Lexington, Ky. - The Arkansas Razorbacks tied an NCAA record they already shared by playing seven overtimes Saturday night in Lexington. Although the setting was different than the first seven overtime game, the result was not as the Hogs posted a 71-63 victory over the Kentucky Wildcats. Neither team was able to move the ball on its first possession. But, the Wildcats began at midfield after a shanked punt by the Razorbacks.
The win improved Arkansas to 5-3 overall and 2-3 in the Southeastern Conference. Kentucky fell to 4-5 overall and 1-4 in the SEC.
The game tied the record for the longest game in NCAA history which the Razorbacks were a part of in 2001. That season, Arkansas and Ole Miss battled to seven overtimes with the Hogs claiming a 58-56 victory in Oxford.
Saturday's win against Kentucky saw the Razorbacks improve to 5-1 in overtime games including a 2-0 mark this season.
Arkansas netted 605 yards of total offense with 334 yards rushing and 271 yards passing. The Razorbacks converted 13-of-22 third downs in the game and one fourth down.
Kentucky totaled 506 yards total offense with 326 yards through the air and 180 yards on the ground. The 'Cats converted 10-of-22 third downs in the game.
A false start penalty and tackle for loss pushed the Wildcats back to their 41-yard line. A third-down pass by Jared Lorenzen was incomplete and Kentucky was forced to punt.
Marvin Jackson returned the punt 44 yards to the Kentucky 49 with 8:54 left in the first quarter.
DeCori Birmingham burst up the middle for a 42-yard gain to the Kentucky seven-yard line. After a tackle for loss and an incomplete pass, the Hogs face third down at the 10.
Birmingham scored on a draw up the middle to give the Razorbacks a 7-0 lead. It was Birmingham's second career rushing touchdown and first since 2001.
A third-down conversion and a holding penalty against the Hogs put the Wildcats at their 49-yard line following an Arkansas punt.
With the help of a chop-block penalty against Kentucky, the Razorbacks forced the Wildcats to punt. Jackson returned the punt to their 21-yard line.
A fumbled snap and pass interference call against Arkansas pushed the Hogs back to their 11-yard line. Birmingham brought the ball to the 30 on a 19-yard draw play to bring up third and one.
Ryan Sorahan was sacked on the play for a loss of six yards and the Hogs were forced to punt.
Andrew Hopewell came clean through the line of scrimmage to block the Arkansas punt and returned it for a game-tying touchdown. It was the first blocked kick for a score against the Hogs since Louisiana-Lafayette's Wendell Williams blocked a punt and returned it for a score in 2002.
The Razorbacks began at their 35-yard line to start the second quarter and marched into Kentucky territory after converting on three third down plays. The Hogs faced their fourth third down of the drive at the UK 35-yard line.
On third and five, Matt Jones ran an option keeper for an eight-yard gain and a first down. On the next play Jones hit Richard Smith for a 26-yard touchdown pass to give the Razorbacks a 14-7 lead with 8:54 left in the first half.
The Razorbacks struck again when Tom Crowder blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone to give Arkansas a 21-7 lead with 6:45 left in the half.
On Kentucky's ensuing possession the Wildcats converted a third-and-long to move into Arkansas territory.
Lorenzen ran an option keeper 25 yards to the Arkansas six-yard line. On the next play, however, Ahmad Carroll made a leaping interception to end the drive. Carroll came down at the two-yard line.
An incomplete pass and a rush by Birmingham brought up third-and-three at the nine. Birmingham gave the Hogs a new set of downs with a six-yard run.
The Razorbacks reached the UK 43, but with only 32 seconds left in the half. On third down Jones ran right for a 12-yard gain to put the ball at the UK 32 with 16 seconds left in the half.
A completion to Wilson moved the Hogs to the 23 with 10 seconds remaining. Chris Balseiro's 40-yard attempt sailed left to leave the score at 21-7 to end the half.
After a series of punts by both teams to open the second half, the Wildcats narrowed the gap on the scoreboard. On third-and-six, Lorenzen hit Alexis Bwenge for a 51-yard touchdown strike to make it a 21-14 game with 3:44 left in the third quarter.
Following the Kentucky score, the Razorbacks began a march into Wildcat territory. A Jones completion to Smith and a pair of Cedric Cobbs' runs put the ball on the UK 32-yard line.
The Wildcats, however, forced Cobbs to fumble and recovered the loose ball at their 22-yard line with 57 seconds left in the third quarter.
The Razorbacks' defense held the Wildcats and forced Kentucky to punt from its 39-yard line. Jackson again delivered with a big return as he brought the punt back 41 yards to the UK 44-yard line with 14:33 left in the game.
The Hogs gave the ball back to Kentucky when an option pitch from Jones to Steven Harris was fumbled. Kentucky recovered the ball at its 33 with 12:46 remaining in the game.
Kentucky moved to the Arkansas 43 where it faced fourth-and-one. Lorenzen piled over center to move the chains and keep the drive alive for the Wildcats.
A completion by Lorenzen moved the ball to the Arkansas 21-yard line with less than 10 minutes remaining in the game.
A first-down run by Bwenge put the ball on the Razorbacks' seven where the 'Cats had a first-and-goal.
