Arkansas goes for four in a row

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Arkansas goes for four in a row

The no. 15 ranked Arkansas Razorbacks are going for their fourth win in a row against the unranked University of Texas-El Paso (UTEP) this Saturday 13 November.  A win could further enhance Arkansas' bowl bid, and perhaps leap-frog conference rival Alabama
in the South Eastern Conference (SEC) standings.

UTEP’s season so far

The Miners started the season with a win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff, but fell the following week to Houston with an awful defensive showing, 54-24.  They went on a four-game winning streak after their loss to Houston against opponents New Mexico State,
Memphis, New Mexico and Rice. 

The Miners have only been able to win one of their last four games however, which came last weekend against Southern Methodist.

The defence has come up strong since the embarrassment against Houston, receiving a national ranking of 40th in the points against category.

Arkansas previous games

The Razorbacks have had one of the toughest schedules this season, facing all of the top teams of the SEC. They started the season 3-0 with victories over Tennessee Tech, Louisiana-Monroe and Georgia, but had their winning streak snapped by last year’s
national champion Alabama.

After rebounding against Texas A&M, they succumbed to the talented Auburn Tigers team, with Heisman candidate Cam Newton leading the Tiger offence.
Since the loss, Arkansas has been on a three-game winning streak with wins over Mississippi, Vanderbilt and former no. 19 South Carolina. 

Keys to victory

UTEP is entering into the showdown being bowl eligible for the first time since 2006.  In order to further supplant the Miners’ goal aspirations, they will be counting on senior quarterback Trevor Vittatoe and his 2260 yards passing.  However, his
season completion percentage is just above 55% and that will have to be improved upon if they wish to leave Fayetteville, Arkansas with a victory. 
A healthy dosage of pass and running plays will keep the Razorbacks' defence honest, but when the game comes down to the wire, it will be best that the Miners keep the ball on the ground with running back Joseph Banyard, who leads UTEP with 418 yards on
79 touches. 

The Razorbacks have one of the best aerial assaults in the league, thanks in part to quarterback Ryan Mallet’s 2752 yards on 193 completions.  However, the rushing game, which ranks 89th overall, will need to get some more play in this game.  Arkansas
is in danger of becoming a one dimensional offence, which is the easiest thing to read as a defensive coordinator. 
Sophomore running back sensation Knile Davis is trying to change that rushing ranking with his emergence as a powerful runner.  He is averaging 6.2 yards per carry, and has scored nine touchdowns with 662 yards this season. 

"We put it all together tonight (6 November) and we have to keep doing that," said Mallett according to  "If we were doing that all season then we wouldn't be in the position we're in.  But we're progressing every game still."


Arkansas 28 – UTEP 17


Arkansas needs wins to bring their bowl hopes to fruition.  They are bowl eligible and will remain to be, unless they receive a loss against UTEP and South Carolina next weekend.  Even then, they sit in an excellent position as they will have played five
ranked teams this season.  The ideal situation would be for the team to win as many games as they can to end the season, and potentially have a chance at the Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl or even the Rose Bowl.



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