With all indications pointing towards a Liberty Bowl appearance on January the 2nd, it can be said that the Hogs are arriving a year early on their normal up and down win totals for a season. I thought this big picture look at the Hogs for about the last twenty years would be of interest.
The Hogs BN (Before Nutt)
8-5 Up (SEC Championship Game Appearance)
4-7 Down (Danny Ford fired) - It is worth noting that in these years the Hogs never got very high on the up and couldn't sustain the up beyond one year.
The Hogs in the Nutt Years
9-3 Up ( A certain fumble took place this year, or it could have been REALLY UP!)
8-4 Up (2000 Cotton Bowl win)
9-5 Up (SEC Championship Game Appearance)
9-4 Up (2003 Independence Bowl win)
10-4 Up (SEC Championship Game Appearance)
8-4 Up - The Nutt years were rather consistent in being up two years and then down two years. Ole Miss fans, I think, are going to see something of the same pattern over there in Oxford.
The Petrino Era Begins
7-5 (possible 8-5, possible 7-6) Up either way. This season has become an Up when it was on schedule based upon the Nutt trend to be another down year in wins. That has me feeling confident that the Hogs are heading in the right direction under Petrino. All programs have their ups and downs, but the Hogs need to get where it is more than one or two years of success at a time if we want to see them attracting the top notch talent. That means developing players as freshmen and sophmores, so that they are ready to take over when their time comes and thus avoiding the dip. I hope this year is the start of a good run of sustained success. Starting the new year off with an actual win in a bowl game would certainly be a "hut, hut," in the right direction.