For the last episode of a four-game gauntlet against ranked teams, the Arkansas Razorbacks travel to the most arrogant (and rightfully so) confines in the Southeastern Conference. Yes, I'm referring to the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide. While the Hogs have been less than stellar on the gridiron, the Crimson Tide has been that much more stellar, the same as it has been the past two years, a well-oiled machine.
No one in their right mind is giving Arkansas a shot at winning, and based on the product on the field, there's an old saying about any given day, yada, yada, yada, so on and so forth.
That doesn't work against Nick Saban, whose soul seems to be as empty as the Alabama student section these days. But I digress ...
I actually pity Alabama fans. Most of them anyway. The ones who actually believe Nick Saban will be there forever, and that 5-star athletes will always be knocking on the front door, begging to don the crimson and white.
I'm sad for the fans who are currently taking this success for granted. Assuming it comes easily, and can be obtained just by throwing millions of dollars at a gruff, hard shelled individual.
I don't mean to take anything away from Nick Saban. He is certainly the greatest coach of the modern era, and maybe all time. His resume would stack up against anyone's.
Just in case, I'll put up protective fences around my trees.
Once Saban moves on, what will come of Alabama? Will it remain afloat, winning enough to stay relevant ? Will it sink like USC has?
What does any of this have to do with the game this Saturday ? Well, it's simple, while Alabama will probably thump Arkansas and go on to compete for the top spot in the nations premier league in college football, the fans of the Razorbacks will still be calling the Hogs, they will still reserve hope that Arkansas can compete with anyone and most importantly, they have something to look forward to.
The Arkansas program will rise from the ditch that Bobby Petrino put them in with his motorcycle shenanigans. The Hogs fans will have something to smile about, even after the John L. Smith year. And as much as Hog fans have something to look forward to, what do Alabama fans have to look forward to ?
Arkansas can go nowhere but up from this point on, with Alabama being at the pinnacle of college football, it must either maintain that high level, or descend like the great teams before. Just ask Nebraska, Oklahoma and USC.
So this Saturday, while the Hogs will fall to the Tide, when the outside world thinks Arkansas football is looking grim, in all actuality, things will be looking up.