Tuesday, October 27, 2020
The Arkansas Football Team's record at this point of the 2020 season is 2-2 (It should be 3-1 if the Auburn game had been officiated correctly). Going into this season, the Hogs schedule was thought by many to be the toughest schedule in all of college football. They were riding a 20 game SEC losing streak, and were believed to be a sure bet to top Vanderbilt's record streak of 23 straight conference defeats. Sam Pittman's Razorbacks have put that talk to rest, much to the dismay of the Commodores, by defeating Mississippi State in the second game of the season. Since then, Arkansas has added a win over Ole Miss and first year head coach Lane Kiffin. Pittman has put together a great coaching staff at Arkansas, he has the players buying in to his system, and they are going into every game believing they have a chance to win. The Hogs have a challenging closing stretch of six consecutive tough SEC opponents, the last of which is Alabama. Regardless of the outcome of these individual contests, Sam Pittman has already earned the consideration of being selected as the Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year. If he does indeed garner that award, he will be viewed by the entire conference as tremendously deserving. One would be hard pressed to find a dissenter in the group regarding the likable Sam Pittman. Woo Pig Sooie!
Monday, October 26, 2020
Auburn University has a 3-2 record at the half-way point of the SEC season. However, those 3 wins have been aided by critical officiating calls/no-calls by the inept SEC football officials. In their opening game against Kentucky, the Wildcats were not rewarded for a touchdown that they should have been credited for. This touchdown that wasn’t called a touchdown in the final seconds of the first half might have been the difference-maker in Kentucky’s 29-13 loss to the Tigers. In Auburn's second win against Arkansas, the Razorbacks owned a 28-27 lead late in the fourth quarter. The Tigers had worked their way into field goal range. The controversy came on a 3rd-and-1, when Auburn QB Bo Nix fumbled the snap, then spiked it into the turf in an attempt to stop the clock. However, Nix spiked the ball backwards and Arkansas fell on it, which should’ve been ruled a fumble. Instead, the officials ruled that the play was an incomplete pass with intentional grounding because ball didn’t reach the line of scrimmage. Auburn then kicked a game winning field goal with seven seconds left on the clock, denying Arkansas the chance to run out the clock and collect the win. Lastly, this past Saturday against Ole Miss, the Rebels recovered a ball in the end zone on a kickoff that the Tiger return man actually touched. But the officials on the field, as well as the replay officials, ruled that the ball was not touched by Auburn, thus denying Ole Miss the touchdown and awarding the ball to Auburn on the ruled touchback. The Tigers went on to win the game by a final score of 35-28. Auburn might have gone on to win the game against Kentucky in the second half even if Kentucky had been awarded the first half touchdown. We'll never know. Arkansas would definitely half defeated the Tigers with the correct ruling, and Ole Miss probably would have won the game Saturday if awarded the touchdown with the recovered ball in the end zone. With all of this in mind, I think it is realistic to infer that Auburn's record at this point should be 1-4 at best. Woulda, shoulda, coulda!
Monday, October 19, 2020
Marcell Ozuna's base running blunder in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series took away the momentum that his Atlanta Braves had built and flipped it into the dugout of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Braves had runners on second and third with one out in the bottom of the third, leading the Dodgers 2-0. Dansby Swanson lined a sinking fly ball to right field that Mookie Betts made a shoestring catch on. Ozuna went back to the bag to tag up but left early. Although he was called safe at the plate, review overturned to call and took the run off the books. The Braves failed to add to their two run lead. The first batter for Los Angeles in the top of the fourth, Corey Seager, hit a homerun to cut the lead in half. But with the base running blunder it was like a two run swing for the Dodgers. They were sky high and went on to win the game. Although the Braves still led the series 3-2, the damage was done. The Dodgers went on to win the next two games and advanced to the World Series. Ozuna's bone-headed play changed the complexion for the remainder of the series. His mistake is a huge reason the Braves are going home and the Dodgers are playing in another World Series.