Other than Arkansas . . .

Usually, when I’m watching a college game not involving Arkansas, my default rooting interest is based on what outcome will best benefit Arkansas - be that due to conference standings, boosting our SOS, or whatever.

But, there are games when none of that really applies. For example, last season - when we won just four games - NO outcome of another game really affected/enhanced how the rest of the nation perceived the Razorbacks, because we were irrelevant regardless. So, my question to all is, when you are watching such a game - one in which there is really no vested interest or impact on Arkansas - what are three teams you would normally root for?

For me, it would be TCU, Stanford and Georgia Tech. Back in the day, I kind of liked Tennessee too - before we played them in SEC play. Probably, upon reflection about why that was, it was because they sort of were to Alabama in the SEC what we were to Texas - almost always “pretty good”, but playing in Texas/Alabama’s shadow to the rest of the country most of the time. However, once we started playing them annually (which ended long ago) in the SEC, that changed.

So - why TCU, Stanford and Georgia Tech?

In the case of TCU, I simply respect how that program was turned around from a perennial doormat (for decades) into a consistent top 20 team over the last 15+ years. That’s incredibly difficult to do, so they have my respect. Plus, I like the fact that they did it based primarily on solid defense first; the offense came along later. And, they didn’t just turn around their product on the field. Having attended many Arkansas games at Amon Carter stadium, it was moribund in the past. When I went there for our game in 2016, it was a very good college football atmosphere. I was really impressed.

Stanford plays the style of football I most enjoy - dominant offensive line, strong running game, very good tight ends, and solid defense. In other words, the same type of program that Bielema was attempting to implement at Arkansas, but ultimately failed to do successfully. Plus, you never hear anything about them cutting corners or doing anything illegal. And at a place like Stanford, you know they aren’t getting any favors from the admission office. Just seems to be a program doing it the right way.

Finally - and I know I’m in the minority - but I’m a fan of a well-run, classic triple option offense. If run correctly, with precision and good decisions by the QB, it can be frustratingly difficult for even very good teams to stop. I’ll admit that 35 years ago - when probably half of the country went through a phase of trying either the wishbone or veer option for a few years - it was a little bit boring to watch many match-ups of option team vs. option team every week. But now that there are just a handful (mostly, the service academies), I enjoy watching Tech move methodically down the field against their opponents.

How about you? Who do you “kind of” root for, if the Hogs are not involved or impacted by the outcome?

As a veteran, I root for any of the service academies, West Point in particular.

UT San Antonio. I lived in San Antonio when they were getting started. It was really neat to watch them get up and going and it’s fun to watch a team that you saw come to life.

Anyone playing Texas, USC and Notre Dame

Alabama-because I know the SEC will look good.

Auburn-because one of my best friends’ son in law is an assistant there.

Clemson because several of my favorite nieces and nephews graduated there and are rabid fans.

Stanford and Wisconsin for a lot of the same reasons you cited.

UCA and Arkansas State

I don’t think I would call it a rooting interest, but I have always followed Oklahoma closely. I grew up not far from the Arkansas-Oklahoma border and the radio station in my hometown was an affiliate for the Sooners’ broadcasts. I have watched the majority of their games for 20 years, mainly because of the national implications.

My grandpa loved Lou Holtz, so we watched Notre Dame together a lot growing up, but my interest in the Irish has waned considerably since he died 13 years ago.

My best friend in college had a grandfather who played for TCU, so he had season tickets to their games. They began to get pretty good during our college years, so we watched a lot of their games and I keep up with them a little bit.

Always who ever the underdog is…and who ever is playing Bama, texas, ND, Penn St, Ohio state, and USC-W

I live in northwest Texas in reasonable proximity to Texas Tech. I am nearly surrounded by Tech alums and fans and so I nominally pull for Tech on occasion. I casually followed A&M until they joined the SEC and now I mostly pull for them to lose even out-of-conference. I too, liked Lou and would frequently pull for ND when he was coaching there depending on who they were playing. Of course, my only dedication and loyalty is to the Hogs. I became a fan in 1956 the first time a heard a stadium hog call while sitting on the grass in the north end zone of WMS.

For some reason I have always liked UGA. I don’t even know why.

Love all the service academies and particularly, because of a brother who was in the Navy, the Naval Academy.
Always loved Nebraska for some reason. Rice, when not playing Arkansas. Most underdogs and anybody, including Alabama, playing LSU.

Hmm. Things have changed for me. Since my last few jobs have required working on weekends, my ability to consume college football has been limited; I frequently had to juggle my schedule to get to RRS when I had tickets. And when I was going to a game, I was spending the day traveling, tailgating or at the stadium instead of watching games.

I used to follow Alabama while Bear was coaching, with the South Arkansas connection (Fordyce is 50 miles from where I grew up). That was also before I discovered how insufferably arrogant/entitled Tide fans are. But then, I’ve also found Arkansas has too many fans with an equally obnoxious sense of entitlement.

Followed OU a bit under Switzer; Barry and my dad were teammates at UA. And Air Force under Hatfield before we hired him.

I guess I still kinda keep track of Nebraska because they seem to be the Power 5 school most like us – one-school state, no pro team, etc.

This won’t be popular, Ohio State. I grew up in Ohio, but have lived in Arkansas for 29 years. For the record, I was pulling for the Hogs in the 2011 Sugar Bowl.

The Buckeyes are not a bad fallback team. :smiley:

Add tOSU

CSU for obvious reasons. They write the check or at least lets me get checks. Sep. 8 is a very big day for me. I will not pull even a little for CSU.

Air Force, and unless they are playing each other, any of the Service Schools. These guys are some of the ones that let us enjoy football and everything else. When I hear people say that Army/Navy should not be given such prominance at the end of the year, I just shake my head.

T.Tech - always like them for some reason.

San Diego State… been traveling out there for 26 years and lived there for 8… now back in NWA after 26 years away.

Not the Xolos?

Nope… had some friends that were graduates of SDSU and others that had kids there. Went to several of their basketball and football games over the years. Aztecs!!

Question for you, off subject. I lived in that area back in the mid 90’s. There was a mall in San Diego. Three stories, had a food court outside on the third floor. Do you know the name of it, or if it’s still there. Was telling my wife about it, there used to be a couple of girls that sang outside on the sidewalk. When Jewell became famous they showed her there. I was trying to tell my wife that I had actually seen her where the pic was taken, but for the life of me, I can’t remember the name of the mall.

Well the UTC Westfield mall has been there for quite some time - it’s on La Jolla Village Drive… then there is a mall downtown - Thornton Plaza… it’s actually shutting down. Then there is Fashion Valley mall in the Mission Valley area… I’m sure there are others but those are the main ones in San Diego…

I think it was Thornton Plaza, but I remember the name Westfield too