I’m thinking in terms of one or more programs, similarly situated to ours on a number of measures, that have experienced the sustained success that we want to?
At one time, maybe as far back as when we joined the SEC, I thought it might be Georgia - a program that if not great, could be counted on (back in those days) to be around 8-3 most seasons.
Georgia has one of the best recruiting bases in the USA. Our recruiting base makes it hard for us even to hire coaches.
Maybe, NIL will change things.
Pretty sure it’s UTEP, the Colorado School of Mines or Marist.
UTEP’s a good thought. I was thinking Chicago Cubs. Lovable losers. loong stretches of bad, then SO CLOSE! then lose a lot.
Rarely out-recruited anybody but managed to have really good teams. Out-coached opposing staffs year after year, and that includes the monster years of OU/Stoops and UT/Brown. Completely confident as a fan that, any given week, your team would show up and compete to the bitter end. Typically won the battle of turnovers, special teams, and penalties.
No better model, in my eyes. Our region of the country, lesser resources (by far), historically awful for 15 years when Snyder took over (makes Bielema’s last year + two years of Chad seem like a hiccup), no recruiting base, and enough in-conference competition to “breaking through” to make it significant.
I was thinking maybe Calgary Stampeders. Wayne Harris made both great.
I haven’t researched this question, but Utah (more recent) and West Virginia remind me of this.
The first program that comes to my mind is Kentucky. That team was in bad shape when Mark Stoops took over — he snapped a two-plus-year SEC losing streak at one point — and is now in pretty good shape. Kentucky always has a strong line-of-scrimmage game, but it took awhile to get to that point.
Why not Clemson? They weren’t World beaters outside Danny Ford’s time there until Dabo got it rolling.
As a Cubs and Hogs fan, the feelings are very similar.
I’d love to see us mimic Clemson. Lot’s of similarities. Give Sam lots of time and keep plugging away.
I think the model is Georgia. Over time, Sam believes he can build a similar program. Right now, I think Arkansas is in the Kentucky realm in terms of progress. Not entirely a bad thing. Kentucky is built on line play, like Matt alluded to, and toughness, running the ball, etc. Hard to create a giant in this game in three years.
I honestly don’t know if there’s a program anywhere that is like Arkansas. We are pretty unique. I’ve thought (for a long time), what other program has had such basketball success but really wants to be a football school?
That’s not to say that we don’t love basketball. And I know that Arkansas athletics was built on football, but we seem to have more potential for success in basketball because of the sheer numbers of players you need to be truly successful in football.
But since we’re comparing – maybe Iowa? They’ve had success in football and basketball. Probably in some other sports, too, but those come to mind. They’ve also been up and down, as we’ve been, so they are probably not the model being asked about. But I think there are similarities in our programs.
I think the common thread in a lot of the programs mentioned is that their administrations exhibited patience that ultimately paid off. Bill Snyder, Kirk Ferentz, Dabo Swinney and Mark Stoops all had hiccups and down seasons along the way, but I think in all of those scenarios you could see a program that had on an overall upward trajectory. That isn’t always the case when a team is losing early in a coach’s tenure. It wasn’t here with Chad Morris. I tend to think it is under Sam Pittman, regardless of what has happened the past few weeks.
Iowa and Michigan State under Dantonio are programs that I hope we can emulate - rarely beat themselves, good on both lines of scrimmage, good on defense, etc.
I think both are similarly situated in terms of their ability to compete with blue bloods in their conference. Iowa has benefitted from a weak west division, but I’m talking about overall in the conference as a whole.
KY has an advantage over any SECW team. They start every season with a 1-0 SEC record. They get to play Vandy every season. In the years, we don’t get Vandy, our 4-4 record is comparable to their 5-3 record.
This is NOT to say that Stoops hasn’t done a great job. He has done just that. I guess in 2024 or 25, we’ll see who, if anyone, will get the advantage of playing Vandy every season. It depends on which scheduling model the SEC picks.
One school that comes to mind this century is Tennessee. Some success here and there but a similar record to ours the last 20 years. Plus they have a 15 game losing streak to Alabama dating to 2006 exactly like us.
Which will go to 21 years Saturday.
You mean 16 years? Vols won in 2006.
Yes….the same year we beat TN in Fayetteville. A great day for Hog fans. Dmac laid the wood on them Vols. 16 year streak for Bama…