Practice notes and observations - Oct. 30

Arkansas again stayed indoors for today’s workout. Here are a few notes from the opening viewing period and Chad Morris’ pre-workout media session:

  • Junior center Ty Clary (shoulder) was present and full go at practice today. He told reporters Tuesday night that he injured the shoulder, which he also banged up a bit in preseason practices, on a screen play in the second half at Alabama. Offensive linemen Austin Capps and Kirby Adcock were absent at today’s workout. As of now, it appears Arkansas’ starting offensive line Saturday will feature (L–>R) Myron Cunningham, Shane Clenin, Ty Clary, Ricky Stromberg, Dalton Wagner.

  • Clary will be Arkansas’ offensive captain this week vs. Mississippi State. It is the second time he has been named a captain this season (San Jose State).

  • The Razorbacks worked plenty of special teams to begin practice. As they were Saturday and have been in previous games, De’Vion Warren and Nathan Parodi were the primary kick returners. Both players had a gaffe against the Crimson Tide that cost Arkansas a few yards of field position. Parodi’s, obviously, was more egregious, stepping out of bounds inside the Arkansas 5. Redshirt junior T.J. Hammonds also worked there Wednesday. He started at KOR against Texas A&M, but was not given the chance to return a kick.

  • Ben Hicks and Nick Starkel led quarterbacks drills again. As we were walking out of Walker Pavilion, Hicks was leading the first-team offense against the scout team defense. I anticipate him starting on Saturday. Morris said a decision has not been made yet, though.

“We’re getting guys kind of going through reps like we’ve been doing the last several weeks, so that’s kind of where we’re at with it,” he noted.

  • Running back Rakeem Boyd (right shoulder) was the lone Razorbacks player in a green jersey. That has been the norm for him since the Kentucky loss.

  • Morris was asked about the progression of running back A’Montae Spivey. He said Spivey is a young player the staff would like to get in the game and gain some experience over the next several weeks. Morris added that Spivey is “electric with the ball in his hands.”

" … Some of our younger guys, they’re just slowly learning the system and learning what we’re asking of them," Morris continued. “They’ve got some really good players ahead of them, so they’ve just got to wait their turn and be ready when that opportunity happens.”

  • Immediately after the question about Spivey, Morris was asked about true freshman tight end Hudson Henry, who has not yet seen the field this season. He anticipates Henry playing against Mississippi State.

“I think he’s really been developing and coming along really well for us, so we’re excited about seeing him on the field a little bit this week.”

  • In wrapping up his pre-practice interview, it was brought to Morris’ attention that he is No. 2 on coacheshotseat dot com. Bulldogs coach Joe Moorhead is No. 1.

“You can’t control what other people say and that’s the least of my worries,” he said. “My worries are making sure that this football team continues to get better every day.”

Maybe I just took that wrong and maybe I’m just in a dark place from our non-ability to win a conference game in 2 years and lose to some of our rent-a-win teams. But to me that is a slap to the face of anyone not playing. I cannot even name 5 players that would start for another SEC team. So to say a player can’t make the field because they got really good players in front of them is just saying they are not any good because what I’m seeing on the field is not “really good”. WOW, Can’t believe he said that. Granted I realize a coach can’t sit up there and say “we suck, we really really suck”. And not hearing the full context of an interview things can be skewed a bit or he could be boxed in to saying something like that, but still… that just made me smack my head!

If the young players that haven’t played aren’t any better than those playing we are in trouble! But one thing for darn darn sure a stop watch don’t lie! The speed we have been chasing on defense part of it has been sitting on the sidelines. Our defense is slow in spots and the pass coverage is. On existent yet Catlon who made plays in camp has been watching. It makes me wonder with the and poor play by the QB what the heck is point on in between the ears of the staff that’s been watching all year.
There’s a lot of head scratching to do but I guess they do watch them in practice and it’s their decision and job!