Arkansas Improves to 7-4 With Win Over SEC Rival Mississippi State

Ashton GilstrapContributor INovember 23, 2009

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 03:  Quarterback Ryan Mallett #15 of the Texas A&M Aggies at Cowboys Stadium on October 3, 2009 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

It ain't pretty, but we'll certainly take it.

The Razorbacks routed the Mississippi State Bulldogs 42-21 at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock on Saturday. The Razorbacks are now riding high on a four-game winning streak—the first in Bobby Petrino's two-year tenure here at Arkansas. 

Having said this, unfortunately the game wasn't very pretty. Mallett, who had gone the entire season with only four interceptions, threw two in the first half. One of these interceptions happened on the very first drive of the game, and it led to MSU scoring the first touchdown.

The Hogs immediately answered, but for the few minutes in between, everyone held their breath. Were we going to throw a game against a team that we should beat? Are our bowl berths going to be limited because of a loss?

Looking at Mississippi State's stats, one would think that they would have been able to put up a few more points. Their rushing offense ran for 376 yards, with 151 of those coming in the third quarter alone. Anthony Dixon ran for 176 yards and two touchdowns by himself. 

All that rushing, though, couldn't keep Mallett and his well-oiled offensive machine off the field long enough to upset the Razorbacks. Yes, Mallet threw two picks, but for the third time this year threw for five—yes—five touchdowns.

His completion rating wasn't what it has been in the past few games, but he still got the job done and had 313 yards in the air to show for it.

He was helped out by a breakout performance from freshman receiver Cobi Hamilton, who scampered for two long distance touchdowns of 58 and 64 yards. Mallett's throws were perfect, and once Hamilton had the ball, he would not be denied entry to the endzone.

What really tanked MSU's already slim chances of taking down Petrino's explosive Razorbacks, however, was their absolute inability to set up the pass game. Eight completions with only five attempts in the second half. Only 58 yards of passing against a high scoring offense just isn't going to cut it.

The Razorbacks will carry their four game winning streak into Baton Rouge this weekend to take on the Bayou Bengals. Expect fireworks, especially considering the Ole Miss Rebels' defeat of the Tigers this previous weekend. 

Woo Pig.

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