Coach Haynes said he feels like he needs to emphasize tackling a little bit more, and has been doing that in recent practices.
Haynes feels as if the secondary got better as the game went on in Saturday’s 49-24 win over Jacksonville State. He points to Sophomore CB Tevin Michel, Junior S Eric Bennett, and Senior S/LB Ross Rasner’s performances, saying that they were both very good from a production stand point. Says the Arkansas defense still has to improve on the fundamentals as a whole.
Coach says his biggest concern about ULM is their passing attack. Says that this is one of those games that you can’t look up at the scoreboard and be “worried about the yards. The biggest deal is keeping them from scoring. They dink it around enough that they’re going to get some yardage.”
Haynes’ biggest disappointments came at the end of the first half and on the last three series of the game. “We can’t give up a 10-play drive in the last 2 minutes. Also, the last three possessions of the game. We game up almost 70 yards in the last three possessions of the game.”
Coach Haynes says that the lack of defensive prowess on Saturday came from a lack of execution. Says “we’ve got to get 2% better every day.”
Coach expects the linebackers to be disciplined on Saturday. Says Hogs will be playing a lot of gap control against a zone-read type of offense and the defense has to be ready.
Paul Haynes’ production leaders from Saturday’s games were Freshmen Defensive End Deatrich Wise, Senior LB/S Ross Rasner who had the most “production points,” and Junior DE Chris Smith.
Coach was pleased with RS Freshman S Ro Gaines’ play on Saturday night, but not overly pleased, saying that Gaines is one of those guys that has got to be “more productive for us,” and that is football IQ “will increase as he gets thrown into the fire.”
Coach Haynes also broke down his “production points” system somewhat. “They get production for plus plays, tackles, assisted tackles, tackles for loss, sacks, interceptions, and then you get (deducted) for missed tackles, missed assignments, critical errors, so it’s kind of like a plus/minus system.”
Haynes says that the first game was very typical. But, “our expectations are high. We’ve got to step up and be sure that we are doing the right thing.”
Coach Haynes also mentioned that he is excited about his first experience in War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock, saying, “I’ve heard some things. I’m excited about the crowd.”