Football Bowl Practice, Dec. 7

Arkansas worked for 90 minutes in full pads as they continued to scrimmage youngsters during the leadup to a bowl trip.

Arkansas worked about 90 minutes in full pads, again displaying as much enthusiasm as I've ever seen on a football field. Houston Nutt called it a great day afterwards, and quickly headed to the team room where the Hogs would meet their visitors for the weekend.

It looked like most of the recruits had made it to campus. Otis Kirk was at practice pointing out stud after stud to this writer as the practice concluded. It was a good-looking group. For sure, I saw Lonnie Davis, Brandon Kennedy, Alex Pou, Chase Pressley and several others I've now forgotten.

The Hogs worked extrensively in one-on-one fundamentals, and scrimmaged some with the first and seconds working against a mixture of seconds and thirds. Every loud hit drew a loud roar from teammates watching on the sidelines. The competition was fierce.

In the one-one-one drills, young players like Jayson Johnson, Arrion Dixon, Elliott Harris, Jim Peters, Bo Lacy and Scott Davenport all looked great. Jayson Johnson was probably the star of the day.

"Jayson had a good day," said line coach Bobby Allen. "It's been like that for him a lot lately. He's figured it out. He is playing great. He's going to be a player, like we thought when we signed Jayson."

De'Arrius Howard scored a touchdown in the goal line scrimmage when the redshirts scrimmaged at the end of the day. Howard circled right end, then taunted the defense in the corner of the end zone with a "he-man" pose. Then, Tarvaris Jackson scored on a bootleg on the next play to end the goal line work with the offense scoring on both plays. That left the entire defense ... varsity, scout team and walkons ... to do pushups with the offense roaring as they counted them off.

Nutt said Howard, the tailback from West Memphis, has had a series of great workouts as the season wound down.

"He's so glad he redshirted now," Nutt said. "He's going to be a great one, and he's got four more years with us. He's a great young man."

Allen, who saw Howard daily on the offensive scout team, said the first defense had trouble containing Howard as the season got to the midpoint.

"De'Arrius wasn't right when he got here," Allen said. "He wasn't feeling right and he wasn't in shape to play. We knew he'd been sick over the summer and couldn't work out. So, he had to get in shape first. After he did that, he was a special player. We had a hard time tackling him. He sees the field so well, he's quick at hitting the hole and then he has a burst. He's a great player."

The Hogs will work in full pads again Saturday. Practice is scheduled at 1 p.m. Nutt said several different groups of players plan watch parties Saturday night for the SEC title game between Tennessee and LSU.

"We'll know where we will be going after the game," Nutt said. "We haven't broken down film, but we have watched film of both Iowa State and Oklahoma."

The Hogs would play Iowa State in the Independence Bowl if Tennessee wins, and could play Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl if LSU wins.

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