3:30 PM ET, October 16, 2004
Jordan-Hare Stadium, AUBURN, AL
AUBURN, Ala. (AP) -- Jason Campbell was so focused on this game that he couldn't sleep the night before.
Then he turned in the kind of performance that could give defensive coordinators nightmares, throwing for a career-high 297 yards and three touchdowns to lead No. 4 Auburn to a 38-20 rout of Arkansas on Saturday.
With Campbell completing 17 of 19 passes -- all in the first three quarters -- the Tigers (7-0, 4-0 Southeastern Conference) won their ninth straight game and lived up to their highest ranking in 10 years.
Imagine if he'd actually slept Friday night.
"All night, I couldn't go to sleep," said Campbell, who was 11-of-12 for 210 yards in the first half. "I was just thinking about the game. It was just one of those days one day you'll look back on and be proud of."
The Tigers continue to forge a memorable season as well, scoring on their first five possessions for a 30-0 lead against a team that had given them fits in recent years. Twice in the past three meetings, an unranked Razorback team blew Auburn out.
Not this time.
"Offensively, we just dominated in the first half," coach Tommy Tuberville said. "It was almost a perfect game for us."
And that was too much for Arkansas (3-3, 1-2), which all but fell out of contention in the SEC West.
"When your opponent scores on five consecutive possessions, it makes for a long, long day," Razorbacks coach Houston Nutt said. "It crushes your confidence."
The Razorbacks couldn't muster any consistent offense and quarterback Matt Jones spent much of the game under pressure. The league's total offense leader hurt his groin on the first play of the game, but he was still able to scamper for 54 yards the one time he got free.
"It changed the game," said Jones, who didn't gain any yards on his other three carries. "On the long run, that is six (points) if I am not hurt. I just didn't throw very well."
It was still the most points anybody had scored against Auburn this year.
Ronnie Brown rushed for 101 yards for the Tigers, while Carnell Williams gained 71. Both ran for short touchdowns.
But it was Campbell who continued to drive the offense, making Arkansas pay dearly for loading up against the run and setting an Auburn record for completion percentage in a game. His highest total in his first 33 starts was 270 yards against Alabama last year, and he topped that in the third quarter before the offense went to the run to protect its lead.
"The main thing we say every week is we want to beat teams to the punch," Campbell said. "We want to get off to a fast start."
The Razorbacks got a late touchdown set up by an interception against backup quarterback Brandon Cox.
The Tigers had said all week they wouldn't let Jones beat them, running or passing. The 54-yard burst briefly made him the SEC's top career rushing quarterback, but even that didn't hold up.
Jones got sacked for a 9-yard loss on the next drive, pushing him back into a tie with John Bond of Mississippi State at 2,280 yards. Jones was 12-of-27 passing for 189 yards with two TDs.
The Tigers outgained Arkansas 522-337.
"After we took them out of their game, it was pretty much all downhill for them," defensive end Stanley McClover said.
Campbell was nearly perfect in the first half. He hit Devin Aromashodu for a 67-yard score after a reverse flea-flicker on the game's third play, and hit Courtney Taylor for a 30-yard score later in the first quarter.
"That was a play everyone's been talking about all week," Campbell said of the trick play. "Everyone on the team wanted to run it. It hardly ever works in practice."
Aromashodu had four catches for a career-high 102 yards.
Jones threw nine consecutive incompletions after starting out 4-of-4, but then threatened to bring Arkansas back into the game. He hit Chris Baker for a 19-yard touchdown late in the half to make it 30-7 and found Steven Harris for a 61-yarder on the opening drive of the third quarter.
Campbell put it away with a 19-yard TD pass to Ben Obomanu, his final throw.
John Vaughn missed an extra point for Auburn in the first half, ending the team's SEC record streak of 209 straight.