It is time once again for our weekly Ask Mike segment where our veteran analyst Mike Irwin takes your questions about Arkansas Athletics.
Our first question this week comes from Hogwild who wants to know: *Back in May, a news report stated that Arkansas administrators are in negotiations with Bret Bielema with regard to his buyout. Has there been any movement on the issue in the past 6 months? Will the dispute end up in ligation?
I’ve been told…
1. Arkansas is claiming that Bielema has violated the terms of his contract.
2. I’m told they have haven’t been paying him for a while.
3. Looks like this is headed to court.
4. My guess is there will be a settlement which will reduce the total amount of Bielema’s buyout.
5 By how much, who knows?
*Kevin says: This team is getting worse, this has to be leaving our ad with no choice of what to do? Correct?
2. From everything I’m told a decision has not been made.
3. The 80 yard TD drive JSJ directed against Bama’s top defense could change things.
4. I’ve said for weeks now that a QB problem is killing this team.
5. If having a QB that correctly reads the various RPO’s puts life into the offense..
6. A decision to keep Morris would be easier to make.
7. But it looks like JSJ is still the 3rd team QB.
8. If true that’s not going to play well with the fans.
9. The going theory is….
10. That the coaches only have a small package installed for
11. Not enough to start him in an SEC game.
12. But stay tuned.
13. Maybe that will change.
14. The MSU game is big for CCM’s future.
PorkSoda asks: Is there any truth to the rumors regarding the Whitehaven LB’s official visit going south?
*1. The only thing official on this is that the linebacker in question decommitted.
2. Everything else involves internet rumors.
3. A lot of Arkansas fans are saying that his offer was withdrawn because of something that happened during the visit.
4. The player in question says he decommited on his own.
5. He says the rumors about what happened on his visit are false.
6. I’m told that Arkansas did indeed pull his offer.
7. There was a definite reason why.
8. But unless there’s an official comment from the school I can’t go farther than that.
*Sivad says: The Highland Park game didn’t kick off until 7:30 pm in Dallas.
What time did Chad Morris finally make it back to the team hotel in Tuscaloosa, Alabama?
1. Don’t know. Don’t care.
2. I’ve been critical of the head coach for a number of things this season.
3. This complaint isn’t one of them.
4. The night before a game… the game prep is done with almost all coaches.
5. Players are usually told to relax and chill.
6. They don’t need the head coach or their position coaches doing game plan stuff on Friday nights.
7. If Arkansas were winning games this would not be an issue.
8. It’s not why they are losing games.
9. I would say the same thing about Chandler Morris staying in Dallas these past two years to play HS ball.
10. He plays better competition there.
11. His mom is there with him for obvious reasons.
12. If Chad is the coach next year they will both move here.
11. This is only an issue because Morris is not winning.,
12. If you want to complain about that… find a real issue.
13. Like Play calling.
14. Or the game of QB roulette Morris keeps playing.
*notsofastmyfriend wants to know: Is there a point differential in this game that is unacceptable? 50 points? 60 points? 100?
1. Unacceptable is in the eye of the beholder.
2. What matters is what’s unacceptable to the athletic director.
3. Alabama may be the best team in the country.
4. The Hogs lost to them by 42 points.
5. The second half was a 7-7 football game.
6. So none of the point differentials you listed as possibly unacceptable actually happened.
*Großer Kriegschwein (This guy) asks: Mike, is JSJ’s performance indicative of Morris’ inability to evaluate players prior to them taking the field? Also, is there any reason you can see to reduce the touches for Boyd and Whaley when they accounted for 100 yards on about 25 carries? Or is he saving them for next week?
a. The running game has been reduced the past two weeks
b. because Auburn and Bama are really really good at stopping the run.
1. The JSJ thing is puzzling.
2. Both Morris and Joe Craddock have been saying all the way back to August camp..
3. That Jones moves the offense in practice
4. Looks like they were afraid to pull the trigger on him.
5. To me there was no reason not to play him in the 4th quarter against Auburn.
6. They might have have put him in sooner against Bama
7. If he had played well against Auburn.
8. They supposedly know this offense and what they need from a QB.
9. Looks like he should have been in the mix from the start.
10. If they had done that…
11. He might not be playing with that limited package the coaches mentioned today.
*johnson9996 wants to know:Will Arkansas ever be the best in the West or will mediocrity be the best we can hope for?
