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  • #51 by Letsroll1200 on 17 Jul 2017
  • A&M and Auburn are must win games for Bret. Gus is 3-1 against the Razorbacks since Bret became coach and Arkansas only win was a overtime thriller. A&M is treating the Razorbacks like a homecoming opponent. With Kevin Sumlin being on the hot seat going into this season, the Razorbacks can not afford the mental breakdowns that has caused them at least two wins vs. A&M.
  • #52 by GuvHog on 17 Jul 2017
  • Well if the team starts off 0-1 then I am pretty sure this place would be shut down for a couple of days because people would be extremely pissed.   

    0-1 with a loss to FAMU in WMS????? That would be a disaster of Epic proportions and Bret woukl possibly be fired before he left WMS.

    Perish the thought!! That isn't happening.
  • #53 by jkstock04 on 17 Jul 2017
  • Seems like the A&M game is looming huge and a big monkey on Bielemas back. I'll never forget that game last year when we couldn't punch it in. Our O-line didn't have the balls to do it and that was the ballgame.

    Their talent really showed over ours in the 4th quarter. Honestly if you were a neutral observer that was probably a great game to watch and be entertained.
  • #54 by bigpigpimpin on 17 Jul 2017
  • Better worry about florida a&m. We lose or almost lose one of those games every year.
  • #55 by GuvHog on 17 Jul 2017
  • Better worry about florida a&m. We lose or almost lose one of those games every year.

    That would be like the Hogs losing to UAPB. That isn't happening.
  • #56 by goodguytex on 17 Jul 2017
  • I'm agreeing with Porqued tongue.... Aggies and Auburn are the ones that we need to win the most. For no other reason than Aggies... We haven't since Bielema has been our HC. And auburn... Well, beating Gus gives bielema bragging rights for a year. Especially after how bad we got beat last year, we need to get payback.

    However, momentum will pay off big. We beat both TCU and Aggies and our other opponents going into the biggest meat of our schedule against bama, and auburn and the rest, that momentum can help mentally if nothing else.
  • #57 by hogcard1964 on 17 Jul 2017
  • If we lose to TCU and beat AUB do you consider that to be better?

    Better than what? Last season?

    ...not if we finish in the same fashion we did 2016.  That being; choking away games late, getting blown out by average SEC teams and losing a bowl game to another mediocre team to end up near 7-6 again.
  • #58 by Tejano Jawg on 17 Jul 2017
  • I don't think that S. Carolina will be as big of a factor as some think.

    I point to the outcome of 4 games:

    TCU, A&M, Auburn and LSU.

    While I generally agree with the OP, but not sure "swing" is the right label, I think Muskogee's 4 pack is more worthy of discussion.

    We have TCU and A&M in between our 2 gimme-wins Florida A&M and New Mex State. We'll have played a warm-up game when TCU comes to town. TCU is critical because it's the rare, early quality opponent for the Hogs. It'll set the tone. Sure we can feel confident (based on last year's outcome)…HOWEVER, be careful. People should not forget about what a solid program Patterson has built—several BCS bowls, a Rose Bowl win, and nearly making the Top 4 a few years ago. Plus, living in DFW, I hear how pissed the Frogs were last year about our OT win. They'll want this one bad.

    The Aggie game is obvious for so many reasons. Ever since 2014, this is the one I've had circled. Think about what happened from 2014 on…how MIGHT an Aggie win have changed the entire season(s)? Our 2014 OT loss—and how we lost it—defined what we were that year (until we dug ourselves out late in the year). We were a team that did not know how to finish. Same for 2015—almost a carbon copy of 2014. Then last year the game turned into a blowout, which like the others, became a dark prophesy of the rest of the year, specifically how our defense would play.

    Now Auburn and LSU. What separates the Auburn game (from the rest of the SEC schedule) is that it's our best home game. Man, the media is in love with the War Eagle. Will being in Fayetteville give us a better chance? Yes. Will it be enough? We'll see. And LSU. Everyone in the known universe will pick them to win in Baton R. What makes LSU different (than Bama, et al)—the quarterback position. Ours will be better. But will he be good enough to make up the difference everywhere else?

    Still, it all starts with those first 2 key games, with our former sister-wives TCU and Texas A&M. Let's revisit this topic after those.
  • #59 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • 0-1 with a loss to FAMU in WMS????? That would be a disaster of Epic proportions and Bret woukl possibly be fired before he left WMS.

    Perish the thought!! That isn't happening.

    Jeff isn't Frank.

