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The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
Little Rock, AR

Arkansas rolls to 49-7 win over FAMU

101 days ago
Associated Press

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Freshman Chase Hayden rushed for 120 yards and a touchdown in his collegiate debut as Arkansas opened its season with a 49-7 win over Florida A&M on Thursday night.

Henre' Tolliver added an 18-yard fumble return for a touchdown for the Razorbacks (1-0), who nearly notched their first shutout since 2014 in their first game since an offseason switch to a 3-4 defensive look.

Hayden finished with 14 carries, becoming the first Arkansas player to top 100 yards rushing in his debut since Alex Collins did so to open the 2013 season.

"It was a great feeling," Hayden said. "... I surprised myself a little bit; I didn't know what to expect and came into the game nervous."

Austin Allen finished 14-of-19 passing for 135 yards with a touchdown for Arkansas. Devwah Whaley added 60 yards rushing on 12 carries for the Razorbacks, and South Carolina transfer David Williams rushed for two touchdowns.

Florida A&M quarterback Vince Jeffries connected with Brandon Norwood for a 7-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter for the Rattlers' lone score.

THE TAKEAWAY

FLORIDA A&M: Rattlers quarterback Ryan Stanley didn't play because of a sore ankle, a week after accounting for 238 yards in a season-opening win over Texas Southern. Stanley likely could have played, but coach Alex Wood decided to rest the sophomore in the Football Championship Subdivision school's matchup against a Southeastern Conference opponent.

ARKANSAS: The three-headed combination of Hayden, Whaley and Williams somewhat eased any concerns the Razorbacks might have had about their rushing attack after former running back Rawleigh Williams' career came to an end following a second neck injury in the spring. Arkansas finished with 236 yards rushing on 45 carries overall, an average of 4.5 yards per rush.

"I think the combination of (Hayden), Devwah and David, we really have three unique players at that position that kind of present a preparation nightmare for our opponents," Arkansas coach Bret Bielema said.

UP NEXT

ARKANSAS: After defeating TCU 41-38 in double overtime a year ago in Texas, the Horned Frogs make the return trip to Fayetteville next Saturday.