Wednesday Grid Report, 8/25

Arkansas took advantage of cooler temperatures for a solid offensive day as Matt Jones bounced back after a lackluster Tuesday.

Arkansas took a hard look at special team situations and other interesting scenarios in a two-hour workout that was in full pads.

Perhaps it was the cooler conditions compared to Tuesday when Houston Nutt thought his charges were sluggish, but Wednesday's workout was much crisper, especially from the offensive standpoint.

Matt Jones, who threw three interceptions on Tuesday, was superb on Wednesday. He hit on almost every pass during a goal line one-on-one drill between wideouts and defensive backs. And, then when the first groups went head to head in a seven-on-seven passing drill, he hit his first four passes, including a touchdown bomb to Steven Harris to open that session.

"I think the interceptions yesterday were the first ones Matt had thrown the entire fall," said Roy Wittke, the UA quarterback coach. "He made one poor decision and two poor throws. One of them was tipped by Chris Baker, but it was behind him and was a poor throw. Today, Matt was very sharp. He had a great day."

Houston Nutt said, "We had a much better day today. We watched film today and tried to correct what we saw. There's nothing like film. You can see it on film when we say they were running in mud. You can use it to teach effort and show where they really weren't getting there. Today was much better."

The Hogs worked on some special situations Wednesday, including special teams and how to handle end of the half and end of the game scenarios.

"We played like there was just 15 seconds left and you have a chance for two plays at the end of the half," Nutt said. "You can get off a play, and then have to get lined up for a field goal. On defense, we practiced the victory formation, where you are protecting a lead and want to bat the ball down to end a half or the game."

The Hogs had all of the walking wounded on the field Wednesday, but Nutt said they are a long way from being full speed. He noted that Reggie Banks and Robert Felton were not ready to play.

"They limped through it and they gave effort, but they don't have their quickness back yet," Nutt said. "They are getting better, though."



Matt Jones rushes against New Mexico State last year.

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