That would be semester finals, which took away several of head coach Bobby Petrino's Razorbacks from at least a portion of Saturday morning's workout.
"It was fun this morning," Petrino said. "It was good to get out there. We didn't really have all the players. We had some guys that had finals. That's kind of tough. But we had to get a practice in today. We will have another practice tomorrow and then give them Monday and Tuesday off and come back late Wednesday and get a practice in when finals are over with."
"It is an interesting time because you are balancing recruiting, preparation for the bowl game and practice and finals," Petrino said. "We just have to do the best that we can. We have had some practices where the coaches haven't been there because they have been on the road recruiting. Some where we have missed some guys during part of practice.
"We got a lot of guys in there (today) for the team part, but some of them did miss early," Petrino said. "The guys have a great attitude and we are really looking forward to the preparation for the bowl game."
While the vets are certainly preparing for the bowl, Petrino and his staff are also preparing their younger players for the future.
"It really is critical," Petrino said. "I really believe that is how you get better. That is how you get the guys reps so they feel comfortable. They can come in and watch the video and then when we start spring practice, they get themselves in position to compete for a starting job or a second-team job and work their way up their depth chart. There is nothing like getting those practices in and getting the extra work with the young guys."
That is taking place during the second half of the workouts.
"We do that after practice," Petrino said. "We did that Monday and Tuesday. They actually did some group work and team work and then today because of finals and a lot of them having to leave and go take their final this afternoon – we kept the guys who didn't have a final out and just work individual technique with their position coach."
Petrino pointed to how quarterback Ryan Mallett prepared while he was redshirting.
"It's good work for them and we are videoing it," Petrino said. "We will put it in the computer so in the offseason they will be able to come in and watch themselves try to execute the offense or the defense and special teams.
"It is very similar to what we did with Ryan Mallett," Petrino added. "Last winter when we got to start studying ourselves with Ryan, we had 455 snaps of him running our offense on video. It is really get them on video and they can learn in offseason what they are doing right and what they need to improve in."
Two guys Petrino says have shown promise while redshirting this season and are getting a chance to step up in this bowl workouts are linebacker/defensive end Ryan Calendar and tight end Austin Tate.
"I am really happy with Ryan Calendar for example," Petrino said. "He is a guy that came in very skinny and has gained I think 20 pounds since he has been here and gotten stronger in the weight room.
"Austin Tate has done the same thing," Petrino said. "Austin came in and I think he was 217 pounds. He is 230, much stronger and he looked good out there today in the individual work we were doing."
Petrino gives strength and conditioning coach Jason Veltcamp the credit and notes there is a different philosophy for those playing and those that are not.
"Coach Veltkamp has done a really nice job in the weight room," Petrino said. "That is something that we have always tried to pride ourselves on – the redshirts and the guys that aren't playing in the game lift different than the guys that are.
"We are trying to build strength and get some weight gain during the season and those guys have done that," Petrino said.
Like most coaches, Petrino admits he would have preferred to redshirt more freshmen than he actually did.
"I would have liked to, but you get at the end of the year and look back on a few of them and say ‘hey, maybe we should have, he didn't play as much as I thought he would' but that is the call you have to make that week before the first game," Petrino said. "You sit down as a staff and you say ‘hey, I really think this guy can help us as the year goes on and you definitely need him right now to back up because if we did have an injury at that position he would have to step up and play a bunch.' You can always look back because hindsight is always better than making the call prior to the start of the season."
Arkansas has now had three days of the 15 it is allowed for bowl practice, but hasn't gone full boar at East Carolina just yet.
"We have been able to watch – not a lot of East Carolina – but enough of East Carolina to get an idea of what they are doing," Petrino said. "Monday morning we will really start hitting it hard on game-planning so we will definitely get 2 to 2 ½ weeks of preparation for the game as far as pour practice goes.
"Today we were really working like we are in camp – ones versus ones, twos versus twos, which is good and nice and competitive and makes for a good hard practice," Petrino continued. "Monday we will start really on the game plan and then this week on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday will be maybe 60-40. Sixty percent East Carolina and 40 percent goods versus goods.
"Then we will send them home for Christmas, understand how much they have forgot and do it again when we are done in Memphis," Petrino said.
Arkansas will have contact during its practices – a lesson Petrino said he learned while at Louisville.
"It's hard because you always worry about coming out and being rusty, not executing early," Petrino said. "After the first two years I was at Louisville we did come out and have tackling the next two years and had some live work. Because in the first two years we didn't tackle well in the game and we didn't take care of the ball as much as we needed to.
"That is one thing that we will do," Petrino added. "We will do some live work, we will do some live tackling so we make sure we can do that in the game. I think taking care of the football and tackling well are the keys to being able to do well."
Petrino clearly has adniration for his team's bowl foe and head coach Skip Holtz, once the quarterback at Fayetteville High School when his dad Lou was the Arkansas head coach.
"We always had a lot of respect for them when I was at Louisville," Petrino said. "It was always a good game. I think Coach Holtz has done a great job in recruiting. When you look at their defensive front and see the guys they are playing with, they could all play in our league. They do a real nice job of coaching. He was won two back-to-back championships so he certainly has done an excellent job there."