FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.— It was an early morning start for the Arkansas Razorbacks and South Carolina on Saturday. The Hogs came out opting for the ball at the start of the second half. However, once the Razorbacks scored on their first three offensive drives they never looked back.
Razorback linebacker, Drew Sanders had a heck of a day rushing the passer, making plays in the backfield and in the open field. He was a menace forcing negative plays on multiple possessions in the first half.
The story of the first half was Arkansas’ ability to run the football at will with their heavy backfield. Before the game, color commentator mentioned that KJ Jefferson and Rocket Sanders combined to be the heaviest backfield combo in the nation.
The Razorbacks played keep away from the Gamecock offense led by Spencer Rattler, though. Arkansas led in time of possession 34:37 to Carolina’s 25:23.
Sanders got the Hogs rolling early on with a 1-yard touchdown on Arkansas’ first possession. His 156-yard performance against the Gamecocks is his second of the season and third of his Razorback career.
Again, Sanders scored from 11-yards out on the Razorbacks’ second drive to push their lead to 14-0.
Rashod Dubinion was also in on the touchdown parade early with a 1-yard run for his first as a Hog. The true freshman rushed for 15 yards on eight carries. His touchdown pushed the Razorbacks to a 21-3 lead in the second quarter.
Arkansas dominated the line of scrimmage on both sides especially in the run game. They out-rushed the Gamecocks for the game, 295 to 40 yards.
What a way to finish, too! South Carolina stayed around during the fourth quarter off a few Razorback miscues. The Gamecocks did score 14 points in the fourth quarter but it really was never that close. The Hogs scored 23 points in the fourth quarter to put the road team away.
Jefferson had another exceptional performance guiding the Razorbacks to a win. The signal caller completed 18-21 passes for 162 yards and one touchdown. He also rushed for 67 yards on 19 carries plus a touchdown.
Arkansas did make huge defensive plays when they had to throughout the game. Drew Sanders had a heck of a day at his linebacker spot with 11 total tackles, two sacks, three tackles for a loss, two forced fumbles and a pass break up.
Pool recorded seven tackles with a sack as well. LSU transfer, Dwight McGlothern made a huge play intercepting a pass in the endzone for his second pick of the season.
Another linebacker with a huge day was Chris Paul. His performance as the third linebacker was evident and effective. Paul recorded four tackles, a half sack, 1.5 tackles for a loss and a fumble recovery.
The Razorbacks are a very opportunistic defense as Latavious Brini forced a fumble downfield. Hudson Clark came away with the recovery.
Jayden Johnson and Jordan Domineck also had a pair of sacks. The Razorbacks recorded a total of six sacks on Spencer Rattler on the day.
The Hog defense may have some weaknesses but the playmaking ability in the front seven is solid. Rattler couldn’t sit still most of the game but when he was it was in the three man, prevent zone midway through the third quarter.
Rattler did pass for 371 yards and a touchdown.
During the postgame press conference, Sam Pittman announced that Jalen Catalon will be out for the season. Myles Slusher did not dress but it’s hopeful he will return soon.
The Razorbacks 2-0 (1-0) will welcome Missouri State into town, coached by their former head coach, Bobby Petrino. The game will be aired on ESPN+ beginning at 3:00. I