All the talk about Arkansas defensive coordinator Robb Smith potentially being on his way out next season and we’ve all overlooked what a bigger exit would be.
As much stink as Smith got this year, Enos, most of the time, received a similar quantity in praise. Deservedly. In just his second year as offensive coordinator, Enos took an offense helmed by a first-year quarterback and almost no experience at running back and transformed his quarterback to second in the SEC in nearly every passing category and guided his running back to the SEC’ rushing title.
Now, no one is saying Enos is leaving. But you have to think, with two years of pretty stunning offensive outputs, Enos is getting plenty of looks elsewhere. And not just looks for OC jobs. He is a former head coach — he was overseeing Central Michigan’s program when he took the Arkansas gig — and his résumé has only been strengthened since his arrival in Fayetteville.
What happens if he goes? Plenty of names have been thrown out as a possible Smith replacement. And with the Arkansas defense changing to a 3-4 next year, options are wide-ranging. But depending on the day — and exactly who you ask — Smith may or may not be going. Enos on the other hand …
The question comes down to what coach Bret Bielema wants. It’s his team, after all. He would want someone who runs a “pro-style” offense (whatever that phrase even means anymore). It’d probably be a requirement that the offensive coordinator prefers bigger offensive lines, which means, most of the time, less agile ones. Enos did run some clever plays here and there, but Arkansas was hardly what one would call an exotic offense. Not in this day and age.
The offensive players on the roster, as it currently stands, would benefit most from a more traditional look, anyway. Rawleigh Williams III and Devwah Whaley would succeed best in that system. Austin Allen isn’t about to take off and run, so that part is out. And Arkansas is depth-laden at tight end with options. This when very few teams run even one old-school tight end, never mind two like Bielema’s offenses have almost always preferred in his days as a head coach.
No guarantee Enos leaves. I don’t even mean to suggest it’s a thing that’s been discussed. But the idea was brought up earlier Tuesday, and it got me to thinking.
Arkansas fans should hope, though, thinking is all that’s done with it. Enos is a great fit where he is right now.
Hogs hoops is rolling
The last time Arkansas basketball was this good in nonconference play …
You don’t really want me to finish that sentence. But let’s say that team went 2-14 in SEC play that year.
This Razorbacks team won’t do that. No way, no how. It does remain to be seen just how good coach Mike Anderson’s team is going to be this year, though. Arkansas’ win against North Dakota State on Tuesday left some things to be desired, but it was the team’s 10th in 11 games so far and only one nonconference game remains before Florida comes calling to start SEC play.
And, apparently, Arkansas is impressing more nationally than inside the state lines, where a common refrain is “Yeah, well, let’s just see.” CBS Sports had the Razorbacks pegged as a 6-seed in its latest Bracketology.
A win against Sam Houston State on Thursday and another against the Gators on Dec. 29 and then maybe, finally, the non-believers will convert.
Hogs baseball is, well, not rolling
Believe it or not, it’s almost baseball season over at Baum Stadium.
Yes, even after an absolute mess of a season last season, baseball at Arkansas still matters. It matters a lot, frankly, where the Razorbacks are one of the top 20 programs in the country.
They are not, however, one of the top 20 teams. Not right now. They’re not even one of the top 40.
Arkansas was unranked in the Collegiate Baseball Preseason Top 40 when it was released Tuesday. The Diamond Hogs were among the few dozen on the outside that received votes. Six SEC teams cracked the top 25, four of them were No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 and No. 6.
Arkansas isn’t near that top 4. The Razorbacks could be with those next two, though, depending on how the pitching shakes out. It will bear watching in the early parts of the season.
We’ll have a deeper baseball preview in the coming weeks.
- Allen was ‘pissed’ when Frank Ragnow joked with him that the center was going to leave early for the NFL Draft. No one can be happier than Allen that the early morning text message was in good fun.
- With a logjam at running back, carries might be hard to come by for T.J. Hammonds next season. So, Arkansas is going to try him all over the place in 2017, writes our Trent Shadid.
- Former Arkansas guard and current Houston Rockets pest Patrick Beverly calls himself the ‘best defender in the league,‘ in this piece from Calvin Watkins. I don’t think he’s wrong.