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College football: Week 8

Updated: Jan 10

Welcome back, KJ.

Arkansas quarterback KJ Jefferson threw a career-high five touchdown passes in the Razorbacks’ 52-35 victory over Brigham Young. Rocket Sanders added a career-high 175 rushing yards, and Matt Landers caught three touchdown passes. It was quite an afternoon for the Arkansas offense as the Hogs scored on eight consecutive possessions at one point.

Arkansas outgained BYU 644-471 and won the turnover battle 3-1. Jefferson was 29 of 40 passing for 367 yards as Arkansas broke its three-game losing streak.

BYU is now 4-7 against schools from the Southeastern Conference. The Cougars come to Fayetteville to play next year.

It’s a good time for an open date for the 4-3 Razorbacks. They get struggling Auburn on the road in their next game.

Arkansas isn’t the state’s only team with an open date this week. UCA and UAPB also have the weekend off.

UCA moved to 2-0 in the ASUN Conference and 3-4 overall with its impressive 51-24 victory at Kennesaw State. The Bear offense had by far its best performance of the season.

UAPB suffered a fifth consecutive loss, falling in Pine Bluff to Alabama A&M by a final score of 34-31. The Golden Lions are now 2-5 overall and 0-4 in the SWAC.

We struggled for a second consecutive week on the picks, going 4-3 to make the season record 46-15. Most of the teams in Arkansas are highly inconsistent this year, making it difficult to predict how they will do.

Here are the picks for this week’s abbreviated schedule:

Louisiana-Lafayette 37, Arkansas State 32 — It was another frustrating game for the Red Wolves as they fell by a final score of 20-19 at Southern Mississippi. ASU led 19-7 in the fourth quarter, but the Golden Eagles went on scoring drives of 95 and 45 yards. ASU is now 2-5 overall and 1-3 in Sun Belt Conference play. The Red Wolves go on the road this week to take on a Ragin’ Cajun squad that is 3-3. The Louisiana-Lafayette victories have come by scores of 24-7 over Southeastern Louisiana, 49-21 over Eastern Michigan and 23-13 over Marshall. The losses were by scores of 33-21 to Rice, 21-17 to Louisiana-Monroe and 20-17 to South Alabama. This is a winnable contest for ASU, but the Red Wolves have yet to show the ability to win such games.

Ouachita 40, Southern Arkansas 25 — Ouachita moved up to No. 4 in the American Football Coaches Association NCAA Division II national rankings with a 41-7 win over UAM. Ouachita is now 7-0 on the season and is 38-2 in its previous 40 Great American Conference games. Senior All-American running back T.J. Cole had 232 yards rushing and two touchdowns in the win over the Boll Weevils. Kendel Givens added 141 yards and three touchdowns. Ouachita’s defense has allowed 14 or fewer points in five of its seven games. The Tigers play Southern Arkansas in the Murphy USA Classic at El Dorado on Saturday afternoon. The Muleriders are 3-4 after beating Arkansas Tech by a final score of 49-33 in Russellville on Saturday as Jariq Scales gained 152 yards on 20 carries and scored three touchdowns for the Muleriders.

Henderson 41, Arkansas Tech 24 — The Reddies are 5-2 after going to Searcy on Saturday and stunning Harding by a final score of 15-14. Tristan Heaton put Henderson ahead for good with a 46-yard field goal with 6:40 left in the game. Tech comes to Arkadelphia this week with a 3-4 record. Henderson just has too much firepower for the Wonder Boys.

Harding 30, UAM 20 — Harding is the defending GAC champion and was the coaches’ preseason pick to win the conference in 2022. The Bisons, though, have now lost to both Arkadelphia schools to fall to 5-2. Expect an angry group of Bisons to get that option offense going again this Saturday in Monticello against 3-4 UAM.

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