    Old Frank would fire him before he made it to the locker room. Nutt-era Frank, not so much.
  • #60 by ModestoHOG63 on 17 Jul 2017
  • TCU  and Texas A&M

    Read the SEC Media / 3-4 Defense on why we better be ready on the defensive side of  ball.  It makes some good points about "adjustments" to a new scheme (from 4-3) and the media feels we need some time and players.
    We really need those games to get off on the right track before SEC play.  And like one media guy said, A&M always seems to trip us up.  Win them, and it could be a a really good season for the Hogs.  WPS!
  • #61 by Bacons Rebellion on 17 Jul 2017
  • I don't think that S. Carolina will be as big of a factor as some think.

    I point to the outcome of 4 games:

    TCU, A&M, Auburn and LSU.

    Four games will swing anyone's season.
  • #62 by Dominicanhog on 17 Jul 2017
  • #63 by GuvHog on 17 Jul 2017
  • Jeff isn't Frank.

    Old Frank would fire him before he made it to the locker room. Nutt-era Frank, not so much.

    I've got news for you. A loss to FAMU probably means Jeff is cleaning out his office and packing his bags too.
  • #64 by lakecityhog on 17 Jul 2017
  • To me it is TCU and ATM. Beating TCU almost guarantees a 4-0 non-con record and beating ATM goes a LONG way towards having a winning conference record.

    We should win 2 of 3 home conference games ---  Miss St and Missouri and in my mind the Auburn game should be better than 50-50 in our favor.
    Our "should win" road games shrinks to 2 of 4 --- USCe and Ole Miss.

    Winning our neutral site "home" game is super important for a shot at a better season.
  • #65 by LZH on 17 Jul 2017
  • To me, losing to TCU and/or A&M signals that we still aren't any better. Doesn't mean we couldn't still have a good season, but what a downer.
  • #66 by Oklahawg on 17 Jul 2017
  • I fully subscribe to the 1-0, one game at a time or philosophy that Coach Bielema preaches.  I try not to look ahead.  That being said, the team needs to make a statement that they are physically and mentally tougher than they showed in 2016.  In my opinion, that opportunity comes September 23rd in Arlington against A&M. 

    I go with this. We are a team that still hopes it can win big games, thinks it can win big games. We need to prove to ourselves we can win big games. In as much as any game is important, 1-0 is a great mantra. I felt last year that TCU was a game where we had nothing to lose going in. Now, we should expect that as a win. That pushes back to A&M the "gotta get this one" attitude.

    Beating Aubbie means you may sweep at home.  That is large as well.

    I think what solidifies the 1-0 mentality for me is the notion that wins vs LSU or Ole Miss a few years back, or Florida last year, came out of left field. They helped cancel out an "oops" elsewhere. I want to get rid of "oops" and then hope we can add a couple of surprises.
  • #67 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • I go with this. We are a team that still hopes it can win big games, thinks it can win big games. We need to prove to ourselves we can win big games. In as much as any game is important, 1-0 is a great mantra. I felt last year that TCU was a game where we had nothing to lose going in. Now, we should expect that as a win. That pushes back to A&M the "gotta get this one" attitude.

    Beating Aubbie means you may sweep at home.  That is large as well.

    I think what solidifies the 1-0 mentality for me is the notion that wins vs LSU or Ole Miss a few years back, or Florida last year, came out of left field. They helped cancel out an "oops" elsewhere. I want to get rid of "oops" and then hope we can add a couple of surprises.

    Sort of.

    TCU will not be an easy out. They may be harder to beat than aTm.
  • #68 by MuskogeeHogFan on 17 Jul 2017
  • Four games will swing anyone's season.

    Those 4 games, at the point that they are played in the season and for varying other reasons, loom large for us in my opinion.

    TCU then an off week and A&M, score to settle and confidence boosters.

    Auburn, important to play well on our home field and settling a score from last year, on the heels of what will probably be a loss at Alabama. A HUGE confidence booster if successful.

    LSU, two games after Auburn and a win or a close loss sets us up to finish out against Miss State and Missouri (another score to settle from last year).

    JMO, but I don't think that the season turns on 2 games, especially 2 games that are on the front end of our season. You need key victories that boost confidence throughout the season. Win those four and I think this season turns out to be a lot better than any of us expect.
  • #69 by bennyl08 on 17 Jul 2017
  • We'll know real quick whether the 3-4 will help us win against spread teams after the TCU game.

    Agreed.
  • #70 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • Agreed.

    Saban's hybrid defense typically uses a 3-4 base, but a 4-3 against spread teams.

    Our offense actually allows them to play in their base.

    I see what we're trying to do, actually understand the philosophy. We'll see if the coaches can make it work. For everyone's sake, I hope it holds TCU to 200 yards of offense.
  • #71 by nwahogfan1 on 17 Jul 2017
  • A&M & Auburn

    Need both.

    Why Auburn?  They will be 10+ point favorite in our game and a much more talented team.

    I think South Carolina, A&M, Ms,  Ms St,  and Mo. Are much more winnable and crucial.

