FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Bret Bielema has experienced a new sense of excitement heading into his second season at Arkansas.
Simple things — increased intensity during practice and a renewed belief — have been a welcomed reboot for both the Razorbacks coach and an entire program in desperate need exactly that after bottoming out last season.
The 3-9 season, the first losing record of Bielema's head coaching career and Arkansas' worst mark since joining the Southeastern Conference, capped a disheartening two-year run for a program considered among the league's best just a few years ago.
Last season has done little to quell Bielema's belief in himself, his coaching staff and players — despite being picked to finish last in the SEC West this season.
The Razorbacks open on Aug. 30 at Auburn.