Sully Says: "Full Tilt Boogie"
The 1997 Razorback football season ended with the Hogs losing six of their final seven games to finish with a 4-7 record for the second year in a row. It was a sad time for the program. Fans weren't angry. They were tired. Tired of Head Coach Danny Ford and losing, I sensed apathy from Hog fans for the first time since coming to Arkansas in 1978.
Enter Houston Nutt.
I still view his most significant contribution to the program was restoring the passion for Razorback football. He got fans excited about Hog football again.
The end of the 2017 season was almost as bad as 1997. It was also a four win season. By November, Coach Bielema was about as popular as Ford was 20 years earlier. Fans stayed away from home games by the thousands.
Enter Chad Morris.
Morris will tell you that deep down he's just a high school coach. A Texas high school coach. We all know that the stadiums, crowds and the football are better in Texas. He's got that Texas coach swagger.
From day one in Fayetteville, Morris has put it in the left lane and put the hammer down.
It's been an all-out assault, starting with social media.
If my only exposure to the Arkansas recruiting class were Twitter, I would think Arkansas' class consists of only game changers and big-time ballers. Morris and his assistants are all over Twitter. There's one post with Coach Morris, posing with John Stephens Jones, crouched down with receiver gloves on. Some other coaches might poke fun at the post, but the new Hog coach doesn't care. It's all about getting through to those prospects.
Last Thursday, Morris addressed a Little Rock crowd for the first time. He must have been three or four Red Bulls in before he took the stage. His presentation was exhausting to watch. The new coach left it all on the stage. About 20 minutes into his talk, he made this declaration: "I'm not leaving tonight until every autograph is signed and every picture is taken."
He hit all the right notes on Thursday. I wasn't timing him, but I would guess that he mentioned the word "finish" about 20 times in only 45 seconds.
His pace in his first few months on the job reminds me of a political campaign ramping up for an election. There aren't enough hours in the day.
His recruiting stats for his first class: 30 days, 18,000 miles traveled to secure his first RazorFast class.
It's been #FullTiltBoogie for Chad Morris.