Texas A&M defense, running game, responds with timely second-half plays in win over Arkansas

Texas A&M entered its game against Arkansas last in the Southeastern Conference in total defense.

After allowing 483 yards to the Razorbacks, the No. 9 Aggies still rank last — allowing an average of 476.8 yards per game — but they made just enough critical stops in the second half to hold on for a 45-33 win over Arkansas on Saturday night.

Texas A&M (4-1, 1-1 SEC) entered the game having already played 11 true freshmen on defense this season. The youngsters responded by holding the Razorbacks (3-2, 0-1) three times in the second half when Arkansas had a chance to take the lead — led by Deshazor Everett's 34-yard interception return for a touchdown.

Aggies coach Kevin Sumlin hopes the timely plays provide confidence entering the bye week.