1. Arkansas will win not just the West but the SEC
2. I don’t know how long it will take.
3. But everything needed for an outstanding FB program is in place…you just need the right guy to lead it.
4. A history lesson here.
4. For the first 15 years Arkansas football was awful
5. Then a guy named Hogo Bezdek came along..
6. … and Arkansas was the best team in the south in 1909-1910.
7. Fast forward 50 years and Frank Broyles came along.
8. In the decade of the 60’s…
9. Arkansas won one national championship..
10… and came real close to winning two more.
11. Look…The fan base is awesome.
12. The campus is great.
13. NWA is a the best place ot live in the entire SEC.
14. Just hire the right coach.
Here’s a baseball question:
*peakhog asks: Will we ever get cup holders at Baum-Walker?
1. Ever covers a long period of time so I would say yes, at some point it will happen.
2. But an athletic department official tells me there have been no discussions about that to date.
3. Sounds like a great idea though.
*Jumpty says:College baseball has really gained traction and fans over the past few years. But has taken off with Arkansas probably more so than any other program. Can you speak as to why that is? Is it the winning culture? Do Arkansans just love baseball more? Is it the facilities? All the above?
1. I think it started with the facilitiy.
2. JFB did his homework when Baum was built.
3. The concourse is awesome.
4. Lots of fans who have seats watch from the concourse because they like to move around visit while the game is going on.
5. But DVH has a lot to do with it too.
6. He and Norm DeBriyn have put a lot of players into the major leagues.
7. These are exciting kids to watch.
8. The recruiting is a huge factor.
9. Finally Baum Walker was built to host regionals.
10.Lately that place has been a launching pad to the CWS.
11. And Hog fans love to go to Omaha.
12. Most fans think it’s just a matter of time until Arkansas wins the CWS.
13. All of that draws fans.
14. but think about it.
15 Baseball is the only major sport on campus that has been in the top 5 over the last few years.
16. That’s how you fill a stadium
17. Get yourself into the top 10. Top 5 is even better.
Back to football:
*holman24 says: Been hearing that Clemson had to dumb down Morris’s offense and SMU isnt using many of his recruits. So is the problem that his offensive scheme is to complicated or is it the coach himself and wont deter from his offense even when he doesn’t have the talent?
1. That’s a really good question.
2. Don’t think that SMU has any relavance to this issue.
3. Sonny Dykes runs the air raid offense.
4. Not surprising that he would want his own players
5. Not guys Morris recruited.
6. The only thing I’ve heard about Clemson…
7. …is that they aren’t running Morris’ offense anymore.
8. Is it too complicated?
8a. Mississippi State runs it.
8b. It worked great for them last year.
9. Looks like the problem is having QBs who can not run it.
10. JSJ did not look confused to me.
11. The question now is…
12. Will Morris ever start him? and if so…
13. Does he continue to improve running it with more experience.
14. Hicks and Starkel have gone backwards with more experience.
And now, on to basketball:
*The_Bionic_Pig asks: What are the chances a Arkansas vs Memphis Basketball series comes to fruition?
It was gaining some major traction last year.
1. Mike Anderson was definitely interested.
2. Gotta believe Musselman would be too.
3. Memphis is an important recruiting area for Arkansas
4. Playing those guys would hype up the interest.
Here’s a basketball question from me to me.
*Mike asks Mike: Since you were at the second basketball exhibition game Friday night what are your thoughts on that game?
1. Southwestern Oklahoma State, a division II school, played really scrappy defense.
2. They were determined not to let Isaiah Joe beat them with three point shots.
3. They did that. They shut him out.
4. But others stepped up.
5. Like Mason Jones and Adrio Bailey
6. Those two combined for 37 points.
7. Eric Musselman pointed out…
8. That Joe did a good job of not getting frustrated…
9. ..and try to force things.
10. He had three assists.
11. Three rebounds
12. Two steals.
13. Arkansas just 5 of 23 on threes but wins by 27 points.
14. That’s versitility.
15. The competition is about to get tougher.
16. But I like what I’m seeing so far.
That’s wraps another edition of Ask Mike. See ya next Monday everybody.