Q. Our first question is from Kevin who says: Can someone ask coach Pittman, when we are chewing up yards like Pac-Man, why he does not veto coach Briles when he calls plays like double reverses, and double passes? He killed our momentum in the first half on our fourth series?
A. A lot of complaints about trick plays have resurfaced this week. I would think by now that Pittman has seen enough of Kendal Briles’ trick plays over the previous two season to know that they usually don’t work. Trickery killed a second quarter drive that was going great with Dominique Johnson running right through the Aggies defense on Johnson’s first series of the season. But suddenly he was on the bench and Briles offered up three straight plays with Mailk Hornsby that maybe gain a yard or two. Later Arkansas had it going again before Jadon Haselwood was asked to throw a pass off a reverse. It reminded me of those times last year when Briles kept trying to use Treylon Burks to throw passes. It’s frustrating but Pittman expressed confidence in Briles’ play calling after the game. There’s no indication that we’re going to see an end to the razzle that doesn’t dazzle.
Q. About complains that the media and part of the fanbase have turned on this coaching staff after one loss, Frank Clement says: Nobody has turned on anybody but this is a line of scrimmage football team with a bomb throwing quarterback. Arkansas got beat being cute, trying to out scheme a team they could run through and throw over.
A. I agree with this. If you look at Arkansas’ three scoring drives they all featured a lot of running plays with some creative pass plays mixed in. The offense was unpredictable. However too many possessions were easier to defend. Too many times Jefferson ended up having to throw on 3rd and 5 or 3rd and 7.
He’s not a good short yardage passer. Midrange and deep pass routes play into his hands. We didn’t see enough of that. Matt Landers is a weapon and we saw him catch one pass in that game.
Q. North hog says: Not bashing Pitt at all here, as he has brought the program back from the dead. I think though some in-game decision making maybe is just him learning from mistakes as a newish head coach will do, and as a result will improve over time. Your thoughts?
A. I don’t want to be overly critical but I don’t see any evidence that Pittman is upset with Arkansas’ play calling. He defended Briles after the game. To me everything about Pittman as head coach is a big win except for this issue. I hope he steps in and gets a handle on it.
Q. LostinSwine asks: Did you hear any rumors or scuttlebutt about KJ being hurt at all for the Texas A&M game? He just didn’t look like the normal full speed ahead KJ on runs and his passes were even off at times.
A. If he was hurt nobody has mentioned it. Sam Pittman had a press conference on Monday and said nothing about Jefferson being injured. I’m assuming if anybody in he media had any indication that he was hurt Pittman would have been asked about it.
Q. Pigsfeat asks: On the fumble returned for touchdown. Did I not see a referee running in with his hand in the air, indicating the play dead, before the handoff? Please look again.
A. I did look several times. There is a ref behind the hand off on the sideline who points sideways toward the goal line. I think he’s indicating that the ball was handed back to the ball carrier who is now proceeding toward the opposite goal line. An indication that ball is still in play.
Q. Marty Byrde’s proxy wants to know: Since Halloween is coming up, what about the curse over Razorback football. I get it, there’s really no such thing, but… Tennessee 98, Reggie Fish, Matt Jones fumble as we’re about to score on Texas in 04 . We just keep finding wacky ways to lose.
A. Been going on for a long time. Back at least as far as Frank Broyles decision have Bill Montgomery throw the ball instead of setting up for a short Bill McClard field goal in the 4th quarter of the 69 game.
I guess all football programs have these things but Arkansas’ Jerryworld series with the Aggies is just full of this stuff. Backfire city. How crazy was that field goal off the top of the right upright? Cam Little couldn’t do that again if the kicked it a hundred times.
I believe you make your own luck but still, this stuff is weird.
Q. RazorAlex88 wants to know: What are the chances of our boys coming out locked in with a predator mentality and ready to give a Bama a hell of a game on Saturday? It’s time for Razorback Nation to bottle up the anger of the A&M loss and unleash it in DWRRS on Saturday!
A. I have no idea how they will react. These days we’re not around the players enough to gauge their attitudes. I will say that ‘Bama is much better than A&M which has a decent defense but in no way compares to Alabama offensively. I worry about Arkansas’ ability to stop the Tide’s offense. I think if the play calling gets more creative they can score on ‘Bama like they did a season ago. But your attitude is exactly what this team needs from the fans. Show up an shake the place.
Q. Jared asks: Can We talk about how many times Aggie players have been laying out on the field, “injured?” With only one, maybe two, being anything remotely serious.
A. They’ve changed the rules a little bit on this but it’s not going to stop. If you run a tempo offense teams are going to do this to you. You just have to overcome it. I think a bigger problem was the holding penalties that were not called on Aggie blockers. They held Drew Sanders on one play that resulted in an Aggie touchdown. But again, with more creative play calling Arkansas would have simply outscored the Aggies.
Q. sgiles says: That snotty Aggie yell leader was at it again. Telling a long and confusing joke about Arkansas fans being hillbillies and marrying their cousins. Do they do this every week?
