TD Club re­veals speak­ers for 2017

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - SCOREBOARD - CLAY HENRY

Arkansas foot­ball coach Bret Bielema and ath­letic direc­tor Jeff Long will be joined by for­mer col­lege foot­ball coaches Frank Beamer, Bob Stoops, Gary Pinkel and Tommy Tu­berville as speak­ers this year for the North­west Arkansas Touch­down Club.

Col­lege foot­ball guru Phil Steele was the lun­cheon guest Wed­nes­day at the club’s speaker re­veal. Steele pub­lishes one of the na­tion’s top col­lege foot­ball pre­view mag­a­zines. He was asked about Arkansas’ chances this sea­son and said the Hogs might sur­prise.

Steele was clear that last year’s Arkansas team didn’t live up to his ex­pec­ta­tions.

“I get why they weren’t as good,” he said. “They had in­juries with Deatrich Wise, Kevin Richard­son and Dre Green­law.”

Steele loves the ad­di­tion of Paul Rhoads as de­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor and the switch to the 3-4 scheme.

“First, I like what they’ve done on the de­fen­sive line,” he said. “They’ve gone from 275-pound guys to 300 and 330 across the front. That will help them be­come much tougher against the run. Paul Rhoads did a great job at Iowa State. He’ll have a solid im­pact with the Arkansas de­fense this sea­son.”

The speaker list and sched­ule for the NWA Touch­down Club is as fol­lows:

■ Aug. 23 — Bret Bielema, Arkansas head coach

■ Aug. 30 — Frank Beamer, for­mer Vir­ginia Tech coach

■ Sept. 6 — Jeff Long, Arkansas ath­letic direc­tor

■ Sept. 20 — Matt St­inch­comb, SEC Net­work

■ Sept. 27 — Chris “The Bear” Fal­lica, ESPN Col­lege Game Day

■ Oct. 3 — Laura Rut­ledge, SEC Net­work, ESPN

■ Oct. 11 — Bob Stoops, for­mer Ok­la­homa coach ■

Oct. 18 — Gary Pinkel, for­mer Mis­souri coach

■ Oct. 25 — Tommy Tu­berville, ESPN, for­mer coach

■ Nov. 8 — Ken Ham­lin, for­mer Ra­zor­back safety

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