Liberty Bowl game notes

BY ANDRES FOCIL
Liberty Bowl game notes

Arkansas Game Notes || Game notes in PDF
Liberty Bowl – East Carolina, 1/2/10

Season Notes
-Arkansas ends the 2009 season with a record of 8-5 after a 20-17 overtime win against East Carolina. The Razorbacks had a three-game improvement over their 5-7 record in 2008. The Razorbacks also won five of their last six games.

-Arkansas is +15 in turnover margin this season after finishing the 2008 campaign -9, which ranked 102nd nationally. Arkansas is currently second in the SEC and seventh nationally in turnover margin. The turnaround is the second-largest nationally from last season in terms of rankings (Ohio currently sixth and was 110 in 2008). The Razorbacks have outscored opponents 128-17 following turnovers this season.

-Arkansas has thrown for 300-or-more yards in nine of 24 games under head coach Bobby Petrino. Prior to his arrival, Arkansas had thrown for 300-or-more yards 16 times in school history.

-In 2009, the Razorbacks set records for points and passing yards per game average; passing yards, passing first downs and passing touchdowns in a season; PAT kicks attempted and made in a career; kickoff return yards in a season and in a season; touchdown passes in a game and in a season; pass completions and attempts in a season; passing yards in a game and in a season; total offense in a game and in a season; touchdown responsibility in a season; consecutive passes attempted without an interception; completion percentage per game (13-19 and 20+) and 300- and 400-yard passing games in a season and career.

Individual Notes
– Alex Tejada won the game with a 37-yard field goal in the first period of overtime and had a 25-yard field goal to get Arkansas on the board early in the second half. He also connected on two PATs. On the year, he is now 16‐21 on field goal attempts and 58‐60 on extra‐point opportunities. Tejada now has 136 PATs which makes him Arkansas’ all‐time leader for PATs in a career. He broke his tie with former leader Bill McClard (125), a mark that had stood for 38 years.

-Ryan Mallett was 15‐36 for 202 yards and one touchdown pass on the day. He has 30 touchdown passes in 13 games this season. Mallett’s 202 yards passing give him 3,624 for the season, making him the first Razorback to throw for 3,000 yards in a season and improving on Arkansas’ single‐season record which he set against Troy on Nov. 14. In his last four games, Mallett has thrown 12 touchdown passes.

– Ryan Mallett’s 30 touchdown passes this season through 13 games are as many or more than the Razorbacks threw in every season dating back to the 1947 season. Arkansas and former quarterback Clint Stoerner (1998) had thrown for 26 passes in a season one other time. Mallett has passed for at least one touchdown in 12 of 13 games as a Razorback and in 14 of his 16 career starts.

-Jerry Franklin had a 31-yard interception to open the second half. It was his team-leading third interception of the season and the fifth interception of his career. His interception led to a 12-yard catch by D.J. Williams and a 25-yard field goal by Alex Tejada.

-Tramain Thomas returned his team-leading third interception of the season for a 37-yard touchdown. Alex Tejada connected on the PAT to tie the game at 10 points with nine minutes to play in the third quarter.

– Jarius Wright led the Razorback receivers in catches for the third time this season. He had four receptions for 90 yards and a touchdown grab. He is one of four Razorbacks to lead Arkansas in receiving this season (Jarius Wright 6‐139 vs. Missouri State, 5‐67 vs. Troy, 4-90 vs. East Carolina; Greg Childs 5‐140 vs. Georgia, 5‐85 vs. Auburn, 4‐135 vs. Florida, 3‐83 vs. Ole Miss, 5-124 vs. LSU; Joe Adams 6‐81 vs. Alabama, 3‐110 vs. Texas A&M, Eastern Michigan, 3‐109; D.J. Williams 7‐137 vs. South Carolina, 6‐57 vs. Auburn). The Razorback receivers have combined for nine 100‐yard receiving games this season and had just five last year.

– Joe Adams made his first and only catch of the game, for 15 yards, late in the first quarter. The catch continued his steak of hauling in at least one pass in every game he has played in (22 games).

-With three minutes left in the third quarter, Seth Armbrust blocked an East Carolina punt. Armbrust has both of Arkansas’ blocked punts this season. He returned a blocked punt for one yard and a TD against Eastern Michigan earlier in the season.

Game Notes
– Arkansas’ captains were Adrian Davis, DeMarcus Love, Malcolm Sheppard and Michael Smith.

-Tonight’s attendance, 62,742, is the No. 2 attendance in Liberty Bowl history.

-Arkansas made its ninth bowl appearance in the last 12 years in the 2010 AutoZone Liberty Bowl.

– In their 10th overtime appearance overall and the second of 2009, the Hogs are now 8-2 in overtime play. Tonight’s game marks the first overtime contest in Liberty Bowl history. Arkansas’ only other overtime game in 2009 was a 33-30 loss to LSU after one period of overtime.

-Arkansas made its 37th trip to a post-season bowl game in the 2010 AutoZone Liberty Bowl. The Razorbacks are 12-22-3 in their 37 bowl appearances. Arkansas’ last bowl victory came in 2003 when the Hogs topped Missouri 27-14 in the Independence Bowl.

-The Razorbacks played in a January bowl game for the 24th time in school history. The Hogs hold an all-time record of 8-14-2 in the month of January with their last win, 27-6, over Texas in the 2000 Cotton Bowl.

-The 2010 AutoZone Liberty Bowl marked the first bowl game the Razorbacks played under Coach Bobby Petrino. Coach Petrino has a 3-2 overall record in the post-season during his six-year coaching career. While at Louisville, Petrino won the 2004 Liberty Bowl 44-40 over No. 10 Boise State. The Cardinals also claimed a BCS bowl win by topping No. 12 Wake Forest, 24-13, in the 2007 Orange Bowl. Petrino now has a January bowl record of 2-1.



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