The Arkansas Razorbacks (3-3, 0-2) are a one-dimensional offensive team that needs to find a passing attack, and fast, or there won’t be many wins left on the schedule. Last week at Florida, the Hogs ran the ball well early – against the SEC‘s best defense, mind you – but fell behind on Loucheiz Purifoy‘s interception return in the second quarter for a touchdown and faded from there to lose 30-10.
Arkansas looked sharp for a bit, gashing the Gators on the ground and taking a 7-0 lead on Jonathan Williams‘ nifty, cutback run. But once the Gators’ defense found its footing and slowed the Arkansas running game, the pig was roasted, as quarterback Brandon Allen couldn’t get anything going through the air.
Allen only managed to complete 17 of his 41 pass attempts for 164 yards. He didn’t throw any touchdown passes, but even worse, he threw a pick-six that sapped all the early momentum away from the Razorbacks. And he was the first to admit it.
“We had a lot of things not go our way,” Allen said. “There were some big momentum swings that we couldn’t get back to our side. … Their defense is No. 1 for a reason. They have a lot of speed on defense.”
Arkansas still hasn’t beaten Florida since 1982, which was a decade before the Razorbacks even joined the SEC. And the hogs lost two important players in the process. Starting cornerback Will Hines broke a bone in his right arm and left the field on a cart, and starting center Travis Swanson re-injured a sprained knee. If Swanson misses any games, it will put even more strain on a running game that is already doing all the heavy lifting.
What to look for in Week 7: Can Arkansas take advantage of a South Carolina defense that has struggled to close out games lately? The Gamecocks have blown big leads against Vanderbilt, UCF and Kentucky the last three games. Maybe Arkansas can capitalize on South Carolina’s defensive slump – preferably with Jadeveon Clowney on the sideline.