Bret Bielema

Open Letter to K.J. Hill: Recommit to Arkansas and Become a National Star

K.J. Hill Arkansas Football Recruit

(Photo Credit: Whole Hog Sports)

Hello, Mr. Hill:

The purpose of this open letter is to urge you (and cause others to urge you) to recommit to playing football for the University of Arkansas. You’re being heavily recruited by the University of Alabama and Ohio State University, but those teams are loaded at the wide receiver position. You, therefore, seriously run the risk of simply sitting on the bench your entire college tenure, squandering an opportunity to live up to your full potential on the football field and make it to the NFL. At the University of Arkansas, you will have the opportunity to emerge as a star, possibly your first season. Although all who follow college football know that Arkansas has a superior power running game—with the biggest offensive line in football (college and NFL)—the team is only an improved passing game away from winning national championships. Arkansas returns a tough defense, a defense that ranked #10 in total defense, holding Alabama to only 14 points and holding LSU and Ole Miss scoreless last season. You, Mr. Hill, will be the featured wide receiver at Arkansas. At Alabama and Ohio State, you will sit on the bench—no matter what the coaches at both schools are telling you right now.

If you’re unaware, one of the significant jobs in college football recruiting, especially among elite football programs, is to not only recruit the best and most appropriate players for one’s team but also to recruit players away from teams to prevent them from progressing. Unfortunately, this brutal recruiting game results in those players never being intended to be used. Nick Saban recognizes the great difficulties he faced against Arkansas last season, which resulted in many Alabama fans calling the team “mediocre” and questioning whether Saban is in decline. Saban understands that Arkansas’ physical play on both sides of the ball is a substantial threat to his team in the SEC West. You’re nothing more than a pawn in his recruiting game.

Urban Meyer and Bret Bielema simply don’t like one another. Meyer isn’t genuinely interested in you—he simply wants to recruit you to anger Bielema. Again, you’re nothing more than a pawn in Meyer’s recruiting war, and he knows his team could face Arkansas in the playoffs, which it’s really possible for both teams to make it there.

If you recommit to Arkansas, you will be just as important to the team as its power running game is to its success. Arkansas has a great tight end, Hunter Henry, who occupies the attention of every defense the team faces. While those defenses are focusing on Hunter Henry, they will open up even more touchdown opportunities and big plays for you. With the recruitment of big-time recruit, Will Gragg, a tight end, defenses will have to concentrate on him as well, allowing increased opportunities for you to gain separation from defenses that will attempt to defend you man-to-man.

Mr. Hill, I have worked for the University of Arkansas’ athletic department and I can honestly attest to the fact that the athletic department has some of the finest facilities in the nation, and you will receive some of the finest academic support inside of the athletic department in the nation. Don’t forget how important it is to have great academic support to maintain your eligibility to play. Too often recruits don’t ask those athletic departments what they’re going to offer them to ensure their academic success. In the academic support center in the athletic department at Arkansas, you will receive tutoring, training, support, and help with your academic work that will ensure your success. If you commit to Arkansas, I make a personal commitment to help you with every assignment you need assistance with completing.

In closing, Mr. Hill, I strongly urge you not to become distracted by offers by Alabama and Ohio State. Those offers are to have you to sit on the bench. Contact Bret Bielema today and make an unwavering recommitment to Arkansas.

I look forward to hearing of your recommitment to Arkansas in the coming days.

Best wishes,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Arkansas

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Arkansas Must Fire Offensive Coordinator Jim Chaney

Arkansas Razorbacks Football

(Photo Credit: Whole Hogs Sports)

Although Arkansas offensive coordinator Jim Chaney had some positive play-calling moments against Texas A&M, he’s not the appropriate fit for the power running game Bret Bielema is establishing at Arkansas.  During the first half of the Auburn loss, Jim Chaney also had some positive play-calling moments. Unfortunately, in losses to both Auburn and Texas A&M, Chaney has demonstrated he cannot stay committed to the power running game.  He seems to be more interested in moving the Arkansas offensive into more of a passing team.  While no one is expecting him to never call a pass play, it’s vital for Chaney to understand when to employ the passing game.  Arkansas isn’t built to be a passing offense with the current players the team has and with the players it has recruited.  Bret Bielema has intentionally recruited players for a physical power running game.  For Chaney to continue to neglect the running game, especially at crucial points in games, is an affront to Bielema’s leadership.

Yes, Brandon Allen has demonstrated he can provide Arkansas with a much needed passing game, but Chaney shouldn’t get carried away with the passing game as he has.  His play-calling has been quite questionable in games against Auburn, Texas Tech, and Texas A&M.  In the Auburn game, his failure to make a commitment to the running game resulted in Auburn defeating Arkansas in the second half.  On the last play in overtime against Texas A&M, the Texas A&M defense dared him to throw the ball by loading the box with 8 to 9 men, and he foolishly ran the ball and Alex Collins was stuffed at the line of scrimmage.