A. Until this season I’d never seen any videos of what’s said at these midnight yell practices. I’ve seen two in the last three weeks and the A&M administration should be embarrassed by what was said in them.
Look fans say insulting stuff in person all the time. They pop off and start arguments on the Internet. I get that. But this is an officially sanctioned event on campus that involves thousands of of students and some of the stuff these yell leaders are saying about the opposing school is over the top.
Implying that people who go to those schools are stupid. Insulting remarks about being inbred. If you notice you don’t hear a strong reaction from the crowd to these insults. They mostly just sit there and let these guys talk. The yell leaders need to be more creative. There are ways to be funny without coming across like complete jerks.
Q. Brian Garner says: Never again will I refrain from Aggie jokes. I actually held back today. Big mistake on my part.
A. I agree. A good Aggie joke can be funny without calling them inbred morons like they’ve been doing to their opponents . Here’s one from Bobby Smittle, a well known Razorback fan for decades. He posted this
Aggie joke on Facebook: “Remember – you can always make an Aggie’s eyes sparkle if you shine a flashlight in his ear!”
That’s a perfect joke. Short, to the point, lighthearted and funny without being overly insulting or degrading.
Q. TimTeNO says: It’s great knowing that Bumper Pool is so close to the record for most tackles in a career, and I hope he achieves it! How many games do you think it will take him to achieve this momentous task?
A. Going into the Alabama game he is 24 tackles short. I’m gonna say five more games. It could be four, maybe six. Something in that range.
Q. BloodRedHog asks: How can anyone say the SEC is fair to Arkansas with the recent release of the 2023 football schedule? We’ve played Florida at the Swamp 3 of the past 4 meetings – yet we play at the Swamp next year? Does the SEC even try for fairness?
A. The only way it’s going to change is to get somebody from Arkansas onto the SEC office staff. If Greg Sanky takes the job as the president of the new organization that is going to administer D1 football and Hunter Yurachek were to become SEC commissioner that would do the tick but Arkansas would lose a really good AD. The short answer is, the only way to change this is to start competing for and winning SEC championships.
Q. Gloria Swineson says: I remember a game, possibly in the late Seventies, where the Hogs scored every way possible (TD,PAT, 2 point conversion, FG and Safety) to win. Possibly in a single Half of football. I have searched the internet with no luck. Do you recall this game?
A. Longtime former Arkansas sports information director Rick Schaeffer is the guy I turn to for answers to difficult questions like this. It was Baylor 1979. Arkansas came from behind to beat the Bears on Homecoming 29-20.
Arkansas was down 17-0 in the 3rd quarter.
They started the comeback with six points on a 32 yard TD pass from Kevin Scanlon to Bobby Duckworth. But the extra point failed.
Then Ish Ordonez kicked a 30 yard field goal after a Randy Wessinger interception.
In the 4th quarter Danny Phillips recovered a fumble in the end zone and Robert Ferrell caught a pass on a 2 point conversion.
Ferrell later caught another TD pass and Ordonez kicked a one point extra point. And finally Arkansas scored two more points late in the game on a safety.
Here’s more information that you didn’t ask for.
Late actor and comedian Bob Hope spoke the night before the game in Barnhill and offered this joke.
He said he was getting ready to fly out of the airport in LA and he had three bags to check in. He said to the ticket agent, “I want you to send one of my bags to New York, another to Chicago and the third one to Detroit.”
The ticket agent said, “Sir I can’t do that?”
And Bob Hope responded, “Why not? You did it last week.”
Q. Dr. Strangepork says: I remember when I was younger a parade that had Lou Holtz and Eddie Sutton together in it – they seemed to get along. Was there a time you recall when a past coach didn’t care for or get along with another coach at AR?
A. I know that John McDonnell didn’t have warm and fuzzy feelings about Lou. He told me that Lou once insulted him in front of several people by saying it was a lot easier to win a national title in track because most schools didn’t try to win in track.
I don’t know of any issues Danny Ford had with coaches outside of football but the coaches on his staff didn’t get along. It was pretty much divided along offense vs defense lines.
I don’t think this has been a serious problem over the years but there’s never been a time when so many of the various head coaches have come together to support each other like we’re seeing now. That’s the influence of Hunter Yurachek.
Q. Armon Abbe says: You posted online that you were pulling for Auburn against Missouri. I don’t like either team. Why does it matter to you?
A. I’ve said many times I can’t watch a football game and be passive. I’m gonna end up pulling for one team or the other. In this case I think Bryan Harsin has gotten a raw deal at Auburn. It’s gotta be the worst job in D 1 football with the politics that they play at that school.
As for Missouri, I think it’s a Big 10 school lurking in the SEC. It doesn’t have an SEC culture. Plus Eli Drinkwitz popped off in Sam Pittman’s first season after Mizzou eked out a narrow win over the Hogs in Columbia. Drink is also a Malzahnite. So yeah, I was pulling for Auburn and they won.