Arkansas coach Bret Bielema is still unsure what prompted Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury's response after the Red Raiders beat the Razorbacks, 35-24, last week. It apparently had to do with remarks by Bielema at a Texas high school clinic in July.
"We aren't talking now and we won't talk now," Bielema said. "In this profession, there are certain things you don't do."
Bielema meant, things said in coaching clinics are to be kept at coaching clinics. Kingsbury took offense to remarks by Bielema over style of play and after the victory over the Hogs said the Raiders kicked (butt).
"I've done clinics for 30 years and you go in and talk about philosophies," Bielema said. "I was talking about our defensive style."
He said the talk centered on program goals. He said he looked at his clinic notes and didn't find any remarks that should have offended anyone and explained Monday that he has a great relationship with Texas high school coaches. Some have reached out to him in the last two days.
"If I said the A-S-S word, then I did," Bielema said. "I do know that when you play the game, you move on. There are things that are said and used against you that are personal in recruiting, but if that makes him feel good (what Kingsbury said Saturday night), then God bless him.
"If that was an ass kicking, then what was last year?"
Later, Bielema revisited the scenario, then said, "Brother, don't be so sensitive."
Bielema said his focus is on getting ready for this week's game with Texas A&M in Arlington, Texas. There is a sliver lining in the game with Tech, A&M runs some of the same concepts on offense and it should help in preparation this week.
"It's a blessing in disguise," Bielema said, "the opportunity to play Tech for four quarters. By the same idea, A&M will see some things that we didn't do well that were exposed. We've got to get some things fixed."
Bielema was asked about the severity of the injury situation. He said he would not use that "as a crutch. If I did that, holy heaven people would be coming after me like gangbusters."
Bielema isn't sure if running back Kody Walker can play this week after sustaining a broken finger last week. If he plays, it will be with a cast.
"I'm not sure about running back," he said. "Maybe he can help at fullback or in special teams. He's in some core parts of our special teams. We'll have to see the cast this week and what he can do with it before we know if he can play running back."
Bielema said roles would continue to expand in the wide receiver group, especially for Kenderick Edwards, Jojo Robinson and Dominique Reed. But there are no plans to pull any freshmen off the redshirt list. Damon Mitchell is another wide receiver that will get more time on the field.
The Hogs have lost Keon Hatcher, Cody Hollister and Jared Cornelius to broken bones. All have had surgery. Cornelius is the latest. He underwent surgery after two bones were broken in his arm against Tech.
Bielema said D.J. Dean would fill the punt return role held by Cornelius. Others considered for punt return duties are Robinson, Mitchell and possibly Rawleigh Williams.