LITTLE ROCK — Head on a swivel, a cartoon cat named Tom listened to both a halo-wearing angel on one shoulder and a pitchfork-toting devil on the other. Trying to decide if American Pharoah is the Kentucky Derby winner or a paper tiger that must be in front from the get-go, I know the feeling.
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LITTLE ROCK — Kentucky’s unprecedented favoritism to win the NCAA Tournament is reflected in creative wagers offered to those who want to make a big-picture bet on the Wildcats but are not interested in the miniscule odds available on Kentucky to win the whole kit and kaboodle.
LITTLE ROCK — Filling out an NCAA Tournament bracket, a trendy, history-based tactic is to select some 12 seeds over some fives.
LITTLE ROCK — Forgotten facts and the words of coach Bret Bielema altered a column advancing spring football practice.
LITTLE ROCK — At the craps table, there are five ways to make six. In Nashville, only one combination is a certain six for the SEC — Texas A&M, Ole Miss, LSU and Georgia advancing in the conference tournament, plus locks Kentucky and Arkansas.
LITTLE ROCK — Bored by a girls high school basketball tournament, a sportswriter on one of his first out-of-office assignments turned away from the “action” and borrowed a friend’s transistor radio to listen to the supposedly questionable lyrics on a hit record by The Kingsmen.
LITTLE ROCK — Regarding Kentucky vs. Arkansas, the plea is guilty to violating a self-imposed ban on reading too much into a single 40-minute contest.
LITTLE ROCK — Two or three times a football season, a not-so-subtle phrase identifies Arkansas as a deserving underdog, something like, “The Razorbacks need help to win.”
LITTLE ROCK — Word from the West Coast confirming a racetrack happening in Arkansas upstaged a second consecutive impressive victory by a colt based at Oaklawn Park.
LITTLE ROCK — A wide receiver from Camden is eligible to alter a long-held attitude that junior college transfers will disappoint far more often than they will make a contribution that is both immediate and game-changing.
LITTLE ROCK — Very adept at marrying new, creative lyrics with familiar melodies, the morning radio man overlooked the fine print in an ESPN ranking.
LITTLE ROCK — Two trips planned to Oaklawn Park, two trips canceled, equals a friendship in jeopardy.
LITTLE ROCK — Growing up, the best free throw shooter in Razorback history possessed the self-discipline to abide by strict rules even when there was no one around to watch.
LITTLE ROCK — Providing college football fans with talking points for the dead period between signing day and the start of spring practice, some observations about the SEC schedule in 2015:
LITTLE ROCK — An unofficial ban on deflated footballs begins at 5:30 p.m.
LITTLE ROCK — Late to the Arkansas-Little Rock women’s game, a fan could tell from the radio play-by-play that there was a decent crowd on hand.
LITTLE ROCK — The slew of new coordinators in the SEC will be measured against the standard set by first-year coordinators Lane Kiffin and Robb Smith did in 2014.
LITTLE ROCK — Asking Urban Meyer about Cardale Jones at halftime, Tom Rinaldi’s endeavor was a waste of time.
LITTLE ROCK — Guess how many times Brandon Allen threw the ball away in 13 games?
LITTLE ROCK — Concisely, coach Mike Anderson explained why Arkansas was trailing Georgia at halftime.
LITTLE ROCK — A week out, the Friday forecast called for a high of 38 and a slight chance of rain in Hot Springs, good enough to prompt an email to a recently retired, longtime friend suggesting a meeting at a familiar parking lot in Benton and carpooling for opening day at Oaklawn Park.
LITTLE ROCK — Blake Sims’ well-documented testimonial to sticktuitiveness is uplifting, but it is surprising that one superb performance in the SEC championship game absolved his sins committed during the regular season.
LITTLE ROCK — Declared days early, New Year resolutions include practicing with a traditional putter, taking a stand on a longshot at Oaklawn Park and omitting both Frank Broyles and Darrell Royal from the next Arkansas-Texas column.
LITTLE ROCK — Oaklawn Park’s unabashed promotion of a four-letter word is a smashing success.
LITTLE ROCK — Whether Oregon’s Marcus Mariota and other high-profile underclassmen invoke Matt Barkley’s name, the former USC quarterback casts a long shadow over the race for the 2015 Heisman Trophy.