A few days ago, Paul Haynes was hired as the new defensive coordinator at Arkansas. In a few weeks, he will lead the Razorbacks’ defense in the Cotton Bowl.
Haynes faces a quick turnaround, and there is no telling how much he will be able to change in that short time. Most new coaches get an entire offseason to train players and install a new system.
But the Razorbacks will look different, to some degree, on defense against the Wildcats. We can be sure of that much. Before coming to Arkansas, Haynes spent the past seven seasons as a co-defensive coordinator at Ohio State. While there, he helped the Buckeyes go 66-11 and beat the team he will coach in the Cotton Bowl in last year’s Sugar Bowl.
ESPN’s SEC blogger Chris Low caught up with Haynes in a Q&A he posted yesterday. A few of his answers reveal what he hopes Arkansas will do defensively on Jan. 6.
What was (coach Bobby) Petrino's mandate to you in taking over this defense? To make sure we keep improving and make sure our guys know exactly what they're doing and make sure our guys do a good job with fundamentals and technique. Again, I don't think that it was something he was disappointed with before. I just think he wanted to make a change and make sure this defense takes it to the next level. If we're sound with our fundamentals and technique and give great effort, we can get it to the next level. (more…)