The Auburn Tigers made light work of the Arkansas Razorbacks on Saturday night. In their second straight road game, Auburn put away the bad memories of last week against LSU with a dominant 52-20 win over the Hogs.
With the win, Auburn is now bowl eligible at 6-2. They’ll have next week off before a huge month of November. A trip to face the Texas A&M Aggies kick it off, and it’s n o rest for the weary after. They’ll host the currently unbeaten Georgia Bulldogs on November 11, and of course, two weeks later they host the Iron Bowl against the Alabama Crimson Tide.
Arkansas, meanwhile, craters to 2-5 with no SEC wins to speak of in their four tries so far. It’s looking rather unlikely that they’ll be able to scrape a bowl appearance, which could put Bret Bielema in some trouble. Time will tell, at least.
What We Learned
Arkansas learned their lesson from last year in defending the run... sort of
Last season, Auburn rushed for 543 yards on 57 carries with SEVEN rushing touchdowns. Arkansas at least got a victory in this department this time around, as that did not happen in 2017. The Tigers settled for a paltry 345 yards and just five rushing touchdowns.
Okay, so that’s still hellacious. Kamryn Pettway didn’t get 192 yards this time around, but he still racked up 90 and three scores on his own. Kerryon Johnson had 63 of his own with a score, and Jarrett Stidham ran for 49 and a touchdown. Malik Willis piled up 62 on just two carries. Eli Stove had one 45-yard rush.
A pretty dominant performance on the ground, you’d probably say.
Arkansas is behind the 8 ball
The Hogs, without Austin Allen, fell to Auburn and their schedule isn’t exactly helpful to their cause. While they have a matchup against Coastal Carolina, the Chanticleers are practically their only relief. Well, okay, Mizzou is abhorrent too. But trips to Oxford and Baton Rouge as well as a game against the Mississippi St. Bulldogs will make it hard for this team to get to a bowl. It’s treacherous, to say the least. And it could make things interesting in Fayetteville going forward.
Auburn looks like a stout challenge to Alabama, if they can get to that point
As we mentioned, the Tigers have a brutal schedule in front of them in November. We’re going to find out a lot about them when they take the field in two weeks at Kyle Field, but they certainly played the part on Saturday night. This thumping on the road can only give them confidence, and amid a flurry of questions in the SEC, Auburn is definitively the second-best team in the SEC West. Unless, well, LSU finds a way to make it happen in two weeks, too.