Work and family schedules precluded me giving this proper coverage earlier this week, but I wanted to do a little preview of a game involving two of the most dysfunctional and loyal fan bases in college football, Arkansas and Texas A&M.
How'd they get the name? Arkansas: After an undefeated season in 1909, Coach Hugo Bezdek referred to his team as a "wild band of Razorbacks" and the name caught on. Hog fans have NOT caught on to the fact that they've only had one undefeated season since 1909, in 1964 when Barry Switzer was an assistant and Boss Hog Jerry Jones was a player on the team. Cash Machine U: It's Texas Agricultural and Mechanical University. While some believe that the Aggies moniker is Greek for "abuser of sheep", that is just a rumor. It's a tribute to the school's agricultural roots. Gearheads just doesn't roll off the tongue, so they went with Aggies. Edge: Aggies.
Returning Starters: Texas A&M 10 on offense / 6 on defense; Arkansas 8 on offense / 10 on defense. Edge: Arkansas
NFL Passing Yards by Alums: Arkansas 41,090; A&M 9,157. I'm excluding former Razorback Tarvaris Jackson from this tally, as he transferred to Alabama State and improved the quarterback play at both schools. Edge: Arkansas, courtesy of Buffalo Bill great Joe Ferguson.
NFL Draft History: Arkansas 243; Texas A&M: 258. Edge: Arkansas
Best NFL Player: Arkansas: Pat Summerall; Texas A&M: Yale Lary. Edge: Arkansas. I went with Summerall over NFL HOFs Lance Allworth and Dan Hampton because Summerall wins the Best Voice and Best Recovering Alchololic portion of the contest as well. Both schools have fairly storied college fb programs, but not many elite NFLers come out of the pack. If you disagree, see Mcelroy, Leeland. Edge: Arkansas
Hot/Cold: Arkansas: Cold. The Hogs have allowed 77 points in two games against 1-A opponents. Texas A&M: Overheated. Courtesy of the mediocre defenses played by the Aggies, Cash Machine U is hot, but cool faster than a plate of scrambled eggs. Edge: Aggies.
Random Stat: The defensive ranking of A&M foes year-to-date: 107, 117, 116. Arkansas is a veritable defensive juggernaut at 91. Edge: Aggies
Random Stat 2: Texas A&I has more NFL Hall of Famers than Texas A&M. Gene Upshaw and Darrell Green starred for Texas A&I back in the day. Edge: Arkansas
How we see it: this game has fluctuated between a pick'em and Arkansas as a 1 point favorite. Arkansas is 1-2, but has played teams you've heard of in Alabama and Georgia. For some reason, I think Arkansas is going to win this, though I'll be pulling for the Aggies. The battle of the Aggies and Hogs in the seats will be an interesting part of the game as well. Prediction: Arkansas