Petrino said Thursday that the Razorbacks will hold their final scrimmage of the preseason tonight in Reynolds Razorback Stadium. It will serve as a mock game eight days before the opener and gives the coaching staff one more chance to evaluate their personnel before heading into game week.
“It impacts (the depth chart),” Petrino said. “We haven’t finished any depth charts at all. We talk about depth every day, but we’ll probably sit down Sunday night and really decide where we’re at.”
The Razorbacks will replicate their game day routine, which includes a pre-game meal, walk through and every other detail. The first-team offense will scrimmage against the defensive reserves. And the first-team defense will play the offensive reserves.
“We’re looking for no mental mistakes at all,” tight end Andrew Davie said. “Perfect alignment and assignment. Guys are going to make mistakes on the field, but you’ve got to just play hard and play fast and hope to keep them to a minimum.”
It will be another chance for Arkansas freshmen to solidify spots in the two-deep rotation as well.
The Razorbacks are counting on their freshmen to contribute immediately. In fact, Petrino said he believes more than 10 of them could play this season.
“I went into this thinking there may be somewhere between six to 10 the first year,” Petrino said. “But I think it’s going to be a little more than that.”
Linebacker Wendel Davis was on the practice field for the second straight day after missing the first part of the preseason with knee and hand injuries.
“He doesn’t know a lot of what we’re doing because he has missed so much, but he did a great job on the scout team,” Petrino said. “He’s got two issues with the knee and the hand, but I was impressed with his movement. I watched him probably a little bit more than I normally would, but his movement was real good and his instincts were real good.”
But Petrino said he isn’t counting on Davis, who played in 13 games last season and earned one start, to be on the field for the opener.
“That wouldn’t be something we’re even considering right now,” he said.
Pay Per View
Arkansas will offer at least one football game on a pay-per-view basis, athletic director Jeff Long said.
Long declined to reveal which game would be televised, but said it will be announced soon. He’s hoping to add more to the schedule, too.
“We may have two, but the second one won’t be determined for awhile,” Long said. “We’re dependent on the SEC television package and what they choose and what they don’t choose. Some of those are six- and 12-day picks, so we may not know if we’re going to do a game pay per view until six days in advance.
“But we are committed to doing one.”
That will be a change from previous seasons. Former athletic director Frank Broyles had a long-standing policy to not offer games via pay-per-view.
Arkansas practiced without linebacker Elston Forte once again because of an undisclosed injury Thursday.
In addition, running back De’Anthony Curtis, wide receiver Rod Coleman, cornerback Jerell Norton and tight end Lance Thompson were among the injured players working out in the corner of the practice field.
Petrino said he’s hoping it won’t be long before Curtis returns to practice. He has been sidelined for a week because of a sprained knee.
“He gets better every day,” Petrino said. “He’s excited about it. He’s got the big smile that he always has back on his face. Hopefully we’ll keep going and be where we need to be next Saturday.”
• Walk-on cornerback Darrell Glasper, who came to Arkansas in 2007 after starting his career at LSU, has left the team. Glasper had climbed as high as the second-team defense in the spring, but was buried on the depth chart this preseason.
• There was a fireworks display on campus Thursday and it had nothing to do with Petrino’s offense. Fireworks that will be used in Reynolds Razorback Stadium for the season opener were tested, creating two loud booms outside the Broyles Complex.
— Robbie Neiswanger • The Morning News