When it comes to the offensive line, there were a couple of very positive things that happened Saturday for University of Arkansas.
First came word that veteran guard Wade Greyson's injury suffered the day before wasn't as serious as first feared.
Then Alvin Bailey (6-5, 323) – the redshirt freshman backing him up - went out and got the job done during the scrimmage for new offensive line coach Chris Klenakis.
"I think they (the offensive line) did fine," Klenakis said. "That's taking nothing away from Wade. Wade is a dang good football player. He's a fourth-year player, but Alvin stepped in and (fellow redshirt freshmen) Colby Berna stepped up into the next unit. They grabbed a hand and they moved on. We didn't change our offense and kept rolling."
The easy-going Bailey, an Oklahoma prep standout at Broken Arrow whose dad was a Razorback basketball player, is just taking it all in stride.
"You just have to go out there and play," Bailey said. "There ain't nothing to it. You just got to go out there and do it.
"I feel like I did pretty good," Bailey added. "Every practice there is going to be a couple of plays here and there and the defensive line might get the best of you. But overall I feel like I did pretty good."
Although the film would tell the true tale of Bailey's scrimmage effort, Klenakis was aware of one thing for certain.
"That is my deal – you are going to play nasty or not at all," Klenakis said. "We have got that slogan in our weight room and he's learning that. All the guys are learning that and we are starting to get a streak in us."
Klenakis sees a lot of things he can work with when it comes to Bailey.
"There are lot of things I like about him," Klenakis said. "He's physical, he's fast, he's athletic. But the best thing I like about him is that he is so raw that everything is new to him so he is learning it the first time. So you are not undoing any old habits. You are starting right from scratch with a raw kid, which is awesome. It is neat knowing you've got four years to work with him and he is just going to continue to get better with reps."
Bailey knows exactly the mentality that Klenakis – whose motto is you are going to play nasty or not at all - wants all the offensive linemen to have.
"The main thing that we are focusing on now is coming off the ball and delivering a blow on people and knocking people back off the ball," Bailey said. "That is one thing we want to implement more into the offensive game.
"…He came in and basically just said this is what I have always done, I have been doing it for awhile and this is what I am going to do here," Bailey said. "We are going to come off the ball and play football. There is no covering up. We are just going to come out and be nasty and physical and be be the most physical offensive line in the country."
Bailey believes he made the most of his redshirt season at a position where Mitch Petrus started and playing time would have been limited for the freshman.
"It was hard for me not playing, but it worked out for the best," Bailey said. "I sit behind Petrus and I learned plenty of things from him and the rest of the offensive linemen. I am still learning from them. I sit out and it was hard for me, but I got a lot stronger in the weight room. I learned the game a lot better and the offense a lot better. It was best for my future."
Bailey's Guard Up
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