Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on September 3, 1974 · Page 13
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Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 13

Fayetteville, Arkansas
Issue Date:
Tuesday, September 3, 1974
Page 13
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Page 13 article text (OCR)

Footbdi 74 JlortfjtoeSt i!Utttn$0 FAYETTEVIUE, ARKANSAS, TUESDAY. .'PTEMBER 3, 1974 ·A prelude to the action by area teams, the SWC, state, and major colleges Bulldogs Hope Future Is Now Under Davis In one sense, the Faycllcvillo Bulldogs of 1974 arc like the Arkansas Razorbacks. Both teams, have a bright long-range f u t u r e , . h u t both want to win ahead oE schedule. At last count, Fayettcville had 46 sophomores practicing. Many, of those played on Ramay Junior High's championship team last year. They're as big as the varsity players, and they abound with enthusiasm. Keep in mind also that there are G8 ninth-graders playing in the city this year. But don't write off this year yet. New coach Doync D a v i s Is used to winning, and lie has infused the Bulldogs with a winning attitude. Only weeks after Davis arrived last spring, team leader Rick Taylor 'said, "There's not one of us who doesn't like him. lie makes us want to work for him." One reason for this is that Davis works so hard himself. For evidence, all one has to «lp is look at the lush turf at rlhrrncn Playficld, or the new coaches' office or the added pavement, or the expanded weight room. . LAWSON OSBURN But what likely motivates the Bulldogs just as much is-Davis proven record of success. He led Morrilton io two AA titles in four years, including, a 13-0 season. STOPPED ECKWOOD Last, year the Devil Dogs took on Brinkley and Jerry Eckwood in the finals, and won 16-6. Eck wood had been gaining over 200 yards a game, but Morriltoi defensed him so well that .recently said, "I didn't have "any kind of game at all." That kind of coaching per formance is impressive to group of players who have watched the last three Bulldoi teams post an overall recon of 10-18-2. Last year's team which talked of going 10-i before the season, finished 4-6. .. All Davis wants is a littli time. "We're starting at thi bottom and trying to work ou way up," he says. "Whei you're coming off a 4-6 seasoi and you've lost your whol senior class, you have to h realistic. Right now, I don' know of any team in the AAA West conference that car handle Fort Smith Southside.' .Davis a d d s , "What we'r concerned about now are ou own organizational problems.' Like, who will be the startin quarterback. The candidates are senior Lawson Osburn and Ore McClelland, and they've bee running dead even. "I don't want to alternate quarterbacks, and I'd prefer that they not play both ways," says Davis. "So the one who doesn't play quarterback will probably start at safety." TAYLOR VERSATILE Davis must also decide where to use the talents of Taylor, the team's fastest player at 5-11 and 155. Taylor can play split end, tailback, and wingback. t he plays split end, Scott Stan- erry will go to safety. Wing- ack would then be manned by 6 juniors Michael Buchanan nd Michael Jackson, with 180- ounders Arthur B u d d and teve Baird playing tailback. Jackson didn't play football ast year, but Davis says, "I ke the way he moves. He has nick feet." Jackson weighs 155 nd Buchanan 145. The fullback position is set vith 6-1, 195-pound senior Brian licks. "Hell have to c a n y the oad for us early," says Davis, icks started last year, but sel- om carried the ball. His locking helped departed tail- jack Dwight Tucker gain nearly 1000 yards. Ass'islant Coach Tom McKin,cy's offensive line lacks size and. experience, but not grit, ^ight end Larry Atha, 6-1 and .75, is the only returning star- er. The tackles are 185-pound eniors Chuck Pearce and Bobby Davis. Working at guard are Steve Eason, 5-10 and 165; foey Rodman, 5-fi and 155; and ary Striegler, 5-11 and 165. The center is 5-10, 175-pound senior John Pabst. Defensive coordinator Carl Tox has a bit more experience ,o work with, partly because of the switch of 6-1, 175'pound senior John McCutcheon from center to