FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 16 Arkansas football began its game-week preparations for Alabama on Tuesday with a 90-minute workout in full pads on the grass practice fields south of Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
The Hogs face the Crimson Tide at 5:45 p.m. CT Saturday on ESPN from Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. The Razorbacks are looking to even the all-time record between the two schools at nine wins apiece.
“It was a good day of practice,” Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt said. “We worked on Alabama schemes, and I thought our guys had a good concentration level today. They really came out here with a sense of getting better. I like what we have seen this week after the practice on Sunday and then the carry over to Tuesday. We have to come back out here again tomorrow and just keep getting better.”
A focus for Arkansas during the off week and leading up to Saturday’s kickoff is getting the wide receivers more involved in the passing game.
“They (wide receivers) have to keep working,” Nutt said. “And we have to keep working to get them the ball. Then when they get their opportunity – take advantage of it. We have been working hard on that part of the game, like we have been since spring. Hopefully this can be a game where these guys can be involved and make big plays for us.”
Another key for Arkansas is adjusting to the Crimson Tide’s smash-mouth style of football after opening the season against a more finesse Troy team.
“This is a real big step in the opposite direction (from Troy),” Nutt said referring to Alabama. “It is what you’re accustomed to and that is really hard-nosed football. I think our player realized that first day after the Troy game … Now we are going back to this type of ball and it is hard, hard, hard ball. They know it has changed, but we have been practicing and gearing everything towards that for two weeks.”
The Razorbacks return to the practice field on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons before departing for Tuscaloosa on Friday.