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Red zone stops help Toledo pull off shocker against Arkansas

Toledo pulled off what Jacksonville State could not.

No. 6 Auburn dodged what would have been one of the biggest upsets in college football history when it edged Jacksonville State in overtime on Saturday. Toledo’s 16-12 win at No. 18 Arkansas is not the same caliber of shocker as the one on the Plains would have been, but it’s still a major victory for the little guy.

The Rockets’ defense limited the Arkansas running game throughout the afternoon -- the Razorbacks rushed for just 103 yards -- and held twice in the closing minutes to make program history. When Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen’s last-gasp throw into the end zone sailed high, the Rockets had their first win against an SEC opponent.

What the win means for Toledo: The Rockets had never beaten an AP-ranked team away from home before Saturday. Now they’re 1-14 all-time. Obviously this is a game that fans of the MAC program will remember for quite a while. Allen (32-for-53 for 412 yards, one INT) picked apart the Toledo secondary, but the defense continuously stiffened in the red zone, allowing the Razorbacks to score just once in five trips inside the Toledo 20.

What the loss means for Arkansas: There is no silver lining here. This was a huge stumble for a program that some believed could contend in the SEC West this season. The rushing attack is supposed to be Arkansas’ bread and butter, but the Hogs' vaunted offensive line failed to generate a consistent push. Leading rusher Alex Collins managed just 54 yards and a touchdown on 20 attempts.

Player of the game: Safety DeJuan Rogers was all over the field for the Rockets. He made arguably the biggest defensive play of the game when he intercepted an Allen pass in the end zone to protect Toledo’s third-quarter lead. He also finished with 11 tackles, half a tackle for loss and broke up a pass.

Top play: Toledo’s offense struggled to move the ball throughout the day. That’s what made Zach Quinn’s first-quarter blocked punt particularly valuable. Quinn blocked the kick after the snap soared over Toby Baker’s head and he attempted to punt on the run. The ball ricocheted out of bounds, setting up the Rockets’ offense at the Arkansas 25-yard line. They used the short field to drive for the game’s first touchdown on a 5-yard TD pass from Phillip Ely to Corey Jones.