SEC Country file
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema is giving it everything he has.

Sorry, angry Arkansas fans — Hogs still have their football coach, athletic director

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.

Arkansas = meltdown? Not yet

If you were to ask the most venomous in the fan base, they would tell you it’s already happened.

Well, it hasn’t. But Saturday was bad. Someone looking for positives could find them, but they were only in stretches. They came on individual plays. Occasional. Rare. The most hyped thing from the 41-9 loss to Alabama that came from Arkansas football was quarterback Cole Kelley. His below-average starting debut was the focal point of the state’s largest newspaper on Sunday. Glimmers of hope, it was suggested.

That’s what Arkansas clings to at the midway mark of the season. The big-hoss redshirt freshman quarterback who didn’t completely stink is the harbinger of glory days to come. Or, at least, he is the herald of not completely stinking.

And, really, at this point, that’s all the Arkansas fan base is asking for:

“Please don’t be terrible.”

Arkansas needs to go up-tempo

One way the Razorbacks could help themselves in the short term is to move faster. Kelley was a fan of it Saturday, he said, and Arkansas had success — in small doses — doing so.

Now, this needs a pre-note of caution: Arkansas’ best offensive success came largely against Alabama’s second-team members. So, this isn’t a guarantee going forward. It’s just a glimpse at what worked on a particular day against a particular team.

This from our guy Trent Shadid:

Arkansas netted 149 yards on 21 plays, an average of 7 yards per play, when it didn’t huddle. The Hogs were equally effective with the run and pass in such situations, too.

Kelley was 7 of 11 for 88 yards in the no huddle. That included a 46-yard connection with wide receiver Jordan Jones in the second quarter, Arkansas’ longest play of the game.

The Razorbacks rushed for 45 yards on 6 carries in no huddle. That’s an average of 7.5 yards per carry on a night when the Hogs averaged 0.9 yards per carry for the game.

Will that continue?

Jeff Long still is the athletic director … for now

I was driving home from Alabama on Sunday after covering the Razorbacks-Crimson Tide game, paying a little attention to the goings-on in college football. And for about an hour, it looked like maybe Arkansas would be in line for a new athletic director.

When it didn’t happen, I could almost hear the collective “Aw, man” all the way from about Jasper, Ala. CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd had tweeted around midday that Long was considered a favorite — not *the* favorite, but *a* favorite — to become Nebraska’s newest athletic director. The Omaha World-Herald had been the one to initially suggest it and Dodd credited the paper, accordingly. But about an hour later, an announcement came that the hire was not going to be Long.

Now, I don’t understand why so many in the Arkansas fan base want Long to be out (the notion he’s a “Yankee” that doesn’t “get it” is patently ridiculous), but it seems like a decent chunk of folks think it’s time. For whatever reason.

At any rate, it isn’t happening now. And, honestly, Arkansas fans, don’t hope for it happening soon, either. The man knows what he’s doing.

ICYMI

  • When Missouri and Vanderbilt are the only teams the mass majority of folks who cover the SEC think you’re better than, then, yeah, the meltdown is nearing. Arkansas checked in 12th out of the 14 teams this week in SEC Country’s Power Poll.
  • Arkansas commit Bumper Pool had a solid weekend. You can see what he and others did in their various high school and junior college games over the weekend in Shadid’s weekly piece.
  • A national writer thinks Bielema could be fired in early November. Here is a link.
  • Someone took to Wikipedia to make Washington State coach Mike Leach the current Razorbacks head man.

Tweets and the like

• The Arkansas basketball team does not lack for self-confidence. It was definitely true last season with Dusty Hannahs and company. Hannahs is now gone, but Daryl Macon and Jaylen Barford — two potential All-SEC guards — have a year under their belts. So …

• The Dodd tweet that had some in Arkansas overly excited.

• Your friendly reminder Twitter is actually a really terrible place. Not sure I’d put it up with it as well as Arkansas players and coaches and the administration do. Nameless/faceless people talk big. This is from Arkansas defensive tackle Bijhon Jackson, who is a joy of a human to be around in the little I have.

• Don’t forget about the Fall World Series out at Baum Stadium. A freshman went 5 for 5 on Sunday.

• Arkansas’ D3 hockey team kept up the decent start to the season this past weekend.

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