quarterback and receivers need to be found and I believe Anderson has them which makes this team extremely dangerous in the Sun Belt.
9/10 @ Auburn
9/17 @ Utah State
9/24 Central Arkansas
10/5 Georgia Southern
10/15 South Alabama
10/29 UL Monroe
11/4 @ Georgia State
11/12 New Mexico State
11/17 @ Troy
11/26 @ UL Lafayette
12/3 @ Texas State