By John Luke McCord
On Tuesday Hugh Freeze felt his team was sluggish. Wednesday’s practice, however, brought better results and a much more glowing review from the head coach.
“It was a better day,” Freeze said following Wednesday’s work inside the Manning Center. “The energy and attention certainly seemed better. Hopefully I feel that way after I watch the film.”
Freeze wasn’t done passing out the praise. He also spoke very highly of his young group of running backs and how they have played in the absence of Jeff Scott.
“I like the way they’re going about their business. They’ve taken the chance they’ve been given and made the most of it. We’re not afraid to use any of those four and Jeff (Scott),” Freeze said.
Scott could see some carries at tailback this week against Arkansas, or he could just handle punts. However, if Scott, who didn’t practice again today, does not practice tomorrow, Freeze said there is a good chance he does not play at all.
The reason Scott is questionable is because the original diagnosis of a thigh bruise is not actually the case. He has a bone spur in his back that is irritating nerves in his leg.
Freeze also said he has seen a change in Mark Dodson since his breakout performance against Idaho and that he would “probably get a carry or two” on Saturday.
Here’s running backs coach Derrick Nix:
The offensive line was also a subject of conversation following practice Wednesday. Freeze specifically spoke about the early development of freshmen Laremy Tunsil and Austin Golson.
“Laremy has played solid the entire time, he’s really special. Austin had a lot more to learn. It’s a little easier to play just on the edge. We throw Austin in the middle in that first game and there’s a lot of different things going happening in there. He’s improving and not making near as many mistakes,” Freeze said.
Freeze also noted Jared Duke, Justin Bell and Patrick Junen as guys that have played well this season on the offensive line and added, “we have a little depth there.”
Freeze also noted that he has liked what he has seen from Mike Hilton and Robert Nkemdiche in their returns to practice this week.
Here’s defensive line coach Chris Kiffin: