AUBURN, Ala. — Open up the talk-show lines. Stay tuned for message board drama.
The red flags are up. The meltdown is real.
Auburn got physical Saturday, opening a big lead against resurgent Arkansas. But the Razorbacks shook off a 17-point, first-half deficit to force Auburn to the precipice.
It took a a 38-yard Anders Carlson field goal with 7 seconds left for the 13th-ranked Tigers to escape with a 30-28 victory.
Yeah, we know. It was upset Saturday. Florida fell. LSU tumbled.
But a not-so-funny thing happened on the way to an Auburn rout. This outcome wouldn’t, shouldn’t, couldn’t happen. Until it did.
To Gus Malzahn, against his home state team, to a program with a first-year coach just a week removed from ending a 20-game SEC losing skid. Yeah, we know, 2020 has been a year like no other.
It will take a while to unwrap this one. Needing to re-establish a physical presence after getting manhandled by No. 3 Georgia a week ago, Auburn did just that from the start.
Freshman Tank Bigsby turned in a breakout performance, hitting the century mark before intermission.
And in less conventional fashion, Auburn’s running game found success with 300-pound tight end J.J. Pegues out of the wildcat. He got Auburn into an early rhythm with an 11-yard carry.
Suddenly, Auburn’s beleaguered offensive line was gashing holes that Bigsby began exploiting. But like a rainbow on a soggy day, the good times proved fleeting.
WEEK 6: Winners and losers include Texas A&M, LSU
SHOCKER:No. 3 Florida falls to No. 22 Texas A&M
LETDOWN: No. 16 LSU loses to winless Missouri
The 17-point lead, established just 25 minutes