John Barnhill’s 1946 through 1948 football teams enjoyed a Cotton Bowl and a Dixie Bowl before going 5-5-0 in 1948. Entering 1949 Arkansas commanded the respect of tradition but did not figure to be in the mix at the end of the year. Would another “also ran” season cause changes for the Razorbacks?
The Hogs brought the strength of Leon “Muscles” Campbell backed up by solid Geno Mazzanti through the Southwest Conference schedule. They faced an opponent player named “Froggie” who played for someone other than Texas Christian while the team had to wonder when Doak Walker would graduate. But controversy would swirl through the whole football season over the Arkansas-T.C.U game which was only the second game of the year. Dutch Meyer, then President of the American College Football Coaches Association accused Arkansas of “rough tactics” which turned into “dirty football” after he left Fayetteville. John Barnhill said, “Not so,” and the league investigated.
By the end of the season the Hogs found a couple of players receiving honorable mention All-America honors, but before the ink was dry on the newsprint following Arkansas’ final game, rumors of changes in the program hit the newsstands.
For 1949, and hopefully continuing in the future seasons, you will find a much broader range of articles which mention the University of Arkansas and its players in addition to newspaper articles involving almost every game. After the Tulsa win, the controversies surrounding the Razorbacks come to a head in articles following their timelines. If you read closely, you will find traditions, fan expectations, and influences on athletic directors which became themes for years to come!
The link below will take you to the 1949 Season page. Click on the “Win” or “Loss” link on each game. You will find the links to the news articles at the bottom of the page in the “Comments” section. Games which may not sound interesting may link side articles which are of interest to you.