Arkansas won for the second straight time, moving to 6-3 overall, 3-3 in the SEC. The Hogs made Lou Holtz 1-4 versus Arkansas since becoming the South Carolina coach. The Gamecocks are 5-5 overall and 2-5 in SEC games. Arkansas takes a break from SEC play next week by hosting New Mexico State.
South Carolina took advantage of a fumble on the opening kickoff to get on the board first. Daniel Weaver booted a 43-yarder to make it 3-0 at 13;53 of the first quarter. Cedric Washington fumbled the kickoff at the Arkansas 26 to give the Gamecocks that chance. USC made only 1 yard on the three plays before settling for Weaver's boot.
Ryan Sorahan started at quarterback, but got only a pass interference penalty in his first four plays before giving way to Matt Jones on the Hogs' second possession.
Jones marched the Hogs 71 yards in his first four plays with DeCori Birmingham finding a crease over left tackle for the final 51 yards. It was 7-3 at 7:38 of the first quarter.
South Carolina kept it for the next six minutes on a 13-play drive, but came away empty when quarterback Donrial Pinkins dropped the ball trying to reach for a handoff on a second-and-goal play from the UA 3-yard line. Jimmy Beasley covered it at the UA 9-yard line. Jeremy Harrell knifed through on the previous play for a 1-yard loss on first-and-goal from the 2-yard line.
The Hogs wasted a turnover midway through the second quarter. Sam Olajubutu intercepted Pinkins. The Hogs had it at the USC 41 after his 12-yard return.
Two plays later, Birmingham popped free for another big gainer off the left side, but he fumbled at the USC 9-yard line and the Gamecocks scooped and returned to their 24-yard line.
The Hogs rolled 71 yards in 13 plays to make it 14-3 on Jones' 1-yard touchdown pass to Jason Peters. The Hogs did it mostly with power running behind Cedric Cobbs and Mark Pierce. They lined up in the ultimate power formation on the TD play, with Shawn Andrews at fullback on the left side in the offset I-formation. The fake went to Pierce left. With everyone flying to the left to where Andrews was trying to get a push, Jones rolled right and found Peters with a soft flip. That made it 14-3 with 27 seconds left in the half.
South Carolina held a 3:26 edge in time of possession in the first half, but Arkansas led in total yards, 239 to 169. The Gamecocks closed that total offense gap a bit with a 27-yard pass on the final play of the half against a UA zone with three safeties 40 yards down the field.
South Carolina got the ball first to start the second half. On the first play, Demetrius Summers went around eight end for 5 yards and sustained an injury that delayed the game 7 minutes while he was loaded on a stretcher for a possible spine injury. The Gamecocks were three and out on that possession.
The Hogs kept it for 11 plays and 6:02 of the third-quarter clock with a 67-yard touchdown march with their first possession. They caught a break on the TD when USC cornerback Ted Crawford looked in position for an interception, but it bounced off his hands to Richard Smith for what turned into a 36-yard play.
The Hogs converted third-and-6 with Birmingham's 6-yard draw. Jones also converted a third-and-6 with an 8-yard QB draw. Jones threw a short pass to Peters and the 320-pound tight end made a nifty cutback for a 11-yard gain. The Hogs led 21-3 at 7:46 of the third quarter.
South Carolina answered with a 13-play, 62-yard march before stalling at the UA 18-yard line. Weaver kicked a 36-yard field goal to make it 21-6 at 1:48 of the third quarter. The Gamecocks reached the UA 11-yard line where on first-and-10 Jeb Huckeba batted an option pitch away from Pinkins for a 10-yard loss.
The Hogs had a chance to put it away when Jimarr Gallon intercepted Pinkins, returning 17 to the USC 8-yard line. Gallon was stripped there and the Gamecocks ended up with the ball at their 15-yard line. USC went three and out from there with a pass interference penalty waved off on a possible pass interference call against the Hogs.
Jones led the Hogs 58 yards in eight plays to make it 28-6 on a 9-yard TD pass to George Wilson. He had plenty of time for Wilson to run the width of the field to pop open near the goal line on the third-and-8 play. Jones also threw a 11-yard pass to Peters on the drive. De'Arrius Howard rambled for 15 and 10 yards on consecutive plays.
South Carolina drove to the UA 13-yard line, but the Hogs stopped them there. On fourth-and-four with 5:10 left, Vickiel Vaughn stripped the ball on a screen play and Bo Mosley recovered at the UA 15-yard line. The receiver never made it across the line of scrimmage.
Arkansas turned to a bevy of backups to run out the clock. Sorahan returned to sneak for a first down after Pierce rolled for 9 yards. Kyle Dickerson powered for 4 yards to erase a third-and-4 at 2:04 when the Gamecocks used their final timeout. The Hogs didn't have to snap it on fourth-and-1 as the final 23 seconds ran off.
Jason Peters had a big night against the Gamecocks.
Sam Olajubutu returns a pass interception against USC.
Cedric Cobbs finds an opening behind a strong offensive line.
Cedric Cobbs powers past a defender.
Jerry Reith prepares to lower the boom on a Carolina defender.
Photos by Tom Ewart
Arkansas 28, S. Carolina 6 (Final)
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