Arkansas owns the Rebels.
It hasn’t been for long and some years the Razorbacks’ own foibles preclude the game from meaning as much as it should. But, goodness, Hugh Freeze does not have the answer for Bret Bielema right now. He just does not.
The Razorbacks have won three straight against Ole Miss, the last two coming in dramatic, late fashion. The win on Saturday may have saved Arkansas’ season as the Razorbacks were staring an 0-3 SEC start in the face.
The hype’s returned now, though, as it seems fans want to beat Ole Miss more than anyone else on the schedule, save maybe Auburn and Gus Malzahn (yes, Alabama would be nice, but a wanted win over the Crimson Tide is more because they’re so good rather than some deep-seated animosity).
Just look at this sampling from right after the final buzzer.
Hotty Toddy, When's Ole Miss Gonna Beat Somebody!!!!!!!! GO HOGS
— chris bennett (@chrisbennett67) October 16, 2016
Hogs stick a knife in Colonel Reb's ribs again. Wow.
— Pat Forde (@YahooForde) October 16, 2016
Death, taxes and now Arkansas beating Ole Miss
— Edward Aschoff (@AschoffESPN) October 16, 2016
And my favorite two, including the always-reliable “The Arkansas Logo.”
— The Arkansas Logo (@Arkansas_Logo) October 16, 2016
Crashin’ the Gus Bus
Bielema made waves just over a year ago at the Arkansas Kickoff Dinner when he said, “I hate Auburn.” Of course, he was half-joking, half-serious. At the time the perception was he and Malzahn were at odds. Not just at odds, more they had a pure and absolute distaste for each other.
Both have tried to extinguish that fire in the last year-plus, but most folks on both sides believe something lingers there. Especially here in Arkansas, where Malzahn remains perhaps the second-most divisive figure of the past half-century of Razorbacks football.
For the uninitiated, a SparkNotes version:
- Back in 2013, Bielema was less than thrilled with how Malzahn was using some game film.
- Then there was concern on Auburn players potentially faking injuries to stop the clock.
- And, of course, the capper: “I hate Auburn.”
All of this is regardless of how people in Arkansas felt about Malzahn already. Tempers and feelings have cooled and softened over the years, but a large segment of the Razorbacks fan base still can’t stand the guy for what happened during his short tenure at Arkansas. Mitch Mustain, Houston Nutt, parents, local TV people, Malzahn, Frank Broyles. It was the greatest (worst?) drama I can remember in my 32 years of college football.
And this year, with Auburn being better than most of us figured, and Arkansas aiming toward that nine- or 10-win season, the odds of fun this weekend: 99 percent.
Introducing a new section we’ll have at least weekly.
While hardly scientific, online polls are fun. We all do them if the topic sparks our interest. This Breakfast is (supposed to be) fun, too. So, here’s my genius idea: Mix them together!
Every week or so you’ll spot this section. Three things will need your feedback. One will be about Arkansas’ opponent, one will be about the sport in season in general and the third will be random. Sometimes it’ll be another college sport or college team. Sometimes a pro team. Sometimes random movie, music or pop culture things. Go with it. Have a good time. And holler at me.
My order: Webb, Williams, Williams III, Johnson, Pettway, Guice
My likeliest order: 8, 7, 9, 6, 5, 10
The correct order: Bale, Keaton, Kilmer, Affleck, Clooney
In my short history of watching games at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium — three years as a beat writer and about 20 games previously as a spectator — the Hogs’ win over Ole Miss on Saturday provided the loudest sound I can remember. KNWA analyst, and former Arkansas tight end DJ Williams, agreed.
Tom Murphy over at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette is this state’s representative when it comes to voting in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll for football this year. Every week he writes his logic behind his picks. This week’s is interesting.
Bleacher Report’s Barrett Sallee, earlier this year, called Arkansas a fraud. Independent of what you think of that, or what I think of that, he didn’t mind eating a bit of crow online. You’ll have to click and follow the reply thread, but it’s solid. And, for the record, I think the world of Barrett. Good dude. Good writer.
A week ago Monday there was talk Bielema’s future at Arkansas could be in doubt. Sane people dismissed the talk as garbage, but over at Auburn, they’re wondering the same thing about their coach. Even still, according to SB Nation.
- Travis Swanson, Detroit center
Started for Lions at center in 31-28 win over Los Angeles
- Alvin Bailey, Cleveland offensive lineman
Started for Browns in 28-26 loss to Tennessee
- Alex Collins, Seattle running back
Scored first career touchdown, a 2-yarder — his only carry – in Seahawks’ 26-24 win over Atlanta
- Knile Davis, Kansas City running back
- Trey Flowers, New England defensive end
2 tackles in Patriots’ 35-17 victory over Cincinnati
- Hunter Henry, San Diego tight end
Team-high 6 catches for 83 yards and a touchdown (his third straight game with a score) in Chargers’ 21-13 win over Denver
- Darius Philon, San Diego defensive lineman
- Ryan Mallett, Baltimore quarterback
DNP in Ravens’ 27-23 loss to Baltimore
- Brett Goode, Green Bay long snapper
No stats in Packers’ 30-16 loss to Dallas
- Jason Peters, Philadelphia offensive lineman
Started for Eagles in 27-20 loss to Washington
- AJ Derby, New England tight end
Recorded no stats
- Chris Smith, Jacksonville defensive end
- Martrell Spaight, Washington linebacker
3 tackles in Redskins’ win over Philadelphia
- Robert Thomas, New York Giants defensive tackle
1 tackle in Giants’ win over Baltimore
- Jonathan Williams, Buffalo running back
5 carries for 21 yards in Bills’ 45-16 win over San Francisco
- Jarius Wright, Minnesota wide receiver
Vikings were on a bye in Week 6
- Brandon Allen, Jacksonville quarterback
- Sebastian Tretola, Tennessee offensive lineman
- Cobi Hamilton, Pittsburgh wide receiver 2 catches for 36 yards and his first career touchdown in Steelers’ 30-15 loss to Miami