Wednesday Grid Report, 9/10

Arkansas is looking for help in the defensive line for Saturday's game at Texas. And, they may have found just the answer.

Arkansas worked for a little over two hours in full pads with an emphasis on tackling and offensive polish of the game plan.

Defensively, Jeremy Harrell has been moved from the scout team to the varsity and worked with the first team at times Wednesday. Jason Peters also took some snaps with the defensive line. Coaches expect both to play against Texas.

On offense, tackle Shawn Andrews practiced, but was pulled about halfway through the workout because of the possibility of dehydration. Andrews left practice early Tuesday with a stomach virus.

"Shawn could have probably pushed through today's workout, but Dean Weber and our trainers are careful and they just wanted him to stop at that point today," Nutt said. "Shawn will be fine Saturday. You worry because he didn't make it all the way. You always worry when someone's not out there. But, he should be okay."]

Defensive coordinator Dave Wommack hopes his trrops tackle better this week after a "poor" tackling performance against Tulsa in the season opener.

"It wasn't like we didn't practice tackling in preseason, but you didn't tackle the first string backs, so when you get into a game and see real speed, you aren't ready for it and you take the wrong angles," Wommack said. "We've worked hard on tackling this week, but you still can't simulate that speed.

"What I hope you learn is that you can't go for the kill shot on each tackle. You get in position and you wrap up the ball carrier. The thing that surprised me is that we had some missed tackles from some very experienced players. Caleb Miller is probably our best tackler and he missed three or four. He went for the kill and didn't get the man down."

Wommack said Tony Bua's play was solid in some areas, but not so solid in other areas.

"It was his first game at free safety and he took the wrong angles at times," Wommack said. "He did some good things and he'll get better. It's not like it was an experienced player at that position making those mistakes. He'll learn and improve.

"The thing with Tony, I don't want him trying to be a Ken Hamlin, Steve Atwater or Kenoy Kennedy. Those guys played that spot and made some impressive hits. Tony wants to make those kinds of hits because it is what has been expected at that position here. We just want him to be sound, take the right angle and stay back. He can do that."

Richard Smith continues to limp with a sprained ankle. He was not in full pads Wednesday and spent much fo the day jogging around the field. Nutt said he is improved and may be able to play against Texas.

"He's still coming on and we think he might can go by Saturday," Nutt said. "Steven Harris and Thomas Crowder got some of the snaps there today."

On the defensive line, Wommack said he was not entirely sure how he would use Harrell, or if the Hogs would pull off his redshirt.

"We might (pull the redshirt)," Wommack said. "I would hope some of the older players would step up. But there comes a point where you don't wait around for those guys anymore and you go with some younger players. It might be time to go with Jeremy and see what he can do."

Another newcomer was getting a lot of snaps in practice on the defensive line. Titus Peebles appears to be in the rotation as the Hogs head to Austin.

"He's a guy who if you get down to it, he was a calf with the cow deal," Nutt said. "We went after another player and we took Titus, too. But, we get him here and he has great feet, a great body and he really comes to work each day. We are going to play Titus."


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