With the kickoff to the 2009 Razorback football season a mere 115 days away, I thought I would use a formula my hedge fund manager gave me that factors in spring practice statistics from just sunny days, the height and weight of incoming freshmen, the GPA’s of the opposition’s cheerleaders and that new APR score, and is divided by last year’s temperature and multiplied by the last year’s pollen count on game day to come up with a prediction for the 2009 season.
But then I thought better of it and just decided to go with what my gut is telling me right now. That being a gut that has a memory of the ways of the Hogs that goes back to a very hazy memory of the Orange Bowl win and gets a little brighter with Holtz’s Sugar Bowl loss to Bear Bryant.
My heart has a memory just as long, but I am going to try to keep the heart out of this forecast, for it does want to call every game a “W” for the Hogs. So, gut, what do you say right now?
September 5th, Missouri State
The gut is going to say that the Hogs get off to a much better start this year, and we don’t come nearly as close to having a Citadel moment like we did last year. Mallet makes a solid premier, Michael Smith runs for over 100 yards, and the defense does enough, but still gives up enough long plays to keep us all worried about how they’ll look against SEC competition.
Hogs Wins 38 to 14.
September 19th, Georgia
Kirk Herbstreit and Tony Barnhart have already said that Georgia better watch out for the Hogs. And without Stafford and Moreno, I think Georgia should have a time of it in Fayetteville.
But, one thing Mark Richt does darn well is win SEC games on the road. And a thing that our Hogs do pretty darn well is lose SEC games in Fayetteville when an Eastern team comes to visit.
As much as we would like to rub it in the face of those Falcons fans, I believe Georgia still gets the better of the Hogs this year. BUT, I think next year in Athens you’ll see the Hogs do a William T. Sherman impersonation.
Hogs Lose 28 to 17.
September 26th, Alabama
Starting off the season with a loss to Georgia at home stings, but the Hogs hope to get into the win column in Tuscaloosa. Sorry, no luck here.
The gut is saying that Ryan Mallet acquits himself well, but not well enough to overcome a bad defensive showing and his own jitters that produce two very untimely interceptions on the wrong end of the field. It won’t be as bad as last year, but Bama and Julio Jones still get us again.
Hogs Lose 34 to 21.
October 3rd, Texas A&M
The Hogs have not had a lot of luck at playing in domed buildings. I am not for sure if they’ve ever won a game inside a dome. But the hole at the top of Jerry Jones’ new stadium is just enough to save the Hogs as they sneak by the Aggies in a game that brings back memories of the SWC and via Wally Hall, the Mexican restaurants he loved to visit in College Station.
Hogs win 24 to 21.
October 10th, Auburn
The visitor usually wins this game, but not this time. Even Gus can’t squeeze a spread offense out of these guys in time for Auburn to be a competitive team in ‘09. The defense has its best effort of the season thus far, and native Arkansan Tommy Tuberville is seen in the stands with his Camden area family.
Some will say he had an Arkansas shirt on. Others say it was an Auburn shirt.
Hogs win 28 to 10.
October 17th Florida
As much as the gut would like say that there is a victory here for the Hogs, it just can’t at this point.
If during the walkthrough Tim Tebow were to get caught up in the Rapture, as you know he’ll be leading the ascent upwards, the Hogs would have a better chance at winning. Loaded on defense with all the starters coming back, Florida does a good job of shutting down Mallet and Smith as well as the other improving backs.
Hogs lose 41 to 13.