Razorback Football Fatigue

This post is kind of a rant, and little venting, but I wonder if anybody else is just fed up and sick and tired of the ugly drama that has been Razorback football for so long.

We have a new and exciting coach whose strong-suit is going to be recruiting in the hotbed of talent, Texas — just saw our recruiting guru’s class is ranked dead last in the S.E.C. Now, I’m not a subscriber to stars and rankings — but dead last tells me no matter how off the alleged experts are on the stars — and they always are — this is a recruiting class sorely lacking in what is needed for this team.

This whole drama going back to 1990 is like wash-rinse-repeat — and note what happens next is a repeat pattern — it’s interchangeable and is the reality of every season and coach for the last almost 30 years — what happens next is all the believers and defenders reply to my post and blast someone like me because I’m obviously stupid not to realize the former coach drove the program into the ground and it’s going to take anywhere from 10 to 20 years for the new coach to even get a respectable recruiting class, so we all need to get happy and sing the Partridge Family song and accept another 5 years of 3-9 seasons, and maybe, just maybe in about 7 years there will be a breakthrough to 6-6 and bowling in Shreveport.

Then the pattern goes like this — as the losses mount next season we have to hear all the recruiting-star-obsessed people come on here and say we should expect to lose while they drone on and on about how the Hogs are never going to win until they get 4 and 5 star players — ignoring the reality that is never going to happen because the system is rigged against giving stars to players who choose Arkansas — but accepting their premise, the Arkansas Razorbacks are never going to win much in football. So why bother to complain or care, it’s hopeless.

When did all this horrible and nasty drama begin and set in place this continual cycle of disappointment and anger? The program took a nosedive when Coach Hatfield was pushed out and replaced by an unproven assistant in 1990. The program has actually recovered and gotten back on track at least twice since then, but we managed to screw those up. But going back to the nosedive, the Hogs went from back-to-back 10-2 seasons and SWC championships to 3-8. That kind of record was unthinkable back in those days (but now that kind of record just goes with the territory)— back in the day a terrible season was 5-6 or 6-5. Now 6-6 is a good season.

Back to 1990, things from there only got worse with the move to the S.E.C.

After years of awful football, change was coming but instead of hiring a coach that had proven he could win with less in the S.E.C., we went out to Boise and hired a coach who had just gone 4-7. But to everyone’s amazement, that Coach won and won big immediately.

Things were so bad, all we wanted to do was beat S.M.U., a perennial loser in one of those made-up conferences — but that’s all the fans wanted to be happy. What we got was 9-2 and within a whisker of going undefeated and we got a Citrus Bowl down in Orlando! We got consistent 7 to 9 win seasons and bowl games every year — and the occasional break-through to an SEC West title. One would think years of winning like that after the losing ugly years of the early to mid 90s would make folks happy — but it did not — and we ran that guy out of town.

Now — next in this cycle — what happens is I get blasted for having the audacity to bring up that topic — because there are people consumed with hatred over that Coach and the very mention of those seasons when he was Coach triggers something bad in them. They will never acknowledge the winning from those seasons but instead talk about all the losing — ignoring that the wins far outnumbered the losses — unlike the 10 seasons since and the 7 seasons preceding that coach. And to be clear the 10 seasons since the 7 prior are not even comparable in terms of wins and losses.

Then we actually got a Coach who in a flash took us to places we had not been since the late 1970s —- but he had some serious character flaws — he really did — and because the A.D.’s power was threatened, he got no punishment and second chances but was instead unceremoniously thrown out because we have morals and standards around here. We’re not a second-chance kind of place — we are at our church (which is Baptist for most) but not in real life. That’s not hypocritical, just how it is. Not able to find a Coach on short notice, the Hogs got a cartoon character coach and went from 11-2 to 4-8. But we held our heads high because we had showed our character.

Now, next in the cycle is, I get blasted for bringing that up and trying to defend a coach who could win but really did have some issues.

Then we got a Coach who took a team in the Big 10 to three Rose Bowls, and we had some great moments but a whole lot of heartbreak in the ensuing years. The poor fella became the King of losing close ball games.

So two or three games into this past season, it was decided he had to be fired — even though the whole debacle would cost us close to $20 million dollars just to tell him and his assistants not to coach —- no way to wait and give him one more season and cut that cost down to less than half — so with the handwriting on the wall — the lame duck coach had an awful season of uninspired play and the inevitable horrific recruiting season is now upon us. No way to give that Coach a freebie down season in the face of all that, no way to give the Coach credit for three straight bowl games — he had to go — and we had to let that be known loud and clear early in the season so his staff would know and his players would know what they did in the next 9 ball games did not really matter. And they sure played like it — Coastal Carolina.

We were told a savior was coming and we were going to pay him crazy money. Instead he leveraged our historic offer and got the crazy money from Auburn.

But alas we had a Texas recruiting guru coming who was going to steal players away from A&M and Texas — revise to stealing players away from SMU and Stephen F. Austin, etc.

So this recruiting class is ranked dead last.

But we are all supposed to be fired up and ready for the future!!!

After what I’ve been through with this program in the past 27 years —- my apologies but I’m just not going there. I’m tired. And I’m pretty sick of it all.

Anybody else feeling that way right now?

And for those who want to blast me — break the cycle — don’t do it — I acknowledged what you are going to say for me.

Instead I look for any thoughtful commentary or opinion on this fatigue that I know is setting in with a lot more folks than just me. Or nothing at all, I’ve said what I want to say.

It’s been said many times… look at the average player rating, that’s a better indication of the class.

When you have 15 signees or so, 5 players get counted as 0 for being under the count of 20. So you’re recruiting ranking is obviously going to suffer drastically if you do not sign at least 20 players.

Not sure why we can’t learn that by now.

The class is not great, never was going to be great, too little time and too bad of a situation. Chads done a fine job.

Go compare the average player rating and see that out ranking is on par with where it would normally be, 20-25th ranked.

Now, if he does not have a good class next year, with an entire year to recruit, yes there will be a lot of concern.

But the 2018 class isn’t the measure, tw the 2019 class, give him a chance to work before you shoot him dead.

it is only drama if you make it that way…

Well said dog72, patience is a virtue. Give these new guys some time. Then you can slam them!

Some truth to what you say and some slanting, but understand from where you are coming. As for me, I am in the wait and see crowd. Been there since the last two games of '16. I read, but do not believe the hye. I want to see it on the field.

I do think this recruiting class is better than I expected. Is it up to SEC standards? NO, but not bad under the circustances. Of course, we really will not know for at least a couple of years.


OP had me at fatigue…

I fell asleep halfway through the post. :roll:

:lol: Agreed.

I can understand and relate to your fatigue OP! Age and rough seasons have let apathy set in at times and I don’t let the losses hurt me like they used to. That’s a bonus. After all, it is just a game. At least we have a relatively “big time” school that we support. It’s just a part of the never ending cycle, but I have hope again with this coach. I think he’ll win some games more often than not…eventually.

I am willing to let the Coaching staff coach for one year before making any negative comments

I will also go on the record on where I believe his next two recruiting classes will end up in the rankings

Next year - 18-26
Third year - 12-20

Nobody will remember this post anyway, but really do believe he will have a top 20 class in his 3rd recruiting cycle.

Give this Coaching group a chance. Really think we overachieve this fall and surprise some folks. I also think the Cajun QB will be the starter and show us some things as a leader. Did he not lead us in the greatest come from behind victory in our history on the road as a Freshmen? He gains a little confidence (does not seem to need it though) and experience and think we will see some great results.

Other than him having more time to recruit I have no reason to believe next years class will be better. If he makes a showing this season on the field on either side of the ball or even special teams then we could see a bump in recruiting. He has a tough row to hoe, other than the excitement shown by Hog fans he has to make a splash of some kind to get some attention as a program on the move upward. He is going to have to prove he is the coach so many thinks he is and he has to do it at Arkansas which has proven to be tough. I’m in CCM corner but keeping my expectations in check to be fair, the only thing I want to hear from our coach is that we are working hard and preparing the best we know how. WPS

There are a lot of problems with Razorback football & with few exceptions have been for nearly 30 years. However, the ranking of this recruiting class isn’t one of them. As was pointed out, when you only sign 16, you’re almost certainly going to be last or very near it. The reason we’re only able to sign 16 (or 18 if we add 2 jucos later this week) is that we’ve had little attrition. Remember, we can only have 85 players on scholarship. 25 per year, not counting any redshirts, means 100 scholarships in 4 years. If less than 15 leave, you’ve got a surplus. LSU had this same “problem” a few years ago. Their class ranking sucked. However, the players they had put them into the top 10 on the field.

I have no idea if all the players we’ve retained are SEC quality. I assume they are or they’d have left or been run off.

As for this class, I expect if we’d signed 20 who were just 2-3 stars, we’d be somewhere around where we usually fall in SEC rankings–about 10th clustered close to Ole Miss, S Carolina, & MSU. Behind us would’ve been Vandy, MU, & UK. The fact that we didn’t sign those 4 extra shouldn’t worry anyone, regardless of how it affects class ranking.