Arkansas Razorbacks tangle with Missouri State - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Arkansas Razorbacks tangle with Missouri State

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - The Razorback football team practiced for just under two hours on Thursday as they finished their preparations for their season opener against Missouri State on Saturday, September 5.  Arkansas and Missouri State kick off their respective seasons at 6 p.m. at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, Ark. 

Bobby Petrino is 5-0 all-time in season openers and 21-6 when having more than one week to prepare for a game (Including season openers, bowl games, bye weeks and mid-week games).

Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett last played in a game on Nov. 17, 2007, against Ohio State. From the time of his last appearance in a game and the time of the 2009 Arkansas season opener 658 days will have passed. In the fall of 2008, Mallett got a lot of work in on Sunday nights as he had 455 reps during those workouts. Ryan Mallett has never lost a game as a starting quarterback in college. During the 2007 season at Michigan, he was 3-0 with victories against Notre Dame, Penn State and Minnesota.

This year marks the sixth time in school history Arkansas has started a season in Little Rock after finishing the previous year there.  

 The following is a transcript of some of head coach Bobby Petrino's comments following Thursday's workout.

On the final practice
"We had a good practice today, things were sharp.  Special teams were sharp, offense; defense part of it was good.  The two-minute drill that we do we were executing that well, so I was happy about that. Now what we do is, tomorrow we get down there and have a walk through.  Review what went on in today's practice, what mistakes we need to correct, do a little bit more of the goal line, short yardage stuff.  Have our meetings Friday night, Saturday morning we have another walk through, use up some of the time in the day and then go to the stadium a couple of hours before kickoff."

On Petrino's expectations of the offense
"I want to see us go execute.  Go do the things that we have practiced, execute the run game; execute the passing game, just like we've practiced it.  Make the checks when they are there and really just have great communication, play with real good technique and fundamentals and play fast.  That's the key, to play fast.  We should be much faster in this game than we were in our opener a year ago simply because most everybody is back and have been through it before."

Plans on Tyler Wilson playing
"He'll get in; you'll see him in there.  I have a plan."

Do you encourage them to watch football tonight
"I didn't say anything about watching football.  I told them to get in bed by 11 p.m.  We have a curfew tonight so they better be in at 11 p.m. and get some rest and take care of their bodies.  The biggest thing is that this is the night that you need to get great sleep and make sure that we do a great job of hydrating and getting fluids in us and getting the sleep that we need."

On the Missouri State defense
"They have two returning corners, both of them played well last year.  They have a returning safety that I think was a preseason All-American and is a very good player.  On the defensive front, No. 99 is a guy that we have to make sure where he is going to be.  I'm not sure where he is going to line up yet, with the different moves that they have with him.  They say he is going to be a defensive end, but last year he played inside so it will be interesting to see what their alignments are going to be.  That's one thing that we have to do as an offense, we have to adjust as the game goes on.  Do a great job on the sideline, be able to take the information from the sideline out on the field and execute, that's something that I'm really interested in seeing, how we do that.  How we communicate from the press box to the sideline, get that information onto the field and execute.  Like I told the coaches, they are going to give us something that we have not practiced.  What that is, I'm not sure, maybe it's a three-three, maybe it's what Tulsa ran, They are definitely going to give us something that we haven't spent a lot of time practicing and we have to do a great job of seeing it, making the adjustments and going from there."

 

Courtesy: Phil Pierce, Athletic Media Relations

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