Recap: Arkansas Razorbacks 40, Texas Longhorns 21

Joe Cook6 days
Aritcle written by:Joe CookJoe Cook

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Will Gallagher/Inside Texas

Texas won the coin toss to open the game. It went downhill from there.

The Longhorns and Razorbacks traded punts on each of their first two possessions, but offensive line problems quickly surfaced for the Longhorns. Texas struggled to get anything going in the run and pass. Bijan Robinson had to avoid Arkansas defenders in the backfield, and Hudson Card rarely had a clean pocket to pass from. This lasted for most of the first half, even against a three-man Arkansas rush.

Arkansas’ third drive ended in a 24-yard field goal by Cam Little. Texas defense covered everyone but quarterback KJ Jefferson, who picked up several chunk plays on the ground during the drive. For the first few plays of the series, Alfred Collins’ lined up at 3-technique for the Longhorns. His teammates eventually made a stand in the tight red zone, and Little made the game 3-0.

As the first quarter crossed into the second, Texas faced a 2nd-and-5 on the Arkansas 24. Card was sacked, then a delay of game led into an incomplete pass intended for Jordan Whittington, who broke free in the end zone but could not haul in the pass despite it hitting his hands. Steve Sarkisian sent out Cameron Dicker for a 52-yard field goal, but he missed it wide right.

With a short field, Arkansas drove to the Texas five with a 22-yard rush from Treylon Smith and the work of Jefferson moving the Razorbacks down the field. On 3rd-and-4 from the Texas five, Jefferson handed off to Dominique Johnson, who avoided Jacoby Jones and fell into the end zone to make it 10-0. This was one play after Arkansas’ center fumbled the snap to Jefferson, who handed it off as if nothing happened.

The ensuing Texas possession was fruitless, and bordered on disaster. Dicker dropped the snap on the punt, and Jake Yurachek blocked the secondary attempt. Mataio Soli returned it to the Texas 14, and Arkansas had all the momentum.

The Longhorn defense stood and forced another field goal to make it 13-0, with BJ Foster making a deflection worth four points on third down.

Card returned to the field again, with Casey Thompson remaining on the sideline. He went 3-and-out, and Arkansas drove down for another Little field goal to make it 16-0.

Card was joined by Robinson and Roschon Johnson on the next series and the duo helped Texas pick up its third first down of the game.

Card then had Whittington open on 2nd-and-9, and hit him in the hands once again. And once again, Whittington could not come down with the football.

Texas was forced to punt, and Arkansas head coach Sam Pittman was content to enter halftime with a 16-0 lead.

The second half began with Texas going 3-and-out for the fifth time in seven possessions.

Arkansas was on the precipice of 23-0 on the second play following the punt, but Foster again made a huge play. He deflected Jefferson’s pass to an otherwise wide open Treylon Burks into the air and hauled it in, moving up to the Arkansas 26.

Card engineered a 25-yard drive to give Texas 1st-and-goal from the Arkansas one. Behind a beefy personnel package, Robinson followed his blocking into the end zone to make it 16-7.

Texas had a chance to keep momentum, but squandered it. D’Shawn Jamison let Tyson Morris get behind him for a 45-yard gain. Johnson rushed 19 yards then 12 yards to put Texas under its own goalposts again. On the one-yard-line, Smith leaped over the pile to make it 23-7 just 1:56 after getting the ball back.

Texas moved the ball down the field despite missing two deep shots to Xavier Worthy and Joshua Moore. They were faced with a 4th-and-1 on their own 43. A handoff to Robinson from Card went nowhere.

Jefferson led Arkansas inside the four again on the ensuing drive, but Texas’ defense held and Little made it 26-7 late in the third.

Disaster struck on the very next possession, as Card fumbled the ball on a roll out on the very first play of the series.

The very next play, Raheim Sanders rumbled 26 yards to make it 33-7.

That margin was enough for Sarkisian to pull Card and plug in Casey Thompson. Thanks to a personal foul on Arkansas, Texas moved into Razorback territory.

A run by Thompson and a run by Robinson set up a 2nd-and-2 on the nine, and Thompson scrambled into the end zone to help Texas reach double-digits and make it 33-14.

Rather than onside, Texas kicked it deep with over 13 minutes left in the fourth. Arkansas took the ball and went on a methodical 8-play, 75-yard drive culminating in an AJ Green 30-yard touchdown. The extra point made it 40-14.

With the game well out of reach, Texas moved into Arkansas territory as the clock reached the halfway mark of the fourth. Facing a 3rd-and-2, Thompson completed a pass to Worthy to move to the 30-yard-line. A few plays later after several Arkansas stuffs, Thompson rolled right and couldn’t find an open man. He rumbled into several Hogs on the way to the end zone to make it 40-21.

Texas couldn’t wrangle the onside kick from Dicker, and Arkansas ran out the remaining 2:22 to seal a 40-21 win.