Garrick McGee has seen enough of Ohio State through the years that he was quick to put to rest all of the stereotypes about what's waiting for Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl. The Arkansas offensive coordinator warned that the Big Ten co-champs are both fast and athletic.
"I coached in the Big Ten for four years so I know about (Ohio State)," said McGee, who was offensive coordinator at Northwestern before joining the Razorbacks three years ago. "They run different schemes, but they have athletes on the SEC level.
"You hear people say that the Big Ten is slow, but I know exactly about the speed they have. They will be athletic and fast. Anyone who thinks they are slow is wrong."
McGee said there is personal respect for the Buckeyes and for their coach, veteran Jim Tressel.
"I've been a fan of his for a longtime," McGee said. "When I was at Northern Iowa, we coached against him when he was at Youngstown State -- then four years against him at Northwestern. I have a lot of respect for him, personally."
The Hogs began practice Monday night in Reynolds Razorback Stadium, working under the lights in chilly conditions. It was the first workout since the victory over LSU to end the regular season. Arkansas coaches were on the road last week to recruit.
"We had a good workout," said Willy Robinson, defensive coordinator. "Our players have a great attitude. They came to work. It's the way they've been all year.
"Was it electric out there tonight? No. But that's not what we wanted. We just wanted them to come to work. They have a focus on school work tonight. That's what we want. They were in class today and tonight we just wanted to get them out there and get back to a little football."
McGee said, "We just wanted to knock some rust off. We don't have a game plan. We'll just work three days this week and get them back at it. We'll look at Ohio State this week and when we get back at it Monday, we'll start in on a little about them. Right now, we just wanted to get back out there."
Tight end D. J. Williams said there has been no study of the Buckeyes yet.
"But we know what to expect, a great, great team," Williams said. "We'll get to them. We know they play great teams each week in the Big Ten. I haven't seen a lot of them, maybe a little on TV. But they will have great players, NFL players. We know they have a great, great defense.
"This is going to be a great challenge. It's the right way to go out as far as I'm concerned, with a team like Ohio State. I'm a senior and you couldn't ask for a better challenge."
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