Arkansas had one major question entering Saturday’s Red-White game at Razorback Stadium.
How improved would Brandon Allen and the Hogs passing game be? After the first two quarters of the intrasquad scrimmage, fans hadn’t found their answer.
Allen completed just 5-of-11 passes for 21 yards and was picked off twice.
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema decided at halftime that Allen would play the entire third quarter after his first half performance.
“The good thing about a quarterback, a competitor, it’s about how you finish and he finished extremely well in the third quarter,” Bielema said. “I thought that was important. I didn’t know how much we were going to play him in the second half but at halftime I said leave him in the entire third quarter and see where he can get and obviously came back on rhythm and that was a big part.”
Allen responded in the third, completing 7-of-9 passes for 86 yards and a touchdown.
“It’s definitely a better feeling knowing that we went out there in the second half and kind of did what we were intending on doing what we were supposed to do,” Allen said. “That’s a better feeling for us as a whole offense.”
Allen didn’t get much help from his starting receivers as passes were dropped in the first half, something that didn’t sit well with Bielema.
“There in the first half, I don’t think they helped (Allen) at all,” Bielema said. “There were some guys that got hands on a ball. I know (Keon Hatcher) had a couple drops. The good news is, (Cody Hollister) and (Jared Cornelius), those other guys don’t want to catch it, those guys do. They’ll play a lot of football for us. I don’t care who, how long they’ve been here, you drop pass, you’re not going to play.”
Hatcher led all players with five catches for 52 yards while Hollister had a game high 61 yards on three catches, including a 33 yard touchdown pass from Austin Allen.
Drew Morgan led the White team, the Razorbacks’ reserves, with four catches for 39 yards.