Arkansas returned to the practice field in full pads Sunday afternoon after taking Friday and Saturday off. Houston Nutt thought the Hogs worked hard in the two hours they were on the practice field.
"It was a different weekend, that's for sure," said Nutt, the Hogs' head coach. "There was no football."
The SEC canceled the weekend's schedule after the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C. The Hogs were to have played North Texas on Saturday. That game may be rescheduled after the season.
Arkansas began preparations for the SEC West matchup at Alabama. Game time is 2:30 p.m. Saturday in Tuscaloosa. The game will be televised by CBS-TV.
"We tried to get a look at Alabama's option attack on offense, and see what Alabama's speed on defense would look like," Nutt said. "We had a good workout. We ran quite a bit at the end. We gassed them good."
Nutt said the Hogs would return to their regular schedule this week. That means the Hogs won't practice on Monday to allow the team to concentrate on late classes and labs.
"Monday is a lab day and we give them that day off," Nutt said. "We talked about working since we had been off on Friday and Saturday, but we'll stick with our schedule."
The Hogs continued to experiment in the offensive line. It appears Kenny Sandlin will start at center. And, line coach Mike Markuson looked at some new combinations on the right side.
"We tried Mark Bokermann at right guard, and gave Shawn Andrews most of the work at right tackle," Markuson said. "We need to get Shawn on the field as soon as possible. We need to find someone to handle right guard now that Kenny is going to play center."
Markuson stopped short of saying Andrews would start at right tackle against Alabama, but that appears to be the direction the Hogs are headed.
"I can at least promise you that something's going to be different," Markuson said. "I'm not saying exactly what it might be, but we will be different up front this week. We've got to make some changes and get our best combinations on the field. I'm not sure exactly what it's going to be, but it will be different."
Defensively, nose tackle Curt Davis missed the workout to be with his girl friend in Dallas during medical tests.
"Curt talked to us about it last week, and we excused him," said John Thompson, defensive coordinator. "It was fine and it was something we knew about before the weekend."
Thompson said the Hogs worked hard against Alabama's option offense, but it's not clear if the Tide will use it or not.
"They ran 19 option plays against UCLA, then nothing against Vanderbilt," Thompson said. "Why they dropped it, we don't know. I do know that UCLA knocked around their quarterbacks pretty good. We don't know if it's gone for good, or just for last week. We worked against it and we will expect it."
The Hogs worked hard on special teams to start the workout. Punter Richie Butler boomed several towering kicks. He was slowed last week with a hamstring pull, but appears to be near full speed now. The Hogs did not appear to have anyone missing because of injuries, and made it through the workout without any bumps or bruises.
Raymond House (56) works against Shawn Andrews.
Brennan O'Donohoe kicks a field goal Sunday afternoon.
Here's a look at the South End Zone on Sunday.
John Thompson (right) hollers instructions to the defense.
The South End Zone still looks great on Sunday.
There's a bit of unfinished business on the outside of the southwest tower.
The press box appears to be done.
Photos by Clay Henry