MOUNTAIN HOME - Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino dropped the hammer Tuesday on some of the rumors that have been on the Internet about quarterback Ryan Mallett on Tuesday. At least, he tried.
Asked about those rumors during the fan question and answer portion of his time with the Baxter County Razorback Club, Petrino said, "Blame Al Gore. He introduced the Internet." Petrino said he asked to speak to the NFL scouts before Razorback athletes worked for them at Walker Pavilion on Tuesday.
"I asked to talk to all of them," Petrino said. "I brought ‘em in. I told them Ryan was the hardest working quarterback I've ever coached as far as what he did in the meeting room, on the field and he is the best as far as a complete understanding of the playbook."
Petrino said he heard a new one on Mallett on Tuesday.
"They said one of the rumors was that he was a finger pointer," Petrino said, raising his voice. "I said, ‘We move the ball up and down the field into the end zone.' Nothing could be further from the truth as far as his leadership. He encouraged his teammates and when things didn't go well, he was the first to say, ‘I could have put it in a better spot.' He'd put his arm around a teammate to help him when he was down."
Petrino said he did not talk to scouts after Mallett's performance, but he watched faces. He said Mallett was superb in his throwing workout Tuesday.
"Ryan really did well," Petrino said. "He really threw it, he hit hands and he was spinning the ball. There was a wow factor with all of the coaches there. I saw their faces when he threw."
Mallett said he was pleased with the four tackle prospects to take the two open spots on the depth chart. He said Anthony Oden measured 6-8, 320 and tested well in the strength and conditioning program's workouts this week. Petrino said Brey Cook also tested well for a true freshman this week.
"A lot of times true freshmen don't test well when they first come to campus," Petrino said. "He benched 380 when we got him this winter. He's done well. He can really bend and move."
Petrino also praised returnee Grant Freeman, noting his strength and size is at a high. He said juco transfer Jason Peakcock has tested well, but there will be a learning curve because the technique used in the Arkansas scheme is different than what he'd been coached previously.
Petrino promised to release all of the winter tests later this week, but noted wideout Jarius Wright recorded the fastest 40-yard dash times in workouts this week.
"Jarius went under 4.3 in the 40," Petrino said. "He's worked hard on his strength and flexibility."
Tweets by teammates indicated Wright was clocked in 4.26. That was not confirmed by Petrino.
Petrino Defends Mallett
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