It’s been a rough season in Fayetteville, and Saturday’s Arkansas-Mississippi State game briefly gave Razorbacks fans some hope.
Arkansas stormed out to a two-touchdown lead on heavily favored Mississippi State, but the Razorbacks ultimately faded down the stretch and lost on a last-minute touchdown.
The Hogs (4-7, 1-6 SEC) no longer have a chance for a bowl berth, unless there aren’t enough bowl-eligible teams to fill the necessary spots. The loss turns up the heat on embattled coach Bret Bielema.
Mississippi State (8-3, 4-3), a 13-point favorite, scored the winning touchdown with just 17 seconds left. The Bulldogs have now won five of their past six games.
SEC Country reporters Eric Bolin and Trent Shadid were on the scene at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. You can review their in-game updates and analysis below:
Arkansas-Mississippi State recap
FINAL: Mississippi State 28, Arkansas 21
Mississippi State 28, Arkansas 21 (0:17, 4Q)
MSU wide receiver Deddrick Thomas catches a 6-yard touchdown pass from Nick Fitzgerald, giving the Bulldogs their first lead of the game.
Mississippi State 21, Arkansas 21 (1:05, 4Q)
MSU goes for it on fourth-and-1 from the Arkansas 35, and the Bulldogs convert with a 2-yard run by Fitzgerald.
Mississippi State 21, Arkansas 21 (3:01, 4Q)
Arkansas went for it on fourth-and-2 from its own 44, but failed to convert on a long throw over the middle.
Mississippi State 21, Arkansas 21 (3:57, 4Q)
The first good throw Fitzgerald has made today – maybe the second – and it goes for a 37-yard touchdown. Tie game. We are going down to the wire.
Arkansas 21, Mississippi State 14 (8:59, 4Q)
Razorbacks forced a punt. Arkansas starts its drive at its own 21. A good, long, old-school Bret Bielema drive would be a boon right now for the team.
END 3: Arkansas 21, Mississippi State 14
Put up those four fingers, folks. Arkansas is looking for its most impressive win of the year. They’re 15 game-minutes away.
Arkansas 21, Mississippi State 14, (4:35, 3Q)
An absolutely nutty play put Arkansas at the MSU one and Devwah Whaley punched it in to give the Razorbacks the lead. The play was a David Williams rush that looked stuffed; he lost the ball on a fumble, but the ball was kicked forward. It rolled all the way to the MSU 1 and Brandon Martin pounced there to set up the score.
Mississippi State 14, Arkansas 14 (9:28, 3Q)
Big stop for the Razorbacks on the previous drive. MSU went for it on fourth down and failed to convert. Hogs take over at their own 25. Tie game.
HALF: Mississippi State 14, Arkansas 14
Arkansas got to midfield on its final drive of the half before things fizzled. For the second straight week the Razorbacks have an overachieving first half. Last week’s didn’t end so well.
— SEConCBS (@SEConCBS) November 18, 2017
Mississippi State 14, Arkansas 14 (2:18, 2Q)
If you thought it wouldn’t last, you were right. Arkansas turned it over on downs after punter Blake Johnson tucked the ball, thinking it might be blocked. Mississippi State then needed three plays to go 17 yards for the game-tying score.
Arkansas 14, Mississippi State 7 (5:17, 2Q)
“Momentum” is tilting back in the direction of Mississippi State. Nick Fitzgerland converted a 4th-and-10 with an 18-yard pass then, on the next play, ran it in from 17 yards.
Arkansas 14, Mississippi State 0 (8:45, 2Q)
Ty Storey in at quarterback for Arkansas. Unsure why.
END 1: Arkansas 14, Mississippi State 0
A shocking start here in Fayetteville. Three more quarters.
Arkansas 14, Mississippi State 0 (7:26, 1Q)
McTelvin Agim forced his second fumble of the day and this one was recovered in the end zone by Arkansas. It’s now 14-0 and anyone not cheering is speechless.
— SEC Country (@SECcountry) November 18, 2017
Arkansas 7, Mississippi State 0 (12:46, 1Q)
Arkansas went 3-and-out on the game-opening drive, but Blake Johnson’s punt went off the back of a Mississippi State player and the Razorbacks recovered in MSU territory. Three plays later and the Hogs punch it in. David Williams scored from three yards the good vibes are here early.
Arkansas-Mississippi State preview coverage
- Sorry, Hogs fans: Gus Malzahn to Arkansas doesn’t make sense
- “Sound Off” video: The best-case scenario for Arkansas football is …
- How does Bielema stack up vs. final seasons of Jones, McElwain, Miles?
Pregame score predictions
Mississippi State 38, Arkansas 20
Arkansas should find more success on offense in this game than a week ago at LSU. However, it won’t be nearly enough to keep up with the Bulldogs. Mississippi State quarterback Nick Fitzgerald should be in for a big day running and throwing. — Trent Shadid
Mississippi State 41, Arkansas 21
The Razorbacks let Mississippi State run all over them last year, and that was with a decent team. This Razorbacks team isn’t nearly as good, so don’t count on the Hogs pulling the upset. Mostly, Arkansas just needs to avoid embarrassing itself. But that, too, has been easier said than done all year long. — Eric Bolin
Mississippi State 45, Arkansas 10
The Hogs will not be close in this one. The Bulldogs are coming off a gut-wrenching loss to Alabama and will be looking for blood. Mississippi State runs all over the Razorbacks and puts them out of their misery early. — John Nabors
Looking ahead to Week 13: The Razorbacks will host Missouri on Friday, Nov. 24. Kickoff time is 2:30 p.m. ET (1:30 CT), and CBS has the television broadcast.