John L. Smith's timing is right on time

Better now than during the season.

That's exactly what Arkansas coach John L. Smith was thinking when he told the Associated Press this week that he's making plans to declare bankruptcy after several of his land deals in Kentucky went belly-up.

I'm not sure how many more blows off the field the Hogs can take when you consider what they've been through going all the way back to the death of tight end Garrett Uekman last November.

And while a head coach's business affairs aren't tied in directly to how he coaches his football team, everything is magnified during the season.

So I applaud Smith for getting the news of his pending bankruptcy out there now.

"From a personal standpoint, I don't want the university being embarrassed. But I'm not embarrassed," said Smith, who replaced the ousted Bobby Petrino after it became public that Petrino was having an affair with a female staffer in the Hogs' football office. "It's something that's happened. I made some mistakes, and to be honest with you, I'm a football coach, not a businessman."