Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Halftime: Ohio State 28, Arkansas 10
By Brian Bennett
NEW ORLEANS -- Halftime analysis from the Allstate Sugar Bowl, where No. 6 Ohio State leads No. 8 Arkansas 28-10:
Turning point: Down 14-7, Arkansas went for it on fourth-and-1 from the Ohio State 30 early in the second quarter. Ryan Mallett's pass was batted down at the line of scrimmage, and the Buckeyes dominated the rest of the quarter on both sides of the ball.
Stat of the half: Ohio State has 338 total yards and was 6-for-8 on third downs.
Best player in the half: Terrelle Pryor. He has completed 13 of- 9 passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns while also running for 51 yards. He's putting his throws on the money (admittedly, to wide open receivers) and his ability to move and extend plays has the Arkansas defense grasping at straws.
Best call: Specifically, Ohio State had the best play call in the second quarter, when Pryor faked a handoff out of the shotgun and passed to little used tight end Reid Fragel for a 42-yard gain that Arkansas never saw coming. More generally, the Buckeyes' decision to play up-tempo and keep the Hogs on their heels has paid major dividends.
What Arkansas needs to do: Recruit some defensive linemen and cornerbacks who are eligible for the second half? Seriously, the Razorbacks have been dominated and have little answer for Ohio State's offense. Because they're making far too many mistakes when they have the ball, they've fallen into a huge hole. They'll need to make major adjustments on defense for the second half and play much crisper on offense in hurry-up mode. And maybe onside kick a few times.