University of Arkansas head football coach Bobby Petrino, Matt Harris, Lucas Miller and Michael Smith met with the media at a press conference on Monday. Below is a brief transcript.
Head Coach Bobby PetrinoOn Eastern Michigan:" Offensively, they’re primarily going to line up in one-back sets with either three wide receivers or two tight ends. They have a quick passing game and like to run play-action. We have to worry about ourselves getting better in practice this week and getting ready for the stretch run. We’ve got five games left. We have to make a good run and get into a bowl game."
On the game plan against Eastern Michigan:"We’ve got to be able to run and throw on them to get our confidence back in both areas. We have to be physical running the ball. We have to execute our passing game. We need to be good in our protections, precise with our routes, and the quarterback being exactly on time and putting the ball exactly where it needs to be. We’re going to spend a lot of time in practice this week on that."
On the status of Ramon Broadway and Rudell Crim:"Ramon is out this week. He has a substantial hamstring injury. Hopefully, it heals quickly. One thing about Ramon is he heals pretty quickly, so hopefully he’ll be back a week from now. Rudell has a chance to play this weekend if it ends up being a hip pointer. We took him in and got him x-rayed and it came back negative. He’s made a lot of progress since Saturday, so he has a chance to play."
Safety Matt HarrisOn the focus this week:"As a team we need to get all three phases together. It was a disappointing loss. This week is a new week. We’ve got five games left and we are starting off with Eastern Michigan in a homecoming game."
On the defenses adjustment after losing the cornerbacks:"David Gordon is a pure speed guy. He will help us with the vertical threats. I have faith in Andru Stewart. He has been playing good for us all season and he made a great play on the ball and got a pick for us. We are going to need some guys to step up because (Ramon) Broadway and (Rudell) Crim got hurt."
On the Eastern Michigan game:"We just got done playing No. 1 Florida and then Ole Miss, but we can’t go in there and look past them straight to the South Carolina game. We have to go out there and play football. They have athletes out there that can score touchdowns."
On the team goals:"You always have to have an ultimate goal and right now it’s a bowl game. You never know what kind of bowl game you will end up getting. You just have to play one week at a time."
Wide receiver Lucas MillerOn this weekend’s Homecoming game:"It’s nice to be home. We’ve played some tough road games this season but we’re excited for homecoming. I am especially since it’s my last one."
On his health:"We’re in there each and every day trying to get better. The training staff is helping me get to my best and that’s what I’m working for this week."
On the Eastern Michigan game:"We need to get our confidence back that we had early on in the season. We have taken some hits and tough losses which will get some guys’ heads down. This week’s game with homecoming and all the festivities will get everyone’s spirits high. We are looking for a big win. This is the game that can get us back on track."
On the drops in the Ole Miss game:"It is uncharacteristic for this team to have that many drops with the talent that we have. Each person is hard on themselves. We expect the best out of each other. We take full blame for the drops but we’re going to move past it as well."
On reviewing good plays from the season:"It goes back to that confidence factor. You’re going to play better when you have confidence in yourself and the quarterback has confidence in you. We need to get back to that. Each of us knows what we are capable of doing and we are going to get back to that."
Running back Michael SmithOn the Eastern Michigan game:"Eastern Michigan being last in the nation against the run should make everyone’s eyes light up. We’re seven games into the season and we have the same record as we did last year at the same point. This game is a turning point in this season. We can make sure we all go out there and play well and make sure we make it to a bowl game. Or we can feel sorry for ourselves for being so close and not make it to a bowl. I think we will come together this week and work toward a bowl."