McFadden Shows Off Arm, Too

LITTLE ROCK — Tight end Wes Murphy, who caught a 9-yard touchdown pass from Darren McFadden in the second quarter of Arkansas' 44-10 win over Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday, said there's no quarterback controversy at Arkansas.

"Darren isn't in the running for it," Murphy joked. "That pass was not exactly a spiral. I'll give him a 10 for getting it in the air, but a negative 2 for the (wobbly) pass."

McFadden, who played some quarterback for Pulaski Oak Grove, said, "That brings back memories from high school. I faked play action and had made up my mind to run until I saw Wes coming across the back of the end zone wide open."

Murphy wasn't even the primary receiver; Peyton Hillis was.

"Darren pump-faked because he was wanting to run, but he saw me so wide open," Murphy said. "I did juggle the ball because it was a curve ball."

Hogs quarterback Mitch Mustain, asked if he would offer McFadden any passing pointers, grinned and said, "Honestly, no. Darren is one of those guys with natural ability. That was awesome to watch."



NUTT'S 100th

Saturday's game marked Houston Nutt's 100th career win as a head coach.

Nutt was 31-16 in four seasons at Murray State (1993-1996) and 5-6 at Boise State in 1997. Beginning in 1998 at Arkansas, Nutt has gone 64-41 in eight-plus seasons for a .610 winning percentage.

His overall record is 100-63, for a .613 percentage.

Nutt had been unaware that he was approaching his 100th win.

Asked what was most meaningful to him about No. 100, Nutt paused a moment and then said, "That I did it at the University of Arkansas."



MORE MONK MILESTONES

Junior Marcus Monk's two 12-yard touchdown receptions from Mustain against ULM marked Monk's 17th and 18th career TD catches at Arkansas, moving him past Richard Smith for second place in school history. Smith had 17 touchdown receptions from 2000-03.

Anthony Lucas is the UA career leader with 23 touchdown catches, from 1995-99.

Monk has also caught at least one pass in 30 straight games, matching the second-best active streak in college football. The streak spans every game in Monk's career.



IDEAL WEATHER

Saturday was the eighth-straight good-weather day for Arkansas games this season, and the seventh time the Hogs have won the coin toss.

The crowd of 55,420 in War Memorial Stadium was treated to a game-time temperature of 69 degrees, with clear skies.

Arkansas senior captains Desmond Sims, Keith Jackson, Tony Ugoh and Sam Olajubutu won the toss and elected to defer their choice until the second half.

Olajubutu did not play because of stretched knee ligaments, but wore his No. 24 jersey with sweat pants as he walked to midfield before the game.

When the Hogs ran onto the field before the game, junior split end Chris Baker of Osceola kept going all the way to the opposite end zone, with his arms high in the air.

Similarly excited after scoring a third-quarter touchdown, McFadden was penalized 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct when he celebrated by flexing his upraised arm muscles.

"I showed my (‘501') tattoos," McFadden said. "They (the officials) don't want to see that."

Hillis explained, "That (501) is his area code. All the big guys are doing that."



HALT, THIEF

Michael Grant's three interceptions on Saturday night tied him for second on the UA single-game list, with four other players.

Wear Schoonover heads the list with five interceptions against Texas A&M in 1929. David Hogue (1970), Louis Campbell (1971), Billy Moore (1961) and Kay Eakin (1937) all made three interceptions in a game for Arkansas.

Matterral Richardson and John Johnson also had interceptions Saturday night, delighting Campbell, Arkansas' secondary coach.

Johnson, a 5-10 senior cornerback who just returned to practice this past week after recovering from a calf injury, made his first career interception in the third quarter, with Arkansas leading 37-7.



MARKED MAN?

Moments before Mustain threw his second interception of Saturday's game, a UA assistant coach waved vigorously for Hillis to enter the game. Mustain's slant pass in close quarters was tipped by Hillis to ULM cornerback Chaz Williams.



INJURIES LIGHT

Defensive tackle Marcus Harrison suffered a sprained ankle, but should be at practice early in the week. So should Olajubutu, Cedric Washington and Darius Vinnett, who sat out the game. Washington and Vinnett are recovering from concussions.

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