By Otis Kirk
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas will face a tough challenge on Saturday night when they take on No. 1 Alabama in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Arkansas linebacker Grant Morgan knows Arkansas has given up a lot of yardage on the ground the past two weeks and expects the Tide to test that aspect of the Hogs’ defense.
“If I was them I would run it,” Morgan said. “They have a real good running back, really good offensive linemen. Their offense they are gonna do whatever works for Alabama. They know how to play football. They’ve done it over the past however many years Nick Saban has been there. You have to give them credit.
“Like Chief asked us today if you were the offensive coordinator what would you want to do? And if you watched our film you say run it. Like Kentucky did and like Auburn did it. We’ve just got to continue to get better in the run game.”
Morgan has played in Alabama prior to this game. What has he told the younger players on the team about playing there?
“I say first thing you do is get in there and look around,” Morgan said. “Get in there and soak it all in. Say you are playing Alabama the No. 1 team in the nation. Every field is a 100 yards. It’s all the same once you get in there except for the LED lights they’ve got going for them now. That’s pretty cool. Just look around once and be done.”
Scoota Impressed With Tide Offense
Senior linebacker Scoota Harris is another one who has faced Alabama for three years now. What do you think about the Tide offense this year?
“Explosive on offense still,” Harris said. “I think this generation, just playing against this Bama offense, I think this is the most explosive I’ve ever seen them. So that’s what I’ve been seeing over the last few years from them.”
Is that mostly because of their wide receivers?
“Yeah, because mostly their receivers,” Harris said. “I mean, you can’t sleep on their running backs. They’re still the old traditional Alabama running backs: big, strong, physical. So we’re going to get a boat.”
Alabama will have redshirt sophomore Mac Jones at quarterback for the injured Tua Tagovailoa. Harris was asked his thoughts about that?
“Without Tua, that’s a big difference, obviously, in their passing game,” Jones said. “To me, we feel like we just want to get a lot of pressure in front of Mac Jones’ face, make him uncomfortable and get him off the spot. I feel like if we do that, we’ll have a chance just to compete and you never know at the end what will happen.”
Hit By Car
Junior center Ty Clary was asked about quarterback Ben Hicks’ statement he felt like he had been hit by a car following the Auburn game.
“I didn’t know that, but I mean it just makes us feel lousy,” Clary said. “I hate it a lot. I hate giving up hits more than anything else. I gave up one in the game, and I was kicking myself for it the whole game.”
Who will be the quarterback this week?
“I’m not going to lie, I don’t even know what’s going on with the quarterbacks,” Clary said. “I snap the ball to them, and I’m trying to worry about my own guy that’s in front of me. I know whoever it is, they’re going to do a good job.”
Brown on Defense
Sophomore cornerback Montaric Brown talked about his thoughts on Arkansas giving up a lot of third-and-long plays this season.
“It’s very frustrating,” Brown said. “We do what we got to do, but we just do what we try to do. We try to get them off the field.”
What was the defense doing well during the middle of the game against Auburn?
“Stopping the run,” Brown said. “Stopping the run, and then stopping the pass.”
What happened later in the game when Auburn started scoring at will?
“I mean, we had a lot of plays on the field,” Brown said. “We get fatigued, but we just keep it moving and just keep playing.”
Brown talked about his play through seven games so far.
“I’m not satisfied,” Brown said. “I’m not where I want to be. I’m still working on my craft every day and keep working. I’m grinding every day to get one percent better each day.”