Remember the good old days? No, not when Frank Broyles, Houston Nutt, or Bobby Petrino had Arkansas Razorbacks football in the national spotlight.
Think back to a time when you had to put on your best clothes, laden your hair with the good gel, and actually take more than one shower in the same day.
I’m referring to homecoming dance night. Now do you remember? The obligatory annual gathering of purple shirts, pink carnations, and every school staff member criticizing the inappropriateness of modern youth.
For many it was where you were permanently defined eitheras a lover or a loser based purely upon the song selections by an elite group of deejays — two of your school’s finest seniors from the year before and a 45-year-old man that acts like his job is more critical than national security.
This weekend’s game against Tulsa is a metaphor of the 2018 Arkansas football season and the aforementioned anxiety attack held after a Friday night’s game.
Up to this point, the sunglasses wearing trio has only played up-tempo music of which you have no moves., no rhythm, and no chance in which to showcase your talent.
Then suddenly, right around 10:45 PM, there is this one slow song that begins to play, and the Hogs had better jump on it like it is the last Frank Sinatra [Ed Sheeran for you younger readers] song of the season.
While some were hoping to see Ty Storey back from his concussion protocol, Tommy Craft reports Storey will not be doing “The Charleston” this weekend.
Instead, Rakeem Boyd and Devwah Whaley will have to do their best versions of the running man to rack up yards against the Hurricane defense. It is possible as Tulsa has given up over 100-yards three times to individual rushers this season.
This week, the top question has become who will replace Storey as the starting quarterback? Andy Hodges gives Connor Noland his nod of approval as the player Morris should utilize to call the signals. Nate Olson also extended his opinion.
Do you agree with their perspectives?
On the opposite side of the ball (no pun intended), Arkansas must stiffen up from the meltdown that they suffered in the second half of the game against Ole Miss.
For the Razorbacks defense, stopping redshirt freshman quarterback Seth Boomer (ironic name, I know) will be key. Boomer, who has stepped in for an injured Luke Skipper, may have not played very well in their loss to South Florida, however, he had unimpressive numbers but 227-yards in a separate defeat to Houston.
In summary, for those of you that in fact had a steady date, the Hogs must play better defense than your girlfriend’s father who suddenly showed up to chaperone the dance, his daughter, and any preconceived aspirations you possessed for after the gala.
In case you weren’t nervous enough in the stag line, knowing that at any moment you could gird up enough courage to brave the floor to one of those fast songs leaves a lump in your throat.
The Arkansas special teams are a constant reminder that at any moment you can transition from what you think is looking suave to becoming the new Elaine Benes with awkward kicks and thumbs-only tackles, not to mention a difficult Monday morning.
Dust off those dancing shoes, Razorbacks fans. This will not be an easy win, yet we will not sit the entire season with our backs to the wall, staring at the punchbowl, and wondering if there is anyone left that will allow us to cut a little rug on our own terms.
The slow song is playing, and Tulsa is that little gal willing to oblige to your extended hand. Enjoy, and for the love of all things Razorback, please, no one cut in.
Last week proved tough to me, and I should have gone with my initial feeling of putting Auburn on an upset alert. I refrained, and my lowly 3–3 performance dropped me to 51–14 on the season. This week looks to be more promising.
- Auburn at Ole Miss – $50-million may sooth some of the burn from the hot seat, but it won’t provide a victory. Rebels by 3 in what some would have classified as an upset at the beginning of the season.
- (1) Alabama at Tennessee – Tide moves easily in a circular motion by 24
- Memphis at Missouri – Tigers by 11
- (22) Mississippi State at (5) LSU – The Tiger defense is too much for the hot and cold Bulldogs. LSU by 14
- Vanderbilt at (14) Kentucky – The Wildcats get back to business. Kentucky by 25.
Follow me on ‘Twitter’: @PeterMorganWPS