    Also we need to win all of our non conference games.
  • #72 by bennyl08 on 17 Jul 2017
  • Don't know if I really want to talk swing games, but here are some definite litmus test games for us

    TCU: I actually disagree that this will be a swing game. Recall losing to Toledo only to finish the season very strong? Toledo was a very talented team that year and we were still trying to get our feet under our bodies that early in the season. This year, our offense should be much improved, but this will be a good litmus test for our defense. Will our defense be clicking early in the season or will we have to hope it turns on later in the season lest we play yet another year without having a decent defense even?

    Aggies: This one will really show if we are doing what we need to do as a team to get better. We have been neck and neck with them. In each of Bielema's first 4 seasons, all of the games have been within 7 points in the 4th quarter with 2 of them going into overtime. We have our only bye before this game. If we lose this game, then it could negatively impact the team's mentality the rest of the season. So, kind of a double litmus.

    SC: First true road game. While no SEC game is a gimme, this one is above and beyond the easiest SEC team to beat on our schedule. TCU should be a more talented opponent as well. Winning an SEC road game will show that we have a team that stay mentally tough. Beating them shouldn't say too much about the physical talent of our team, but will require that we are mentally tougher than we were at the end of last season.

    Auburn: A winnable home game. TCU should be a game we can win on talent, but Patterson is a good coach and will test our coaching staff. SC shouldn't be too much of a test via talent or coaching, but will test mental toughness. Auburn is a team with strong athletic talent but not superior coaching and we have the home field advantage. This is probably the third most talented roster we will face, so it will be a good litmus test for where we are as a team.

    @LSU: Not so much a litmus test for us, but for them. We always play their team tough. Particularly under Miles, but even under Saban. What sort of mentality will this team take on under Orgeron?

    Mizz: Of all the games, this one might be the biggest swing game for the season. Why, you ask? It happens at the end of the season. Winning or losing won't really impact the rest of the games on our schedule save for maybe the bowl game, which will be a month or so after. Here's why Mizzou will be a swing game for us. First, as we saw last season, even though the overall record was what most of us expected after losing virtually our entire OL, our 3 year starting qb, and our RB's, people were soured last season. The hogs way over performed on expectations and we should have finished the season with 9 wins. Those last two games brought us down to what we originally expected, but by then, we knew we should have expected more. People remember those last two games more and not so much the games earlier in the year. Winning here will set us up with positive momentum heading forward, while losing will give people a bad lingering taste until at least the bowl game. Two, and related to one, this game could swing our final record to a number that is good or bad. We could very realistically be 8-3 going into this game and be 4-3 in the SEC. 9 regular season wins with a chance at a 10th in the bowl game vs going 8-4 and 4-4 and thus more of the same of what we've had in recent year would have a major impact on the outlook of our program under Bielema. Lastly, Mizzou could easily have the best offense in the SEC next season. Our defense has with the exception of 2014, been a major achilles heel for our dating back the better part of a decade. It will be at the end of the season so we are still cutting our teeth shouldn't be an excuse. Barring major injuries, this should be our defense at it's peak next season. On the other side of the ball, Mizzou seems to have a never ending supply of quick edge rushers. They don't recruit very well, but they never disappoint in having those. Those quick rushers have done a number on our OL in recent years. Anderson did a pretty good job in year 1 replacing 3 starters. Now, at the back end of year two having only replaced 1 undrafted starter, his OL should be rolling.
  • #73 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • I've got news for you. A loss to FAMU probably means Jeff is cleaning out his office and packing his bags too.

    We aren't losing to FAMU. No matter what that stoopid wet dream of yours said during your post-lunch nap.
  • #74 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • Benny, I really get where you're coming from saying that SC is our first true road game, but aTm at Cowboy Stadium might was well be. Doesn't matter who owns it.

    That needs to be a home & home.
  • #75 by bennyl08 on 17 Jul 2017
  • Benny, I really get where you're coming from saying that SC is our first true road game, but aTm at Cowboy Stadium might was well be. Doesn't matter who owns it.

    That needs to be a home & home.

    I wouldn't shed any tears if they make it a home and home, but I like it being in Dallas. When we were regularly winning that game, the crowd made it effectively another home game. Only in recent years has that changed.

    I think ending the LR games would help though because I see where you are coming from as well. We are still having to travel. It still isn't our stadium. There is still the extra stress. Even if the crowd there was 100% hog, it still could be argued as a road game due to that and that alone.
  • #76 by MuskogeeHogFan on 17 Jul 2017
  • I wouldn't shed any tears if they make it a home and home, but I like it being in Dallas. When we were regularly winning that game, the crowd made it effectively another home game. Only in recent years has that changed.

    I think ending the LR games would help though because I see where you are coming from as well. We are still having to travel. It still isn't our stadium. There is still the extra stress. Even if the crowd there was 100% hog, it still could be argued as a road game due to that and that alone.

