Keith Jackson: Oxford is Favorite Place to watch Hogs

Keith Jackson has been all over the SEC, but his favorite place to watch Arkansas play is in Oxford, Miss. He points to two classic games, both overtime victories for the Razorbacks.

Arkansas color analyst Keith Jackson has had lots of fun covering the Razorbacks in 16 years doing the radio broadcasts. But nothing tops his trips to Oxford, Miss.

Jackson's two favorite games to call were both in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. He absolutely loved the 58-56 seven overtime victory the Hogs earned over Ole Miss in 2001. But it wasn't any better than the 53-52 one overtime triumph the Hogs achieved last week.

"I'd have a hard time picking between the two," he said. "I will say that this last one, I was glad to be there. I'd buy a ticket to watch that. I'll say that Oxford is my favorite place to watch the Hogs play. There is something about Oxford. The Hogs ought to play all their games there."

The Hunter Henry lateral play that set up the winning points in the overtime will probably be archived and show up as one of the great plays in college football in years to come.

"I think that play will be like the Stanford band play," Jackson said. "You are going to see it over and over. It's a great play not just in Arkansas football history, but the history of college football. It's so exciting."

Jackson said the Hogs are on a roll and anything is possible over the last three games. He expects the Hogs to win two of three with LSU, Mississippi State and Missouri left on the schedule.

"I can't tell you which two, but I do think the Hogs have a shot at LSU, they have a shot againt Mississippi State and I think they will beat Missouri," he said. "The future looks good for the Razorbacks. I think they could win all three. I do think it helps them that they are playing running teams. They are better against the run."

LSU running back Leonard Fournette will be a challenge, one of the many keys to victory.

"You have to stop No. 7," Jackson said of Fournette. "If you know anything about gambling, you know what the No. 7 means.

"The second part of that key, you want to make them one dimensional and that means Brandon Harris passing. We want him passing on our secondary, yes."

Jackson said this is the sort of team he expected Arkansas to be at the start of the season, but injuries changed the equation.

"I do think if they had Jonathan Williams all along, there would be only one loss," Jackson said. "I picked 10-2. There was a point that I was questioning what I had thought, but now you see what I saw. They have wide receivers now. They are creating things for the quarterback. Those injuries were tough. But now, Arkansas has found a rhythm. Those injuries early took away the rhythm."

Quarterback Brandon Allen is a different quarterback than he was earlier in the year.

"I give Dan Enos credit for giving Brandon some things," he said. "He's giving him some good situations and the running game has opened up some things in the passing game. There are some new routes that have gotten into some holes. They create holes. I think Drew Morgan may be the best route runner the Hogs have had since Chuck Dicus. He's not running just basic routes.

"Without question the receivers are better than what they had in game one. And, that's helped Brandon. He's making great throws, but they are helping him with getting open. There are open receivers now. There is talent and ability to run routes. Michael Smith has done a good job with this bunch."

Jackson said he loves going to Baton Rouge. It's a fun atmosphere because of the LSU fans.

"It's the team you love to hate," he said. "I've seen it there. They are mean fans. I think they teach their kids to be mean.

"I'll never forget one of the times we upset them. We went in to the stadium the day before and they were yelling tiger bait. There was a young boy with his father. He was yelling tiger bait. He'd look back to his dad and he'd get a thumbs up. I decided I'd see how mean he was, so I walked right up next to him."

At point blank range, the youngster wasn't so brave with the hulking Jackson above him.

"He looked up at me and said, 'tiger,' and that was it. He looked at his dad and said, 'This one is really big.' I loved that."

And, the LSU games are always big, too;

"I love them," Jackson said. "I think why I think Arkansas has a shot, they didn't get out of personality against Ole Miss. That's what they'll need. They will need to stick to the running game and mix in the pass. Time of possession will be a big key. You want to limit the possessions, don't give LSU the ball a lot. I don't think there will be a lot of possessions in the game

"I also think Arkansas is better in the front seven than in the secondary and this will be a front seven type of game. I think Arkansas has gotten much better in the red zone. Early this year, there were even teams in Italy better than Arkansas in the red zone."


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