All Hogs: ‘Petrino must be licking his chops’ over facing Texas

The Southwest Conference’s longtime rivalry between the Texas Longhorns and Arkansas Razorbacks resumes in the Southeastern Conference in 2024. One Arkansas writer is confident in the Razorbacks exploiting the Longhorns’ secondary.

All Hogs’ Kent Smith shared the following thoughts on new Arkansas offensive coordinator Bobby Petrino attacking the Texas secondary he saw in the Orange-White game.

“Despite the vanilla nature of what the starters are being asked to do, (Bobby) Petrino must be licking his chops because there are weaknesses all over the secondary that can be exploited no matter what Texas does to try to cover it up.”

It’s worth noting how mightily Arkansas’ secondary struggled against Boise State transfer Taylen Green, but the Texas defensive backfield is a cause for concern in its own right. The Longhorns have work to do in the transfer portal and in bringing current defensive backs up to par.

In spite of the bravado coming from Smith, Arkansas probably isn’t the team to exploit Texas. Petrino might relish the opportunity to face Texas, but it’s doubtful the Razorbacks have the firepower to get it done.

Much of the misplaced Razorback confidence comes from starting quarterback Taylen Green’s spring game. He has something to prove.

Green completed 57.1% of his passes last season with 1,752 yards and 11 touchdowns to nine interceptions. Perhaps in 2024 he transforms into a good quarterback.

Green will be asked to lift one of the worst offenses in the country into the top half of college football. Last season with a more proven KJ Jefferson at quarterback, Arkansas averaged 326.5 yards per game with a 187.5 yard average through the air.

The first two series of the Orange-White game are probably more indicative of what Texas will look like in the secondary in the upcoming season. Arkansas would be wise not to throw at Longhorns starter Malik Muhammad. Nickel corner Jahdae Barron, Clemson safety transfer Andrew Mukuba and the winner of the other starting spot at safety between Michael Taaffe and Derek Williams can be counted on as dependable starters next season.

It’s uncertain if reserve cornerback Gavin Holmes will be asked to start or if Texas will fill the other starting cornerback role with a portal addition, but whoever it plays should be able to slow down the Arkansas passing attack.

In contrast, the late season matchup will reveal if the Razorback defense can keep up with the Longhorns’ speed at receiver. Judging by the team’s own lack of speed, the Razorbacks might not be getting many stops of their own.

Story originally appeared on Longhorns Wire