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Arkansas Faces Tough Season Ahead

The long offseason of our discontent is finally over as football gloriously returns.

Naturally, most local eyes are on Fayetteville, where Bret Bielema will debuted against Louisiana-Lafayette at 3 p.m. last Saturday. Nobody, it seems, has a good handle on what to think about the 2013 version of the Razorbacks. You start talking about how many games Arkansas will win and “Ehh, I don’t know” comes up quite a bit.

Fittingly, I bumped into an old friend last week at our kids’ school’s open house. He’s a seriously committed Razorback fan, always found on gameday wearing an old school Uncle Heavy’s Hog Hat at his tailgates. I’ve seen him yell at the TV and curse the coaches after wins (admittedly, it was the Houston Nutt era, so he wasn’t alone in doing that).

After some chit-chat, I asked what he thought about the season. His answer: “I don’t even care about this season.”

With it being Bielema’s first season of getting Arkansas back to playing “Real American Football,” combined with an inexperienced quarterback in Brandon Allen and some huge question marks on defense, particularly at final Thanksgiving weekend game against LSU won’t be one Arkansas fans want to remember.

Best-case scenario is Arkansas manages to get to 6-6. Thanks to the glut of pointless bowl games, that will get the Hogs a berth in one. The past few seasons, it would have been disappointing to wind up in the type of bowl game that’ll take a 6-6 team. In 2013, Arkansas fans should see it as a cause for celebration.

Scott Faldon is the Times Record sports editor. His Five Thoughts about college football appears online each Wednesday at Twitter: