FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – For the first time this spring, the Arkansas football team worked out on the practice fields located just south of Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium. The Razorbacks were in preparation mood as the team will participate in its second scrimmage of the spring during Friday’s practice.
“We’re going to have a good, long, hard scrimmage,” head coach Bobby Petrino said. “So we need to, first, see if we can execute. We’ll cut back on what we’re doing and get back to be the basics we did the first week and try to execute that.
“I want to put a lot of pressure on the quarterback, so we’ll let the defense liven it up a little bit with their calls. We still need to run the ball and hopefully, we’ll continue to tackle well. I think that’s one of the things we’ve been doing well on defense.”
Petrino said the coaching staff will be looking to see who can be tough and execute their respective assignments during the scrimmage. It will also be another opportunity for the Razorbacks coaches to see the players in game-like situations against active opposition.
“It’s way too early for a depth chart,” Petrino said. “We’re still evaluating, guys are competing and we’re trying to find out a lot about (the players). We have to have our depth chart ready for our opener which isn’t until the end of August.”
Looking to improve on the first week of spring practice, Petrino said the offense will continue to build on its playbook and try to execute better. On defense, the head coach said there had been too many assignment errors so the defensive playbook was scaled back in order to focus on the fundamentals.
“I think we had a good first week,” Petrino said. “Offensively, we’re continuing to insert and didn’t execute as well today as we have been. Defensively, we actually held back on the installation we were supposed to do today and our execution picked up, so I think we just have to be patient and keep put pressure on them to execute and eventually we’ll get it where we need it to be.”
With the team practicing outdoors for just the third time this spring, Petrino said the Razorbacks will have to concentrate in the windy conditions on catching the ball and keeping it tucked away. One player making a good impression with his playmaking ability is tight end D.J. Williams.
“D.J. (Williams) is a good football player,” Petrino said. “I have a lot of respect for him. We certainly need to get him the ball. He can run, (he) runs good routes, catches the ball well and runs well after the catch. I’ve been very impressed with D.J., and certainly, he’ll be a good option for us.”
Arkansas will continue its spring practice schedule with Friday’s workout that will also include a scrimmage. The session will be open to the public, unless there is the event of inclement weather. Log on to www.hogwired.com for up-to-date information on the Razorbacks’ schedule.