Bret Bielema-Gus Malzahn Rivalry Begins at 2013 SEC Media Days
There was one storyline, and one storyline alone, heading into today’s second round of SEC Media Days. All of the anticipation this morning revolved around Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel and how he would address his off-the-field situations. Early this morning, that was indeed taken care of and that was supposed to be the majority of our extensive excitement for the day.
Well, that was the case until microphones were put in front of the mouths of two of the newest additions to the SEC head coaching fraternity, Arkansas Razorbacks head coach Bret Bielema and Auburn Tigers head coach Gus Malzahn.
It’s no well-kept secret that Bielema is not the biggest supporter of the fast-paced offenses that have taken over the game of football in recent years. He built his powerhouses at Wisconsin with freight train-sized lineman and smash mouth running backs. His teams line up and hit you right in the mouth, and this is exactly the philosophy he intends to bring to his new job.
Malzahn, on the other hand, wants to spread his offense and run you right off the field, broken down and gassed.
On Wednesday, these two philosophies clashed and a new SEC rivalry may have come out of it.
In defense of his stance against the hurry-up offenses, Bielema has, on more than one occasion, cited that it may be unsafe. Whether this is true or not hasn’t been proven. But, when Malzahn was asked about that matter, he made it known that he assumed that Bielema was “joking.” He then continued to lay out his offensive plans to the media as he tries to rebuild the Auburn program, which is just a few years removed from winning a national championship.
Just a little while ago as Bielema took to the stage, he was immediately asked about Malzahn’s assumptions that his safety concerns were a joke and responded with, “I’m not a comedian.” and “We play American football.”
And just like that, no matter how much the two may downplay it, we have a little rivalry brewing on our hands.
Oh, and if you were wondering whether or not these two see each other this year, I highly suggest marking down Nov. 2 on your calendars, because that’s exactly when these teams meet each other on the field in 2013 in Fayetteville.
Jack is a College Football Writer for Rant Sports. Follow Jack on Twitter @JackJ14RS