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#13 Arkansas faces #17 Ole Miss Saturday in Oxford

Arkansas Razorbacks
Arkansas Razorbacks(KBTX)
Published: Oct. 8, 2021 at 5:51 PM CDT
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No. 13 Arkansas (4-1, 1-1 SEC) aims to return to the win column after dropping its first game of the season last week by traveling to No. 17 Ole Miss (3-1, 0-1 SEC) for an 11 a.m. tilt on Saturday, Oct. 9, on ESPN.

10 Things to Know Before Kickoff

1. – No. 2 Georgia exploded for 21 first quarter points, handing the Razorbacks their first setback of the season last weekend, 31-0, at Sanford Stadium in Athens. The Hogs and Dawgs met in the Peach State for the first time since 2010, with Georgia outgaining Arkansas, 345-162. Linebacker Grant Morgan tallied the eighth double-digit tackle game of his career and led the team with 12 tackles. Arkansas was shut out as a ranked team for the first time since 1995, when the Hogs were ranked No. 14 and fell at unranked LSU, 28-0.

2. – For the fourth consecutive week and 421st time in program history, the Razorbacks are ranked in the AP Poll, this week at No. 13. The Hogs’ have been ranked the 21st most times among all college football programs. The 2021 team is the first Hogs squad to be ranked inside the AP top 20 for four straight weeks since the final two weeks of 2011 and the first two weeks of the 2012 season.

3. – With a win against the Rebels, Arkansas would start a season 5-1 for the first time since 2011. A win would also boost the team’s SEC record to 2-1 for the first time since that 2011 year, when the Hogs defeated Auburn (38-14) and Ole Miss (29-24) and fell to Alabama (38-14).

4. – The Arkansas rushing attack is one of the best in the country this season, averaging 224.6 yards per game on the ground to rank 18th-best nationally and fifth in the SEC. Running back Trelon Smith leads the team with 302 rushing yards and three touchdowns. Dating back to 2020, Smith has scored eight rushing touchdowns in his last nine games while averaging 76.6 rushing yards per game during that span.

5. – Quarterback KJ Jefferson is a dual threat with his arm and his legs and is the only SEC signal caller with over 900 passing and 200 rushing yards this season. The redshirt sophomore paces the league in yards per completion (16.8) and ranks sixth nationally averaging 10.0 yards per attempt. His 235 rushing yards are the most by a Razorback QB since Matt Jones rushed for 622 yards in 2004.

6. – Wide receiver Treylon Burks leads the team with 22 receptions for 383 yards and has scored two touchdowns over the season’s first five games. The junior (25 games) is one of only four FBS pass catchers to record a reception in every game played of their career (minimum 20 career games) joining Ball State’s Justin Hall (48 games), TCU’s JD Spielman (40 games) and Wisconsin’s Jake Ferguson (38 games). He made his 100th career catch against Georgia last week and became the fastest Hog to 100 receptions since 1997.

7. – Since Barry Odom began his tenure as defensive coordinator in 2020, the Razorbacks have totaled 17 interceptions in 15 games. Defensive back Jalen Catalon has accounted for five of those 17 interceptions, followed by defensive backs Montaric Brown (3), Hudson Clark (3), Greg Brooks Jr. (2), Joe Foucha (2), defensive lineman Eric Gregory (1) and linebacker Grant Morgan (1).

8. – Defensively, Arkansas is allowing its opposition an average of just 129.9 yards per game through the air and 280.0 total yards, the ninth-best mark nationally. Senior linebacker Bumper Pool leads the team making 49 total tackles, with 3.0 tackles for loss and one pass broken up. He registered his team-leading 12th career double digit tackle game last week at Georgia.

9. – Second year head coach Sam Pittman is one of just 14 SEC coaches in history to take over a team with a losing record and lead it to a top 10 spot in the AP Poll in their first two seasons. Pittman and Houston Nutt (1998) are the only Razorback head coaches to accomplish the feat.

10. – Arkansas leads the all-time series over Ole Miss, 37-27-1, and won last year’s meeting 33-21 in Fayetteville. The Razorbacks defense intercepted Rebels’ quarterback Matt Corral six times, including walk-on freshman Hudson Clark who recorded three of them. Arkansas has won five of the last seven meetings, with two of those wins occurring in Oxford.

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