Tre Williams (above) led the Tigers in tackles.
Auburn, Ala.--The Arkansas Razorbacks didn’t know what hit them Saturday night.
Offensively, the Auburn Tigers scored 56 points with an SEC all-time best, regular season rushing mark of 543 yards.
Defensively, Auburn limited the visitors to only 215 yards, including 25 yards rushing.
A bye week had a lot to do with what happened, according to junior linebacker Tre Williams, who led the Tigers in tackles with seven, including one for a two-yard loss.
“We had a bye week so we had a lot of time to get ready and we were well-prepared,” said the junior out of St. Paul's in Mobile.
Was it the best game by Auburn since he’s been here? “I think so personally. I mean only 25 yards rushing? I’ve never seen that, especially with me playing. We played a really good game, but there’s still things we need to work on.”
There is a reason for the defense’s confidence and much-improved performance under new defensive coordinator Kevin Steele.
“We’ve put those losses (to Clemson and Texas A&M) behind us and we just need to keep on pushing,” Williams stressed. “Those two losses haven’t defined our team. The consistency of the defense is us just being focused on our assignment. Once everyone was able to just focus on their individual assignment, then the whole defense was able to come together as one.”
There was also another motivation for the Tigers as Arkansas players were on the AU logo at midfield prior to the game.
“Normally we pray before every game and we pray around the AU,” Williams stated. “They were standing in the middle of our AU. That’s low-key disrespectful to stand on our logo. We just tried to let them know that they needed to get off our logo. That is our time to give God praise and they were really messing that up so we let them know.”
In other news and notes:
*Auburn had four quarterback sacks, three in the first quarter. Jeff Holland had his first sack of the season and second of his career on the final play of the first quarter. Andrew Williams had his fourth career sack in the first quarter.
*Carl Lawson and Montravius Adams combined on a sack in the first quarter. Lawson now has 11.5 career sacks and Adams has nine.
*Marlon Davidson recovered an Arkansas fumble in the first quarter, the first of his career.
*Devaroe Lawrence had the first full sack of his career in the fourth quarter. He previously had a half sack vs. Louisville in 2015.
*Redshirt freshman defensive back Javarius Davis had his second interception of the season.
*Junior placekicker Daniel Carlson is 126-for-126 in his career on PAT attempts, setting a new Auburn record for consecutive extra points made (Damon Duval, 125-125)
*With eight points against Arkansas, Carlson now has 297 total points for his career (291 points kicking plus one touchdown). He is third all-time scoring at Auburn and is now 15 points behind John Vaughn (312 points, 2003-06) for second all-time.
*Carlson had a string of 35 consecutive touchbacks on kickoffs snapped late in the third quarter when Arkansas returned a kick out of the end zone-36 of his 38 kickoffs this season have gone for touchbacks.
*Kevin Phillips’ 53-yard punt in the second quarter was the 13th of his career of 50-plus yards.
*Montravious Adams, Carl Lawson, Alex Kozan and Marcus Davis continued to serve as Auburn’s captains. Arkansas won the toss and elected to receive.
*Kamryn Pettway opened at running back for the Tigers with Kerryon Johnson coming off a high ankle sprain he sustained in the opening series of Auburn’s win over Mississippi State two weeks ago.
*Austin Golson remained at center after shifting from left tackle with Darius James starting at left tackle for the third straight game. Early-season starting center Xavier Dampeer is still not 100 percent after suffering a high ankle sprain.
*Stephen Roberts started at free safety ahead of Nick Ruffin who is still banged up, according to Coach Gus Malzhan.
*Nova handled the eagle flight and a pre-game flyover was conducted by the Alabama Air National Guard’s 187th Fighter Wing out of Montgomery, “Home of the 100th Fighter Squadron’s Alabama Red Tails and the Tuskegee Airmen.”