Alabama vs. Arkansas: Postgame Grades for Razorbacks' Loss vs the Tide
The Alabama Crimson Tide embarrassed the Arkansas Razorbacks winning by a final score of 52-0.
At the start of the year, Arkansas had high hopes for this match-up. The limping Razorbacks never had a chance as they fell behind early and the Crimson Tide never looked back.
Here is a final report card with player grades on the Razorbacks.
Overall Unit: C-
Leading up to kickoff it looked as though injured quarterback Tyler Wilson was going to get the start, but just before the start of the game head coach John L. Smith announced he would not play.
Instead the Razorbacks went with a two-quarterback system as both Brandon Allen and Brandon Mitchell would get snaps under center.
Allen was used as the passing quarterback as he had more attempts and chances to throw, but had little success against a tough Alabama defense. Allen was sacked three times and had two interceptions. The interceptions were off the hands of his receivers, but overall Allen struggled.
Mitchell only completed one pass with seven attempts and served as more of an option-running quarterback.
The two-quarterback approach had no chance going against Alabama.
Overall Unit: D
This was supposed to a big game for Knile Davis.
Tyler Wilson was hurting and the Razorbacks needed a leader to step up and hit the holes and establish some type of ball control.
Davis failed miserably.
Davis had 56 yards on 20 carries and could not manage to find daylight. He started to run harder late in the game but by then it was too late. Davis fumbled the ball twice and did not rise to the occasion.
Jonathan Williams was the second-leading rusher on the team, but most of those yards were accumulated in garbage time.
Overall Unit: D-
Brandon Mitchell made a catch early in the second quarter, and he used his physical abilities to fight for a first down and energize the crowd.
That is the sole highlight for the Razorbacks receiving corps.
Cobi Hamilton had a pass squirt through his hands that resulted in an interception and—other than that—was invisible for the entire game.
The wide receivers could not get space, had trouble blocking downfield and were not a factor in this game.
Overall Unit: D+
As noted in the wide receivers grading, the offense was pitiful.
The only saving grace for the Razorbacks was tight end Chris Gragg. Gragg played hard and he stood out from the rest on the offense.
He led the team in receptions, but the disturbing part was that he only had three catches.
Overall Unit: C
The offensive line of the Razorbacks started off playing well, but faded—along with the entire team—as the game continued.
On several occasions the line was slow out of the blocks, which hindered the running game. The Tide's defensive front beat the Hogs off the snap, disrupting the development of plays.
The pass protection was decent early in the game, but when the Tide built a lead and the Hogs had to pass, they could no longer protect the quarterback.
Overall Unit: D-
The Arkansas Razorbacks defense has been under fire the last few years.
The offense has always been the strong point of this team, but this year the defense was going to make it's mark.
Well, we have yet to see it.
The Hogs allowed 230 yards rushing to the Tide, and the defensive line was shoved around.
The line could not clog the lanes or apply any pressure on the quarterback. The defense had a good start to the game, but that didn't last long.
Overall Unit: F
The Arkansas Razorback linebackers have yet to execute the defensive scheme in any game they have played yet.
The unit's aggressive approach is undisciplined and susceptible to overcommitting. This was painfully obvious in the fourth quarter when the Alabama offense scored on a misdirection play that made the overpursuing linebackers look silly.
Overall Unit: C-
The secondary was not any better than the rest of the defense, but they deserve a higher grade than the rest of the defensive units.
After all they had to endure the majority of the hits since the Alabama running backs were always in the defensive backfield. The battered and bruised defensive backs showed some guts by getting in the mix even late in the game when the contest was out of reach.
Overall Unit F-
Is there a lower grade than "F-"?
If there is, the Razorbacks special teams unit should get it. They were miserable.
A high snap by longsnapper Will Coleman on a punt early in the game quickly followed by an illegal kick by Dylan Breeding were directly responsible for the first score of the game by Alabama.
The high snap on the field-goal attempt led to a missed kick, and the special teams gets a failing grade for this game.
Overall Unit: B
It's hard to blame John L. Smith for this loss or how the season has turned out. It's much easier to blame injuries and Bobby Petrino.
Smith had a decent game plan headed into this game, but without his best player, the game was out of reach early. Smith became a cheerleader in this game, with his main objective going from winning to keeping his players from completely self-destructing.
It's hard not to root for Smith, but its obvious he will not be with the Razorbacks next year.