FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — When it became apparent late Saturday afternoon Arkansas’ game with TCU wasn’t going to happen, there were probably a lot of groans. After thinking about it a few minutes, this could be better than good.
Seldom do you hear Razorbacks coach Dave Van Horn or a pitcher complain about an extra day’s rest. If you think about things for a minute, there are some possible benefits for the Hogs with getting all this unexpected delay.
The guess here is Van Horn probably looked at the weather forecast and figured all this out and didn’t have people working too much of an 8 p.m. game Saturday night that was in doubt from about 2 p.m. when the thunderstorms showed up, delaying the start of an elimination game with Arizona and Santa Clara.
Sunday could be a busy day with the Hogs’ game with TCU at 2 p.m. and available on ESPN+ and may be added late to one of the ships in the ESPN fleet or the SEC Network. You can hear all the games on ESPN Arkansas 95.3 in the River Valley, 96.3 in Hot Springs and 104.3 in Harrison-Mountain Home.
Now the Hogs get an extra 18 hours to get pitchers completely rested up, as well as any other players that needed a little more time to get a little more rest for a game they need to win in the winner’s bracket of the regional. There’s just one little nagging thing they have to get over.
If they don’t beat the Horned Frogs they’ll have a couple of other things to figure out because it might get hectic, but you have to like the Hog’s chances. Especially because the game is going to be played at Baum-Walker Stadium.
The Hogs are 31-4 at home this year. That’s a pretty big thing at this point. Which is yet another reason this whole delay thing might work out pretty well. The crowd should be energized and ready to go after a delay. They’ll know exactly how big the game could turn out to be.
Hey, hosting super regionals are expected around here. To get there, they have to win the regional. Not only is it big for the team, but the entire Fayetteville area gets a big economic shot in the arm. Baseball is the biggest revenue-generator for businesses because they have so many more games over the number of days. More night occupancies in hotels and more meals at restaurants.
It’s a big deal. Especially if the Hogs win and set up a championship Monday. The guess here is a lot of people will be calling in too sick to make it in on a Monday and it won’t be from a hangover on a long weekend.
But to set up all this, the Hogs have to get a win Sunday afternoon. It helps set up the pitching with a long, strong outing from Hagen Smith and now the stage is set for well-rested Brady Tygart to play a huge role.
Yeah, it should be a pretty lively bunch Sunday and maybe even crazier Monday … if they are playing to close out the regional.