"We're still here, the players that they watched," Hamilton said after practice Tuesday at Reynolds Razorback Stadium. "We are still fighting. We are still the same team, the same players.
"I tell you what we hope as players, that there will be a big, great crowd here to watch us play."
A senior wide receiver, Hamilton said there really has been little change in practice or preparations in the last week since Bobby Petrino was fired as head coach."
Hamilton said players have stayed focused on practice and preparations for the Red-White game as others have debated who should coach the team.
"I think we've just tried to stay together and stay on what we are doing," he said. "None of us have anything to do with this. We are players. We don't have any say in it. We just play. It's not our decision to make."
Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach Paul Petrino said it's clear the players have stayed focus.
"Sometimes when something difficult happens, if you are a coach or an athlete, the nicest thing that you can do is go on the field and practice," Petrino said. "That's the way it is a lot of times."
Junior center Travis Swanson, a starter the past 26 games, said there's nothing else that you can do.
"I have tried to take young players under my wings and tell them that, there's nothing to do but go forward," he said. "You can't do anything about it. You can't worry about it. You just focus on your job. I think we are doing that. If anything, it's made us closer, more together."
The Hogs have two more practices this week (Wednesday and Thursday) before finishing spring drills with the Red-White game at 2 p.m. Saturday. Petrino said there are still discussions about the format, but that coaches are leaning on not splitting the squad into even sides.
"Right now, we are thinking about making it ones versus twos," Petrino said. "We want to have something that keeps it consistent and easy for the players."
It's been ones versus ones in practice. And even while facing the first defense, quarterback Tyler Wilson has exploded with an All-American type spring. The fifth-year senior is the returning All-SEC quarterback. Petrino said it's been a wow type spring.
"If there's a quarterback anywhere that's better, he's Super Man," Petrino said. "He has been really good and he was even better today."
Hamilton said Wilson has been fantastic.
"You see what he can do and it is really good," Hamilton said. "And he's getting even more confident. He's got a real swagger about him. He's really taken over as the leader. He was good last spring and last season, but he's gotten better and better every day.
"He just continues to work hard every day. He busts his tail and does a great job. Tyler is so much better than what he was before. I think he has to be the best quarterback in the country.
"I think part of it is that we have good players around him, too. Coach (Bobby) Petrino recruited good players everywhere. We have great guys, too. We've kept everything intact and that's helped all of us. It's unbelievable what we can do together."
Paul Petrino said Tuesday's workout has been just like the rest of the spring, really good for the team.
"It was a real good day," he said. "We had a period where we ran the ball and did some things for toughness. There was a period of all blitz. And then there was another period where we worked against a four-man rush. There was a lot of situational stuff."
Petrino said he's taken a "bigger role" with his brother gone.
"I've scripted more things as far as practice," he said. "My role increased. We had a head coach that was very involved with the offense, not the typical head coach. But I've done that. I did it the last two years at Illinois. The time away from here, no question, made me a better coach."
But he said the key to the practices has been to "keep things consistent for the players. That's why we have been successful here."
Does Petrino think this is an audition for an even bigger role?
"Everything in life is for a reason," he said.
Swanson said the only way he can look at it is that it will make the Hogs more prepared for adversity.
"We just aren't going to let this affect us," he said. "There is no change in anything. We are going to go win a national championship. We are the same team. We have the same coaches. I see the same fired-up offensive coordinator. I see our leadership taking over inside the team. I don't see how anything is going to stop us."
Petrino was asked about reports that Austin Tate was injured in Friday's scrimmage. He said he wouldn't comment on injuries other than to note Tate was "walking around at practice" on Tuesday.