With head coach Bret Bielema at the helm, experts see the Arkansas Razorbacks to be a run heavy team on offense. That was not the case during the Razorbacks opening game of their 2015 season.
When Arkansas took the field to face UTEP , they opened up an aerial showcase right from the beginning.
On the Razorbacks opening drive, senior quarterback Brandon Allen completed all four of his passes. Three of those passes were for 15 yards or more, including a 26-yard touchdown to Drew Morgan.
Allen’s second drive was not as impressive as the first drive. His first pass on the second drive was an incompletion. However, that did not keep Allen and the Razorbacks from continuing to attack by air.
Allen completed his next pass to senior receiver Keon Hatcher for 14 yards. Then, he let the ball loose, going 38 yards down the field to junior tight end Hunter Henry. Arkansas capped off their second drive with a 20-yard touchdown pass to Hatcher.
The third and fifth drives were just as productive as the first and second for Allen and the Razorbacks. Allen completed a 58-yard pass to sophomore receiver Jared Cornelius for a touchdown on the third drive. On the fifth drive, Allen tossed another touchdown pass to Hatcher for 38 yards.
At the end of the half, Allen finished with a career-high four touchdown passes. Not only did Allen finish with a career high in touchdown passes, but he finished with 256 passing yards. The quarterback would finish the game with a career-high 308 passing yards and four touchdowns.
The running game for Arkansas took awhile, but it finally got on track. Starting running back junior Alex Collins ended the first half with a 70-yard run. Collins would finish the game with 127 yards and one touchdown. Collectively, Arkansas ran for 182 yards and two touchdowns. If you thought the offense was stellar, the defense was just as good.
The Razorback defense held UTEP to 58 yards rushing on 34 rushing attempts, which was an horrific 1.7 yard per rush average. The rest of UTEP’s 204 total yards were passing. The defense constantly created pressure on the UTEP quarterback.
Arkansas had 11 tackles for a loss of 46 yards on Saturday, however, out of those 11 tackles for loss, the Razorbacks only tallied one sack. The Arkansas defense also created the only turnover of the game, which was an interception by sophomore defensive back Henre’ Toliver.
Bielema and company went on to beat UTEP 48-13.
They will take a detour to Little Rock next Saturday, Sept. 12, to take on the Toledo Rockets of the Mid-American Conference.