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Southern Miss03003
Arkansas737724
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24


Southern Miss (0-2) at Arkansas (2-0)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, September 14, 12:21 p.m. (et)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium (72,000) -- Fayetteville, Arkansas. Television: SEC Network, ESPN3.com. Home Record: USM 0-1, Arkansas 2-0. Away Record: USM 0-1, Arkansas 0-0. Neutral Record: USM 0-0, Arkansas 0-0. Conference Record: USM 0-0, Arkansas 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.

GAME NOTES: The Arkansas Razorbacks attempt to stay undefeated to start the Brett Bielema era, as they play host to the Southern Miss Golden Eagles on Saturday afternoon in non-conference action.

Southern Miss has had a rough go of it to start the season. A year after going winless in 12 tries under Ellis Johnson, the Golden Eagles have dropped their first two games under new head coach Todd Monken to extend their losing streak to 14. They fell at home in the season opener versus Texas State (22-15), and followed that up with a blowout defeat at nationally-ranked Nebraska (56-13).

Also in the first year of a new regime, Arkansas has experienced the exact opposite fate as Southern Miss early in the season by starting 2-0. The Razorbacks took down Louisiana in the opener, 34-14, and while they struggled for much of their latest contest against FCS foe Samford, they escaped with a 31-21 triumph. This matchup will mark the end of a three-game homestand to open the season for the Hogs.

This bout also marks the first-ever meeting between these two programs.

The Golden Eagles offense has failed to impress early on this season, putting up 14.0 ppg and 342.0 ypg, while converting just 27 percent of third-down attempts. They were stifled last week by the Cornhuskers, committing four turnovers in the 43-point setback.

Allan Bridgford has had little trouble amassing big yardage totals, as he sits with 599 passing yards through two games, but he has completed just 55.7 percent of his passes and has tossed five interceptions paired with only two touchdowns.

Bridgford has been locked in on Tyre'oune Holmes, who is tied for fourth in the FBS with 20 receptions for 161 yards. Rickey Bradley is the offense's home run hitter, tallying 10 receptions for 250 yards and a touchdown.

While the passing game has found some success, the rushing attack has struggled to get off the ground. The team has gained just 85 yards on 51 attempts (1.7 ypc), with Kendrick Hardy's 62 yards leading the way.

Nebraska's point total was inflated by a pair of interception returns for touchdowns, but regardless, Southern Miss still had no answer for the Huskers' well-balanced offense. The unit gave up nearly 480 yards of offense while allowing the home team to score touchdowns on each of its trips to the red zone.

DaBarriaus Miller and Alan Howze are the team's top tacklers with 19 and 18 stops, respectively, with Howze adding a team-best 2.5 TFL. Octavius Thomas has the lone sack.

Even though Arkansas outgained Samford last week, 458-231, it still found itself trailing by four points heading into the fourth quarter before a pair of rushing touchdowns bailed it out of trouble. On the season, offense has not been difficult to come across (32.5 ppg, 490.0 ypg).

Brandon Allen has played very well in his first year as the team's starting quarterback. While he averages less than 178 passing yards per contest, he has tossed five touchdowns against zero interceptions.

The Razorbacks have leaned on their rushing attack with great success, as both Alex Collins (303 yards, TD) and Jonathan Williams (277 yards, two TDs) are averaging more than 6.7 yards per attempt.

Javontee Herndon has been Allen's favorite target in the early going, hauling in eight balls for 143 yards and three touchdowns.

While nobody will confuse the Arkansas defense with some of the other elite units in the SEC, its performance so far in 2012 (17.5 ppg, 252.5 ypg) has been commendable.

The play of the defensive line has been the most impressive, with Trey Flowers (3.0 TFL, 2.0 sacks, FF), Robert Thomas (3.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks) and Chris Smith (2.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks) all getting off to outstanding starts. Braylon Mitchell leads the team with 15 total stops.

Arkansas' hot start is a great sign coming off a disappointing 2012 campaign, but it has yet to play a quality opponent and still has a lot to prove once its SEC schedule kicks into gear. Luckily for the Razorbacks, a visiting Southern Miss squad that is stuck in a serious rut does not pose much of a threat, and they should easily move to 3-0.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Arkansas 41, Southern Miss 24

09/11 10:38:28 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCCU 108
BASC 52
 
Final
CHA 106
PHO 111
Final
NCSU 83
TENN 72
Final
CLE 98
ATL 127
Final
CHA 106
PHO 111
Final
DET 106
DAL 117
Final
BOS 109
ORL 92
Final
MIA 87
UTA 105
Final
TOR 105
BRK 89
1st OT
SAN 93
MEM 94
 
2nd
POR 39
MIL 41
 
1st
DEN 18
HOU 16
 
1st
LAC 27
IND 23
 
Final
UNT 78
LANG 65
 
Final
Terriers 64
DELST 72
 
Final
MSST 55
ARKST 69
Final
NCCU 108
BASC 52
 
Final
GMAS 99
CATAWBA 69
 
Final
WOFF 64
CSOU 58
 
Final
HIGH 106
FERR 48
 
Final
JVU 68
GWEBB 65
 
Final
ILL 73
HAMP 55
 
Final
BST 52
JMU 72
 
Final
YOUNG 84
KNST 90
 
Final
UMO 71
LONG 60
 
Final
PITT 65
MAN 56
Final
OSU 97
NCAT 55
Final
FSU 93
UNF 77
 
Final
TOL 83
RMU 57
 
Final
CAMP 70
SIUE 65
 
Final
DUQ 52
RFLSH 67
 
Final
NCSU 83
TENN 72
Final
UCF 75
DET 70
Final
UNCW 73
LIB 70
 
Final
LOYC 83
ABCHRIST 44
 
Final
MURST 94
ALCOR 56
 
Final
HOU 56
ARKPB 61
 
Final
NW 67
CMICH 80
 
Final
WKENT 75
CHIST 60
 
Final
ODU 58
UGST 54
 
Final
SMU 67
ILLCH 46
Final
LALAF 115
MLGN 76
 
Final
TULSA 74
MIZST 70
 
Final
UWGB 66
MORE 50
 
Final
NEOM 92
NCOL 82
 
Final
TTU 101
SCST 39
 
Final
DEN 83
TAMCC 73
 
Final
STEPH 66
TXST 60
 
Final
STLU 75
TXPA 69
 
Final
MEM 83
USCU 73
 
Final
ILLST 64
TENNM 54
 
2nd
MSU 62
EMICH 42
 
Final
GRCN 80
INCWORD 82
 
Final
STAN 67
LMU 58
 
Final
BAY 66
NMST 55
 
2nd
CIN 54
SDST 49
 
2nd
AUB 70
WINT 56
 
Half
NMU 35
CARK 30
 
Half
PEPP 28
HOW 23
 
2nd
CPSL 25
NE 35
 
1st
UNLV 24
PORT 18
 
11:00pm Tonight
OREG
CSNO
11:00pm Tonight
WASH
GRAM
Final
NJD 0
OTT 2
Final
MIN 2
BOS 3
1st Intermission
VAN 0
DAL 0