On second down, a fumble out of bounds by Lorenzen pushed the Wildcats back to the 17-yard line and brought up third-and-goal.
Lorenzen's pass sailed out of bounds and forced the Wildcats to attempt a field goal. Taylor Begley's 34-yard attempt was good and made it a 21-17 game with 7:11 remaining.
Arkansas took over at its 12-yard line. A pair of runs netted eight yards and brought up a third-and-two at the 20.
On third down, Jones hit George Wilson for a 56-yard gain to put the ball at the UK 24-yard line with 5:10 remaining.
The Wildcats held, however, and the Hogs were forced to attempt a field goal.
Balseiro's 37-yard attempt was good and pushed the lead back to seven points at 24-17 with 3:22 left in the game.
With 2:40 left in the game the Wildcats faced fourth-and-five at their 26-yard line. An offside penalty against Arkansas made it fourth-and-inches at the 31 for Kentucky.
On fourth down, Bwenge carried to the UK 40-yard line to give the 'Cats a fresh set of downs.
A completion to Derek Abney put the ball just across midfield at the Arkansas 48 with two minutes left.
Another completion, this time to Chris Bernard, moved the Wildcats to the Arkansas 13-yard line with 1:54 remaining.
On third down Lorenzen hit Bernard for a 13-yard touchdown pass to even the game at 24-24 with 1:38 remaining.
The Razorbacks moved to midfield with less than a minute remaining, but were unable to get any closer. After a punt, Kentucky took a knee to send the game into overtime.
In overtime, Jared Hicks moved the Hogs to the one with an 11-yard catch from Jones. From there, Mark Pierce carried into the end zone to give Arkansas a 31-24 lead.
A holding call against Arkansas moved Kentucky to the 15-yard line on their ensuing overtime possession.
Bwenge then carried to the eight-yard line. A pass interference call against the Hogs moved UK to the two-yard line with a fresh set of downs.
Bwenge carried it into the end zone from there to even the score and send the game into a second overtime.
In the second OT, Bwenge again found the end zone to give the 'Cats a 38-31 lead.
On the Hogs' possession, Jones ran for four yards on the first play following the UK score. Birmingham then carried for another three yards to bring up third-and-three at the 18.
Jones ran around left end for the first down and put the Hogs at the nine-yard line.
Birmingham then carried to the two-yard line after a seven-yard gain. On second down, Birmingham was brought down for no gain to bring up third-and-goal.
A false start penalty against the Hogs pushed the Razorbacks back to the seven. Being chased backwards, Jones hit Jason Peters in the end zone for the touchdown to send the game to a third overtime.
In the third OT, a Jones completion to Smith and run by Birmingham moved the Hogs to the eight-yard line.
Birmingham was stuffed for a one-yard loss to bring up third down. Jones' pass was incomplete and forced the Razorbacks to attempt a field goal.
Balseiro's 25-yard attempt was good and gave the Hogs a 41-38 lead.
On UK's possession, a pair of runs netted nine yards and brought up a third-and-one from the 16. Bwenge carried for 11 yards to the five where UK had a first-and-goal.
Another run by Bwenge moved the ball to the two-yard line. The Razorbacks stuffed Bwenge on the second-down carry for a loss of one to bring up third-and-goal from the three.
Rock Johnson carried to the one to bring up fourth down. A penalty against UK pushed the ball to the six-yard line.
From there, Begley's kick was good to send the game into a fourth overtime period.
In the fourth overtime, a pair of completions by Lorenzen put UK on the one-yard line. Lorenzen carried to just inside the one on first down. On second down, Lorenzen carried into the end zone to give the 'Cats a 47-41 lead. The two-point attempt was good to give Kentucky a 49-41 lead.
On Arkansas' possession, Jones ran in from three yards and then hit Pierce for the two-point conversion to even the game at 49-49.
In the fifth overtime, Jones hit Wilson for a 15-yard touchdown. The two-point attempt was no good and made it a 55-49 game.
On Kentucky's possession, the Wildcats moved to the two-yard line. On second down Lorenzen carried into the end zone to even the game at 55-55 before UK's two-point attempt. The attempt was no good and sent the game into a sixth overtime.
In the sixth overtime, the Wildcats moved to the 11-yard line where they faced first-and-10.
A pair of runs by Bwenge put the ball on the one-yard line with a fresh set of downs. From the one, Lorenzen recorded his third touchdown of the game. The two-point try was good to give Kentucky a 63-55 lead before Arkansas' possession.
Jones completed to Wilson and then carried around left end to put the ball on the two.
Pierce carried in from the two to bring up the two-point attempt. Jones hit Wilson for the two-point conversion to even the score at 63-63 and send it into a seventh overtime.
Arkansas had the ball first in the seventh overtime and found the end zone on Birmingham's 25-yard run. Jones found Peters for the two-point conversion to make it a 71-63 game.
The Wildcats moved to the nine on their possession and faced third-and-seven. Lorenzen carried to the five-yard line where the 'Cats faced fourth down.
On fourth down, Lorenzen fumbled trying to reach the first down yardage and the loose ball was recovered by Arkansas to end the game.
Arkansas plays South Carolina this Thursday at 6:45 p.m. in Little Rock.