Arkansas: Another Season in the SEC West
I’d be fairly confident in assuming Arkansas and its constituents were part of the group in favor of teams who fail to win their conference having a chance to make the playoffs in the post-BCS college football world. Last year, they happened to finish third in their own division while having an argument as one of the five best teams in the nation.
Unlike some of their SEC peers, Arkansas did not have the schedule fairies shining down upon them a season ago. Not only did they have to play both Alabama and LSU; they had to face both on the road. The results were not surprising for having faced the two best teams in the nation: Arkansas lost both contests rather convincingly. However, an odd piece of coincidental circumstance occurred as well. Arkansas lost no other games all year long; they won them all, including a smack-down of #8 Kansas State in the Cotton Bowl. Thus, as logic would play out, if the only two teams to have beaten the Razorbacks were first and second, Arkansas had some claim as being third.
A playoff scenario where a team must win their conference to be eligible seems highly unfair with supportive evidence occurring just a few months ago. Of course this is still a ways away with the BCS intact for 2012. Arkansas will be forced to do battle once again in the stacked SEC West with two championship game contenders above them.
There is, however, some hope with what the Razorbacks have returning. Quarterback and Heisman hopeful Tyler Wilson will be back, as will star running back from 2010, Knile Davis. Davis missed all of 2011 with an injury but should be a huge boost to what was already a formidable offensive unit. It may be hard to imagine Arkansas doing any better than they did last year but as we saw, finishing third in their own division might have been good enough for a berth in the future college football playoffs.