Arkansas Football: Why Tyler Wilson Is Bound to Win Awards This Year

Alex SimsCorrespondent IIIAugust 1, 2012

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - NOVEMBER 12:   Quarterback Tyler Wilson #8 of the Arkansas Razorbacks sings the fight song with his teammates after a win against the Tennessee Volunteers at Donald W. Reynolds Stadium Stadium on November 12, 2011 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.  The Razorbacks defeated the Volunteers 49 to 7.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Senior quarterback Tyler Wilson has the Arkansas Razorbacks looking like a serious Southeastern Conference and even national title contender in 2012.

Wilson has garnered some impressive accolades in previous years and has already received a heavy dose of praise from opposing coaches and the media alike in the 2012 preseason.

It was no surprise when the SEC coaches named Wilson the preseason first-team All-SEC quarterback (via

The Greenwood, Arkansas native threw for 3,638 yards and 27 touchdowns last year in the toughest defensive conference in college football.

In his 2011 first-team All-SEC campaign, he averaged 279.8 yards per game, all while his conference had 11 of the top 30 passing defenses in the nation.

A proven winner, last year he led Arkansas to its third-ever 11-win season.

His performance was enough for him to be named a finalist for the Manning Award and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, as well as a semifinalist for the Davey O'Brien Award. 

There is little doubt that he is one of the best quarterbacks in all of college football, as he finished No. 13 in the nation in total passing yards.

Now, after a breakout junior year, Wilson is receiving some well-earned recognition.

Andrew Perloff of Sports Illustrated has Wilson at No. 1 in his early NFL mock draft.

Also, Wilson has been named to the preseason Maxwell Award watch list and Davey O'Brien Award watch list, and he's regarded as one of the early Heisman Trophy contenders.

To win these awards, Wilson will not only have to have a great year, but he will need a strong effort from his supporting cast.

Fortunately, the Wilson-led Razorbacks offense will be supplemented by the return of running back Knile Davis and one of the SEC's top receivers, Cobi Hamilton—both of whom join Wilson on the preseason first-team All-SEC squad.

The Hogs had two decent runners in Dennis Johnson and Ronnie Wingo Jr. lead the ground game last year, but Davis is expected to make a strong return from injury to make this one of the most balanced offenses in the country.

Now Wilson will be seeing more players in the box to account for Davis and fewer sitting back waiting for the pass.

Of course, the offseason hasn't been all good news, as Arkansas has had about as rough of an offseason as any team, with the Bobby Petrino motorcycle fiasco and his subsequent departure.

However, they will now be led by John L. Smith—an extremely enthusiastic player's coach who has made infamous the phrase "Get your piss hot."

Bleacher Report's Barrett Sallee provides a nice explanation of the phrase there, but I'm sure that particular saying can conjure up enough mental imagery for you to understand its meaning.

So, all spring and all summer, Smith and Wilson will be getting their piss hot, or revving up their motors for this upcoming season.

This should be pretty alarming for their SEC opponents who watched Wilson throw for more than 3,600 yards last year.

This year, Wilson will flirt with 4,000 yet again, as the Razorbacks will be in the thick of the SEC title race in the loaded SEC West.

Arkansas has what looks like an extremely tough slate in 2012, but a closer look shows that the Hogs are set up nicely for an SEC title run.

Two of their four SEC road games come against Texas A&M and Mississippi State—the two teams that gave up the most yards to Wilson last year.

Also, they won't have to go to Baton Rouge or Tuscaloosa—the two sites they had the least success with last year.

Having both Alabama and LSU at home may be enough for Arkansas to take the SEC West.

Either way, Wilson will again lead the most potent offense in the conference.

Last season, Arkansas led the SEC in scoring offense, passing offense and total offense.

With Wilson at the helm, they'll more than likely do it again.

If that happens then the Hogs will be in the thick of the SEC title race and Wilson will be in the thick of the race for many of the nation's top awards.


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