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story.lead_photo.caption Texas Tech running back DeAndre Washington is tackled by Arkansas defender Rohan Gaines after a big run during the first quarter Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015, at Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville. ( Michael Woods)

FAYETTEVILLE -- Two weeks ago the Arkansas Razorbacks were ranked No. 18 after opening the season with a 48-13 victory over Texas El-Paso.

That seems like a long, long time ago.

Home losses to Toledo 16-12 and Texas Tech 35-24 have the Razorbacks (1-2) reeling as they prepare for Saturday night's SEC opener against No. 14 Texas A&M (3-0) at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

This isn't the start anyone expected with Arkansas returning 15 starters from a team that won three of its last four games last season -- including shutouts of Ole Miss and LSU and a 31-7 pounding of Texas in the Texas Bowl.

Instead of building on last season's 7-6 record, the Razorbacks appear to be closer to their 2013 team that went 3-9.

"We hate losing," said junior cornerback D.J. Dean, who had an interception Saturday in the loss to Texas Tech. "We do not want to slip back to where we were two years ago, or even a year ago.

"We want to move on from that, and that's what we're going to do next week."

If Arkansas can upset the Aggies, it could revive the Razorbacks.

"It's a new season," Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen said. "That's going to be our mind-set."

Allen, a fifth-year senior, said he remains confident the Razobacks can turn their season around.

"I think we've just got a lot of guys that have bought in," he said. "The guys still have the right attitude about what we want to get done.

"We have every SEC game ahead of us. We still have a lot to play for and we're going to do what we can to win each and every one of those games."

Arkansas Coach Bret Bielema said the Razorbacks showed no signs of giving up against Texas Tech.

"It didn't go our way, but by no means am I disappointed in our guys," he said. "I didn't see a lack of effort. I didn't see a lack of intensity.

"We've just going to keep sawing wood."

Junior defensive end Jeremiah Ledbetter said the Razorbacks should have extra motivation playing Texas A&M to make sure they don't have a third consecutive loss.

"The fire within us coming off these losses is building up," Ledbetter said. "I think we're going to release it."

Bielema said an improved passing game through the first three games should be a boost against SEC teams.

"The good news is we can throw the football and run the football," he said. "We're 1-2 right now, but I think going into SEC play we're probably more prepared than we have been to be a little more balanced."

The Razorbacks gained 424 yards against Texas Tech, including 228 rushing and 196 passing.

"We did some good things, we've got some players moving in the right direction," Bielema said. "Unfortunately, we lost to a good football team.

"We're going to get better this week."

Junior tailback Alex Collins, who rushed 28 times for 170 yards against Texas Tech, said the Razorbacks aren't panicking.

"If we do what we're supposed to do to the best of our ability, we'll have great success," Collins said. "This is the just the beginning.

"We've still got a lot of football left. The losses we've just had don't determine our future."

Bielema is 79-41 in 10 seasons as a head coach at Wisconsin and Arkansas, but 11-17 with the Razorbacks, including 2-14 in SEC games.

"There's a mountain to climb, and we're not at the top," Bielema said.

Arkansas was a 21-point favorite against Toledo and a 12-point favorite against Texas Tech.

"You should play with an edge after losing two games like this that we shouldn't have lost," Dean said. "We've got to come back and play a lot better."

Arkansas' next three games are away from home, though the Razorbacks technically will be the home team against Texas A&M. After playing the Aggies, Arkansas plays at Tennessee and at No. 12 Alabama.

"It's just more adversity," Allen said. "We've got to play well, got to play tough. We're going to do what we can to win."

Sports on 09/21/2015

Print Headline: UA (1-2) hits reset with A&M up next

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Archived Comments

  • franglary
    September 21, 2015 at 10:26 a.m.

    Wow, thank goodness the Razorbacks are wearing white shoes!! I would hate to still be wearing black shoes and appear to be slow.

  • GoBigRed
    September 21, 2015 at 10:43 a.m.

    The 48-13 victory wasn't really anything to brag about either. They beat the spread but any quality team should have scored even more. And Bielema isn't one to hold back if he can run up the score.

  • Packman
    September 21, 2015 at 11:23 a.m.

    2-14 in the SEC. At what point do Hog fans either accept that with Bret Bielema we will always be the Vanderbilt of the West, or find a coach smart enough to keep their mouth shut about other teams' schedules and offensive schemes and concentrate on actually winning football games? If the Hogs lose out this year in the SEC, which is not far-fetched, Bielema will be 2 - 21 against SEC competition. Jeff Long extended Bielema's contract without Bielema actually proving anything. If the Hogs go 3 - 9 this year, is it asking too much to fire Long and Bielema?

  • Kharma
    September 21, 2015 at 12:37 p.m.

    Jeff Long did a very bad thing for the school and for the state re: our coaching staff. Someone please remind me why the raises and contract extensions were necessary. I see the very real possibility of 1-3 record after the game.

    Bielema is smart though for sticking it to the state and the foundation. He and his overpaid coaching staff are laughing all the way to the bank.

  • GCW
    September 21, 2015 at 1:59 p.m.

    At the end of the game while the ESPN girl was waiting to speak to the Tech coach she was holding the mic over her shoulder. Someone was heard to say "We suck" as two players in Arkansas jerseys (but not pads) walked by.

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