The Sugar Bowl started out strong for the Buckeyes with Arkansas going into halftime trailing 28-10, but that didn’t stop the Razorbacks from pulling out their best game and bringing it for the latter half of the match up.
Both Ohio State’s Pryor and Arkansas’ Mallett were on the ball as quarterbacks throughout the game with the difference being that Mallett had a lot of passes left uncaught. This helped OSU to keep the Razorbacks away from the goal line as much as possible as they used their strong running game to build the score.
When both teams returned from halftime, it seemed a new momentum had entered the Arkansas team. In the third quarter they added 11 points and for the first time it appeared they had a shot at coming back for a victory.
As the game went into the fourth quarter, Ohio State endured a safety giving the Razorbacks 2 additional points and a field goal brought them within 5 points of tying the game. An incomplete pass led to a turnover with only minutes left on the clock.
Pryor and the Buckeyes took their time to wind down the clock as Arkansas used up the last of their time outs. The ball turned over with 1:15 left on the clock. In a surprising play, as Ohio State went to punt the ball, Arkansas blocked the punt leaving the ball in the red zone for play. However as Mallet went for a pass with less than a minute on the clock Ohio State’s Thomas came out of his position and intercepted the ball sealing the game for the Buckeyes.
This was the first time Ohio State has beaten an SEC team in a bowl game in history. It was also a nice comeback for the Big Ten who suffered tremendously against the SEC on New Year’s Day.
The final score was 31-26 ohio State.