The PGA Tour's 2012 season thus far — through the California and Florida swings — has been as thrilling as any we can recall. Yet, it took Sunday to remind us that none of it really matters unless Tiger Woods is playing like Tiger Woods.
The Southeastern Conference is the unquestioned king of college football these days. Six straight national championships will do that for you. On the court, however, the SEC is fighting for respect. The conference tournament starts Thursday in New Orleans. It'll be yet another chance for the rest of the SEC to show that the league is more than Kentucky and a bunch of other teams.
Anthony Downing scored 20 points off the bench and Caleb Patterson and Kyle Weems combined for 32 points to lead Missouri State to a 68-60 victory over the UALR men’s basketball team on Saturday evening. The Bears shot 54.1 percent from the field and outscored the Trojans 22-to-9 at the free-throw line to snap a three-game losing streak.
Teams don't show all they've got in tune-up games. Most folks who pay attention to college football would agree that’s the case. Doesn’t mean Coach Bobby Petrino wants to talk about it. In fact, Petrino did his best to shoot that idea down — with humor! — Thursday when a local TV personality asked about further opening up the playbook in the coming weeks.
By defensive coordinator Willy Robinson’s count the Razorbacks have missed seven opportunities for turnovers through two games. That includes defensive backs dropping potential interceptions or tipping the ball up instead of coming down with it. Robinson further estimated two of those could have resulted in touchdowns.
Bobby Petrino doesn't sound ready to break out the two-headed quarterback system, though he's used one in the past during his time at Louisville. But sophomore Brandon Mitchell's play against New Mexico in the second half on Saturday gave Petrino and his staff -- as well as the finicky Arkansas fan base -- enough confidence that the team has a quality backup behind starter Tyler Wilson.
We're back with our second week of ArkansasSports360.com "Confidential," our early-in-the-week roundtable about what we saw over the weekend and our impressions as Arkansas started the season with an easy and expected 51-7 win over Missouri State. We touch on the most talked-about topic after the opener, which is where the Arkansas running game stands after totaling just 102 yards in the win. Also, LSU carried the SEC banner well against Oregon, Arkansas has another relatively easy test ahead this week in Little Rock, and the NFL opens the season on Thursday night.
Arkansas played a great game, but if we are to hold Arkansas to championship expectations, we must also have championship standards. Arkansas still has a lot of work to do. But then again, so does everyone else.
Joe Adams has been named SEC Special Teams Player of the Week. Adams tied an SEC record by returning two punts for touchdowns. The senior from Little Rock took Missouri State’s first punt of the game back 61 yards for a score before turning in a 69-yard return to the end zone in the third quarter.
Too busy enjoying the weekend to, you know, read about Arkansas' 51-7 victory against Missouri State? Below is a list of what you missed in Razorback coverage and above is a slideshow you can watch (to keep from reading):
WHAT WE LEARNED: Hard to take away much from a game like this, but Arkansas is to be commended for doing what had to be done. There was little suspense to this game, and the Razorbacks dominated in every phase. It appears at least 10 freshmen will contribute something for Arkansas this year. That’s the number that played against Missouri State and some like Kody Walker, Marquel Wade and defensive end Trey Flowers had memorable debuts. Arkansas wasn’t perfect, but didn’t miss it by much.
What Joe Adams did on Saturday against the Bears can’t be dismissed as routine. His SEC record-tying two punt returns for a touchdown aren’t guaranteed, even when the opponent is a team making six figures to provide a guaranteed victory. Adams, who is also a big-time threat at receiver, joked with me this summer he prefers special team scores to receiving touchdowns because punt returns “look better on TV.” His returns, which covered 61 and 67 yards, were good enough to earn Adams the No. 7 spot on ESPN SportsCenter’s Plays of the Day.
Tyler Wilson threw for 260 yards and a pair of touchdowns to Jarius Wright, Joe Adams tied a Southeastern Conference record with two punt returns for touchdowns and No. 15 Arkansas defeated Missouri State 51-7 on Saturday.
We're blogging live throughout the Arkanas-Missouri State game from Fayetteville. Come in and join us for all the happenings from Reynolds Razorback Stadium as the Hogs open the 2011 season, the fourth under head coach Bobby Petrino.
Until we see the 2011 Razorbacks in action for a game or two, strengths and weaknesses of this group will be up for debate. Even with six offensive starters returning, things have changed and the offense will have a different feel than the one that stretched defenses with deep passes and outside running a year ago. Replacing last year’s key contributors are guys with vastly different skill sets than their predecessors. Even Arkansas Coach Bobby Petrino seems intrigued by the possibilities.
Running back can be a demanding position. Few plays that go by — even when not carrying the football — that don’t involve contact. And with depth in the Arkansas backfield taking a hit, Ronnie Wingo Jr. understands the demands of playing tailback for Arkansas are increasing. Wingo, who has run for 572 yards and four touchdowns, has seen his practice carries increase with a hamstring issue sidelining Dennis Johnson and Broderick Green (knee) and Knile Davis (ankle) both out for the season.