On its first road trip this season, the visitors stepped off the bus in Tuscaloosa and got punched squarely in the mouth early and often.
But Alabama only staggered the University of Arkansas with that haymaker, they didn't knock the Razorbacks out.
That came with just 8 seconds left in the game.
John Parker Wilson hit Marcus Cadell at that time to help rally the Crimson Tide to a 41-38 win over the Razorbacks before 92,000-plus at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Alabama (3-0, 2-0) led by 21 late in the third quarter only to see Arkansas (1-1, 0-1) score on four straight possessions to take a 38-31 lead.
But a field goal by Leigh Tiffin – who struggled so much in his team's overtime loss at Arkansas last year – got a field goal and then Bama scored on its last drive for the win.
Arkansas star Darren McFadden rushedx 33 times for 199 yards, but was out on the final two drives with a hamstring injury.
Felix Jones had 16 carries for 100 yards and Casey Dick struggled early, but rebounded to go 11-for 23 – hitting 7 out of his last 11 – for 140 yards with two touchdowns and one pick.
Wilson was 24-of-45 for 328 yards with four touchdowns, two interceptions and fumble.
Alabama wideout D.J. Hall hauled in 6 passes for 174 yards and two touchdowns and redshirt freshman tailback Terry Grant had 22 carries for 101 yards.
After falling down 31-10 with 6:23 left in the third quarter, Arkansas rallied to score four touchdowns on its next four touchdowns.
Dick hit tight end Andrew Davie on a 2-yard scoring pass to cut it to 31-17 before the third quarter ended.
An Alabama fumble inside its own territory had McFadden busting into the end zone from a yard out on the first play of the fourth quarter and suddenly it was 31-24.
It got tied 31-31 when Arkansas picked off a pass when Jerell Norton picked off a pass on the next Alabama play and then McFadden was in from 5.
The Razorbacks then took the lead 38-31 on Dick's 7-yard pass to Peyton Hillis – a play that was set up by a big 36-yard run by Jones.
Wilson tossed a pair of touchdown passes to senior wideout D.J. Hall early and had the Razorbacks playing catch-up the rest of the game.
Alabama got the scoring started after Dick's pass was picked off by Derrick Mustin and set Bama up at the Arkansas 9.
Two plays after the pick, Wilson hit Hall on a 9-yard touchdown pass with 10:15 left in the opening quarter.
Because Tiffin was in the locker room getting treatment for an injury, back-up kicker Alex Friedman booted the PAT for a 7-0 lead.
It became 14-0 at the 4:45 mark on Glen Coffey's 14-yard scoring dash and Tiffin's PAT, which was set up by a 39-yard run by redshirt freshman Terry Grant.
The Crimson Tide made it 3 scores in 3 possessions when Wilson connected with Hall on a 31-yard toss that set up a 35-yard scoring toss between the pair.
Tiffin's PAT had the Razorbacks down 21-0 with 1:56 still remaining in the second quarter.
Arkansas finally got on the board midway through the second quarter when the passing game finally got some footing.
Dick drove the Razorbacks 84 yards in six plays – hitting Hillis over the middle for a 22-yard gain and then hooking up with freshman wideout Crosby Tuck for a 41-yard scoring strike.
Alex Tejada's extra point was true to cut it to 21-7 with 6:40 in the second quarter.
Matteral Richardson picked off a Wilson pass, setting Arkansas up with a chance to cut it closer.
The Razorbacks could not get it into the end zone and settled for Tejada's 22-yard field goal that cut it to 21-10 with 44 seconds left before halftime.
Arkansas missed a chance to get it even closer on its first possession of the second half.
Dick completed a pass over the middle to a wide open London Crawford, who dropped the football after a catch at midfield.
Alabama turned that fumble into a 24-10 lead on Tiffin's 24-yard field goal with 12:03 left in the third quarter.
Tiffin then missed a 37-yarder a short time later, but a bad snap punt eventually resulted in Javier Arenas' 58-yard punt return to the Razorback 3.
Wilson's third touchdown pass of the night - a 3-yard toss to Nick Walker on the next snap - combined with Tiffin's PAT surged Alabama ahead 31-10 with just over 6 minutes left before Arkansas got it going.
The Razorbacks will return to action next Saturday in a 5 p.m. home game against Kentucky, who beat No. 9 Louisville 40-34 on Saturday night.
Bama 41, Arkansas 38
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