Football history in the making. The University of Arkansas announced today that the Razorback football team will play an in-state team, the UA Pine Bluff, in 2021 and 2024.

The football Hogs last played an in-state team, what is now UA Monticello, in 1944. From the release:

“As the flagship institution within our state, scheduling games with our sister institutions is an opportunity for us to enhance interest in college football throughout our state while supporting other schools within the University of Arkansas system,” University of Arkansas Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek said. “We have already witnessed the anticipation these meetings have created in a number of our other sports. This new football series between Arkansas and UAPB will only add to the excitement for these matchups.”

The Razorbacks began playing University of Arkansas system schools in the fall when the baseball team traveled to Little Rock to take on the Trojans in a fall baseball game. The two teams followed up with a regular season game in early April at Baum Stadium with the Hogs also taking on UAPB in mid-April. The Razorbacks have also met the Golden Lions on the softball field and tennis courts this academic year.

That howling you hear is coming from Jonesboro, home of Arkansas State University, traditionally a more powerful football team than UAPB.  Talk of the Hogs playing an in-state team has most often focused on a UA-ASU matchup. Arkansas developed an avoidance of playing in-state teams during the long tenure of Athletic Director Frank Broyles. He believed the Hogs’ primacy as the state’s most popular and powerful football team would have been endangered by encouraging in-state rivalries, which are the rule in most other states.