Sam Pittman and Arkansas became bowl eligible the old-fashioned way – by earning their sixth win of the season.

The Razorbacks went 3-7 last season but were still set to play in the Texas Bowl during a postseason significantly impacted by the pandemic. That game ended up being canceled because of positive COVID-19 tests within TCU’s program.

That was Pittman’s first year at the helm at Arkansas. His second began with four straight wins, including victories over Texas and Texas A&M, but a three-game losing streak meant bowl eligibility wasn’t guaranteed, given how tough the team’s SEC schedule is.

The Razorbacks wrapped up win No. 6 by beating Mississippi State 31-28 on Saturday.

Arkansas went to three bowls under Bret Bielema, but after Chad Morris took over they went 2-10 in back-to-back seasons. Reaching six wins is a nice benchmark in Pittman’s second year.

There are now 49 teams that are bowl eligible:

Air Force

Alabama

Alabama-Birmingham

Appalachian State

Arizona State

Arkansas

Auburn

Baylor

BYU

Central Florida

Cincinnati

Clemson

Coastal Carolina

Eastern Michigan

Fresno State

Georgia

Houston

Iowa

Iowa State

Kansas State

Kentucky

Liberty

Louisiana-Lafayette

Marshall

Michigan

Michigan State

Minnesota

Mississippi

N.C. State

Nevada

Northern Illinois

Notre Dame

Ohio State

Oklahoma

Oklahoma State

Oregon

Penn State

Pittsburgh

Purdue

San Diego State

SMU

Texas A&M

Texas-El Paso

Texas-San Antonio

Utah

Utah State

Virginia

Wake Forest

Wisconsin

More AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25. Sign up for the AP’s college football newsletter: https://apnews.com/cfbtop25