Arkansas athletics/courtesy
Dustin Thomas is the oldest scholarship player on Arkansas' roster.

No one on Arkansas’ roster was even alive last time Hogs won at Florida

Eric Bolin

Arkansas football rules the world of Razorbacks sports. So, with your bacon, have some Hogs for Breakfast and get caught up. It’s SEC Country’s weekday column and roundup on all things Arkansas … especially Arkansas football. Opinion, numbers, inane babble and more! And now with ironic exclamation points! There is no place like it on the web.

Kentucky and Florida. Those two teams have been the class of the SEC — in basketball — for the last 20 years.

Just on the outskirts of that top 2 lingers Arkansas. In the last three years, combined, a strong case could be made that the Razorbacks stand third in that hierarchy. For the first 10 years the Hogs were in the SEC, they were, at worst, second best. There’s just the matter of all that time in-between.

That time includes this nasty stretch Arkansas has endured against Florida. Really, the whole history of the series has been more or less a disaster. In fact, Wednesday night, Arkansas will seek its first win in Gainesville since 1995. For some perspective, no one on Arkansas’ current roster was even born when the Hogs won 94-85 that year.

What’s worse is recent history. Arkansas has just one win total in its last 13 games against the Gators. So, you’ll have to pardon anyone who thinks the Razorbacks, at 2-3, have a “good” chance to go down and beat the 4-1 Gators this year.

Of course, it doesn’t mean it can’t happen. Just a stretch. A win would do Arkansas a ton of good. Not only would the Razorbacks return to .500 in SEC play, but it would keep the top of the conference — at which Florida currently is in second — from extending that lead. Such a hole would be mighty tough to extricate from.

T.J. Smith has loads of potential

McTelvin Agim is a given on the Arkansas defensive line. Everyone else? Jobs are open.

T.J. Smith, Briston Guidry and Austin Capps all return with regular rotation experience from 2017. All three had capable moments. All three had moments of disarray.

Their positional unit is the one on defense that needs to make the biggest jump. If one of those three can provide more consistency, Agim can be freed up to take more advantage of his raw talent.

Our bet is the jump comes from Smith. It doesn’t have to be a huge jump. But even a slight move upward will go a long way in helping Arkansas’ defense become better than 13th in the SEC.

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ICYMI

  • The quarterback position under Chad Morris may not change in obvious ways to laypersons. But the truth is, based off numbers, the QBs are going to get a lot more work than they did under Bret Bielema.
  • Anyone who watched the Arkansas football team the last couple years knows the Razorbacks could use some dominant players on the offensive line. Ryan Winkel could be one. He’s high on the Hogs and visiting soon.
  • The ceiling is the floor. Never have figured out what that phrase means. But John Nabors and I tackle the question of what the ceiling is for Morris at Arkansas in the Full Tilt Boogie podcast.
  • The Arkansas baseball team was ranked in the top 5 in D1Baseball.com’s preseason poll. In the three major polls released so far, the Hogs are top 10 in all of them. SEC Country’s preseason Power Poll also will make its debut next month.

Tweets and the like

• It was an historic day Monday for Arkansas track and field, nay NCAA Track and Field.

• Hudson Henry is the younger brother of former Arkansas tight end Hunter and current Arkansas linebacker Hayden. Not coincidentally, Michigan just hired former Razorbacks offensive coordinator Dan Enos, who is familiar with the family.

• Episode 4, y’all.

Skip Breakfast? C’mon. It’s too important. Catch up with previous versions here.