Five Keys Review
1. Start Strong
2 — Arkansas turnovers vs. zero for Samford.
80 — Total carries for Jonathan Williams and Alex Collins in the first two games.
ALEX COLLINS: The heralded freshman led all rushers Saturday and his 55-yard run in the fourth quarter set up Arkansas’ go-ahead touchdown. Collins rushed for 172 yards on 24 carries and a touchdown. He got in hot water with Coach Bret Bielema for an excessive celebration following his 2-yard TD run. Bielema said he planned to talk to Collins and that it wouldn’t happen again or Collins would not be playing for the Razorbacks.
JAVONTEE HERNDON: Wide receiver Javontee Herndon caught his third touchdown pass of the season before the first quarter ended Saturday. That made three TDs in five quarters in 2013. At the start of the season, the senior from Jacksonville, Fla., had caught three TD passes in 37 quarters. He did have a miscue Saturday on a punt return though, fumbling after faking out at least two would-be tacklers. Samford could not take advantage of the turnover, going three and out. Herndon ended the night with five receptions for 70 yards.
LITTLE ROCK — Three defensive starters did not dress out against Samford. Safety Rohan Gaines suffered a knee injury in the opener against Louisiana-Lafayette. He was replaced in the lineup by junior Alan Turner. For discipline reasons, Jarrett Lake was replaced in the lineup by junior Martrell Spaight, a two-time junior college All-American from Coffeyville Community College in Kansas. Defensive end Trey Flowers was announced as a starter but redshirt freshman Brandon Lewis started in his place. Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said Flowers had a knee issue and it was decided before the game that he was not ready.
Tight End TDs
LITTLE ROCK — Trailing Samford by three points entering the fourth quarter, Arkansas turned to the one-two running punch of running backs Alex Collins and Jonathan Williams. They ran for 145 yards and two touchdowns in the final quarter as the Razorbacks avoided an upset by a Football Championship Subdivision team with a 31-21 win at War Memorial Stadium.
“We just wanted to wear them out and wear them out and wear them out,” Collins said. “You could tell in the third and fourth quarters, you could see them start to slow down and get tired. We took advantage of that. We talked about pounding the rock and getting back on track.”
LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas got a good look at what it’s capable of accomplishing with a clean performance in last week’s win against Louisiana-Lafayette.
The Razorbacks found out what sloppy play can produce Saturday night.
Arkansas RB Jonathan Williams (6-0, 222, So.)
Key Statistics: 18 carries, 151 yards, TD vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
1. Start Strong
Arkansas is aware of the FCS vs. FBS statistics from week one. The Razorbacks know an upset can happen. But Arkansas also knows it can squash Samford’s upset hopes with a strong start tonight. So the goal: Bury the Bulldogs in the first quarter.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas fullback Kiero Small will never forget where he was when the Razorbacks made their first trip to Little Rock last season.
The senior was in a hospital bed, watching Arkansas and Louisiana-Monroe on his computer while recovering from foot surgery. Nodding in and out of consciousness because of his pain medication, Small didn’t get to watch the entire game. But when he woke up, Small couldn’t believe the end result.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn has plenty to sort out during his team’s fall practice schedule, which began Friday afternoon.
It includes a question that wasn’t exactly expected at the end of the 2013 season.
FAYETTEVILLE — Kiero Small wasn’t used to holding the football during his Arkansas career. So when the fullback pulled in a short pass from Brandon Allen and looked at the goal line last Saturday, a thought flashed into his head.
Better make it count.
1. Game-Time Gaines
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said he won’t know until Saturday whether safety Rohan Gaines will be available to play against Samford.
1. Jones Commands Defense
Arkansas defensive coordinator Chris Ash said he was “seriously” concerned about middle linebacker Austin Jones before last Saturday’s season-opening win.
FAYETTEVILLE — Jeff Long described the future of Arkansas football games in Little Rock as a “complicated, difficult question” Wednesday.
But Arkansas athletic director also believes it isn’t the right time to dive into the topic with four years remaining on the contract between the program and the War Memorial Commission, which is scheduled to run through the 2016 season.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long has no trouble seeing the need for construction of a basketball practice facility on campus.
Apparently, Long has had trouble getting supporters to agree with him.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas running back Jonathan Williams did most of the work on his 75-yard touchdown run last Saturday, but was quick to credit quarterback Brandon Allen after the 34-14 win against Louisiana-Lafayette.
Allen was the one who saw something he didn’t like at the line of scrimmage before the snap. So he changed the play, calling an audible to an outside zone run play.
1. Impressive Debut
Arkansas running back Alex Collins showed plenty of big-play potential during his college football debut last Saturday, rushing for 131 yards on 21 carries.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas coach Bret Bielema was impressed with the way his team prepared and performed for its season opener last week.
Now, he wants to see if the Razorbacks (1-0) can duplicate the feat when they go on the road for the first time in 2013. At least, that’s the way Bielema views his first trip to Little Rock for Saturday’s game against Samford (1-0).
1. Flowers Earns SEC Honor
Arkansas defensive end Trey Flowers was named Southeastern Conference defensive lineman of the week Monday.
Five Keys Review
1. Win Line of Scrimmage