The hay's in the barn and the Tide is drawing near.
The University of Arkansas football team finished up its own-campus preparations for its Saturday game at Alabama with a one-hour workout on Thursday.
"We had a good day today and our guys are very, very anxious to get on that plane (Friday) and get going," Razorback head coach Houston Nutt said. "We have had two good weeks (of practice) and now it is time to take it to the field."
No doubt Arkansas' success in the 5:45 p.m. game in Tuscaloosa that will be nationally televised by ESPN will have a lot to do with how junior quarterback Casey Dick performs.
"Casey Dick has had two good weeks and just needs to take it to the field, manage the game the way he managed it last week, take care of the ball, throw it to our guys, get us out of those bad plays," Nutt said. "He doesn't have to be Superman each play. He just needs to execute and take care of the ball. He is going to be fine."
Nutt also noted that Nathan Emert will go into the game as the back-up quarterback with true freshman Nathan Dick slated at No. 3.
"Emert will stay right where he is right now," Nutt said. "He knows the offense and understands it a little bit better."
Arkansas had considered taking star senior wideout Marcus Monk on the trip, but has decided to keep him here over the weekend in hopes rehab would have him ready to go the following week against visiting Kentucky.
"We wrestled with that back and forth, really wanted him to go," Nutt said, "but with our kicking situation we took a couple more coverage people, you take two deep snappers just in case and so we we decided to have him stay here and rehab with him all weekend.
Monk and tight end Ben Cleveland have been injured since before the season started, but having been doing some things recently.
A return to full practice next week for both?
"We just don't know," Nutt said. "I'm hoping."
"Hopefully this will be the last time and he will be with us for good now," Nutt added.
Starting fullback Peyton Hillis will be back to return punts – sometimes by himself and other times with Reggie Fish or Jerell Norton.
"We'll mix it up," Nutt said. "We will see which direction we want to go. How's the wind, is it going to be raining, what's the scenario."
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