Razorbacks Roll on the Plain

The Arkansas Razorbacks traveled to Auburn this weekend for a matchup that meant a lot more to the two teams (and their respective fanbases) than it did to the rest of the nation or the polls. Auburn entered the game with a 3-4 record and Arkansas sat at 4-3. Both teams, however, were a lowly 1-3 in conference play. Auburn had won the previous 6 meetings between these two programs.


The Recap

Interestingly enough, both teams were coming off a bye week.  One would expect them to come out well-prepared with a polished game plan, right? One would be incorrect. After taking the opening kickoff, Arkansas QB KJ Jefferson dropped back on the first play from scrimmage, was rushed, and threw the ball away to avoid a sack, incurring a penalty for intentional grounding. They punted after a three and out and then lost a fumble on their second possession. Auburn didn’t look much better on their first two possessions, and it was starting to look like one of those games that neither team deserved to win. But with about six minutes remaining in the first quarter the Razorbacks got the ball back for their third possession of the game with Auburn up 3-0. The rest, as they say, is history. The Arkansas offense came alive behind the strong running of Rocket Sanders, driving the ball 75 yards and capping it off with a one-yard KJ Jefferson run. The Razorbacks never looked back. KJ punched it in again from 13 yards out with about ten minutes remaining in the half to make it 14-3.

At this point in the game, however, you have to give Auburn credit for hanging in there. In the last few minutes of the half the Tigers made a strong push and put ten points on the board. The highlight of this stretch being Tank Bigsby’s 41-yard run for a score. Say what you want about Auburn this year, but Tank is a full-grown man. He should definitely get the opportunity to play on Sundays next year. Arkansas went into the locker room at Half nursing a tight 17-14 lead with the Tigers set to receive the second half kickoff.

Auburn came out in the third quarter looking like a team ready to play. They took the kick and put together a six-and-a-half-minute drive that for a few minutes looked like Arkansas couldn’t stop. Penalties and poor execution finally caught up to Auburn and the drive ended in their second missed field goal of the game. This is where the Hogs really laid on the gas, scoring touchdowns on each of their next three possessions. KJ Jefferson hit Jadon Haselwood for an eleven-yard strike at the end of the third quarter, and true freshman Rashod Dubinion added two rushing touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Auburn added on some trash points late in the fourth quarter, but it was too little too late with the game ending up in a 41-27 Razorback victory. In all honesty, the game really wasn’t as close as the score.



Coming into the game, Arkansas had the 9th ranked rushing offense in the nation and Auburn the 116th ranked rushing defense. The Tigers really had no answer for the Razorbacks’ potent rushing attack. The Hogs put up 286 yards rushing, with eight different players getting carries. Although Dubinion got the two short TD runs in the fourth quarter, the true hero today was Rocket Sanders. Sanders had 171 yards on the ground, averaging 10.7 yards per carry on 16 carries.  This isn’t to minimize KJ Jefferson, though. He had an outstanding game as well, going 16/24 through the air for 234 yards and a TD. He also carried the ball ten times for 45 yards and a score. After the first ten minutes he really managed the game well and made big plays when he needed to.

Arkansas running back Raheim Sanders (5) carries the ball as Auburn safety Zion Puckett (10) tries to catch him during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)


Mid Season Evaluation

So, what does today’s game mean for these two programs? For Auburn, it’s probably time to hit the reset button. The Tigers came into this game on a three-game losing streak. Make it four now. Second year coach Bryan Harsin is all but gone, and he probably already knew that before the game started. Any chance he had to save his job likely evaporated today after getting drubbed by Arkansas at home.

For the Arkansas Razorbacks, on the other hand, this was a big win. After losing six in a row to Auburn, winning in this fashion in Jordan Hare Stadium is a big deal for the Razorbacks and their fans. Arkansas certainly looks like a team on the rise after an early season 3-game skid. During that stretch they were plagued with some pretty poor defensive performances, especially in the secondary. But a combination of improved play from some younger players and getting a few injured players back has resulted in notedly better defensive performances these last two games. The Hogs get Liberty at home next week for Homecoming, which some might think is a gimme. Not so fast though. Liberty is currently 7-1 and coming off a big 41-14 win over BYU last week. They are coached by former Ole Miss and Arkansas State head coach Hugh Freeze. Liberty is also on a bye this week. After Liberty, LSU and Ole Miss come to Fayetteville in consecutive weeks. Both of which will be huge games on the Hill. Arkansas, now sitting at 5-3, only needs one more win to be bowl eligble. The Hogs, however, must not look past Liberty next week if they want a chance to finish this season strong.

Leave a Replay

One Response

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.


Hello fellow sports fans! My name is Joseph Jordan. Welcome to our page. Welcome to our website. I hope you are as deeply passionate about sports as I am. Julien and I have spent a lot of time writing our sports opinions on Facebook over the years. … Read More>>


Follow Us

Your The Sports. Your Inbox. Everyday