FORT WORTH, Texas – Late-game heroics from Austin Allen was exactly what Arkansas needed Saturday night as the Razorbacks upset No. 12 TCU, 41-38, in double-overtime at Amon G. Carter Stadium.
Allen’s 5-yard sneak in the second overtime was what secured the win for Arkansas as TCU only managed a field goal earlier in the frame. It was just one of many big plays Allen came up with throughout the fourth quarter and overtime periods.
The win for the Razorbacks is their third-straight over a ranked opponent on the road going back to last season and snapped a 14-game home winning streak TCU had coming in.
The Horned Frogs, who had come back from a 20-7 deficit in the fourth quarter to score 21-straight points and take a 28-20 lead, were unable to stop the Hogs’ air attack in the final minutes.
With 1:49 remaining and Arkansas on the TCU 49-yard line, Allen was a perfect 4-for-4 passing, including the 16-yard score to wide receiver Keon Hatcher. Even with the score Arkansas needed two points to tie the game.
On the two-point conversion, Arkansas completed the perfect reverse with Hatcher throwing the pass to Allen in the end zone with just over a minute to play.
TCU did get deep into Arkansas territory on their next drive with the help of a 56-yard kickoff return by KaVontae Turpin. Reaching the Arkansas 11-yard line, the Horned Frogs went for the game-winning field goal with 10 seconds left, but Arkansas’ big lineman Dan Skipper was able to push through the line just enough and get his hand up to make the block. Arkansas recovered the ball and took the knee to send the game into overtime.
The Razorbacks and Horned Frogs traded scored in the first overtime period, but the defense stepped up big in the second extra frame, holding TCU to only a field goal. On the ensuing possession, Arkansas got inside the TCU 5-yard line and Allen snuck it in for the winning score.
Allen finished the game 17-of-29 passing for a career-high 223 yards and three touchdowns. His receivers Drew Morgan, Jeremy Sprinkle and Keon Hatcher each had a touchdown catch of their own. Morgan led all players with 93 receiving yards.
Rawleigh Williams led all running backs with a career-high 146 yards on 28 carries. His previous high was 100 yards against Tennessee (Oct. 3) last season.
How it went down
Arkansas’ defense was the story of the first half, holding the Horned Frogs scoreless with no red zone chances. Even though TCU totaled 222 yards of total offense through the first 30 minutes of play, the Razorbacks came up with two turnovers, including one interception that was returned for a touchdown.
Senior linebacker Brooks Ellis came up with his fourth interception of his career when he read TCU quarterback Kenny Hill perfectly at the TCU 47-yard line and had an open field all the way into the end zone to give Arkansas a 13-0 lead.
Before the Ellis pick six, sophomore kicker Cole Hedlund capped two 50+ yard drives by the Arkansas offense with field goals of 38 and 27 yards, respectively. The 38-yarder, which gave the Hogs the early 3-0 lead in the first, was Hedlund’s second longest field goal of his career.
TCU finally got on the board after its first drive of the second half. The Horned Frogs were able to go 84 yards on nine plays, finishing with a 9-yard rush by Kyle Hicks to cut the Razorback lead to 13-7.
Arkansas responded later in the quarter with a six-play 63 yard scoring drive that ended with Allen hooking up with wide receiver Drew Morgan for a 13-yard touchdown pass, making it a 20-7 advantage.
The Razorbacks fought back from two penalties on the drive, including a 25-yard pass to Keon Hatcher that was called back after an offensive pass interference flag. On the ensuing 2nd and 23 play from the TCU 48, Allen connected with tight end Jeremy Sprinkle for the first down and then hooked up with Morgan three plays later.
Arkansas looked to possibly add to its lead as the game entered the fourth quarter. The Hogs were inside the TCU 5-yard line on its next offensive drive, but were unable to punch it in for the score and were forced to go for the field goal. Hedlund, who already had two field goals earlier in the game, missed his third attempt off the upright.
TCU went on to score 21-straight points after the missed field goal to take a 28-20 lead, but the Hogs roared right back to tie the game in the final minutes.
The Razorbacks return home for its third game of the year as they will face Texas State at 6:30 p.m. on the SEC Network Alternate channel.
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