Smith addresses Arkansas' lack of depth and A&M

John L. Smith discussed the loss to Rutgers, lack of depth and Texas A&M along with several other topics on Wednesday. A partial transcript is below and you can listen to the conference above.

On positives from the Rutgers loss:
“There were some very positive things that I think we have tried to build on this week The fact that we did believe and we battled and we fought as hard as we have done this year. That was a positive. There were some (places) on our team that played their best game. For instance D-Line played probably their best game.”

On what stands out about A&M:
“Their quarterback. What they do and what Kevin does with the offense is tremendous. He gets rid of the ball and throws it around and is able to score a lot of points, but I think that their quarterback is a special kid. (On the) defensive side of the ball again they are a very sound and well-coached football team in all three aspects of the game…The one thing that just jumps out at you is that kid pulling the trigger.”

On recent success against A&M:
“I think it does (help to build confidence this week). They can look back, even though it doesn’t mean anything, they can look back and say that we have played well against these guys. We have been able to come back against these guys. We have been able to beat these guys, so let’s approach it as such. I think it something that has been a benefit for us and I think it is something that we try to point to as well as coaches. We have been fortunate in the pass to go down there and play well.”

On familiarity with A&M Head Coach Kevin Sumlin:
“I know Kevin fairly well as far as the head coaches. He was a Northwestern guy at one time across the border at Washington State. We have crossed path let’s say quite a bit in the past, so his style is that of get rid of the ball, throw it around, spread you, run it. They have a skilled running game. They are so up-tempo it is not all complicated it is just the up-tempo of them throwing the ball and their ability to run it. He has done a tremendous job.”

On lack of depth:
“We knew coming in that we had some depth at our defensive front, but we had very little at the linebacker and the secondary spots. Any time that you lose people in those position it is a definite factory on what takes place. Offensive front wise we have to stay healthy there…It has been a factor, but it is not something we are looking at as an excuse.”

On how A&M’s defense matches up with Arkansas’ offense:
“I think it matches up a little bit better than maybe we have in the past. It is not like they are going to sell out and blitz as much as they did. It seems like they make you work for everything that you are going to get. They are awful good. Hopefully we can hang on to the football a little bit and continue to possess it. That is kind of a key for us. Defensively they are very stout.”

On what needs to change on the defensive side of the ball for Arkansas:
“The biggest thing is that again that that they are up-tempo, they are running a number of plays (and) their ability to throw the football. We have to be able to get guys in, get guys out (and) get guys substituted to stay fresh enough to keep fighting that battle. I think that is one thing we have been working on a bunch is trying to get what guys we have in and substitute without making mistakes.”

On what is not working for the defense right now:
“Our ability to defend the run and the pass. Actually, I shouldn’t say that. Our ability to defend the run has been much better. Last week was probably the best that we have had. But again, forcing people to throw the ball and then not being there to defend it, giving up a big play here and a big play there, has really hurt us. Again, you can’t allow people just to run the football on you. You have to take away something and that is where our defensive front comes in. They have done better at that as far as making them have to throw the football. Now it is a matter of us becoming consistent enough on defending the throws.”

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Topics : ArkansasFootball
People : John L. SmithKevin Sumlin
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