Last year after the 4-0 start with big wins over Texass and A$M we went on a 3 game slide. Much grumbling and consternation then from many. This year we’ve not had the really big wins and were blown out last week so I get it. But anything can happen and I’ll stay positive. On the game thread last week one poster said he’d fire our coaches is he could. Laughable. From the ashes to respectable. Much more work to be done.
It’s called a two game losing streak. It’s the nature of fans. Never known them to like back to back losses. I don’t care which fan base you point to, it’s the same. Danny Ford said it’s consistent in the SEC with a two game losing streak. The natives will be restless.
I’m confident our program is better than it was before Sam was named HC. I’m bummed bc we lost to A&M the way we did, bc SEC victories are precious and hard to come by, plus that loss probably impacted us negatively a lot on the recruiting trail…think about how well we’d be perceived in Texas if we beat them two years in a row, especially with Jimbos butt getting heated up by that fan base! Having to came back and beat Missouri State didn’t give me confidence and that vibe is lingering among our fans.
Bama was our annual NFL scrimmage and showed we’ve got more work to do to close the gap. Was hoping we were closing the gap more, but not the reality we all saw Saturday. That’s ok, but we need to bow up and win some close games coming up.
I think the rest of our games ARE winnable, but we’ve got to play clean football and hammer people on offense bc I don’t see our D stopping some of the better offenses like this week at State. Can and will we beat the Mississippi schools…that’s our next test to see if we are still at the bottom of the SEC West or middle by the end of the year. I also think LSU and Auburn are beatable this year, but LSUs defense is getting better.
I agree on the A$M loss. I had no expectations to beat Alabama with the way our defense looks. We beat A$M by 21 in my mind as I was there watching the game, but somehow let the scoreboard beat us.
I believe we can compete with everyone else on our schedule as far as talent wise and look forward to seeing how it plays out (can our coaches be better than their coaches). I think it could be a fun rest of the season. We just aren’t going to compete with Georgia and Alabama for a while if ever. Find a way to enjoy that we can potentially compete with 5-25 in the country. I still remember Western Kentucky making us like the beating we took at home a few years ago.
The A&M loss really hurt. Very few expected must against Bama. A&M has great players who are poorly coached. They are not a good team, but they beat us with a few big plays by athletic players and we did not respond. That kills you. Hopefully, they will show some life this week, but so far, they have not shown much of that.
We were expected to lose to both A&M and Bama. Even the 10-2 predictors had us losing to those two teams, which means we are technically still on course for the most positive predictions.
Now, let’s add in these two facts into the mix of games we were supposed to lose:
In the A&M game, we had them. We can even say that we should have won and not feel like we’re exaggerating.
In the Bama game, we crawled back from a deep deficit to be genuinely in the game at the end of the 3rd quarter.
With Morris, we basically failed to show up constantly.
With Bielema, we failed to make meaningful adjustments and collapsed in the second half—the Missouri and VA Tech one’s still hurt.
I’m still upset by the two losses, but I feel good about the overall trajectory of the program—especially because our lines are finally getting better and deeper. That alone is a marker of better health in the program.
I maintain that I think we give up a lot of yards to Leach, but I still think we win.
It’s easy to be a prisoner of the moment. I sometimes fall into that too, even though I try not to.
The margin for success in the SEC is incredibly thin. I maintain that if we made one more play against A&M we’d be 4-1, still ranked in the Top 20, and the angst wouldn’t be much at all.
We didn’t, so in some corners it is.
The difficulty in any sport comes from attempting to make program statements based on game performances, especially early in a coach’s tenure. Everyone defines that differently, but for me it’s always typically been 4-5 years regardless of sport (yes, Chad Morris was an outlier).
I still have confidence in the program Sam is building, and will regardless of the outcome against the Bullies Saturday.
We need more players on field and depth (I think). That takes time and not missing on the ones who make it to campus. Hudson Clark has played well for the Hawgs. He is a good walk-on and while he plays hard, he is not going to play corner back in NFL given the speed of those players we see weekly. That is fact but he is a good player . Now he is being mentioned as safety starter against MSU and was indicated might have been against Bama. That says he is a player who will stick his nose in there but speed he doesn’t have cannot be covered up. I am not ragging on Hudson, I respect his play and love of Hawgs–we would be much worse off without him. However it says we need more Jimmies and Joes. However, I am not clear in my mind how much coaching could improve these issues. I am thinking Trevlon solved alot of issues for us last year --thus it is Jimmies and Joes. However , I believe we have receiver talent to fill the gap he left–Knox is example. To quote B. Petrino–feed the studs. Fact that in game five we still are looking says we need to improve coaching (putting those players on campus in position to be successful). I think that is what is being done with Hudson but there is still a lot of ball to be played and what happens if Hudson gets hurt or a several receivers do not step up. Recruiting reflects success on field so we need to get it fixed now. MSU will take best effort of year to win. Win and thinks look better, Lose and we will keep digging that hole deeper.
Arkansas got back into the Bama game after a 28 pt deficit & played well against better talent & depth. If not for those 3 long yardage plays that put the game out of reach, the Bama game could have gone down to the wire. Don’t blame the UofA coaches for recent struggles after we lost several key starting players on defense this year - Foucha & Brooks transferring back to their home state, plus Catalon & Slusher to injures. Any team would struggle after losing so much veteran talent.
Only concern I have is our coaches building depth & having position coaches who can recruit, develop, & retain good talent without them transferring elsewhere once they prove their abilities. Portal has overall been good to us, but that (& injures) have taken its toll on our defense this season.
We might otherwise be either undefeated or with 1 loss & with a different outlook.
Win at MSU and at BYU (not easy, but doable) and the sentiment changes. Many of the SEC teams have yet to play their toughest games yet. We win the next two and the SEC rankings start looking a lot different.