Marlon Davidson took it away early
(Todd Van Ernst)
War Eagle everybody! It’s time now for the Acid Reign Report on Auburn’s big road win over the Arkansas Razorbacks. Much was made this week of the “Arkansas early game curse” and not without reason. This time, Auburn started fast, and Arkansas would be out of the game in less than 5 minutes. down 14–0. Arkansas won the toss, and on 3rd down Marlon Davidson stripped the ball out of Arkansas quarterback Ben Hicks’ hand and was able to recover the fumble at the Arkansas 21-yard line. It took just 3 plays for Auburn to score, and the game already felt out of hand.
The offense appeared to come out with some well-scripted plays to gain an early lead, but Arkansas then tightened up nearly every defender into the box and dared Auburn to throw. At that point, Bo Nix and his receivers had several missed-communication issues, and Auburn managed just a handful of 2nd quarter yards, but had a 17–0 lead at the half.
The 3rd quarter began poorly for the Tigers. Auburn received the opening kickoff, then apparently forgot to call a first play or to set up which players were going to be in on the first snap. A delay-of-game flag was thrown on the Tigers, leading to a quick 3 and out. Arkansas went on its longest drive of the day with some interesting switches on run blocking plus multiple defensive penalties on Auburn. The Tigers finally tightened up and forced a field goal, and still held a 17–3 lead.
Arkansas had eaten the 3rd quarter clock down to 5:53 by the time the Auburn offense got a second chance. Auburn cracked out a couple of first downs behind hard-nosed running by D. J. Williams, and a first-down touchdown bomb from Bo Nix to Seth Williams essentially iced the game. From that point, the Auburn offense exploded for 4 more touchdowns in the last 20 minutes of the game.
On defense, Auburn had as big a mismatch up front as I have ever seen against an SEC offensive line. Arkansas tried everything but could not effectively protect the quarterback or open up running lanes very often. Auburn had a few errors in the back seven, but Arkansas did not manage to get into the end zone till late in the 3rd quarter, when reserves were being added to the rotation in increasing numbers.
Special teams were mostly decent on the day, and Auburn certainly won the battle over Arkansas in all phases. Auburn broke the consecutive made-extra-point record with 304 straight before missing one in the 4th quarter.
Unit grades after the jump!
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From concerns about Auburn’s next road game, to who will replace running back Boobee Whitlow, to Auburn dropping proposed changes to the Auburn logo and more in this edition of Ramblings.Read Full Story