linebacker. Other returning starters are S-3'A, 195- pound tackle Dayton Lierley and 155-pound halfbacks Clark "p.wis and Keith Striegler. SENIOR ENDS At weak-side end will be 165- ound seniors Alex Montez and Clayton Hughes. Senior Hick Jones and junior Bruce Me- lleod are the strong-side ends. Besides Lierley, the tackles will x 6-1, 197-pound senior Richard H a m m o n s ; 5-10, 160-pound junior Read Hudson; and 6-0, 2 0 5 - p o u n d sophomore J i m Elliott. Working at nose guard are Silly Harrison and Joey Rob bins. Harrison is a 5-9. · 220- pound junior who missed ' last season with an Achilles tendon injury. Steve R o b e r t s , a 150 - pound senior with g o o d speed, will s h a r e one linebacker position w i t h Atha. Backing up McCutcheon will be junior Mark Springer. The monster man is 150-pound senior Scott Mundy. Coach Davis will align the Bulldogs in multiple sets on both defense and offense. Basically, we have monster defense." he said. "But we'll line up in both an odd front' and a six-man front. We think it makes us hard to scout. "On offense, we'll line up in the powcr-I, the slot-I and the pro-I. But we run the same plays out of all sets. We know how to run the ' plays --· the problem is how fast." If it's not fast enough, the Bulldogs can go for a field goal with McClelland or kick the ball away with Davis or McCleod. In the latter case, secondary Coach Joe Kretschmar won't be overly worried. "I believe," he said after the first scrimmage, "that we have 11 out there who are not afraid to strike you." LOOKING PENSIVE · . . is new Fayetteville Coach Doyne Davis. After compiling an outstanding record at Morrilton, Davis 'accepted the challenge of returning the Bulldogs to football respectability. Fayetteville opens on the road · against Bentonville Friday night. Johnson Sells Commitment To Young Porkers Jimmy Johnson is a disciple of the late Jim Mackenzie. Johnson was a nose man at the University of Arkansas when Mackenzie was the defensive coordinator for Frank Broyles. Mackenzie's philosophy stuck with Johnson and what he is practicing Mackenzie preached. "In the old days, you would tell a player to run into a brick wall and he would do it," Johnson said. "Now, the player has to believe that what he's doing is the very best thing in order to get him to perform at the top of his capability." Johnson, a member of Arkansas' 11-0 team of 1964, said he could remember when Mackenzie would stop a practice that wasn't going right. "We might stop a practice now that isn't accomplishing anything," Johnson said. "In the old days, you might try to go into a tough guy attitude make it tougher on the player. We try to stop it and let them think it out for themselves. We don't try to be all-perfect type coaches. The players feel like they can be a part of it this way. MORE QUESTIONS "I think some of your better players will question what you omore much of last year, had a knee operation in the spring. Billy Burns, a senior, also has been bothered by injuries. Possibilities are sophomores Johnny Meadors and Dennis Winston. Winston moved into the starting lineup as a freshman in are telling them to do ... not rebel, just question. Johnson answers the questions. "Any body with a total commitenl will work harder," he said. "We don't tell them we wani to be national champions, we want them to nave the com rnilment to be national cham pitfns. We don't tell them we'n going out and have a goot practice. We want them to hav a commitment to a good prac tice to improve." Johnson's defense may bea much of t h e pressure thi fall, particularly in the earl^ going while the Razorbacks new wishbone attack tests it muscle against the Universit IMPORTANT ADDITIONS the Arkansas attack in 1974 mil be halfback Ike Forte (85) and quarterback Mark Miller (10). Forte is a transfer from Tyler (Tex.) Junior College, where he gained 1175 yards rushing in eight games last year. Miller played only sparingly while recovering from a knee injury last season, carrying the ball just six times and throioing only 13 passes of Southern California and Oklahoma State. He believes the defense will be good, maybe even better. "It's not