Bielema simply needs to transition to an offensive coordinator who will give Arkansas the best chance to win, and this offensive coordinator must be someone who is comfortable making a significant commitment to the power running game.  Although it defies conventional wisdom to transition to a new offensive coordinator at this point in the season, it wouldn’t be a difficult job to find a offensive coordinator who could quickly adjust to the key principles of the current offensive schemes Arkansas employs.  Bielema could even get more active in the offensive play-calling until the new coordinator makes the full adjustment to what he desires for him to do.

Arkansas has proven that it can compete with any of the elite teams in the nation, but it’s unfair for the players to continue to suffer from the poor play-calling of Jim Chaney.  The Razorbacks have a credible chance to finish well in the SEC and make it to a bowl game this year.  Right now, however, Jim Chaney is the enemy within who can prevent the team from having the kind of year its capable of experiencing; he’s already proven it.

If Chaney does not ameliorate his play-calling against Alabama this Saturday, then Bielema shouldn’t give him another chance to hinder the progress of the team.  With Arkansas squaring off against Alabama in Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, Arkansas, where it’s always a mighty tough place to play, one can only hope Chaney will not harm the team’s legitimate chance to defeat the Crimson Tide.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Arkansas

Why Arkansas Lost to Auburn in the Second Half in Week One

Arkansas Razorback Football 2014

(Photo Credit: Bleacher Report)

Although several of the Arkansas coaches, including offensive coordinator Jim Chaney, got stuck in the elevator during the entire halftime period and didn’t have a chance to meet with the players, it was the failure of Jim Chaney to stay committed to the running game that resulted in Arkansas losing in the second half of the game.  Chaney had to send text messages with his instructions for players to the coaches who were present with them during halftime.  As a coach, I understand how important it is to be physically present with your team during halftime, considering you have a chance to make key adjustments.  Chaney foolishly decided to abandon the power running game, featuring Arkansas’ huge offensive line, and a power running game that Auburn couldn’t handle in the first half, for a greater focus on passing.  While Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen had a good game, the strength of the team lies in its great stable of running backs, led by Jonathan Williams, Alex Collins and Korliss Marshall.

Arkansas has one of the biggest and most athletic offensive lines in the nation.  For Jim Chaney to fail to remain committed to the running game in the second half defies all logic.  Yes, Arkansas did run the ball in the second half, but passing the ball so much in the second half resulted in Arkansas not being able to wear down the Auburn defense as it did in the first half.  When Jim Chaney decides to neglect the power running game, which made Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema one of the winningest active coaches and such a success at Wisconsin, Bielema must step in and refocus Chaney on the running game.

Without question, Arkansas is a much improved team than last year, and the team is going to surprise some teams this year.  Arkansas’ coaches, however, must stay true to who the team is, a power running football team; a team designed to play physical on both sides of the ball.  The NCAA has determined that Arkansas has the toughest schedule in the country.  It will, therefore, be essential for the Arkansas coaching staff to make wise decisions throughout this season.  Arkansas has some really great coaches, including Bret Bielema and Randy Shannon, and those coaches will need to evince their great coaching prowess this season to maximize the team’s success and make it to a bowl game.

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Arkansas Has A New Razorback: Kevin Richardson

Razorback Football

(Photo Credit: 247sports.com)

The Arkansas Razorback football team has added Kevin Richardson to the roster.  Read “Kevin Richardson Opts for Razorbacks” to learn more about him making the roster.  When you see his highlights film, you will understand why the coaches at the University of Arkansas believe Richardson has the potential to be a star for the Razorbacks.  At Jacksonville High School in Jacksonville, Arkansas, Richardson played wide receiver, quarterback, safety, punt returner, kick returner, and running back.  He has legitimate triple-threat talent; that is, he can make an impact on offense, defense, and special teams.  In the SEC, the competition is fierce and continues to get better each year.  For the Arkansas Razorbacks to have success, the team will need special players like Richardson.

Kevin Richardson is a gifted football player and a quality walk-on recruit for the Razorbacks.  He’s a great team player, has great character, and good grades.  This young man will have a positive impact on and off the field.

Revolutionary Paideia was the first media source to advocate for the Arkansas Razorbacks to recruit Kevin Richardson.  Through the efforts of Revolutionary Paideia, Richardson received strong support from former players, many Razorback fans, and Arkansas sports reporters, including leading Arkansas recruiting reporter Richard Davenport, and this strong support helped bring Richardson to the attention of Razorback football coaches.

Although Richardson got a late start in getting his recruitment materials out, he did not let his dream of being a Razorback end.  Because he continued to work tirelessly to prove himself to Razorback coaches, he earned a spot on the roster.

