Stubbornness Could Spell Trouble For Bielema At Arkansas
By Dan Harralson
The Bret Bielema experiment did not work at Arkansas in year No. 1.
Will it get better in Fayetteville under Bielema's watch? One would think that it could only get better, but it may not. Stubbornness may be the end result for the three-time Big Ten-champion coach who only wants to run the ball.
"I'll take a minute to look at last year," Bielema told reporters at SEC Media Days. "Okay that's all I need to say. Just pause and move on."
Bielema is an advocate against the hurry-up, no-huddle offenses – and he is not afraid to voice his opinion regarding it either.
"I'm not gonna do no-huddle, or big blitzes. We're gonna stick to our principles, but just do it better. I like playing no-huddle teams – enjoy seeing a no-huddle offense sitting on sideline that can't stand it.”
In this conference, a team cannot be one dimensional, something that Bielema takes pride in at Arkansas. Bielema's Wisconsin run was stellar, making Rose Bowl after Rose Bowl. But he will have to learn how to preach throwing the ball to have any chance of improving on a 3-9 2013 mark that left the Razorbacks winless in the SEC. If it continues, impatient Arkansas fans maybe louder than the calling of the Hogs.
His first opponent of the 2014 season is Auburn and Gus Malzahn's fast-paced offense. It's probably not wise to be this outspoken going into the first game like Bielema was at SEC Media Days.
"Gus runs a style of offense that is opposite of what I believe in," said Bielema of the Tigers’ head coach. "We're not breaking bread together, but I'm not throwing bread and rocks at him either."
Bielema concluded SEC Media Days with one last Auburn sound bite. The second-year Arkansas head coach was asked if he thought Nick Marshall would miss any time after the Auburn quarterback’s citation for marijuana possession last Friday.
"Knowing what I know as a head coach, Nick will be there."
2014 Arkansas Razorbacks Schedule Prediction
Wins: Nicholls State
Losses: Auburn, Texas Tech, Texas A&M, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi State, LSU, Ole Miss
Toss-ups: Northern Illinois, UAB, Missouri