Welcome to the final installment in our series of providing handy pre-game cheat sheets detailing why you should hate each one of the Razorbacks’ football opponents. If you need any help getting fired up for the Cotton Bowl, here's your motivation:
1. They Think They're Better Than the Cotton Bowl. To be fair, they have a legitimate gripe in this case...for reasons not really clear to anybody, the Tigers were passed over by the Orange Bowl in favor of their hated rival Kansas (a team they'd beaten decisively only days earlier). At any rate, the team and fans are not happy about it. Will they play with an angry intensity to show that they'd been wronged? Or will they come out flat and disappointed? Either way, we don't really like this aspect of the situation.
2. They Can Score, Score, Score. It seems like we've written a variation of this one before nearly every game this season, but Missou's offense has the potential to rack up some major points against our occasionally porous D. Led by Heisman finalist Chase Daniel's 4,170 passing yards and 33 touchdowns, the Tigers are putting up almost 42 points per game. You don't have to be an ESPN expert [sarcasm alert] to realize that the Hogs are going to have to put up some serious points of their own to win this shootout.
3. Without Missouri, There Would Be No "Blank Shark Eyes". That's right, the University of Missouri Journalism School spawned the world's foremost authority on hating Bobby Petrino: Mr. Pat Forde. Thanks guys...without your proud alum we never would have known that our new football coach is nothing less than the 21st century Hitler.
4. It's a Bowl Game. Arkansas always loses bowl games (granted, our last bowl win came against the Tigers so maybe there's hope). It might just be an unbreakable law of the universe that the Hogs lose their bowl games, but maybe - just maybe - working up a little extra animosity against Missouri will help reverse this trend. It's worth a shot...
5. Frankly, Missouri is a Little Boring. Last time we checked, Arkansas has bordered Missouri for a very long time. Yet, during that entire time the Tigers have inspired a sports rivalry with the Hogs hovering between slim and none (unlike our relationships with teams from fellow border states Texas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana). Obviously conference affiliations have something to do with this, but you'd think something would have been cooked up by now if they'd been an exciting opponent. Call that a reason for low-level disrespect rather than a reason to hate if you will, but that's how we see it.