Alabama football: Recapping Arkansas week ahead of kickoff

Alabama football-Nick Saban-Jalen Hurts-Arkansas-ESPN-kickoff time

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — We know there is always a lot of news flying out around Alabama football, so we figured it’d be a good idea to provide you with a spot to catch up on things you might have missed.

No. 1 Alabama (6-0, 3-0 SEC) hosts Arkansas for homecoming on Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Here are stories, videos and other news and notes you might have missed this week.

Nick Saban winks

If you want to get Alabama coach Nick Saban to play nice with reporters, just let him know ESPN cameras are going to be in the room. News conferences with Saban are typically short and sweet on Wednesdays.

This week, Saban doubled the time he normally talks to the media on Wednesday night. Saban was in a joking mood as ESPN cameras invaded the Naylor Stone Media Room in hopes of catching a testy moment between the coach and reporters.

There would be no such interactions as Saban played nice and gave long responses to nearly every question.

At one point, Saban did turn to his media relations rep and wink after given a reporter a little grief about how he pronounced “persona.”

Injury updates

Defensive backs Tony Brown (knee) and Trevon Diggs (foot) will likely be game-time decisions Saturday. Both were able to practice this week, but Alabama coach Nick Saban wouldn’t say Wednesday whether the duo would play.

Da’Shawn Hand (MCL) will be out for the second straight week. Saban said Hand is making progress in his rehab. It wouldn’t be a shock if Hand missed the Tennessee game as well, and was back for LSU on Nov. 4 after Alabama’s bye week.

Calvin Ridley (thigh) practiced and looked fine during media viewing periods. Alabama will be without backup center Brandon Kennedy (ankle) for an extended period of time.

Everyone else should be fine.

Nick Saban speaks

Nick Saban’s Monday news conference (video courtesy of Bamaonline.com):

Nick Saban’s Wednesday news conference:

Player interviews

Alabama running back Damien Harris:

Alabama defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick:

Alabama defensive lineman Da’Ron Payne:

Alabama left guard Ross Pierschbacher:

Alabama linebacker Rashaan Evans:

Alabama right tackle Matt Womack:

Alabama wide receiver Cam Sims:

News and analysis

Predictions

Each week, SEC Country writers and editors predict the outcome of Alabama’s next contest.

“Arkansas is truly a horrific football team. If it weren’t for Missouri, you could make the case that the Razorbacks are the worst team in the SEC. I think Saturday is going to get really ugly fast, especially after Alabama’s close win at Texas A&M, where the team looked vulnerable for the first time this season. You better believe that the Crimson Tide are going to want to start fast and not let up on the gas come Saturday. It’s going to be a bloodbath. Alabama 52, Arkansas 7.” — Chris Kirschner

More predictions here.

The post Alabama football: Recapping Arkansas week ahead of kickoff appeared first on SEC Country.

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