I’m going to miss a lot of the gameday traditions that I have enjoyed with my family over the years. The excitement of slapping the hands of players and coaches at the hog walk, slapping the hands of other fans around you as a touchdown or turnover happens and being able to hear 70,000 plus fans echoing “Woo Pig Sooie” through the Ozarks.
The Razorback Marching Band playing “Hey Jude” will be a tune I miss hearing at least for this year. Will baby Tusk make an appearance during his second season as the live mascot?
I’ll miss the pregame excitement. The roar before the kickoff. The chills you get when you know the Hogs are about to end their long SEC losing streak.
What do we have to look forward to besides missing all the things we enjoy?
We will be able to watch Treylon Burks score his first career touchdown in some way. May it be through the air, punt returns, rushing or maybe even passing. The most electric, entertaining player on the team will be one to watch this season. Cheers to Burks finally reaching the endzone in 2020.
We can take joy in the fact that Arkansas’ defense could be much improved after having literally the best option out their take the position of defensive coordinator. Barry Odom should have those boys right even though they may lack in star power and talent he could make a difference right away making them technically sound and able to get to the ball quickly.
For the first time in quite awhile the Hogs will not be playing musical chairs at the quarterback position. Offensive coordinator Kendal Briles unintentionally mentioned Florida transfer Feleipe Franks as the starting quarterback job being his to lose. A big time stud and now being named team captain quickly showed us his ability to lead his team.
That’s not saying Franks isn’t a leader but it shows how much confidence his teammates have in him. This could just be what the doctor ordered for the Razorbacks ahead of 2020 season where they play one of the toughest schedules in college football history.
We have already seen a few upsets early on this season. Hello, Big 12! The last time Arkansas ended their long conference losing streak they shutout LSU and Ole Miss in back to back weeks. That was two top 20 teams and that had never been done before. Sam Pittman was the offensive line coach back then and he returns as the head hog this time. Can he spark the magic and give the Hogs their first conference victory since 2017? It’ll be a tough task but it is possible. Also, can they win one at home? Their last home win came in 2016 in an upset over 11th ranked Florida.
We will miss a lot of these moments this year but the fandom will be strong even if there isn’t 78,000 fans packing Razorback Stadium this fall.
Optimism is filling the air. Hope is contagious. The Hogs will be called. It’s game week, baby!