Countdown to Kickoff
Tide Preps for SEC Opener



Sept. 21, 2009

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Alabama football team practiced for just over an hour in shells Monday afternoon inside the Hank Crisp Indoor facility as preparations for Saturday’s Southeastern Conference opener got underway.

The Crimson Tide will host the Arkansas Razorbacks in a nationally televised game on Saturday at 2:30 p.m.

Alabama head coach Nick Saban talked about the challenges this Saturday as the Crimson Tide defense will go against Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett, the nation’s top-rated quarterback with 193.49 passing efficiency rating in two games.

“Arkansas, to me, is one of the best offensive teams in the country,” Saban said at his weekly press conference on Monday.  “Bobby Petrino has always been one of the best offensive coaches, wherever he has been or whatever level.  They have a great passing game; a very good system.  Now with the quarterback Ryan Mallett, who leads the nation in passing efficiency, he is obviously a guy who can execute and do it very well, but he also has some very good players around him. They have a couple of running backs, Michael Smith and Dennis Johnson, who are very good players.  They have three receivers who are in the top-10 in the SEC in terms of receptions. They have a good tight end.  Their offensive line plays extremely well in their system.”

Alabama and Arkansas will meet Saturday afternoon on CBS Sports, with Verne Lundquist, Gary Danielson and Tracy Wolfson calling the action to a national audience. The game can also be heard on the Crimson Tide Sports Network with Eli Gold, Phil Savage and Barry Krauss describing the action.