IMHO the game Matt Jones had that night was the greatest individual performance by a Razorback since I began following the Hogs in 1964. Does anyone dispute that?
I thought Darren McFadden had a couple of similar games, including one against South Carolina and one against Tennessee. If you want to talk about defense, you can pick about any of the three games Loyd Phillips played against Texas (that were all wins), or maybe Ronnie Caveness or Cliff Powell against Texas.
Yes Clay that game D-Mac had against the chickens was another great one. That game should have won him the Heisman but apparently the old ball coach was not impressed enough to overcome his gator bias. Speaking of great Defensive performances, I would have to add Dirt Winston’s game vs USC-LA in 1974.
Don’t forget Darren and the LSU game in Little Rock and again in Baton Rouge, Nutt’s last game. He was truly a man among boys.
I wonder sometimes if Matt had a healthy shoulder how good he could have been. He said on 103.7 he could throw the ball 75 yards in high school. He would have been an NFL quarterback and maybe a Heisman candidate himself, like Darren. Lance Alworth, Darren McFadden and Matt Jones…that is a trinity of talent. Wow.
The only way he would have been an NFL QB, would be if he had gotten a discipline and dedication transplant. Matt was such a freak of an athlete, that he didn’t have to work that hard to be a great improv QB. Playing QB successfully in the NFL would have required immersing himself in film study and the finer points of footwork and throwing motion. At that time in his life, I don’t think those would have been high priorities for him. I still don’t understand why he wasn’t given a second chance to be an NFL WR. I believe he had around 50 receptions in his final year, despite being suspended for a couple of games.
He was great in that game, but he really didn’t play until late in regulation. So for a complete game performance, I would go with McFadden vs. the chickens. Remember, Felix Jones had a game that would have been well-remembered had Run-DMc not run so far.
- D. McFadden: 34 carries, 321 yards, 1 TD, 80 yards (longest), 9.4/carry
- F. Jones: 13 carries, 166 yards, 3 TDs, 72 yards (longest), 12.77/carry
love these kinds of threads… thanks.
also love to remember Matt Jones highlights.
he was simply amazing and did things that had to be seen to be believed
the ole miss game
i agree has to be on the list.
hard to argue against that
the fact that he came in late in the game and did what he did makes it even more incredible
Welcome back to the building Elvis. Where ya been?
Putting statistics to the side, no Hog has ever made as many clutch plays in one game as Jones did in that 7 OT game vs. Ole Miss. And that despite only playing half the game.
Remember, most of the plays he made were essentially “sudden death” - as in, if he failed, we lost. He continued rolling “7’s” and “11’s” for 2 straight hours.
Also, remember that no one really knew if Jones could pass the ball with any consistency or accuracy going into that game (his very first pass EVER was a TD against Auburn the week before). His passing line was just 3 for 6, but that doesn’t include being 2 for 2 on “must have or the game is over” 2 point conversions that were completed in spectacular and dramatic fashion. And Ole Miss defenders couldn’t seem to lay a hand on him, as he ran through them like a wizard and eluded the pass rush time after time.
With great respect for Clyde Anderson, Lance Alworth, Gary Anderson and DMac - there’s never been a playmaker like Matt in all of Razorback history, IMO. Their NFL careers are a totally different thing - Alworth wins that contest hands down. But at Arkansas, it was Matt.
I was in the stadium that night in Oxford. I don’t think I’ve ever been more exhausted after a football game. It was almost like Jerry Clower’s famous comedic diddy “Shoot in amongst us. One of us needs some relief”. It is true that Arkansas would not have won without a great performance by Matt Jones. However, there other people who stepped up that night. That junior college transfer linebacker who made the great one-on-one tackle close to the goal line sealed the deal.
I must say that Matt Jones on a given day could be brilliant. But…he sure could make some bonehead plays. Plus, I don’t think he was all that coachable. He marched to his own drummer.
Matt Jones was a double-edged sword, sometimes cutting both ways on the same play. But in his zone, he was without a doubt one of the most exciting Razorbacks of all time. That 7 OT performance is legendary.
Not sure how it ranks statistically, but Brandon Allen’s 2015 performance against Miss St might be at least worth mentioning. I still wish CBB would have put the outcome of the game on BA’s arm instead of the kicking unit, but…that’s a different thread.
Quinn Grovey out-dueling Andre Ware in LR (45-39) was a pretty good performance too.
I believe I’d put that game #1 on my list of exciting games over the last 25 years. Even above both the “Miracle on Markham” games against LSU. Since it was only #3 I suspect one of the remaining two is the 7 OT game against UK. (I started to say that game against Houston might be #1, but it just hit me that was more than 25 years ago.) I’d put that behind the OM game if only because the OM game was the first such OT game. Don’t know what’s left on the table so I can’t really guess. (Has the win against UT in '99 come up? Or the win over Bama in 2005?)
What about Fred Talley running for 850 yards vs auburn. Enjoyed that one.
I assume you’re talking about the 2006 win over Alabama; Arkansas lost the game in 2005. The 2006 game did not make the top 25 list; it was No. 40 when the ballots were counted.
The 1999 Tennessee game was No. 7 on the list: http://www.wholehogsports.com/news/2017 … -his-back/
The Kentucky game was No. 8: http://www.wholehogsports.com/news/2017 … -slugfest/
Jones was no doubt an athletic QB. But he never would’ve been much in the NFL. Look at Vince Young for your comparison. The NFL defenses punish running QBs.
As for which game was more impressive, for me it was Darren’s game against USC-E. Had to fly out the next morning for work and Kirk Herbstreit was on the flight (he had called the game the night before). He was obviously tired so I didn’t bother him much. I did ask what he thought of the game, and he said it was the most dominating performance he had ever seen from one player. Darren wouldn’t just run away from you or around d you, he would also run through you. Just a beast that night…he could’ve run for 500 yards if he wanted.
A game few talk about (didn’t really have any national importance) was 1981 (I think) Baylor game at WMS. 41-39 or something like that. Brad Taylor was on fire!
And Spurrier (the Usce HC that night) didn’t put him in his Top 3 in Heisman voting, which helped pave the way for fellow Gator QB Tebow to steal the trophy.
Spurrier remained in Peter Pan mode into his 60’s.
A dishonest, self-absorbed man.
Matt holds the NFL combine record for the fastest time by a man weighing more than 240 pounds (4.37). At a shade under 6-6, his God given ability was off the charts. As mentioned earlier, his dedication and focus never came close to those abilities or he would be in the NFL HOF, but Hog and Ole Miss fans won’t ever forget him.