There have long been questions of whether or not Corey Grant could run physically, through contact.

Well, Grant wasted no time in trying to silence the critics. During his 3-yard touchdown run Saturday in Auburn’s 45-21 win over Arkansas, Grant got hit by a pair of defensive linemen shortly after he took the handoff. Then two linebackers got a shot in, but he kept churning his legs.

All the way to the goal line. It was during that run that Grant proved he can do more than just speed sweeps on the perimeter of the field.

Grant totaled 87 yards on 10 carries against the Hogs, but his carries weren’t all stretch plays to get him to the outside of the defense. He took several handoffs between the tackles, including a 24-yard run up the right side.

“What I liked about Corey is he finished runs,” Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn said. “He was looking to get his pads low and looking to finish and run over people.”

Grant’s role in the offense has always been that change of pace guy, similar to former tailback Ontario McCalebb. But his strength has never been questioned.

“He’s one of the strongest guys on this team,” center Reese Dismukes said.

As the Auburn offense continues to evolve, Grant’s role will be interesting to observe. Cameron Artis-Payne was the feature back on Saturday, with Grant providing the speed element. Grant got 21 snaps to Artis-Payne’s 52.

Grant’s final drive showed Malzahn something on Saturday, though.

He now knows how to complete runs and pick up yards after contact.