Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen (8) attempts a pass against South Carolina linebacker Skai Moore (10) during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Sean Rayford)
Arkansas quarterback Austin Allen isn't going through warmups and isn't dressed out before Saturday night's game at Alabama, appearing likely to miss the game against the No. 1 Crimson Tide.
With Allen out, the struggling Razorbacks (2-3, 0-2 Southeastern Conference) will turn to sophomore quarterback Cole Kelley under center while facing Alabama _ which has won 10 straight games in the series.
The 6-foot-7, 268-pound Kelley won the backup job during the preseason over fellow sophomore Ty Storey, doing so despite having a bullet still lodged in his left leg following a shooting in his hometown in Louisiana during high school.
Earlier in the week, both Arkansas coach Bret Bielema and Allen said they were optimistic the senior would play despite a shoulder injury he suffered in last week's loss at South Carolina.
However, as the week wore on, it became more and more clear Allen would be unable to play.
Allen entered the season as the leading returning quarterback in the SEC in passing efficiency, but he's struggled this season behind an offensive line that's allowing 2.6 sacks per game _ tied for 99th in the country. After completing 61.1 percent of his passes and averaging nearly 264 yards passing per game last season, Allen is 66 of 117 passing (56.4 percent) this year and averaging only 170 yards passing.
He gave way to Kelley following the the injury against the Gamecocks after completing 12 of 24 passes for 84 yards _ as well as throwing an interception that was returned for a South Carolina touchdown.
Kelley finished 8 of 13 for 140 yards after replacing Allen last week. He also threw an interception that was returned for a touchdown and said afterward that Allen remained the clear starter for the Razorbacks, despite some fans calling for the backup to take over under center.
"I think that's a great indicator of a guy being in the right frame of mind," Bielema said about Kelley's backing of Allen.