Arkansas started the baseball season in a dream fashion, with a shiny new, giant scoreboard, some record crowds and most importantly, three wins. Central Michigan is a sneaky good team with experience, so a sweep was pretty great. Another positive would be the 13 players who debuted this weekend. The Hogs are replacing a lot of production this year, so the quicker they can get comfortable the better. Guys like Eric Cole, Blaine Knight and Austin Catron all made impacts and should be names to know in the future.
A lot of people turned out to Baum Stadium as well this weekend. Like "record crowds" a lot. The over 28,000 tickets sold this weekend was a record for an opener. Saturday’s game had an opening weekend record of 11,341. Coming off a College World Series appearance will boost numbers, but you know what else does? Nice weather! For the first time in seemingly forever, the baseball team hasn’t had to shovel snow off the field to start the season. It’s almost like actual baseball weather out there.
Like any successful coach at Arkansas, there were some rocky times with Eddie Sutton at the end of his tenure in Fayetteville. But all of that was put to bed once Arkansas raised his banner alongside Nolan Richardson’s in a win over Missouri. Even though his name is already on a court at Oklahoma State, the ceremony was touching to Sutton. This article talks about the importance of being able to honor Sutton in the way Arkansas did, because he was the one who put Arkansas basketball on the map.
One of the more touching moments from the game was the message from Razorback superfan Bill Clinton. There is a video here to see it, and even though it is clearly recorded with an iPhone the message still comes through loud and clear. It was an excellent touch by the athletic department to add to what was already a fantastic moment.
We’ve even got a bonus video as well. Here is a quick Bobby Portis update of him dunking so hard on the Lakers that Bill Walton would be proud of him. Throw it down big fella! Throw it down!