State of the Hogs: Smooth Enos

Dan Enos handled everything smoothly and with confidence in his first interview with the Arkansas media. Bret Bielema's new offensive coordinator said he'd arrive in Fayetteville on Monday, then hit the recruiting trails. Enos handled the interview like a former quarterback and head coach, his background.

Arkansas coach Bret Bielema hired an offensive coordinator with the perfect fit for offense, with recruiting prowess and experience in inheriting a senior quarterback. It should be a smooth spring for the Razorbacks as they slide into the Dan Enos era of calling plays.

Enos was named offensive coordinator Thursday morning. He replaces Jim Chaney, the playcaller and quarterbacks coach the first two years under Bielema. Enos navigated his first session with the Arkansas media via teleconference Thursday afternoon in ultra smooth fashion.

The head coach at Central Michigan the last five seasons, Enos said he was both comfortable and familiar with Bielema's preferred Arkansas style. He studied it because of a common opponent this season, Northern Illinois. He also said he liked the skill set and size of returning quarterback Brandon Allen, probably the starter for the third straight season.

Enos, who called coming to the SEC "the mecca," spoke about Allen's touchdown to interception ratio, a solid 18/5. And, he talked about not being able to pass up an unbelievable opportunity, working in the SEC and with Bielema.

"That's low turnovers and that's huge," Enos said of his new quarterback. "He's a senior and I've slipped into this situation before. Obviously, they have two 1,000-yard backs returning (in Jonathan Williams and Alex Collins). They have a mammoth offensive line that's physical. They have size at tight end and there is (Hunter) Henry back who can run. He's impressive on tape."

Enos talked about his passion for recruiting. He's got a proven track record in that regard and will hit the ground running for the Hogs when he arrives Monday, taking to the road almost immediately. He said he'd probably meet with his new offensive players later in the week when he returns to town for a big visit weekend.

What struck this reporter during his teleconference was the ease and smoothness of the interview. Enos is very polished, very easy to talk with. He seems like a very comfortable person. I can see how he would put parents and young men at ease with the way he conducts himself and be a top recruiter and that's his reputation.

Enos said he'd seen Arkansas play since Central Michigan played Northern Illinois, a team Arkansas played early in the season. It struck him then while watching Arkansas tape how similar the two offenses were, Central Michigan and Arkansas. Both ran a power pro style scheme and that tape was particularly helpful in CMU's prep of NIU so it was studied hard.

Bielema and Enos first talked at the coaches convention two years ago. After they realized that both had a strong mutual interest in each other, the process escalated quickly, Enos said.

"We wanted to see how serious we both were," Enos said. "Then, it moved quickly. As I was around Coach Bielema, I became very comfortable. He's blue collar, heavy on fundamentals and a good person. His priorities are in the right order.

"As I met with the staff, I became comfortable with all of them as coaches and people."

Enos said he's known Bielema dating back to their days as opposing players in the Big 10. Enos played quarterback for Michigan State at the same time Bielema played nose tackle at Iowa.

"He was a very good player," Enos said of his new boss. "He was tough. I remember every time we played Iowa, they were physical. You would see a team that was intense and physical, the same things you see at Arkansas in his teams now."

Enos, who noted he was relieved to head to a place with not so much snow shoveling required, said there has been discussion about the language Arkansas will use in the transition with the new offensive coordinator.

"We've talked a lot about keeping certain things the same," Enos said. "But there will be one guy running it, me. There will be give and take about what (language is used). We'll iron that out in the next month or two, after signing day."

As far as philosophy, Enos said there are very few differences between his beliefs and what Bielema likes.

"It's very close," Enos said. "We both felt it was a good fit. I'm familiar with what Coach Bielema ran on offense at Wisconsin. I watched the Northern Illinois tape since we played NIU, too. We are committed to the same things, the same plays, the gap plays, the zones, the tight end plays, the use of play-action. It's very similar to what we've done.

"It looks complex, but it's going to be simple for the players."

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