Bret Bielema took a jab at Gus Malzahn on Monday
You make the call. Was it Bret Bielema's intent to embarrass Gus Malzahn on Monday?
In advance of Saturday night's date with Auburn, Bielema offered this on the SEC coaches' teleconference:
Bielema indicating an issue with Auburn video: "The TV copy doesn't match the film copy." He said the SEC will handle it.— Robbie Neiswanger (@NWARobbie) October 28, 2013
Little more on the film situation. Bielema said there was a swinging gate formation that he saw on TV, but not on tape sent from Auburn.— Robbie Neiswanger (@NWARobbie) October 28, 2013
Bielema said Arkansas had been aware of the Auburn video issue for about a week and a half. Contacted SEC about it.— Robbie Neiswanger (@NWARobbie) October 28, 2013
Then he had this to say about Malzahn:
Bielema added he's sure video issue is just a mistake. "I know Gus stands for everything that’s right."— Robbie Neiswanger (@NWARobbie) October 28, 2013
Whether or not the discrepancy between tapes was a mistake or intentional on Auburn's part, Bielema had ulterior motives for offering up such a nugget to the media. If Bielema was truly concerned with the issue on a competitive level, he'd let the SEC office handle it. But he didn't.
Bielema wanted to throw some dirt on Malzahn and a program that's his rival in the SEC West and in the state of Arkansas recruiting circuit, both fronts which Malzahn has had his share of success this season. Bielema was trying to take a jab at Malzahn, otherwise he wouldn't have brought it up at all.
Auburn, 7-1 and ranked 11th in the country, will be Arkansas' fifth straight opponent ranked 18th or higher when they head to Fayetteville on Saturday night. Arkansas lost its previous four games by 12, 20, 45 and 52 points.
We'll have to wait until then to see if the Tigers throw Arkansas any new wrinkles, real or imagined.
Update> As Brandon Marcello points out, it is against SEC rules to discuss video exchange issues with the media. Odd.