The challenge for UALR early in the season will be to stay above .500.
With one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country, one loaded with tough road games, the Trojans will need to win some games to create some momentum headed into Sun Belt Conference play.
The bottom line is this: Anything better than 6-6 in nonconference play would be an amazing start to the season. What will they have to do to get to seven nonconference victories?
Win the home games. UALR has to beat North Florida, Southern Arkansas, Arkansas-Fort Smith and Grambling at home. That would get them to 4.
Win 2 of 3 road games against Middle Tennessee, Southern and Tulsa. That will be extremely tough but would get them to 6.
Split the two games at the BVI Tropical Shootout in the British Virgin Islands. UALR plays Jacksonville State in the first game and either Southern Miss in the second game. A split would get them to 7.
UALR also has tough road games at Florida, Memphis and Oklahoma.
Anything 7-5 or better would be a great start. A 6-6 start wouldn’t be the end of the world. With all the road games, 5-7 might be realistic. But it would also be disappointing considering this year’s expectations.