Tuesday Practice Report

Arkansas appears full speed for this week's trip to LSU. Here's a look at Fred Talley's availability for the game.

Arkansas completed its last hard practice of the regular season Tuesday without complications and the game plan for LSU intact.

The Hogs worked for about 30 minutes on the grass practice field, then moved into Reynolds Razorback Stadium to complete the workout under the lights. With dark hitting earlier, the Hogs decided not to use the portable lights set up along the road above the practice field to take advantage of the better grass in the stadium. The grass on the two practice field is worn thin since it was in poor shape in August after winter kill wiped it out.

The workout was spirited and crisp. The only surprise came when the kickers ... who had moved inside for some treatment ... came out to the stadium thinking they had it to themselves, only to learn that the team had taken the area they had planned to use for their extra work.

"Hey, what's the deal," said Brennan O'Donohoe. "We were going to work here."

There really wasn't a problem. The kickers were done anyway.

The offense looked sharp in its execution, and tailback Fred Talley practiced without problems. Talley, who looked quick and sharp Tuesday, has a sore shoulder, but is expected to start against LSU. The Hogs also worked Cedric Cobbs, Brandon Holmes and Decori Birmingham at tailback. Mark Pierce, Sacha Lancaster and Holmes all took snaps at fullback, too.

Punter Richie Butler was especially sharp in the early portions of practice, booming some 50-yard punts in the cool, crisp air. Temperatures were in the high 40s by the close of practice after a cool front sailed into Northwest Arkansas over night.

The only player who did not practice was cornerback Marvin Jackson. The Hogs' top punt returner will miss because of a severe ankle sprain. The Hogs will likely use George Wilson and Gerald Howard on punt returns with Jackson out. Wilson caught punts to end the MSU game last week after Jackson's injury.

The Hogs plan a light practice Wednesday, the final day of classes before the Thanksgiving break. The team will depart for Baton Rouge on Thursday.

"We've had another good week so far," John Thompson said. "Our players are working hard. We've had a short week and had to get a lot done in meetings. I've been pleased at the mental concentration so far this week."

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