Practice Notes

FIRST DOWN Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino summed up quarterbacks Ryan Mallett and Tyler Wilson in one word Thursday night: Sloppy.

Arkansas kicked off preseason practice with most of the attention on the two quarterbacks who will run Petrino's offense. Each turned in some big plays during the non-contact workout, but also took turns throwing some careless interceptions.

"Our timing wasn't where it needs to be," Petrino said after practice. "We threw a couple balls you either need to check down to the running back or tuck it and run."

Mallett worked with the first-team offense and competed primarily against the starting defense. Two of his passes in team drills were intercepted by cornerback Ramon Broadway.

Wilson, who worked with the second-team offense, threw passes that were picked off by safeties Anthony Leon and Matt Harris.

Mallett said on one hand it was nice to see Arkansas' defensive backs making plays during the practice. But Mallett said he and Wilson know they must improve when they return to the field today.

"Just mental errors," Mallett said of the interceptions. "Can't make those. That's what it was. (Today we) have to come back, fix that mistake and come back out here and play ball."



TWO-MINUTE DRILL

• Freshman RB Knile Davis was not with the team Thursday because his father has died. Petrino said Davis, who broke his ankle in the spring but has been cleared to practice this preseason, will rejoin the team Saturday. His father's funeral is Friday night.

• There's a new Petrino on the roster. Bobby Petrino, the youngest son of the Razorbacks coach, has walked on and joins his older brother Nick. Petrino originally intended to play at Air Force, but decided the military wasn't for him and returned to Arkansas.

"As he tells me, he didn't want to be in the military after he was done with college and wanted to come back," Petrino said.

• Offensive lineman Michael Aguirre, defensive back Chris Raggett and defensive lineman Brandon Lampkin are not part of the 105-man roster this preseason and will not return to the team.

Aguirre, who started two games in 2008 and was a second-teamer on the depth chart, will not return because of a back injury.

• Arkansas welcomed two punters to the practice field. In addition to signee Briton Forester, the Razorbacks also added walk-on Dillon Breeding. The two will compete for the starting job.



INSIDE SCOOP

Fans attending a practice may notice that defensive backs have added some color to their jerseys. There's a good reason for it.

As a new teaching tool, each defensive back has two yellow dots and two green ones on his jersey. The yellow ones are up by the armpits. The green ones are lower, down by the hips.

"The yellow dots are for hand placement," newcomer Rudell Crim explained after Thursday's practice. "It helps DBs get their hands up and be able to jam with their thumbs and be able to get control of the receiver. The green dots right here are for DBs to keep their eyes on (an opponent's) hips and be able to control and turn your hips at the same time while you're jamming."

The teaching tool can only help a secondary that struggled in 2008. So can newcomers like Crim, who lined up at second-team cornerback and is expected to fight for a spot in the rotation. Crim said the dots are new to him, but knows they can be an effective way to learn.

"Once I get the technique down I think I'll have fun with it," he said.

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