Arkansas certainly had a happy flight home from Ole Miss Saturday night, but a stark reality awaited them once the coaches and players put on tape on Sunday.
Another huge challenge awaits this Saturday when the Razorbacks (5-4, 3-2) visit No. 9 LSU (7-1, 4-1) in a 6:15 p.m. game that will be televised by ESPN.
LSU comes into this game off their first loss of the season, 30-16 loss at Alabama on Saturday night.
“It’s a tremendous LSU team that will obviously very upset about their loss last week,” Bielema said. “We will play them at night, where they are virtually, well, not undefeated, but pretty close to it.
“They are pretty good over there at night games. That speaks for itself and they are a very, very talented football team that will be motivated. I think our team is excited about this challenge moving forward.”
LSU is 48-5 in night games in a place called Death Valley under head coach Les Miles.
“It’s mystique, it’s awe, it’s the crowd, which has a lot to do with it,” Bielema said. “People don’t understand what a crowd does for the game, especially if they are into it and things are going their way. Plus the confidence level it just brings those players putting on their uniform and they are like ‘been here, done this.’
“The best thing that we tell our own individual players is that each play is its own play and what you do during that play determines the result. It doesn’t matter what the other 48 guys did before you in that situation. It matters what we do.”
Arkansas offensive coordiantor Dan Enos has not coached a game at LSU.
"I have heard that it is loud," Enos said. "I've heard it is an unbelievable atmosphere. I know a few people that have coached there in the past and they have just always talked about what a great place it is, how unique it is and what a great atmosphere it is."
Enos has watched LSU on film and knows his offense will face a big challenge with the Tigers' defense.
"The front four is really good," Enos said. "I have been very impressed with their backers...The secondary is very good and they are very physical. 33 (Jamal Adams) makes a lot of plays.
"They are 7-1 or 8-1 for a reason. They are very, very good on defense. I feel like a broken record coming up here every week talking about Alabama and Texas A&M and Ole Miss. They've got good people.
"So we are going to have to play well and we are going to have to execute, put a good plan together, not only to handle their defense, but to handle their environment and everything.
"We thought that was one of the keys to this last weekend. We felt like our guys handled that environment well. It got loud in there and we thought ours guys did well. It will be an even bigger challenge this week."
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Many fans and media earlier in the season thought Arkansas may have put too much emphasis on the passing game and trying to get it improved.
The Razorbacks threw a whopping 53 passes in a 16-12 loss to Toledo before settling in with a more balanced attack under new offensive coordinator Dan Enos.
“Obviously we don’t ever want to have defeat or failure, but I think we were trying to learn some things about ourselves that would benefit us in SEC play.
“I think we learned without a doubt that we could throw the football. You go through so much adversity with the injuries, with a different receiver every week or a couple of guys.
“It took awhile to get ahold of it…As a player caller, when you learn players and their strengths, it gives you the ability to make great calls. That is what is happening now more than anything.”
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Arkansas’ players of the Week - WRs (Drew Morgan, Dominique Reed), OL (Denver Kirkland), TE (Hunter Henry), QB (Brandon Allen), Defensive MVP (Kevin Richardson) and Special Teams (Kevin Richardson).
Richardson had a team-leading 10 tackles, including six special team stops.
Five of those six were behind the 20 yard line on kick or punt returns.
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Arkansas should add back in injured wide receiver Cody Hollister this weekend.
“We didn’t play Cody Hollister last week,” Bielema said. “I know you guys probably saw him there and he went through pre-game warm-ups, but we just didn’t need him with the way those other guys were playing.
“We didn’t want to force him back in there since he had not gone through a full week of practice. I think he will begin to matriculate back into it like J-Red( Jared Cornelius) did two weeks ago.”
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Bielema opened his press conference by sending along condolences to Mississippi State, whose player Keith Joseph, Jr., was killed along with his dad Keith Joseph, Sr. - a former Bulldog player - in car accident on Friday night.
“Sitting there Friday night and heard the story and then as a group when we got together Saturday morning, we sent our prayers from our family to theirs and the Joseph family at Mississippi State,” Bielema said. “That was a tragedy there with Coach Mullen and we pass along our thoughts and prayers as they go through obviously a pretty tough time.”