The Arkansas Traveler may be struggling. For those of us who aren’t familiar with student news, the Traveler is the University of Arkansas student newspaper. They’ve been discussing the Arkansas @ Alabama game throughout the week, and I’m starting to think that they could use a bye week of their own:
Arkansas helped by element of suprise against ‘Bama
Now, let’s focus on the topic of the article. Does Arkansas have the element of surprise on their side? The paper seems to think so since Saban only has one game from this season to analyze. But, is it helpful for a team to take their bye week during the 2nd week of play? It’s not as easy to claim as you might think since it means different things for different coaching philosophies.
Is it good for a team with a new starting QB to just spend time on the practice field, or to learn by game experience? Will David Lee’s new offensive plan result in more than handing off the ball to McFadden and Jones 30+ times? I don’t know.
The thing that bothers me the most about bye weeks is the belief that they will make such a huge difference for a team. I seem to remember Alabama playing like total garbage against Ole Miss in 2005 following a bye week. You could look back through the record books for Houston Nutt after bye weeks and you’ll see mixed results against SEC teams. Oddly enough, Nutt has had plenty of off weeks before playing Auburn.
Bye weeks are usually most helpful when your team needs a rest after a long streak of games. Will it have a huge impact? Maybe, although it’s nearly impossible to say. We’ll see this Saturday.
(HT: The Arkansas Traveler)