Yeah, you liked that.
Auburn beat Arkansas 51-10 yesterday for the sixth win in seven tries for Gus Malzahn as head coach, and despite a bit of a lull, the Tigers easily dispatched the Hogs.
Gus’ wins over the Razorbacks have come by margins of 18, 24, 53, 32, 31, and 41. That’s more than 28 points per game. He’s got a 6-1 record against Arkansas, which is the best for him against any SEC West foe. Gus is 5-2 against Texas A&M, 5-1 against Ole Miss, 4-3 against Mississippi State, and 2-4 against both LSU and Alabama. He’s never had trouble with Arkansas, though, even when Bret Bielema decided to chatter at him from the get-go. It’s a far cry from what happened with our previous two coaches. Chizik was 1-3, and Tuberville was 5-5 against Arkansas. Gus has dominated an opponent that he should.
Something else that Gus has done is get Auburn bowl eligible every year. We’re there just seven games in this season, and that’s something that he also did in 2013 and 2014. Other than that, it happened in 2010, 2006, 2004, and 2001. So far, Gus hasn’t failed to reach the postseason. Chizik’s first fail was his last — 2012 — and Tuberville failed to reach a bowl in only his first and last seasons on the Plains. Miss a bowl and it’s likely you’re going to get fired. Terry Bowden and Pat Dye each missed bowl games in their final years as well.
As for yesterday in a vacuum, Auburn’s 14 early points were more than enough for the entire game, and they came thanks to both sides of the ball. Marlon Davidson’s making himself some fantastic money by becoming pretty much the incumbent SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week each game, and Derrick Brown continues to pop out on film nearly every play. Davidson’s forced fumble and recovery led to a touchdown just three plays later (on a drive that consisted on two different ways of getting the ball to Anthony Schwartz!!).
Auburn’s running back rotation was slick and had Arkansas fooled for the most part since we saw runners with wildly different skillsets. Kam Martin’s 52-yard burst on the second drive led to the quick and slippery touchdown run from Shaun Shivers, and later in the game we saw D.J. Williams run with more of a Boobee Whitlow style before the slashing run of Harold Joiner came in later and put the hammer down.
Auburn HC Gus Malzahn on the RB rotation: "I was really happy with the young guys." He mentions D.J. Williams and Harold Joiner as particularly impressive in their "quality reps against an SEC opponent."— Justin Ferguson (@JFergusonAU) October 20, 2019
It was troubling to see Auburn struggle to run between the tackles early, but they were able to break down the Arkansas defensive line and get some yardage later on in the game. Overall, the Tigers rumbled for 298 yards on 51 carries. It’s nice to do it against the worst team in the West, but we’re all going to have to wait to see how it translates to the second-ranked team in the country next weekend.
Simply put, Arkansas was outmatched yesterday. From the 14-0 hole they were in less than five minutes into the game, to the laughable fake punt that Chad Morris called —
Arkansas punter just went full Bobby Boucher on that fake punt vs Auburn pic.twitter.com/ltP5p9u73i— El Dutch (@eldutchsnyds) October 19, 2019
Auburn's Chandler Wooten on his interception on Arkansas' very odd fake punt:— Auburn Gold Mine (@AUGoldMine) October 20, 2019
"He basically just threw me the ball."
It's so bad it's good. Let's watch it again:https://t.co/xwZBuFrLWf
— which unfortunately came right after the Hogs honored Darren McFadden on the field, Auburn took care of business. There’s really not much else to say about a win like that, except that the Tigers finished stronger than they started, and looked to get into a rhythm heading into the second straight road game.
Up next is LSU, who had a little bit of a struggle against Mississippi State yesterday, but came out clean with a 36-13 victory to improve to 7-0. The Bayou Bengals have one of the top offenses in the country, and Joe Burrow’s passing has been revolutionized by the Joe Brady offense. Somehow, they’re utilizing all of that talent they’ve stockpiled for years. Shocking.
Auburn opened up as a 12.5-point underdog in Baton Rouge, which is a point less than Florida was in Death Valley. Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about playing there at night, but we will get to see the most hostile atmosphere we’ve seen all season. It’ll be louder than the Swamp, and it’ll be more daunting to stay calm for Bo Nix. Hopefully we did a little soul searching in the off week, and spent more time preparing for LSU than we did for Arkansas.
If Auburn can somehow get past the Tigers on Saturday... look out. Until then, it’s just going to be a week leading up to what will certainly be a game that ends up with a nickname once it’s all said and done. War Eagle.