FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – If Arkansas’ players were expecting a light walk-through in anticipation of Saturday’s scrimmage, they were probably a little bit surprised by the volume of work Friday’s spring football practice in full pads.
The Razorbacks put in a full day’s work into their fourth spring practice and their second workout in full pads. Arkansas will turn around and practice at 10 a.m. on Saturday before moving to Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium for a scrimmage at approximately 11 a.m. Even with the scrimmage set for Saturday, Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt can’t afford to waste valuable preparation time with only 15 spring opportunities.
“We got some good fundamental work done today,” Nutt said. “Tomorrow we are going to practice for and hour and then have some scrimmaging in different situations. We will do some red-zone, third and medium, first and 10 and just keep trying to play the game and get better each day.”
It has been quite a difference from last spring as far as work on the offensive line has gone. A year ago, Arkansas was just trying to get five healthy bodies on the field. This time around, the Hogs’ offensive front is working on slowing down the pass rush of Arkansas defensive coordinator Reggie Herring’s defense.
“We haven’t slowed down Reggie (Herring) at all,” Nutt said. “We are seeing fast, fast bullets which we don’t mind. You look at today compared to the first day, we are doing a little bit better. We have some things that we need to get corrected, but I love the way we are moving. You can tell Zac (Tubbs) has been away from the game. He has been away from the game for almost two years now. That hurts. We will get him caught up and keep going.
“Nate Garner is doing very well. We have some depth on the offensive line in the spring which makes you feel very good. Last year, if you recall, we were holding our breath and hoping you got through practice. You could get very little done. This is a good group of linemen.”
The progress of the passing game has been slowed, somewhat, in the early going by a banged-up wide receiver corps. Junior Marcus Monk has been limited in the past two days of work with soreness and redshirt freshman Rod Coleman added a slightly pulled hamstring to the injury list on Friday.
“Our wide receivers have some little pulls, bruises and we to get those guys back on the field full speed and see what happens,” Nutt said. “Rod Coleman didn’t get to finish today. When you take out Rod Coleman and (Marcus) Monk isn’t full speed it kind of hurts your passing game a little bit. Monk makes catches when he is in there. We know that. He is a solid guy. We just want to keep him healthy and keep him on the field.”
Arkansas will stage its first true scrimmage of the spring on Saturday. The Hogs will take Sunday off before hitting the practice field again on Monday.