Arkansas preps for NCAA Tournament, Seton Hall with open practice, meeting media

Eric Bolin

With your bacon, have some Hogs for Breakfast. It’s SEC Country’s weekday column and roundup on all things Arkansas. Opinion, numbers, inane babble and more! And now with ironic exclamation points. There is no place like it on the Web.

The Arkansas basketball team arrived in Greenville, S.C., on Wednesday ready to roll in their first game of the NCAA Tournament against Seton Hall.

The eighth-seeded Razorbacks get the ninth-seeded Pirates on Friday at 12:30 p.m. (CT) on TNT. They were busy with planning for that game Wednesday. Coach Mike Anderson’s team held a practice at Furman University as a penultimate prep session.

Both Arkansas and Seton Hall, along with the other six teams in Greenville, will meet with the assembled media Thursday before practices inside Bon Secours Wellness Arena. Seton Hall has media availability first at 11:20 a.m.; Arkansas goes at 12:50 p.m. The Razorbacks practice, by the way, is at 1:30 p.m. local time. Those in Greenville are free to watch as all practices are open to the public.

Racking up the commits

The past 48 hours or so have been excellent for Arkansas recruiting heads.

Coach Bret Bielema received commits from tight end Luke Ford and defensive back Byron Hanspard II on Wednesday and Thursday. Both are 4-star high-school players and give Arkansas four commits as part of the Class of 2018. All four, including quarterback Connor Noland and linebacker Bumper Pool, are of the 4-star variety.

SEC Country Arkansas’ recruiting writer Trent Shadid has the details on both Hanspard and Ford here. Not a bad start to the next class for the Razorbacks.

Reed still has a shot

Dominique Reed’s two seasons at Arkansas yielded, really, just about six games’ worth of high-quality play. But in those six games, or so, Reed showed flashes he could be an absolute star.

Now that his career is over with the Razorbacks, his dreams of playing in the NFL come next. Reed wasn’t invited to the NFL combine, but he did get a chance to showcase his skills Wednesday at Arkansas’ pro day.

Arkansas Razorbacks-Arkansas football-Dominique Reed-SEC bowl game
Former Arkansas wide receiver Dominique Reed

Our Jason Kersey writes that Reed’s 4.38-second 40-yard-dash and 40-inch vertical leap made for the most impressive day of anyone who participated Wednesday.

Reed’s production and lack of commitment while at Arkansas make him a long shot to make an NFL roster. But those who watched him shine in 2016, and based off his day Wednesday, he might be giving himself a better chance than initially thought.

Bielema always having a good time

With all of the chippiness that took place near the end of the Kentucky-Arkansas SEC title game on Sunday, nearly everyone voiced some kind of opinion.

The Razorbacks football coach included.

Bielema explained the tweet, which can be found below, Wednesday during Arkansas’ pro day. He said it was in good fun and he meant nothing negative about it. Mostly, he saw his old quarterback Brandon Allen, current Jaguars QB and Fayetteville High grad, mention the physicality, so he followed up.

The remarks earned him plenty of support in Razorbacks Country but drew concern elsewhere. But, like always, Bielema was doing his usual — kidding around. Ultimately, no big deal. Moving on to spring football.

Ahead of things

Arkansas takes a 14-4 overall record into its SEC-opening series against Mississippi State this weekend.

Coach Dave Van Horn’s Diamond Hogs team will enter the weekend with a tie for the best record in the SEC West.

Of course, no one in the SEC has played a conference game yet, so take that with a grain of salt. By the time Sunday night arrives, though, Arkansas will have played its first three. Mississippi State visits Baum Stadium for a three-game set Friday, Saturday and Sunday to open both teams’ SEC season.

Arkansas (14-4) won just two of its 10 series against SEC opponents last season and will enter Friday with an 11-game conference losing streak. The Razorbacks have won six of their last seven this season, though, and match up rather well with the Bulldogs.

The Diamond Hogs completed a two-game sweep of Alcorn State with an 11-3 win on Wednesday.


Yee-Haw! Today in Arkansas

Have you seen the movie “The Green Mile”? There’s a scene in it when death-row prisoner Wild Bill Wharton, played by the awesome Sam Rockwell, urinates through the bars of his cell on the leg of a passing guard (Jeffrey DeMunn). Somewhat funny in the film. Not so funny in real life.

An inmate in the Pulaski County Jail is in serious trouble after throwing a cup of urine at two correctional officers Tuesday night, according to this story in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

Movies are poisoning our minds, I tell ya!

In the meantime, enjoy this clip of Wild Bill. So good.

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