Arkansas football is proving that their program is moving forward.
Sam Pittman is proving all naysayers wrong that he couldn’t get the job done.
The Razorback football team is proving that they want to play big boy football again. Something that has been absent from Fayetteville for such a long time.
Hunter Yurachek is proving to be a genius of an athletic director with the hires he’s made in both men and women’s athletic programs, too. He also had every right to be ticked off about the officiating. Could he make a trip the SEC office for a discussion on Monday?
The Hogs had to try and beat the SEC Officiating crew, too, but fell short. A fourth quarter Jameson Williams touchdown that was actually bobbled and never controlled through the whole play was reviewed and upheld. Even with clear replay that should have negated the touchdown, it still held.
Alabama and their red and white zebra crew ensured that the Crimson Tide would indeed play Georgia in the SEC Championship Game. That’s all about ratings and Arkansas was on the wrong end of the deal.
KJ Jefferson played Heisman caliber football again on Saturday going toe to toe with the front runner for the coveted trophy. Jefferson finished 22-30, 326 yards and three touchdowns.
Arkansas gave up 559 yards passing but had timely defensive stops to stay in the game throughout the night.
“We played to win. We felt like we could come on here and win,” said Sam Pittman.
The Razorbacks have made this state proud. It’s been a very long time coming for a program that was struggling on life support under the previous coaching staff.
That being said there was really only one issue defensively and that was the coverage problems keeping Jameson Williams in check. The transfer wide receiver from Ohio State has been playing very well with his opportunity as a graduate transfer. His athleticism was a definite mismatch for the Razorback defense as he reeled in 8 passes for 190 yards and three touchdowns.
Coming out of halftime the Razorbacks needed a timely stop to keep the game at a fighters chance. Alabama went for a 9 play, 75 yard drive in 3:29 to extend their lead to 31-14.
The Razorbacks would answer three plays later with a 66 yard touchdown by Treylon Burks. An extra point attempt by Cam Little made it 31-21 Alabama.
Alabama missed a field goal on their next drive but Arkansas couldn’t capitalize on the miss. The Tide redeemed themselves by converting a field goal from the the 13-yard line to extend their lead, 34-21.
The Razorbacks would pull within 34-28 on a rushing touchdown by Dominique Johnson from one yard out. That play was reviewed after being called short at the 1-yard line. Which shouldn’t have been reviewed at all since he was literally standing in the endzone.
Don’t forget the play before that when Warren Thompson was clearly in the endzone with his arm extended and knee on the ground simultaneously. The play was overturned.
Rocket Sanders scored what should’ve been the game tying touchdown but SEC Officiating.
The fact that Arkansas had the will and heart to fight back to make it a one score game is a testament to to the culture Pittman is instilling I Fayetteville.
Arkansas had five drives of 75 yards with one being 96 yards. Anyone can go back and look at the history of this series and see that Arkansas hasn’t had the kind of offensive success against Alabama. Moral victories are hard to take in but fans can take solace in the truth that Arkansas is returning to respectability.