FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas tailback Michael Smith, defensive tackle Keith Jackson and placekicker Jeremy Davis were recognized by the Razorback coaching staff on Monday as the Hogwired.com Players of the Week.
Smith garnered offensive honors, Jackson captured defensive accolades and Davis secured special teams’ plaudits for their play in the Hogs’ 63-7 win over Southeast Missouri State last weekend. The honor was the first Hogwired.com player of the week award of the season for both Smith and Jackson and the second-consecutive selection for Davis.
Toiling behind Razorback standout tailbacks Darren McFadden and Felix Jones, Smith has had limited opportunities to show his ability in 2006. He took full advantage of his extended playing time against the Redhawks racking up a career-high 116 yards and two touchdowns on only eight carries in the Homecoming win. He scored on a 10-yard run on his first attempt of the day and on an 11-yard carry in his third rushing attempt of the afternoon. Smith averaged 14.5 yards per carry and netted double-digit gains on all, but one of his eight carries including a career-long 27-yard gain. In addition, he scampered 48 yards on his first career kickoff return to set up an Arkansas touchdown.
Jackson earned Crip Hall Award honors as the most outstanding senior in the Homecoming game for his efforts in the victory. The Little Rock, Ark., native played only 27 snaps, but still managed to earn four tackles, two quarterback hurries, one sack (-10) and an interception. He tallied Arkansas’ first interception of the year when he hauled in a SEMO errant pass and raced 69 yards for a touchdown. Jackson’s 69-yard interception return marked the longest since linebacker Jermaine Petty returned a pick 88 yards against Auburn in 2001. Jackson helped the Hogs’ to a dominating defensive effort in which the Razorbacks’ yielded only 144 yards of total offense including 31 rushing yards.
Davis kicked his way to the special teams’ award for the second-consecutive week after claiming the honor against Auburn. The Fort Smith, Ark., native scored nine points and was a perfect nine-for-nine on extra points in the non-conference win. Davis tied the school record for PAT in a game tying Chris Balseiro (vs. New Mexico State, 2004), Kendall Trainor (Pacific, 1988) and Elvin Geiser (Hendrix, 1933). Davis has now converted on three-of-three field goals and 16-of-17 PAT this season.
Following each game this season, Hogwired.com will recognize an offensive, defensive and special teams player of the week. Recipients are chosen by the UA football coaching staff.