Bumper Pool Looks to Tackle the Record Books of Arkansas

In the long history of Arkansas, we have seen many prolific tacklers come through Fayetteville. Names such as Ken Hamlin, De’Jon Harris, Caleb Miller, and others have all made names for themselves in an Arkansas uniform. Of all these names, a current Hog has the fanbase in Hog heaven. That name would be Bumper Pool.  Pool is possibly the best name in all college football, but his play on the field has made it resonate even more. What has Bumper accomplished in his career in Arkansas? Can Pool tackle his way to history? How close is he to this history?

What history is Bumper chasing?

Coming into this season had received significant praise for his play. This season, Pool was named Preseason Phil Steele First Team All-SEC and Second Team All- American. His 349 total tackles ranked him ninth in school history. To put this into perspective, Jerry Franklin, who played from 2008-2011, ranked second with 382 tackles. The all-time leader is Tony Bua, who played from 2000-2003 and finished his career as a Razorback with 408 tackles.

What has Bumper Pool Achieved in Arkansas?

The 6’2 Senior from Lucas, TX, came to Arkansas in the 2018 season as a five-star linebacker and top 25 overall talent. Pool also garnered a top 10 ranking in the state of Texas in the 2018 rankings. Pool had offers from Alabama, Michigan, and Texas A&M, in addition to Arkansas. Ultimately, he would choose the Razorbacks as Fayetteville is a place he dreamed of playing. What has Pool done to tackle his way into history in Fayetteville?

2018 Season

Pool would appear in six games for the Razorbacks this season. He would finish his freshman season with 29 total tackles {14 solos, 18 assisted} with his season-high ten tackles coming against Vanderbilt in a 45-31 loss on October 27th. In that season, Pool would also have a fumble recovery and pass deflection against Eastern Illinois in a 55-20 win to start the season.

2019 Season

In 2019, Pool would appear in all the Razorbacks games and amass 94 tackles {38 solos, 56 assists} in 12 games. The 94 tackles would be the second highest on the team for that season.  Pool would have a season-high 13 tackles on two separate occasions against Mississippi State in a 54-24 loss and against Missouri in a 24-14 loss to close out the season. That season, Pool would also have five pass deflections and his first career sack against Auburn. This is the season that fans in Fayetteville and the nation would realize who Pool was. Pool would receive his first SEC Academic Honor Roll award this season.

2020 Season

In his Junior season, Pool would begin to bring in the hardware for his accomplishments on the field. This season, Pool would finish with 101 tackles {40 solos, 61 assisted}, making him the second tackler for the Razorbacks. He would rank second in the SEC and ninth in FBS by averaging twelve tackles per game. Pool was named SEC co-defensive player of the week, along with teammate Joe Foucha, for his 20 tackles against Mississippi State in a 21-14 win on October 3rd. As a result, Pool would earn the Bronko Nagurski Defensive Player of the Week. His 20 tackles were also the most since 2010 when Jerry Franklin had 20 against Auburn. This performance is tied for tenth most in school history and was second most in FBS that season. Pool was voted All-SEC Second Team by the conference coaches for his play that season.

2021 Season

Likewise,  Pool would continue to impress with his play last season in all 13 games with only one start at linebacker. He would lead the Hogs with 125 tackles {45 solos, 80 assists} including the Outback Bowl victory over Penn State. As a result, the 125 tackles would garner him tenth nationally, and his 9.6 tackles per game would rank second in the SEC and fifteenth nationally. Pool would lead the Razorbacks in tackles in seven of the thirteen games last season.

His season-high 14 tackles would come against Rice in a season-opening 31-17 win. Pool would achieve his seventh double-digit tackle game against Missouri to close the season with thirteen tackles.  To demonstrate, Pool would go on to accomplish last season where PFF voted him All-SEC third team, All-SEC second team was voted by the AP and coaches, All-SEC First team, and the third team all American voted on by Phil Steele.

2022 Season

Could Pool ‘Bump’ his way into history in 2022? In 2022, Pool has 36 tackles {14 solos, 22 assists} and now sits in second all-time with 385 tackles. In this early 2022 season, Pool has 13 tackles against Cincinnati in the season-opening 31-24 win. Pool only trails Bua by 23 tackles to tie his record. With Alabama coming to Fayetteville this week, it would take a massive game to tie it this week. Pool should break this record by the Mississippi State game on October 8th but will for sure break it by the upcoming BYU game on October 15th.

Indeed it has been impressive when you look at the stats that Pool has put up in his career. Not to mention that he has essentially done all of this as a non-starter at linebacker.  With the emergence of Alabama transfer Bryce Stephens, Pool has been somewhat overshadowed this season because of his play thus far. It has been an exceptional career for Pool at Arkansas, fans around the country will forever remember his name as he looks to tackle his way to history.