like we have to. take new players and build up their confidence. We've got the 'exact same players that we'had last year and they're going info the season feeling like they did at the end of last year." The only apparent problem is at linebacker. Danny Rhodes, an All-Southwest Conference performer. midseason last year and was a terror. "He has such a great frame f mind for playing defense," ohnson said. "In a way, he ind of wants to hurt people, makes the kind of hit that an pick up a defense . . . pick p the whole tempo." Winston may start at line- tacker. The failure of the young inebackers to develop, a slow tart by McAfee or improvement by defensive end William Vatkins could make the move a permanent one. GOOD SECONDARY The secondary is loaded with' 'xccllcnt athletes. "I don't even like to say ve've got a first and second cam secondary." Johnson said. 'We've got eight players back :here that I feel can play de- 'ense for anybody." The ringleader is Rollen Jmith, the Razorbacks' best lone for postseason honors. The defensive line includes Ivan Jordan, All-SWC as a sophomore, and Watkins or .Vinston at end. Tackle Brison Manor played well near the end of the 1973 season after making .he adjustment from junior college. The other tackle will be Jon Rhiddlehoover, Arkansas' top technique player. Rhiddle- hoover played tackle last year, but could go to the nose, Leotis Harris, a freshman, is given a chance at nose. Offensively, the Razorbacka should have an experienced line-including letter men Grald Skinner, Russ Tribble, Greg Koch, R. C. Thielmann and LeB King. Quarterback is a three-way. i attic among Mike Kirkland. Scott Bull and Mark Miller. A.U are juniors. Kirkland started last year when Miller and Bull \yere recuperating from injuries. Arkansas fans remember Bull leading the Razorbacks to victory in the 1972 season finals against Texas Tech. Miller showed a big-play running ability in the spring. Jerry Eckwood, the highest touted freshman of a highly outcd crop, has a back prob- ,em and is not expected to re- graduated. Hal McAfee, who [turn to action until the midsea- led the tackle chart as a soph-'son. And When He Kicks Off, He Really Kicks Off i / I «, U « : U 11 /f^ ^7 OU en? By GRANT HALL TIMES Sports Editor Alex Karros would love Steve Little. No, you haven't been misled. Little is indeed a soccer-style kicker and Karras indeed dislikes that genre. But Karras doesn't object to sidewinders who are also good athletes. It's the European guys who say, "I keek a touchdown" that draw his scorn. Little is a good enough athlete to have quarlerbacked his Shawnee Mission, Kan!, high school earn to the state AAA A championship. No Garo Ycpre- mian, this guy. No shuffling up to the ball and tiptoeing after the kick, a la Yepremian. Little lines up and moves into the ball with approximately the same fury and coordination as Jack Nicklaus hitting a drive. While warming up for his first scrimmage as an Arkansas Razorback, Little took three steps and kicked -the ball 68 yards. Later, he said, "I was just kicking them easy." NOT COCKY By now, you may have gathered that Little is the cockiest freshman ever, and that he'll be the starting quarterback by the fifth game this year. Wrong on both counts. Much has been made of the fact that Little asked for anc received jersey number 12, lasf worn by Clyde Scott in 1948 The jersey was the only one ever retired at Arkansas, am Scott gave Coach Frank Broyles permission to un-retire it for Little. "I wore No. 12 in high school," explained Little. "Si I asked Luigi (student manage John Vigiletti) if I could get i at Arkansas. I didn't know was retired. It's not true tha I wouldn't have come here i I hadn't gotten it." About playin'g quarterback Little says, "I know I won' play this year or next,' becaus we have three juniors there. I doesn't bother me. I just hop I can contribute with my kick ing. He really wouldn't be crushci if he never plays quarterback "It's pretty lough to comhin the two things in college," h said. "Mike Kirkland found tha ut last year. It's probably est to do the thing you can o best, and kicking is what 'm best at." MORE LIKE 25 Little added that lie didn't get he 60, 80 or 100 college offers lat have been variously uoted. ."It was more like 25," e said. "One guy wrote that all the ' Pacific-Eight schools were after me, but that was a lot of garbage." Asked if he would have been offered a scholarship just for his quarlerbacking, Little said, "I doubt it. Our high school team had such a great offensive line that we got big gains no matter who carried the ball." But before you change your Football Teams Previewed ^arnay Junior High 2B Woodland Junior High . ...