Arkansas falls to San Jose State in front of the home crowd 31-24, dropping to a 2-2 overall record. Arkansas’s struggles continue on both sides of the ball. It seemed that San Jose set the tone right from the get go, and never let up. They took the momentum and ran completely away with it and for the first time in San Jose State school history, they defeat an SEC opponent. This is also their first victory over a power-5 conference since 2006.
Arkansas could never get a rhythm established on offense. They approached certain situations a bit more aggressive than they had in the previous 3 games. But the execution throughout the game was pretty poor. 6-15 on 3rd down and 1-3 on 4th down with an abundance of turnovers is not the formula for winning football games. There were plenty of dropped passes, throws that were underthrown and overthrown. Nick Starkle was trying to force a lot of plays that were just not there to be made. The running game struggled to get anything going as well. There were times where the line struggled to create running lanes, or the backs simply were not hitting the lanes that were being made.
Turnovers anyone? Well, if you were in Fayetteville Arkansas, you got turnovers in bulk. Nick Starkle finished with a whopping 5 interceptions. Arkansas forced one turnover thanks to defensive back, Kamren Curl. Unfortunately, that was the only good thing Arkansas did on defense.
Oh…. the defense. Where do I even begin? Arkansas forced one interception early in the game and mustered one sack all night, late in the game. The defense is a absolute train wreck. No pressure on the opposing QB and zero coverage in the secondary. The defense had many chances to end the opposing drives, but committed big penalties and allowed big plays down the field to keep the drives alive. The defense finished the game out allowing San Jose to drive the ball 75 yards on 5 plays for a game winning touchdown.
After the defensive collapse, Arkansas still had life. 1:13 left on the clock with one timeout is an eternity in football. However, the lifeline didn’t last long. It only was enough time for Starkle to throw his fifth interception of the night on the very first play of the drive to end the game.
Overall this game was an atrocious display of football and certainly one of the worst displays in recent memory. The 50,000+ fans who showed up last night deserve better than this. The ones who stayed despite being down 24-7 at the half, deserve way better than this. I think its safe to say that changes are much needed if Chad Morris wants to remain a coach. Maybe its time that Chad Morris focuses on his current staff, especially regarding the defense. Maybe make changes at Defensive Coordinators. I’m not going to put Starkle’s struggles on Morris’s feet because regardless of his struggles, Starkle is the best option this team has at moving the ball down field. Freshman redshirt, KJ Jefferson is still developing and hopefully by next year the offense will be turned around. I think its fair to say that if changes aren’t made immediately somewhere soon, Chad Morris could find himself on the hot seat. That is how the fans feel currently. Another 2-10 season will probably be the end of the line. Arkansas faces Texas A&M next, and the schedule doesn’t really appear to become easier. LSU, Alabama and Auburn are also left on the season.
Will Chad Morris make the changes needed for Arkansas to thrive? Can he show that he can improve the program in the next few weeks? And how will a loss this big effect the locker room?
Photo Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
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