FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas’ medical staff quickly put up a medical tent on the sideline at AT&T Stadium when quarterback Austin Allen came off the field with a minor chest injury last Saturday.
Allen went into the tent briefly before with the Hogs’ defense on the field before emerging moments later and retaking the field without missing a snap. It made for a somewhat bizarre scene and drew reaction from several fans on social media during the game. But the tent isn’t some sort of gimmick or result of paranoia. According to coach Bret Bielema, it serves a useful purpose to the Razorbacks.
Bielema said Thursday the tent allows the medical staff a more efficient way of examining and/or treating an injured player in a case when they would otherwise have to go to the locker room. The tent can’t be used at every venue. Bielema said it depends on the size of the sideline.
“What we can do is put them in that tent and you probably should have someone shielded from what might be seen,” Bielema said. “If you have a player that’s injured and you want to take a look at it sometimes you literally have to take pads off, pants off, whatever. I think there’s probably going to be some ruling. It’s a new thing that’s popping up all over the place, so it might be something that grows or disappears.”
The tent design was reportedly made and patented by Alabama.
Arkansas medical tent is up … BTW, that's the same tent that Alabama designed and has the patent on.
— Christopher Walsh (@WritingWalsh) September 25, 2016
Here’s a look at how it works: