FAYETTEVILLE – The University of Arkansas Razorback football team continued spring practices with a two-hour workout Tuesday afternoon. The squad practiced inside Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in shells.
Arkansas’ practice consisted of position drills, team drills and special teams work. The windy conditions added extra problems to the already difficult practice.
"The wind definitely didn’t help us much (while working on punt return)," special teams coordinator John L. Smith said. "We had some problems today fielding punts and the winding holding us up. We need to be able to go get it. We have to be able to identify a guy to go do that for us. And hopefully we find a guy who can do more than just catch the ball. Today we worked on punt and kickoff return. Tomorrow we will focus more on punt return. The wind was bad but you have to play in it."
Arkansas had its first spring scrimmage on Saturday. Overall, the coaching staff saw room for improvement but Smith was encouraged by a few aspects of the game the Razorbacks did well on Saturday.
"(Saturday’s scrimmage) wasn’t what we wanted but as a coach you’re never satisfied," Smith said. "That’s the way it is, particularly in spring ball. When you are trying to figure out ones, twos, three, there’s going to be mistakes out there. From my standpoint, I saw a lot of running to the ball, I saw a lot of hustle, a lot of d-lineman making plays down field. We still have a lot of improvement to make but I thought those aspects were pretty good. In my eyes, we were better on Saturday than we were a year ago. We aren’t where we want to be and we aren’t good enough yet."
In Wednesday’s practice, Smith hopes to narrow down who might be Arkansas’ top punt returner.
"We are going to work with the same guys we have back there," Smith said. "Jarius Wright, Cobi Hamilton, Lance Ray, they have all been working at the position but we need to identify one guy that we can go forward with. I think Wright should be one of the guys but we’ll have to wait and see. We’ll take a look at all of those guys tomorrow."
Arkansas is scheduled to return to the practice field at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Razorback practices throughout the spring are open to the public. The Red-White spring game presented by Cox Digital Cable will be held at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium on Saturday, April 24. Kickoff is set for 6 p.m.