His mother, Sanci Richardson, and older brother, Airic Hughes, devoted significant time and effort to advocating for Kevin to be recruited by the Razorbacks; their efforts paid off too.  Kevin comes from a highly supportive and great family.  At the University of Arkansas, I taught and mentored Airic Hughes, a graduate student and scholar in History at the University of Arkansas.  Hughes is also a University of Arkansas alum and staff member and great student.  

Follow Kevin Richardson on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/itsyaboy_KRICH.  Welcome him to the Arkansas Razorback family!  I’m confident Kevin will emerge as a star for the Razorback football team.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

Open Letter to John L. Smith, Paul Petrino, and Paul Haynes

John L. Smith

Dear John L. Smith, Paul Petrino, and Paul Haynes:

The purpose of this letter is to express my outrage at you for blaming the players for the 4 – 8 losing season last year.  Paul Petrino, if you’re looking to blame someone, start with your brother first and then blame your horrible coaching.  John L. Smith, you’re a joke!  Paul Haynes, you could not come up with a defensive scheme to stop anyone we faced, even in the four games we won.  It was your poor defensive coaching that caused the Razorbacks to have a losing season.

Paul Petrino, Athletic Director Jeff Long was justified in only giving John L. Smith a 10 month contract: look what happened—a 4 – 8 season.  You guys were not good enough coaches to come up with a winning strategy to defeat Louisiana-Monroe. I repeat, Louisiana-Monroe.  Are you serious?

Each one of you should look in the mirror and place all of the blame for the 4 -8 season at Arkansas on the person in the mirror.  Those guys played tremendously hard and even believed in you guys, but you now want to be disrespectful to them now by placing all of the blame on them, the players—that’s simply disgusting.

You should be glad that you were granted an opportunity to coach at a program of the caliber of the University of Arkansas.  In all honesty, you never were worthy of coaching at Arkansas in the first place.  I want you to know that your current players will never trust you because they see how nasty you are treating your former players at Arkansas.  A coach should never place the blame on his players for having a losing season.  It is ridiculous for you to say that players who are seriously injured were faking their injuries.  I know those guys.  They would never fake an injury.  I have seen some of those players who were really too injured to step on the field get on the field without regard for doing further damage to their bodies.

Arkansas Razorback fans look forward to years of success with one of the best top-to-bottom coaching staffs in the nation.  We’re led by one of the best coaches in the nation, Bret Bielema.

John L. Smith, you need to worry about your bankruptcy issues.  You were fired and are now coaching at one of the smallest football programs in the nation, which means you’re a reject.  Paul Petrino, you need to focus on helping your brother to end his whorish ways.  You will never be a successful coach.  Paul Haynes, it’s only a matter of time before Kent State University discovers you are a loser.  Learn how to coach defense!

I’m a proud Arkansas Razorback!  Razorback fans are proud of our players!

Sincerely,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

Open Letter to Bret Bielema Concerning Kevin Richardson

Dear Coach Bret Bielema:

The purpose of this letter is express my strong recommendation of Kevin Richardson, WR/QB, DB/S, and PR/KR of Jacksonville High School in Jacksonville, Arkansas, to be a part of the 2013 Arkansas Razorbacks football recruiting class. With my experience working in the athletic departments at the University of Arkansas and University of Wisconsin-Madison, and my experience as a football coach, I contend I’m a suitable judge of the type of talent you have acquired in the past and the type of talent the University of Arkansas has selected in the past and needs. I invite you to look at the highlights of Kevin Richardson here: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/602351/highlights/2023389 .

Kevin Richardson would set the Razorbacks apart from all SEC teams: the Razorbacks would have the only player in the conference who can play quarterback, wide receiver, defensive back/safety, and kick and punt returner. For a long time, Arkansas has longed for a player with the skill of Kevin Richardson: a player who can who can play at a high level on offense, defense and special teams. Imagine how frustrating it will be for defenses when they will not be able to decipher what the offense is doing when Richardson is on the field.

When thinking about getting the most value for the allotted scholarships, Kevin Richardson can contribute for you in every aspect of the game: offense, defense and special teams. That’s like getting two or three players on one scholarship.

As a football coach, almost nothing pleases me more than hearing other coaches having limitless great things to say about an athlete. Kevin’s coaches never run out of great things to say about him. He’s a gifted and versatile football player. He plays the game the right way. You will never have to worry about Kevin not meeting his academic responsibilities. He has an ACT score that’s nationally competitive with all student-athletes in the 2013 recruiting class. Kevin is a leader on and off the field. He’s the right player to help the Razorbacks’ defense to develop into a national championship level defense.

I very much appreciate your time and consideration and look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison