Arkansas’ Tuesday Practice Notepad: Sosa Agim, La’Michael Pettway and much more

McTelvin Agim, Nicholas Fulwider_1536186033017.jpg.jpg

On Saturday night at defensive end, McTelvin Agim finished with four tackles, a tackle for loss, two forced fumbles, one recovered fumble and a pair of quarterback hurries. 

He started at defensive tackle against Eastern Illinois in the season opener. Will you play end or go back to tackle this week?

“Whichever one I’m needed at I’ll go play,” Agim said. 

Agim said he feels he’s prepared to play any of the line positions and spent extra time studying with Imarjaye Albury last week.

“That’s something we work on a lot,” Agim said. “Something I did with the GA, one of our grad assistants Marje, we just stayed overnight trying to study plays and making sure I didn’t have busts when it came to Saturday.”

On Saturday, the Arkansas defense will face North Texas quarterback Mason Fine and the high-powered offense. Agim talked about needing to get pressure on Fine this week.

“I feel like it’s very critical,” Agim said. “We didn’t get too much pressure last week and you seen the outcome. We definitely gotta get a lot more pressure this week because we’re playing the No. 1 (passing) offense in the country and the No. 1 quarterback in the country. They’re there for a reason, so we’ve got to make sure we get pressure on them.”

Last week, Arkansas dominated Colorado State’s offense for 2 1/2 quarters. But the Rams scored on their final four possessions of the game to get the victory. What happened those four series?

“I honestly don’t know,” Agim said. “The only thing I could say is we were just having mental errors and they were making plays. We weren’t where we were supposed to be. That’s something coach preaches all the time: Be where you’re supposed to be, do what you’re supposed to do, when you’re supposed to be there to the best of your ability and we weren’t doing that.”

Do you feel like the late-game losses in recent years are something that is just lingering on?

“I feel like because of those losses, we’ve been able to get off of them and not focus on them very long,” Agim said. “Because it’s been a problem. So it’s just like you’ve got to get it fixed. Since we’ve had that problem before, we just get it and try to work on the next work.”

Ramirez on the Gunslinger

Safety Santos Ramirez has seen a lot of Mason Fine on film this week. What does he think about the quarterback’s quick release?

“He is a gunslinger, I am not going to lie,” Ramirez said. “He is a gunslinger. They can run the ball if they want to and slow it down if they want to as well, but most of the time they try to get you on your toes. We are pretty prepared for that. We going up against a lot of up-tempo teams and our offense runs up-tempo so I think we got some work in with that. I feel like we are going to be ready.”

Does it seem like each week that people are spreading it and slinging it and it’s the same type of stuff every week?

“Yes, it is pretty much the game of football nowadays, everybody going to the spread or the RPO and trying to air the ball out and North Texas is no different,” Ramirez said. “They can go to the spread and do the run-pass option as well. We have to got to make sure we are on our Ps and Qs once again and there is not going to be a slack off in the passing game no matter what team we play this year.”

Randy Ramsey in a green jersey. Any sense of when he might be available?

“I haven’t, not sure, that’s not a question for me,” Ramirez said. “Hopefully our trainers can clear him. He was moving out there today so that’s a good thing. Hopefully we can get him back this week. We would love to have him. That would be great for our defense.”

In Saturday night’s game, Arkansas’ defense dominated for 2 1/2 quarters. However, the Rams scored on their final four possessions of the game to get the win. Did the altitude there play into that?

“If it did, all I can say is at the end we’ve got to make sure we’ve got to stay locked in,” Ramirez said. “It did shock us but you have to have that type of mentality regardless to keep our foot on peoples’ necks when they’re down, man. That’s the name of the game regardless of what, man. The game is No. 1.  Obviously we showed all the way up to the fourth quarter and then they made a comeback, man.  We’ve got to keep our foot on their neck, man. We can’t sit here and think the game is over, especially in college football on the D-1 level. 

“We’ve got to make sure we’re disciplined and make sure our eyes are good. If our eyes aren’t good, we can’t afford that in the secondary.”

First Down Arkansas?

Junior wide receiver La’Michael Pettway caught a third-and-six pass on the last play of the third quarter. The referees ruled it just short of the first down. 

“It was a 10-yard route and I actually took it two steps deeper to actually get past the first down and make sure I secured it, but the ref thought it was different.” Pettway said. “I thought it was a first and so did the coaches, but the ref ruled it different. So that is where we went from there.”

You were good on first downs this game after you weren’t the first game, but this game the third down plays weren’t. Can you put a finger on why the third down plays weren’t successful (5-15)?

“I do not have a say so in that,” Pettway said. “I just know we went in with the gameplan and some plays we executed well and some we didn’t.”

On Saturday night, Pettway caught a 25-yard touchdown pass from Cole Kelley with 8:35 remaining in the third quarter. What happened on that play?

“Just a 50-50 ball,” Pettway said. “That is what Coach challenges us to make. I made the play and it was a great ball and I executed the play.”

How did the quarterbacks look during Tuesday’s practice?

“They looked good,” Pettway said. “They are pretty consistent. We caught passes from both of them so I don’t have a problem with either one of them.”

Fans are Fans

De’Jon Harris was asked about the sense the players are getting from the fans following the loss?

“I mean, fans are fans,” Harris said. “When you lose, they talk about you or whatever and when you win, they praise you. That just comes along with the game, so we don’t really pay much attention to that.”

One familiar face on the North Texas team on Saturday afternoon will be kicker Cole Hedlund, who was at Arkansas the previous three seasons. He’s a graduate transfer who was eligible immediately with the Mean Green.

“It’ll be nice to see him,” Harris said. “It’ll be nice to block a couple of his kicks, but it’ll be nice to see Cole. It’s been a minute. I heard he’s doing pretty good over there and I just wish the best for him.”

He is 7 of 7 on field goals this season with a long of 51 yards. Are you surprised by his success?

“No. I’ve seen him in practice my last two years with him,” Harris said. “I know kicking is a mental thing with him, so if you’re not kicking good, you’re not going to go into a game and kick well. Obviously he’s over there doing his thing and I hope he keeps the momentum going for him.”

Senior linebacker Dre Greenlaw hasn’t played since the first quarter of the season opener. How big would it be to get Dre back this week?

“It’d be big just having Dre out there,” Harris said. “He’s an older, experienced guy. The communication would be much better. Bumper (Pool) didn’t play a bad game. He made freshman mistakes, but just to have Dre back out there in the starting lineup, it’d be huge.

Feel like Dre is feeling better and getting close?

“Yeah, he’s getting close,” Harris said. “As a senior, I wouldn’t rush it. Like I told him, I wouldn’t come back until you’re 100 percent. Especially going into SEC play, we don’t need to lose you, so don’t come back until you’re ready and feeling better.”

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