That means this is a big test for redshirt sophomore Junior Rosegreen, who was one of the few bright spots on defense last season for Auburn in its loss at Fayetteville. Auburn racked up 492 yards in a 42-17 setback to the Razorbacks last year, but was way too mistake-prone to pull off the road victory.
That game is remembered as the breakout performance for quarterback Matt Jones, who directed the Razorbacks to a pair of fourth quarter drives that put the Tigers away. For the game, Arkansas managed just 149 yards on 43 carries. Jones carried the ball 10 times and averaged 9.9 yards per rush.
A freshman last year, Jones proved that his performance vs. Auburn was no fluke as he took over the starting spot for Coach Houston Nutt's team and has developed into the unquestioned leader of the Arkansas offense this season.
"He is a good quarterback," says Rosegreen. "He is as good as you make him. If you miss tackles and blow assignments, you are going to make him look good. If you do what you have got to do, you can contain him. Last year we were caught by surprise because we had never heard about him and he just had a breakout game against us--42-17 speaks for itself. We have got payback this week, too."
Arkansas brings a 2-2 record into Saturday's 11:30 a.m. contest at Jordan-Hare Stadium. The Razorbacks lost a very tough six-overtime game at Tennessee on Saturday night. Jones did his part for the visitors. He rushed for 107 yards on 21 carries and finished the night with 66 net rushing yards and one touchdown. In the air he completed 11-19 passes for 186 yards including a school-record long pass of 92 yards to Richard Smith with 3:30 left to play to tie the game at 17-17 and send it to overtime.
"He can throw the ball pretty well, but if you don't contain him he can get wild on you and make plays," Rosegreen says. For the season, Jones has completed 34-64 passes for 551 yards with six touchdowns and two interceptions. He has rushed for 249 yards on 45 carries at a very impressive 5.5 yards per run average.