    I think the neutral site makes it a more special game, at least from the standpoint of interest from the public. I mean, they call it the "Southwest Classic" but I am not sure that has enough relative meaning for both fan bases. Need to coin a new and more meaningful name for that game if it is to stay in Jerry World, where I think that it belongs.

    If not, then move to a home and home game format but other than it being another SEC game, it will lose some of its luster from a promotional standpoint. Additionally, it puts money in Jerry's pocket and with everything that he has given to the University already, a little pay-back to him isn't a bad thing and continues to insure his investment in the program.
  • #77 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • I wouldn't shed any tears if they make it a home and home, but I like it being in Dallas. When we were regularly winning that game, the crowd made it effectively another home game. Only in recent years has that changed.

    I think ending the LR games would help though because I see where you are coming from as well. We are still having to travel. It still isn't our stadium. There is still the extra stress. Even if the crowd there was 100% hog, it still could be argued as a road game due to that and that alone.

    aTm fans outnumber ours at Cowboy stadium, and I would say it's probably dramatic. We can fill a 70k+ stadium for conference games, aTm fills 100k+. The stadium is just up the highway from campus (not that it really matters for them).

    We have good attendance for it being a half day's drive from campus. But we don't replicate their attendance numbers.

    That's an apples and potatos comparison. No matter which side of the GSD you sit.
  • #78 by MuskogeeHogFan on 17 Jul 2017
  • aTm fans outnumber ours at Cowboy stadium, and I would say it's probably dramatic. We can fill a 70k+ stadium for conference games, aTm fills 100k+. The stadium is just up the highway from campus (not that it really matters for them).

    We have good attendance for it being a half day's drive from campus. But we don't replicate their attendance numbers.

    That's an apples and potatos comparison. No matter which side of the GSD you sit.

    Win a few more games down there and see how the attendance has an "uptick" in terms of Arkansas fans. No one wants to drive that far and see us blow a game that we should have won, and we have done a lot of that lately, especially the A&M game. Start pulling those out and you will see the attendance even up. I think it needs to stay at Jerry World for promotional purposes.
  • #79 by Großer Kriegschwein on 17 Jul 2017
  • Win a few more games down there and see how the attendance has an "uptick" in terms of Arkansas fans. No one wants to drive that far and see us blow a game that we should have won, and we have done a lot of that lately, especially the A&M game. Start pulling those out and you will see the attendance even up. I think it needs to stay at Jerry World for promotional purposes.

    Gotta beat em first.

    Never thought I'd ever be saying that 30 years ago.
  • #80 by 247Hog on 17 Jul 2017
  • You are more than welcome to donate towards the buyout, make sure you have at least 2 comma's on that check though along with who you think will do better.

    Didn't say i want that. Was putting the scope on how important i believe the A&M game is for our season. Actually i would love to go undefeated...every single year...and keep CBB for the next 40 years.
  • #81 by MuskogeeHogFan on 17 Jul 2017
  • Gotta beat em first.

    Never thought I'd ever be saying that 30 years ago.

    That's what I said, I believe.
  • #82 by Porked Tongue on 17 Jul 2017
  • Why Auburn?  They will be 10+ point favorite in our game and a much more talented team.

    I think South Carolina, A&M, Ms,  Ms St,  and Mo. Are much more winnable and crucial.

    Also we need to win all of our non conference games.
    I'm not chasing "winnable" with my opinion.

    Rather at potential winning games that would swing the season to the good more than the average "winnable" ones.
     
  • #83 by pigroots on 17 Jul 2017
  • TCU will be a very tough game. They are everyones bounce back team. Even Phil Steele who I think is the best prognosticator is all over them. Gary Patterson is generally considered the little 12's best coach and he really has a chip on his shoulder about the SEC. They will come in with something to prove and be a tough out. The A&M game is must..end of that story. Win these 2 and we are looking at a good season. Lose these 2 and probably looking at a losing season. Don't see us beating Alabama or Auburn this year
  • #84 by widespreadsooie on 17 Jul 2017
  • I don't see TCU as a swing game. Your destiny is controlled and determined through conference play.
  • #85 by HamSammich on 17 Jul 2017
  • I don't see TCU as a swing game. Your destiny is controlled and determined through conference play.

    If lost, it will effect confidence and promote self doubt. It will also get the fans up in arms.

    Make no mistake men. Our season hinges on TCU. If we lose to TCU this is going to be another dump from our memories season.
  • #86 by widespreadsooie on 17 Jul 2017
  • If lost, it will effect confidence and promote self doubt. It will also get the fans up in arms.

    Make no mistake men. Our season hinges on TCU. If we lose to TCU this is going to be another dump from our memories season.

    We're doomed anyway if one loss leads to a dump of a season. A good football team will put an early season OOC loss out of their minds before the next game.
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