On November 3, 2001, the Arkansas Razorbacks entered Vaught-Hemingway Stadium having never played in a multiple-overtime game. They left with a 58-56 win in seven overtimes.

Fourteen years later, Arkansas owns the nation’s best record in games lasting two or more overtime periods.

The Razorbacks are now 7-1 in multiple overtimes. The latest victory, in four overtimes October 24 over Auburn, pushed them ahead of SEC rival Missouri, which is 6-1.

The Tigers lost their last multiple-overtime game, 27-24 to South Carolina in double overtime, for their only loss in the 2013 regular season.

SEC’S BEST TEAMS, LONG OT GAMES

SchoolMulti OT winsMulti OT lossesMulti OT Winning %
Arkansas7187.50%
Missouri6185.71%
Tennessee4357.10%
Georgia2166.67%
Texas A&M2250.00%
Florida10100.00%
South Carolina10100.00%
Vanderbilt1150.00%
Auburn1233.33%
Kentucky1325.00%
Mississippi State010.00%
LSU020.00%
Ole Miss020.00%
Alabama030.00%

The Razorbacks are 10-6 overall in overtime games.

On Saturday, the Hogs return to Vaught-Hemingway Stadium seeking to slay Ole Miss’ SEC title hopes, just as they did in 2001. The programs’ 2001 and 2015 situations at this point in the season are eerily similar.

Both seasons, Arkansas lost its second, third and fourth games of the season to head into Ole Miss with a 4-4 overall record. Likewise, Ole Miss has entered early November with a single SEC loss with a shot at its first SEC championship game appearance.

In 2001, Ole Miss’ Eli Manning had already emerged as a future star but Arkansas’ rangy Matt Jones, who had previously thrown three passes in his college career, had not.

Jones ran for 110 yards on 18 carries — including two TDs in the overtimes – establishing himself as Arkansas’ quarterback. The 6-foot-6 Jones was later drafted as a tight end in the first round by the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he spent his four-year NFL career.

This fall, Arkansas’ Brandon Allen (who leads the SEC with a 157.6 QB rating) and Chad Kelly (the SEC’s leading passer with 317 yards a game) are both among the SEC’s top quarterbacks.

While the Rebels are 11-point favorites against Arkansas, they likely will win by more if Arkansas’ defense plays as poorly as it did last Saturday when surrendering 519 yards to FCS member Tennessee-Martin, whose quarterback Jarod Neal, threw for 380 yards.

Afterward, Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema called UT-Martin’s passing success “a little frustrating defensively.”

Unless Arkansas figures out how to channel its mojo from last November to solidify what has been a consistently porous pass defense, expect Saturday to produce a very long afternoon for the Razorbacks — multiple overtimes or not.