Monday Grid Report, 9/2

Arkansas worked for two hours on a hot Labor Day on the grass practice field south of Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

Arkansas worked for almost two hours in full pads in an intense practice as the Hogs tuned up for the season opener Saturday against Boise State.

"We had a real good workout," Houston Nutt said. "We've had the longest to wait. We got to watch a lot of games this weekend and our guys are very excited to play a game.

"It was good to get some players back on the field at practice. Josh Melton did some good things today. He went through a few things. It looks like he heals rapidly."

Fred Talley sat out the workout with a stomach bug, but he should return on Tuesday. Brandon Kennedy "rolled" an ankle during middle drills and didn't return for the second half to the workout.

Nutt said the team elected four regular captains, and two special team captains.

On defense, Jermaine Brooks and Raymond House were voted captains. Fred Talley and Sparky Hamilton were elected offensive captains. Richie Butler and Chuck Nalley were elected captains by the special teams.

"All six of these young men are deserving," Nutt said. "They have the confidence of their teammates and will be good captains."

Defensive coordinator Dave Wommack said he considered both Tony Bua and Jimarr Gallon as starters at the wolf linebacker, and either could open the game.

"It depends on the defensive scheme," Wommack said. "If we are in our gator or our 3-3 front, then Jimarr is out there. He's our gator. He's had a great spring, a great summer and a great fall camp. He's so smart and makes no mental mistakes.

"Of course, Tony is a great player, too. I feel really good with the two of them at our wolf position. We have great flexibility to play them both play them in different spots to disguise our looks. They can flip sides and play the other spot so that we can disguise the reads for the quarterback. It's a great situation."

Wommack said Gavin Walls would play some defensive end in the opener, but he isn't sure that Gene Perry is ready to play in the interior of the defensive line.

"Gene is going to play, it's just a question of when," Wommack said. "He hasn't played defensive line since three years ago in high school. He's relearning some technique and is learning our calls and our stunts. He'll get it. Will it be this week? I don't know.

"But, he's not going to redshirt unless the head coach tells me otherwise real soon. He's going to play. I love his athletic ability, his strength and his aggressive nature. He loves to play. He has quickness and speed."

Wommack said it's clear that Batman Carroll is much improved over last year and will play the boundary cover corner, the toughest position on the field.

"He's our best corner," Wommack said. "The boundary corner is the place where you leave them on the island the most and man up. It's a tough spot. But, he's so good. He's really, really good. He's about the best I've seen. He doesn't give you an inch. We are in a situation with him that if we want a matchup against a good wide receiver, we might send him with him. He can do that and we are prepared to do that with him.

"I like our other three corners, too. All four will play in the opener. I think we have something pretty special with Batman, Eddie Jackson, Lawrence Richardson and Bo Mosley. They are good, good players."

Offensive line coach Mike Markuson said that Josh Melton worked for less than half the practice Monday and that Dan Doughty was the starter for the opener and Kyle Roper the backup.

"Josh did some things, but he's not ready to play yet," Markuson said. "It's good to get him back, but Dan Doughty is ready and he's our starter. Kyle Roper is ready, too. They are the first two. That's who we will play at center in this game."

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