It’s amazing how different things can look with a bye week to heal up and not playing an SEC West team. Arkansas looked like a completely different team against Florida, and the defense played inspired for all four quarters. Postgame, Bret Bielema said that former Hog Trey Flowers gave an impassioned speech to the team and the team really responded to it. There aren’t a lot of details about what he told them but Trey has been one of my favorite players and I’d probably be able to run through a wall after hearing him speak.
One of the strategic changes came on the offensive line, inserting Johnny Gibson into the starting line up, and the extra size proved to be beneficial. As you look at a film breakdown of the game, you can see that this very well could have been Arkansas’ most impressive game in the trenches, both on the offensive and defensive side of the football.
The win officially made Arkansas bowl eligible for the third straight season, and this is the earliest Arkansas has been bowl eligible in the Bielema era. After trips to the Texas and Liberty Bowl, the players say they have their sights set on going to a game with a bit more prestige this time around.
Speaking of, where do the bowl projections have the Hogs? ESPN has them in either the Belk Bowl or Texas Bowl. SB Nation has the Hogs in the Belk as well. With 3 full weekends left, the location and opponent will change multiple times between now and when we find out where the Razorbacks are going.
When Bielema was hired, one hope was that he could expand the recruiting base from where it was. At first people thought it could be in South Florida when guys like Alex Collins and Denver Kirkland came in. Right now Louisiana is proving to be the most fertile recruiting ground for the Hogs. Santos Ramirez and Jared Cornelius came from the same High School in Shreveport, and three defenders (Henre’ Tolliver, Dwayne Eugene, and Briston Guidry) all hail from Archbishop Rummel in the New Orleans area. If you’re curious, Arkansas has another three commits from Louisiana, including another from Archbishop Rummel, Derrick Munson.