FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas won a convincing 31-10 victory against No. 11 Florida on Saturday inside Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
It’s time to hand out some grades from the victory:
The Arkansas offensive line might have had a breakthrough. Against a really good Florida defensive line, the Hogs kept Austin Allen off his back and paved the way for 223 rushing yards — most of which came from running backs Rawleigh Williams III and Devwah Whaley.
Austin Allen threw an early pick-six and got off to a bit of a rough start, but settled down and had himself a very nice game, completing 15 of 26 pass attempts for 243 yards and a touchdown.
All in all, a very crisp, efficient game for the Arkansas offense.
Arkansas’ defense played well. Sure, the Hogs allowed fewer yards this season in victories against teams such as Texas State, but all things considered, this was Arkansas’ best defensive performance of the season.
The Hogs held Florida to just 12 rushing yards — a far cry from the 543 Arkansas surrendered to Auburn two weeks ago. The Arkansas secondary picked off Luke Del Rio twice, returning the first one 24 yards for a touchdown on the Gators’ first offensive snap.
The changes made to Arkansas’ defense made a huge difference Saturday. But can the Hogs keep it up next week against LSU?
Special teams: B
Adam McFain made a 36-yard field goal. Toby Baker was his normal, reliable self in the punting game.
Two of the Hogs’ 6 kickoffs were touchbacks. That still needs improvement.
Arkansas continues to struggle to make plays in the return game. That just hasn’t been much of a factor this year.
Coach Bret Bielema’s staff used its bye week wisely. Very wisely.
After that 56-3 embarrassment at Auburn, things easily could have fallen apart, but after this impressive victory against a good Florida team, it’s clear that isn’t happening.
The coaches deserve a massive amount of credit for that.
The anthracite alternate uniforms were the subject of scorn among some fans — especially old-school folks who hate when teams do things like this — but I thought they looked sharp. Especially those shiny helmets.
Here’s the most important thing, though: Players like alternate uniforms. Recruits like alternate uniforms.
Thus, expect to see alternate uniforms. It’s just the way things are these days.
Saturday was a good day in Hog-land.