-. ...-. , . 2B A!C Roundup 2B John McKay Profile . ..... 2B Rice .-... ........ ..,.: . .,. 4B TCU . . . . . . . ... 4B Tulsa , -....,,. 5B Siloam Springs . . . . . . . . ... . · 5B -armington .-, ...... . 8B Texas Tech .,...-... . . . , ,..-.... .. 8B West Fork 8B Greenland ·. .. 8B Elkins ... ... . . 8B Arkansas State . . . . 8B Decatur . . - . . . . . . . . . ' . . . . . . . . . . . 9B Gentry . . . . ; ... ,. 9B Pea Ridge 9B Gravette . ... . .,.,., ......,. ....... . 9B Lincoln . . : .. . 9B Winslow 9B Rogers . 10B use '.;;.;'/. I Oklahoma State . .-.,... ......... IOB SMU ...,.,. T ........,.'.^.','''',,'.'[;.'........ 10B Texas . . . .-.-.T.-...-. ., .......... 12B Huntsville . , . . - . . . 12B Prairie Grove . 12B Colorado State .'.'... 12B Niiiffl[iiiiBiiJii«iiii.:iii;!i':iyiiJii:iii;;ifciiiHiw mind. Alex, be apprised that Little also played cornerback as a junior and senior, intercepting 14 passes. He also threw the iaveiin 185 feet. And he played on an intramural basketball earn that "wiped out everybody." Little didn't play varsity basketball at Shawnee Mission after his sophomore season, because "they played the slow style." As a kid living in Oslo, Norway, Little became an excellent snow skier and ice speed skater. He also played soccer. 'When I got back to the United States and saw -Jan Stenerud and Pete Gotfolak on television," said Steve, "I noticed ;iiat they kicked the way I had in soccer. It all came back to tne." So he went out and started sidewinding as a sophomore in high school. "I got good distance right from the start, but at first I was kicking the ball too low," he said. "I had to work on getting it over the lineman." Before the year was out, le had kicked a 47-yard field goal. FIVE OF NINE As a senior, Steve kicked five of nine field goals and 37 of 41 points. The three-pointers came from 28, 32, 36, 39 and 43 yards. Little also punted 26 times for a 41.3-yard avera'ge. "Coach Broyles came to see me more than any of the other head coaches," said Little. "But he didn't hound me like the others did. He just stated that Arkansas had had kicking problems last year, asked if I would come, and let it go at that. I liked that." Steve said that six other players from his high school team received inajor college scholarships. "We agreed to get together in (our years and see who made the best choice," he said. "But I've already told them that Arkansas is going to a bowl this year." · Asked if he'd ever tried to placekiek the conventional way, .Little said, "Yos, but I'm no ·good that way. I can't keep my ankle locked." It's good that he can't, because otherwise his punting might suffer.' "My problem with punting right now is kicking with tha wind," h« said. "The wind pushes the ball down and turns it over. Tom Cheyne punts beautifully with the wind." One time back at Shawnee Mission, Little encountered another kind of punting problem. "Our fullback called the signals on punls, and stayed back to block," Steve recalled. "One night he backed up a little too far and the snap from center was too low. I kicked him with the ball, right where it hurt. He just crumpled." Steve plans to major in personal management at the University, but has "no idea" what he'll do after college. "I just take the days as they come," he says. "My only goal is to be successful." How successful will tha Razorbacks be this year? Without hesitation, he said, "We're gonna win 'em all." IT'S A SEQUENCE .. .involving snapper, holder and kicker, says Little. Tht[ timing for placements must be just right. Here, he prepare* (o kick out of Scott Butt'* hold

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