This week on the SEC blog we're looking ahead to the biggest hurdle each team will have to navigate this fall by analyzing the toughest stretch on their 2015 schedule.
Toughest stretch: Sept. 26-Oct.24 (vs. Texas A&M, at Tennessee, at Alabama, vs. Auburn)
Why: As soon as the Razorbacks jump into conference play in late September, they will be greeted with a strong test from their first four SEC games.
The first three SEC games are away from home -- vs. Texas A&M at AT&T Stadium in Dallas, then back-to-back road games at Tennessee (a team some feel could contend for the SEC East title this season) and Alabama.
The Razorbacks get an open date after the Alabama trip, but return home for a date with Auburn on Oct. 24.
Those four games will be revealing for Arkansas. The Hogs finished 2014 with significant momentum, winning three of their final four in dominant fashion against LSU, Ole Miss and Texas. If the Hogs are truly turning the corner and going to be a team that moves up the SEC West ladder, winning games like these are key.
Last season, they had Texas A&M on the ropes, but missed opportunities to close the game out and wound up losing by a touchdown in overtime. They lost to Alabama by a point, and though Auburn defeated the Razorbacks by 24, the teams were tied at halftime 21-21.
These are teams Arkansas can -- and should -- compete well with.