(12) Arkansas 43

(4-2, 1-2 SEC)

(7) Auburn 65

(7-0, 4-0 SEC)

Coverage: CBS

3:30 PM ET, October 16, 2010

Jordan-Hare Stadium, Auburn, AL

1 2 3 4 T
#12ARK 7 14 14 843
#7AUB 7 20 10 2865

Top Performers

Passing: T. Wilson (ARK) - 332 YDS, 4 TD, 2 INT

Rushing: C. Newton (AUB) - 25 CAR, 188 YDS, 3 TD

Receiving: G. Childs (ARK) - 9 REC, 164 YDS, 2 TD

Arkansas-Auburn Preview


After sneaking by with another nail-biting victory, Auburn is about to face one of its toughest challenges of the season. With Cam Newton under center, it should be feeling good about its chances.

The No. 7 Tigers host 12th-ranked Arkansas and Heisman hopeful Ryan Mallett on Saturday afternoon in an SEC showdown.

Newton leads the conference in rushing with 112.0 yards per game and is fourth in the FBS with a 180.7 quarterback rating.

The junior college transfer rushed for a career-high 198 yards and four touchdowns, and Wes Byrum made a 24-yard field goal as time expired to lift Auburn to a 37-34 victory over Kentucky last Saturday after the Tigers (6-0, 3-0) led 31-17 at halftime.

"I feel like we're still in search for a really good, all-around four-quarter game. I don't think that we've had that yet," coach Gene Chizik said. "We've just got to continue to work every week and try to get better at some of the little things.

"As I've said every week, I don't feel like we're where we need to be. I'm very proud of our team that we've continued to fight and battle. They don't look at the scoreboard. They just keep playing."

The win was Auburn's third by three points this season, but despite its inability to put teams away, Newton feels the Tigers will benefit from sweating out the tough victories.

"You cant schedule close games," he said. "It works wonders in how it builds team chemistry."

That chemistry will be tested against the Razorbacks (4-1, 1-1). The Tigers have lost three of the previous four meetings, falling 44-23 at Arkansas on Oct. 10, 2009.

Newton is aware of the Tigers' struggles against Arkansas and is looking forward to Saturday.

"It's just another week in the SEC and this is what you signed up for, week after week, even though the stakes get higher, you know your opponent is going to be gunning for you," he said. "We're facing a great team in Arkansas, and you know they're gonna be gunning for us because the previous years they've had our number, but we have to change that."

While Auburn has been on a roll, the Razorbacks have struggled to put points on the board in recent weeks.

Mallett ranks second in the nation with 358.0 passing yards per game, but that hasn't translated into many points due to untimely penalties and costly turnovers.

"We're used to moving the ball more and scoring more points," coach Bobby Petrino said. "Yardage-wise and a lot of things we're doing are good, but we have not scored points like we need to. Actually, all year long I've not been happy with how many points we've scored."

Arkansas was able to come away with a 24-17 victory against Texas A&M last Saturday despite scoring three second-half points for the second consecutive week.

Mallett completed 27 of 38 passes for 310 yards and three first-half touchdowns, but he was also picked off for the sixth time after throwing seven interceptions all of last year.

"A couple of them are just bad throws," Mallett said. "You know, you can't do nothing about that, it's going to happen. Last year, I was fortunate enough to not throw very many. Obviously, that's not my goal, to throw interceptions."

Regardless of the turnovers, Auburn defensive coordinator Ted Roof knows how dangerous the junior quarterback can be.

"He makes plays against everybody," Roof told the Tigers' official website. "He's mobile enough to avoid the first rusher and he's got a big-league arm and some big-league receivers. He can make big plays at any point in the game and anywhere on the field."

After losing 24-20 to then-No. 1 Alabama on Sept. 25, the Razorbacks are excited about facing their second ranked opponent.

"We're looking forward to the Auburn game," Petrino said. "Obviously, it's a big game for us. It's another game we want to be in, and we've got to go down there and come away with a victory.

"They're very good. They do a great job of running the ball and throwing it deep offensively, and they're very sound and physical on defense. So, we're just looking forward to the preparation and going down there and having a great game."


Passing Leaders

B. Allen56.02285205
A. Allen50.015301
N. Marshall60.82532207
J. Johnson75.743630

Rushing Leaders

J. Williams21111905.612
A. Collins20411005.412
C. Artis-Payne30316085.313
N. Marshall1537985.211

Receiving Leaders

K. Hatcher4355813.06
H. Henry3751313.92
S. Coates3474121.84
D. Williams4573016.25

Research Notes

NEXT LEVEL: If Cam Newton drops back to pass, but can't find an open receiver, he will scramble for yards.
NEXT LEVEL: Ryan Mallett's deep ball has been on the money in the first half this season, but after halftime Mallett has struggled to connect with receivers deep down the field.
NEXT LEVEL: Ryan Mallett's deep ball is among the best in the college game, and thus far in 2010, Mallett has completed over half of his passes thrown at least 20 yards down the field.
NEXT LEVEL: Cam Newton is absolutely tearing apart opponent blitzes this season. All five of the Auburn quarterback's interceptions have come when the defense has dropped back at least seven defenders into coverage.

ESPN Stats & Information