Videos by OutKick
The Texas Bowl is Monday. So as part of the absurdly prolonged bowl festivities, the opposing coaches pose for photos and shake hands at a pregame press event. Generally these events are as boring and predictable as possible. Every opposing team is awesome, well-coached, supremely talented and much better than its record suggests. You know the drill: It’s all one big banal cliche. Unless, that is, you happen to be Arkansas coach Bret Bielema.
Today in the midst of a handshake with Texas coach Charlie Strong, Bielema went with the downwards Hook ‘Em Horns sign.
This. Is. Spectacular.
The photo comes to us via Aaron Peters. (Given that this is the Internet, there’s always the possibility the picture’s Photoshopped. But the photo was immediately shared on Twitter and Facebook by the guy linked above, a member of the Arkansas media at the press event. If he made it up, this is the stupidest prank ever. All Photoshops, by their nature, are stupid.).
Assuming it’s real, I suppose Bielema could argue this is a coincidence — “My upper palm needed to be scratched in the middle of the photo” — but it’s pretty hard to accidentally end up with your fingers in this position, pointing downward in the Hook ‘Em gesture, while you shake the hand of Texas’ head coach. Nope, this seems pretty damn intentional.
You’ll recall that in past instances of the downward horns sign, ESPN’s Jesse Palmer had to apologize to Longhorns fans for doing it in the broadcast booth and Vince Young once got in a strip club fight when someone flashed the downward Horns logo at him. Yes, both of these things really happened.
We’ll update you when Bielema issues a response or it’s 100 percent confirmed as a Photoshop.
Until he does, he is now Outkick’s favorite head coach. If he claims that he was scratching his upper palm, he may remain our favorite coach forever.
UPDATE: Bielema and Arkansas deny that he made the downwards Hook ‘Em sign and say it’s a Photoshop, but the media member who initially posted the picture has fired back with his own series of photos from the press event.
So did he or didn’t he?
We report, you decide.
UPDATE 2: Video appears to confirm that Bielema did, in fact, do the downwards Hook ‘Em sign. Unless, that is, people are now Photoshopping video too.