After two consecutive Cotton Bowl trips, Arkansas wasn’t forecast to be a Top 10 team in 1990, but the Razorbacks weren’t supposed to tumble quite so embarrassingly the way they did when Jack Crowe was suddenly tapped at the last moment to replace the successful and departing Ken Hatfield. What we saw, however, was a sudden fall from grace after six years of winning under Hatfield that is mirrored by much of what is happening at Arkansas these days in the post-Bobby Petrino departure. Let's be clear, Hatfield and Petrino are as different as night and day, but both were completely in charge of their programs, and the players knew it.
The loss to Louisiana-Monroe stings, but it also means the Arkansas Razorbacks are through looking backward at the Bobby Petrino era and will now look forward to the remainder of the season and whatever lies beyond, which will no doubt include a new coach.
So far six Arkansas football players have been arrested this spring, including five allegedly involved in taking property that isn't theirs. They have nobody to blame but themselves. Bobby Petrino, John L. Smith and the NCAA aren't at fault for their stupidity.
Former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino and Jessica Dorrell exchanged thousands of phone calls, text and multimedia messages between September and April 5, including on game days during the 2011 football season. Documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request provided more detail of the inappropriate relationship between the two that ultimately led to Petrino’s firing. Athletic Director Jeff Long said Petrino and Dorrell, hired into the football office on March 28, were together a “significant” amount of time, something the records confirm.
Arkansas paid out more than $360,000 in bonuses to football coaches and administrative staff for a Cotton Bowl appearance and victory in January. Payouts to football employees ranged ranged from $1,053 for an administrative assistant to $75,000 for head coach Bobby Petrino. According to a list obtained through a Freedom of Information request, former defensive coordinator Willy Robinson earned a bonus of $27,083 despite not coaching in the game.
All-American wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham has made his choice. Well, he’s made his choice of when to announce what college he’ll attend. Green-Beckham, who is believed to be choosing either Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma or Texas, is scheduled to be part of signing day coverage on ESPN-U.
The Cotton Bowl matchup of 10-2 teams Friday night is the only postseason game featuring the Big 12 vs. the SEC, which expands next season with the addition of outgoing Big 12 members Texas A&M and Missouri. No other non-BCS bowl had both teams ranked even in the top 15 of the Bowl Championship Series standings, much less the top eight.
Anyone that saw Arkansas quarterback Tyler Wilson play this year came away impressed with his toughness. Razorback coaches, teammates, opposing players and coaches have noted the way that Wilson seemed to be able to absorb hits and keep playing.
The Cotton Bowl is sticking with its prime-time spot on a Friday night again next year.
Cotton Bowl officials and Fox Sports announced Monday that the 2013 game will be played on Jan. 4, the third consecutive year the game at Cowboys Stadium will be played on a Friday night after New Year's Day.
Greg Childs doesn't think there's anything special about the way he has behaved this season. The Arkansas wide receiver just smiles when he's asked about his on-the-field struggles and downplays the remarkably positive attitude he's shown while recovering from last season's knee injury.
Not surprisingly, the Southeastern Conference is well represented in bowl games this year. From the LSU-Alabama title game to the Mississippi State-Wake Forest matchup on Dec. 30, there are plenty of options. Besides the BCS title game, the Cotton Bowl matchup between Arkansas (10-2) and Kansas State (10-2) features Top 10 teams.
Arkansas isn’t in a BCS bowl this season, but is still getting a Top 10 matchup. This year’s Cotton Bowl will feature the sixth-ranked Razorbacks (10-2) and No. 8 Kansas State (10-2). Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Jan. 6 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Arkansas (10-2)is headed to either the Cotton Bowl or Capital One Bowl. There are positives to each, but the bottom line remains the Razorbacks need to win no matter where they wind up this bowl season.
Arkansas is out of the running for the BCS title and a BCS bowl. That much we know. There is still a bit to clear up regarding bowl destination and bowl opponent for the No. 8 Razorbacks (10-2, 6-2). Below we look at projected scenarios:
WHY ARKANSAS WON: A mix of opportunistic play-calling and crucial defensive stops helped the Razorbacks overcome a rough special teams day. Quarterback Ryan Mallett threw for three touchdowns, while running back Knile Davis continued his late-season surge and picked up 152 yards on 30 carries and a touchdown. Davis and Broderick Green combined for nine consecutive runs late to milk the clock and protect the Razorbacks’ lead with 55,808 watching at War Memorial Stadium. Arkansas clinched just its fifth 10-win regular season since 1979 and only its second since 1989.
Regional and national projections see the Razorbacks as a team headed for the Cotton Bowl in Dallas Cowboys Stadium. That would be two games there this year and a second against a Big 12 opponent. Arkansas and Texas A&M played the second game in a 10-year deal earlier this year. Arkansas won 24-17 on Oct. 9.