Alabama vs Arkansas: A Historical Retrospective

The history between the football programs of Arkansas and Alabama is one overshadowed by the relationship between the conferences they have been associated with. As a member of the Southwest Conference, Arkansas aligned itself with the football powers in Texas and Oklahoma. It wasn't until the school's departure for the SEC in 1990 that Arkansas emerged as a regular rival for the Crimson Tide.

Thus, the earliest games between the two programs tended to be for the highest stakes. In 1961 and 1979 (video above) the path to Alabama's national championships lay through the Sugar Bowl and high-power Razorback squads. Ironically enough, the first "regular season" game between the teams, was part of Bama's 1992 national championship campaign.

Overall, Alabama has amassed an 11-8 record against Arkansas and the series stands tied at 4-3 for games played at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

There is significant controversy involving Arkansas due to the outcome of the 1964 season although the two teams never faced each other on the gridiron that year. At the end of the season, but before the bowl games were played, Alabama was selected the national champion by both the Associated Press and UPI "coaches poll"  ahead of also-undefeated No. 2 Arkansas.

But Alabama was upended by No. 5 Texas in the Orange Bowl - a team Arkansas had bested during the season. (Arkansas topped No. 7 Nebraska in the Cotton Bowl) Since there were no further polls, Alabama retained the national championship. The Football Writers of America in a post-bowl recognized the Razorbacks as the national champion in their separate post bowl award, The Grantland Rice trophy. Due to the controversy, the AP began the practice of selecting its national champion after the bowl games the following season.

Alabama vs Arkansas Historical Record

Season W/L Score Date Location Game Information
1961 W 10 - 3 Jan. 1, 1962 New Orleans Sugar Bowl National Champion
1979 W 24 - 9 Jan. 1, 1980 New Orleans Sugar Bowl AP, UPI National Champion
1992 W 38 - 11 Sept. 12 Little Rock, Ark.
1993 W 43 - 3 Sept. 18 Tuscaloosa, Ala. Forfeited by NCAA
1994 W 13 - 6 Sept. 17 Fayetteville, Ark.
1995 L 19 - 20 Sept. 16 Tuscaloosa, Ala.
1996 W 17 - 7 Sept. 21 Little Rock, Ark.
1997 L 16 - 17 Sept. 20 Tuscaloosa, Ala.
1998 L 6 - 42 Sept. 26 Fayetteville, Ark.
1999 W 35 - 28 Sept. 25 Tuscaloosa, Ala.
2000 L 21 - 28 Sept. 23 Fayetteville, Ark.
2001 W 31 - 10 Sept. 22 Tuscaloosa, Ala.
2002 W 30 - 12 Sept. 28 Fayetteville, Ark.
2003 L 31 - 34 Sept. 27 Tuscaloosa, Ala. 2OT
2004 L 10 - 27 Sept. 25 Fayetteville, Ark.
2005 W 24 - 13 Sept. 24 Tuscaloosa, Ala. NCAA vacation under appeal
2006 L 23 -24 Sept. 23 Fayetteville, Ark. 2OT
2007 W 41 - 38 Sept. 15 Tuscaloosa, Ala. NCAA vacation under appeal
2008 W 49 - 14 Sept. 20 Fayetteville, Ark.

Source: The University of Alabama 2009 Football Media Guide


Alabama vs Arkansas: The Record Book

Record Place Year Statistic Holder
Most Consecutive Rushes 1st 1994 15 Sherman Williams
Most Tackles (Single Game) 1st 2003 25 DeMeco Ryans
Longest Field Goal 2nd 1998 55 yds Ryan Pflugner 
Highest Percentage of Passes Completed (Min. of 20 att): 2nd (tied) 2006 80% (16 of 20) team record
Best Completion Percentage (Min. 15 completions) 3rd 2006 80% (16 of 20) John Parker Wilson
Most Touchdown Passes 3rd (tied)
Jay Barker
Brodie Croyle
John Parker Wilson
Highest Average Gain Per Catch 7th 2006 24 yds (6 for 144) DJ Hall
Longest Scoring Pass Play 10th 2006 78 yds John Parker Wilson to DJ Hall
Longest Punt 10th 2005 72 yds Jeremy Schatz 
Longest Touchdown Rushes 14th (tied)
80 yds
80 yds
Shaud Williams
Shaud Williams

Source: The University of Alabama Football Record Book

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