The Auburn Tigers (6-4, 3-4 SEC) made a statement this Saturday against the Arkansas Razorbacks (3-7, 1-6 SEC) on the road with a 48-10 win.
The game not only showed the potential of the team but secured bowl eligibility, a crucial goal in Hugh Freeze’s first year on the Plains.
There were many key takeaways from this game, some of which fans have seen sparingly this season.
Rushing on full display
Jarquez Hunter was able to put together yet a dominate showing. After a slower than anticipated start to the year, the junior running back has put together three straight games with at least 100 yards rushing.
Hunter was not the only player in an Auburn uniform to make noise in the running game. Damari Alston collected 64 yards off 12 carries, the most for the sophomore this season.
Payton Thorne showed promise
Despite a questionable interception in the game, Payton Thorne put together an impressive showing.
Thorne finished the game with 163 yards through the air along with three touchdowns.
However, the most impressive part of the quarterback’s game was the ability to run the ball. Thorne finished with 88 yards, finishing only behind Hunter, on the ground and a touchdown.
If Thorne can continue the success on the field, the potential is much closer to what was accomplished at Michigan State rather than early on this season.
Jalen McLeod is a force
Jalen McLeod led Auburn’s defense with nine tackles and three sacks. If that is not impressive enough, the junior also was able to add a forced fumble to the stat sheet. It seemed like McLeod was anywhere and everywhere at any given time.
The Appalachian State transfer has recorded at least four tackles in five of the last six games, making McLeod a physical presence on defense for the Tiger’s.
Auburn will be back in action next week against New Mexico State. The Tigers will host the Aggies with a 3:00 p.m. CT kickoff time. The game will be broadcasted on SEC Network and the Auburn Sports Network.