FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas running back Alex Collins and defensive end Chris Smith were recognized by the Southeastern Conference for their performances in the Razorbacks’ 24-3 win against Southern Miss last Saturday.
Collins was named the SEC’s Freshman of the Week for the second straight week after rushing for 115 yards and a touchdown. Smith was named the SEC’s Defensive Lineman of the Week after collecting a career-high 3 sacks.
Both players were key in helping the Razorbacks overcome the first quarter injury to starting quarterback Brandon Allen.
Collins teams with running back Jonathan Williams (116 yards and a touchdown) to go over the 100-yard mark for the third straight week. He also made SEC history in accomplishing the feat, becoming the first freshman from the conference to go over 100 yards in his first three games. Collins also is the first freshman in the NCAA to accomplish it since Oklahoma’s Adrian Peterson in 2004.
“He’s playing really good football right now,” Arkansas offensive coordinator Jim Chaney said. “He’s a good, talented young man. We watched the tape and felt like he missed a few cuts, too, that were out there that could’ve even jumped his rush total up a little higher.”
Smith accounting for each of Arkansas’ three sacks in the win, helping the Razorbacks keep Southern Miss out of the end zone. Smith now has 4 ½ sacks this season, which is tied for the NCAA lead after three weeks.
“I’m proud of the way that Chris changed up his pass rush, within the course of the game,” Arkansas defensive line coach Charlie Partridge said. “One was speed one time, he countered back inside one time. He’s changing things up which makes him a very dangerous football player. Hopefully, we can go from there.”
— Robbie Neiswanger • Arkansas News Bureau