Bielema's Tale: How a Badger Became a Hog

Bielema's Tale: How a Badger Became a Hog

We should establish this up front: Plenty of the phrases that Arkansas Razorbacks football coach Bret Bielema uses — most of them, in fact — lack a single curse word. "Cut drill," for example. Also: "Grind it out," "Run some skelly," and "Let's give the kids a snack." All Bielema's, all clean, and all uttered while he's sitting in his new office, surrounded by his new staff in his new state.

But there's a problem with the rest of Bielema's cleaned-up sentences. On this morning, at least, they're almost impossible to understand. Bielema is auctioneering his way through a 9 a.m. meeting, packing so much jargon into so few breaths that unless you work for him, you can discern nothing about the strategies being tweaked or the plans being made.

When he slows down, however, the cursing starts. And when the cursing starts, Bielema transitions from coach-as-CEO into coach-as-giddy-overgrown-child. And that's when all the questions that have followed Bielema from Wisconsin to Arkansas — primarily, what the hell is he doing here? — start to find answers.

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