10 Things to Know – Missouri

Arkansas returns to the road after a short week for its season finale, squaring off with Missouri in the Battle Line Rivalry in Columbia on Friday, Nov. 23, at 1:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium. The game will be televised on CBS and the CBS Sports app. Here are 10 things to know before kickoff.

1. Friday will be the 10th game between the two teams and just the fifth in Columbia. Missouri holds a 3-1 advantage in games played in the show-me state. The Razorbacks trail the all-time series with the Tigers, 3-6, with the first matchup coming in 1906 in Columbia. Arkansas has won only once in the last five meetings with Missouri, claiming a 28-3 win in Fayetteville in 2015. The Razorbacks last won in Columbia in 1944 in a 7-6 battle.

2. The matchup is also a trophy game, as the two teams will battle for the Battle Line Trophy, presented by Shelter Insurance. The hardware was introduced in 2015, the last time Arkansas picked up a victory in the series. It is made of silver and stands more than four feet tall and weighs more than 180 pounds. The trophy depicts the outline of the two states with the border of the two states being divided by interchangeable silver inserts with the words Battle Line in either gold or cardinal. The color of the battle line within the trophy will be reflective of the winner of the most recent game in the series. Former Razorback football student-athlete David Bazzel was the designer and project lead for the building of the Battle Line Trophy. Bazzel also created The Golden Boot, the annual trophy given to the winner of the Arkansas-LSU football series, the Broyles Award and numerous other trophies and awards. Supreme Fixture and Sissy’s Log Cabin of Little Rock were the primary companies involved in the construction of the trophy.

3. Junior wide receiver La’Michael Pettway has made it a habit of coming up with big receptions for the Razorbacks this season. The Nashville, Arkansas, native has hauled in a team-high eight receptions of 20+ yards this season, including a 47-yard catch from Ty Storey against the Bulldogs last week. Six of his eight have been gone over 30 yards, with three over 40. He leads the team in receiving yards this season with 470, averaging 17.4 yards per catch.

4. Senior defensive lineman Armon Watts added another sack to his season total after racking up 1.0 for 11 yards against LSU. The St. Louis, Missouri, native has registered a sack in seven of 11 games this season, including three of the last four, to lead the Razorbacks in the category with seven, which is also good for fifth in the SEC. One more sack will tie him with Deatrich Wise Jr. (2015) and Henry Ford (1991) for 10th-most in a single season by an Arkansas defender. The school record is 14 set by Ford (1993) and Steven Conley (1995). Watts leads all defensive tackles in the FBS with his seven sacks.

5. Junior linebacker De’Jon Harris continues to lead the SEC in total tackles with 110, hitting the 100-tackle threshold against LSU on Nov. 10. It’s the second-straight season Harris has recorded 100 tackles, racking up 115 in 2017. He’s the seventh Razorback since Arkansas joined the league to hit 100 tackles in back-to-back years & the first since Jerry Franklin (2010-11). Harris holds a five-tackle lead heading into the weekend, as he looks to become the first Razorback since 2014 to lead the conference in tackles, when Martrell Speight tallied 128, which is also the 15th-most in school history.

6. Senior linebacker Dre Greenlaw moved within striking distance of cracking the Arkansas record books after eight tackles at Mississippi State last week. After a 12-tackle performance against LSU, his fifth double-digit tackle game in 2018, the Fayetteville native posted eight against the Bulldogs to increase his career mark to 320, putting him 10 from the 10th-best mark in school history of 330 set by Mick Thomas over the 1989-91 seasons. Greenlaw’s 320 also leads all active SEC defenders.

7. No other defense in the SEC has a tackling trio as accomplished as Arkansas. Senior De’Jon Harris (110) leads the league in total tackles, while senior defensive back Santos Ramirez (85) and senior linebacker Dre Greenlaw (80) rank seventh & tied for ninth, respectively, in tackles. No other school has two in the top 10. The Razorback trio has combined for 275 stops this season, while the next closest threesome in the league sits at 256. The combination of Harris and Ramirez is also the top tackling duo in the conference. At least one member of the trio has had 10 or more tackles in each of the last seven games & 10 of the last 11 contests, with all three accomplishing the feat against Texas A&M (9/29), Alabama (10/6) and LSU (11/10).

8. Junior kicker Connor Limpert was named a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award on Nov. 1, which is presented annually to the nation’s top kicker. The Allen, Texas, native is one of 20 up for the honor, as he is 19-of-24 in FG attempts this year and owns the longest FG made among the group & the second-longest in the FBS this season at 55 yards. Limpert is one of the most accurate kickers in school history, aided by 10-straight made over a five-week stretch. Although his streak ended on a 60-yard try against Vanderbilt, Limpert broke into the Arkansas record books by nailing a 55-yarder in the game for the seventh-longest field in school history. His 19 field goals made is tied for the fourth-most in school history, needing five on Friday to match the school record.

9. Compared to the first 11 games of last season, Arkansas is averaging more passing touchdowns (17 to 16), passing yards (2,172 to 2,152), field goals (19-of-24 to 7-of-10), tackles for loss (66 to 44), sacks (26 to 16), forced fumbles (14 to 12), fumble recoveries (10 to 9), PBUs (40 to 39), QBH (29 to 22) & fewer points allowed per game (34.5 to 35.1) in 2018 than 2017. Another 100-yard rushing performance from Rakeem Boyd would give him four this year, making him the 29th Razorback to post four 100-yard games over a career. A 100-yard receiver would make 12 consecutive years Arkansas has had at least one player record 100 receiving yards in a game. A 300-yard passer would make four-straight years Arkansas has had a QB throw for 300 in a game.

10. Cheyenne O’Grady & his fellow tight ends have emerged to be the top targets among the Arkansas receiving core with four tight ends catching passes. O’Grady recorded a career-high seven receptions against Alabama, while fellow TEs Austin Cantrell (two catches) & Grayson Gunter (one catch) also were part of the passing game. Grayson Gunter added to the fun with a touchdown reception against Tulsa, while O’Grady led the team in receptions (six) & yards (83), including a touchdown. He leads the team with six scores this season. The Razorbacks have relied on the TE position in the passing game through the first 11 games with four different tight ends being targeted for a total of 79 targets according to PFF. O’Grady, Cantrell, Gunter & Jeremy Patton have combined for 46 receptions, 600 yards & eight touchdowns. Only three SEC teams have targeted TEs more this year.