Cole Kelley? Connor Noland? Ty Storey? Gerry Bohanon? Arkansas may have options at QB
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.
Let’s get one thing out in the open right now for the people who usually just read the headline and don’t bother to click the story but decided to this time because it has Gerry Bohanon’s name in it: Earle High’s 4-star quarterback has not committed to Arkansas. Repeat: Bohanon has not committed to Arkansas.
Doesn’t mean he won’t. In fact, based off the way he has been on social media lately, the impression is Arkansas remains in his favor. He met new Arkansas coach Chad Morris for the first time earlier this week and said Morris is the right man for the job.
Bohanon has suggested he won’t commit until Dec. 20, the date for the new early signing period.
In the meantime, Morris has options. Cole Kelley is a returning starter and fits better than some want to give him credit for. Ty Storey was a 4-star recruit and an in-state guy, too. Daulton Hyatt is a dual-threat, 3-star recruit who redshirted this past season. Connor Noland is a 4-star, pocket passer from Greenwood High who is also set to play baseball for the Diamond Hogs. All four are possible. But given the way things stand right now …
Right now. Noland may not make it to campus, by the way, either. He is more highly touted in baseball than football, even, and if he is selected high enough in the MLB Amateur Draft this spring, it might be hard to turn down. Still, it’s odd how overlooked or forgotten he’s become with the hubbub about Bohanon.
But let’s be straight about one thing: It’s a great problem for Arkansas and Morris to have.
Arkansas checks in at …
This is a bit of a slow time at Arkansas right now. Sort of. Recruiting is huge, but with no Hogs football prepping for a bowl, there is no on-field news. Yeah, there are new coaches and still a defensive coordinator to be named, but the on-staff guys are mostly out and about recruiting. And the DC, well, he isn’t even hired yet, nor has there been much of a sniff about the position.
That leaves basketball, the major sport actually in season at Arkansas right now. The Razorbacks are off this whole week but head to North Little Rock on Saturday to play Troy. Only three nonconference games remain for the Hogs before SEC play. Arkansas is unlikely to lose any of them. Very unlikely.
So, those two things combined, figure it’s as good a time as any to take stock where Arkansas sits compared to the other teams in the SEC. As such, a miniature power poll. Not SEC Country’s official one but mine. The guy who will take SEC basketball over SEC football all day, every day.
1. Texas A&M — Lone loss came by 3 to an Arizona team that, on paper, is one of the best five in the country.
2. Kentucky — Way too many close games for this to be a completely dominant Kentucky team.
3. Florida — At 6-3, it isn’t sexy (and losing to Loyola, Ill., is bad), but still loads of talent.
4. Alabama — Like Florida, record isn’t attractive at just 7-3. Unlike Florida, all three losses have been close and two to great teams.
5. Arkansas — Better than anticipated and can out-athletic almost any team.
6. Tennessee — Hugely overachieving so far but doing so in a fashion that suggests it’s for real.
7. Mississippi State — The 8-1 record is tied for best in SEC, but only played one good team and lost.
8. Georgia — Beat St. Mary’s (plus). Lost to San Diego State (minus). Completely unclear what this team will be.
9. Auburn — Auburn similar to Georgia. Gaudy record but complete unknown.
10. Missouri — Not the same team without Michael Porter Jr.
11. South Carolina — Not as bad a drop-off as expected but definitely in the bottom middle.
12. LSU — Not terrible, which is a positive after the last two years.
13. Ole Miss — To some, this is the SEC’s biggest disappointment. To me, it’s more of “Uh, yeah, they’re not very good, obviously.”
14. Vanderbilt — Yeesh. Worst Vandy team in a decade, seems like. At least.
Tweets and the like
• How little went on Tuesday in Razorbacks Nation? They’re doing this on the Bo Mattingly Show. Whatever “this” is.
Intern Pete (@peter_roulie) with a Chad Morris acoustic cover:
"Four Wins Is Never Enough"
Check out the podcast for more. pic.twitter.com/tnLcaLRz1X
— Bo Mattingly (@SportsTalkwBo) December 13, 2017
• Speaking of Bo, there is a reason no outlet in Arkansas has reported what you see in this tweet. Just a FYI.
Low: There’s been talk about John Chavis going to Arkansas. I talked to people close to him, and I don’t think that’s going to happen, but you never say never.
— Bo Mattingly (@SportsTalkwBo) December 12, 2017
• This is the biggest news on the beat. The best basketball writer in the state is off to take a corporate gig. See ya at the bars, buddy.
Wrote about some personal news at the end of my column: I’ve accepted a position at Walmart’s corporate office and my last day at the paper is Friday. Really enjoyed covering the Razorbacks and interacting with a lot of you. Been a fun 17 months!
— Jimmy Carter (@NWAJimmy) December 12, 2017
Skip Breakfast? C’mon. It’s too important. Catch up with previous versions here.