Razorbacks Outrun Tigers, 38-17
October 12, 2002
LB Dontarrious Thomas
Talley ran for 241 yards, including an 80-yard score, as Arkansas gained 426 yards on the ground to earn a 38-17 victory Saturday over Auburn (No. 21 ESPN/USA Today, No. 24 AP).
His 241 yards were the most ever given up by Auburn. The previous high was 233, by Alabama's Bobby Marlow in 1951.
The Razorbacks (3-2, 1-2 SEC) looked fresh enough after a six-overtime loss at Tennessee, just as coach Houston Nutt had predicted during the week.
Talley helped, too.
He spearheaded Arkansas' first 400-yard rushing game since the team gained 412 against LSU in 1994. Talley's 241 yards was the second-best performance in school history, behind Dickey Morton's 271.
He did it against an unlikely opponent.
Auburn (4-2, 2-1) had not given up more than 350 yards since LSU piled up 377 five years ago. The Tigers hadn't allowed a 200-yard rusher since Cecil Collins gained 232 in the same game.
Talley, who came in with just 123 yards in the first four games, gained 179 yards in the first half alone.
Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville coach took the blame several times for the loss.
"We just made it easy for them,'' said Tuberville, whose team was coming off an idle week. "I take full responsibility for today. It is my fault. We had two weeks to get ready for this game, and they were coming off of a six-overtime game.''
It seemed the other way around.
Fullback Mark Pierce gave the Razorbacks a 31-17 lead with 7:44 left in the third quarter, rambling 44 yards on fourth-and-1 for his second touchdown. Matt Jones added a 70-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter.
Pierce, who had 15 yards all season, finished with 62 on five carries.
Third-team tailback De'Arrius Howard also ran for a TD.
Auburn's Carnell "Cadillac'' Williams gained 99 yards on 24 carries and become the first player in school history to run for a touchdown in six consecutive games. But the Tigers couldn't overcome three first-half turnovers, and he couldn't break any long runs.
Quarterback Daniel Cobb was benched for Jason Campbell after three quarters, throwing a pair of first-half interceptions and losing one of his two fumbles.
Cobb had Auburn's only big plays, throwing for a 65-yard score to Devin Aromashodu and setting up another score with a 41-yarder to Silas Daniels.
He was 13-of-23 for 225 yards.
Auburn, which came in behind only Arkansas in the SEC in rushing yardage, was shut out in the second half. The Tigers had 40 carries for 104 yards.
The Razorbacks used a 10-point scoring flurry to close the first half with a 24-17 lead.
The Tigers took a 17-14 lead on Williams' 9-yard run, but Talley went up the middle for his 80-yard score with 1:34 left before halftime.
After Auburn failed to move the ball or run out the clock, Bo Mosley blocked Duval's punt at the Tigers' 12 with 25 seconds left.
Arkansas, which had no timeouts left, threw three incompletions and settled for David Carlton's 22-yard field goal with 5 seconds remaining.