FAYETTEVILLE — Newly hired head football coach John L. Smith met with the media Tuesday afternoon to discuss his rejoining of the Razorback football program as the 31st head coach in school history.
Coach Smith, who spent the 2009-11 seasons as Arkansas’ special teams coordinator and outside linebackers coach before accepting the head coach position at Weber State, commented often about how excited he was to be back at Arkansas.
“I am very excited to be here,” Coach Smith said. “I want to say thank you to Chancellor (David) Gearhart and Jeff Long for having the confidence in me to say, come on back and help us with the fight that we have to fight. I’m excited to be here and I want to thank them.”
Coach Smith went on to speak about what he expects from the football team in this upcoming season and how things will not slow down as the season draws near.
“I want to say that our expectations here are the same,” Coach Smith said. “Nothing is going to slow down. In fact, we’re going to speed up. Our expectations are that we’re going to go ahead and we’re going to battle. We’re going to fight for a national title. That was the way it was when I walked in the door here three years ago and it’s going to continue to be that way.”
Coach Smith believes that the entire team and coaching staff as well as the fan base is aware of the possibilities for the upcoming season and he thinks the 2012 season will be a special year.
“Everything is in place here,” Coach Smith said. “We’ve got a good football team. We’ve got the best fans in the world and we’ve got great coaches. Let’s make it a special year. Forty-five thousand for the spring game shows the attitude and resilience of the Razorbacks out there. Let’s just all lock arms and forge ahead and go win a championship.”
The Razorback football team opens the season by hosting Jacksonville State on Sept. 1 at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium.