Sep 15, 2012; Fayetteville, AR, USA; Arkansas Razorback running back Knile Davis (7) goes over Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Deion Belue (13) during the second half at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. Davis fumbled on the carry. Alabama defeated Arkansas 52-0. Mandatory Credit: Beth Hall-US PRESSWIRE
Fayetteville, Ark. – Call it Alabama’s continued dominance over all of college football, the Arkansas Razorbacks free fall under interim head coach John L. Smith after Bobby Petrino’s dismissal, or a devastating mixture of both, however one slices the game the Crimson Tide dismantled Arkansas’ defense and offense Saturday night 52-0.
The Arkansas Razorbacks (1-2) followed up one of the worst losses in college football history a week ago to Louisiana-Monroe by being outplayed in every facet of the game on Saturday against their SEC West rival Alabama (3-0).
The Arkansas offense managed 171 net total yards of offense, 85 rushing and 86 passing. On the other side of the ball the Arkansas defense was shredded for 441 total yards by the Alabama offense, 230 rushing and 211 passing.
Not aiding in Arkansas’ efforts on the field was four fumbles, two lost (one on fourth down), and two interceptions thrown by redshirt freshman quarterback Brandon Allen.
The one statistic that will not reflect in Allen’s favor is the two picks thrown even though each came off dropped or tipped passes by his own receivers.
The Razorbacks came out of the gate strong on defense but the lack of offensive firepower and stalled drives by their offense took its toll by the second quarter allowing Alabama to stretch a first quarter lead of 7-0 to 24-0 by halftime.
Arkansas’ offense had eight possessions in the first half with a long drive of 51 yards on 8 plays that resulted in a missed 41 yard field goal in the driving rain after a high deep snap to the holder.
Of the eight possessions the Razorbacks held in the first half five were four and out or less including a one-play drive that resulted in an interception.
In the third quarter Alabama had three possessions to Arkansas’ one. The Razorbacks held the ball for 6:49 on a 16 play drive that ended on a fumble by starting running back Knile Davis.
The Hogs bypassed a drive opportunity in the second half after kickoff returner Dennis Johnson fumbled the ball after an 18 yard return.
Arkansas laid out several easy scoring opportunities for Alabama’s offense allowing the Tide to start four drives on Arkansas’ side of the field including a start at the six yard line, the three yard line, and the 27 and 28 yard lines. Each short drive resulted in a touchdown for the No. 1 ranked team in the nation.
The loss for the Hogs was the first at Reynolds Razorback Stadium since Alabama last traveled to Fayetteville in 2010, 24-20.
Due to injuries Arkansas was a few starters short of full potential on Saturday, most notably the absence of senior starting quarterback Tyler Wilson.
Wilson took practice snaps on Wednesday and warmed up with the team before the game but was not cleared by the Arkansas medical staff to play on Saturday.
Before the game was finished Wilson was angry enough at the performance of his teammates that he stopped sideline reporters stating, “Do I feel that we, at times, gave up out there? Absolutely. As a leader, it sucks to see people not do their jobs and to see things go wrong. There have been a lot of people jump off the bandwagon, and it is my job to keep everyone in this organization and this team in that locker room together. I am going to make sure of that going forward.”
Next week University of Rutgers travels to Fayetteville to face the Razorbacks while Alabama hosts Florida Atlantic.
Game Statistics of Note:
Brandon Allen, 10-18, 67 yards, 3 sacks, 2 INT
Brandon Mitchell, 1-7, 19 yards, 1 sack
A.J. McCarron, 11-16, 188 yards, 1 TD, 0 sacks, 0 INT
Knile Davis, 20 attempts, 57 yards, long 13, 1 fumble
Jonathan Williams, 3 attempts, 18 yards
Dennis Johnson, 4 attempts, 12 yards
Eddie Lacy, 11 attempts 55 yards, 3 TD
Kenyan Drake, 6 attempts, 57 yards, 1 TD
Alabama Rushing, 5.4 yards per attempt
Arkansas Rushing, 2.4 yards per attempt
Chris Gragg, team-high 3 catches, team-high 33 yards