What Chad Morris said on his weekly radio show ahead of Auburn

By: Clay Henry
Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2018
Arkansas Razorbacks head coach Chad Morris watches his players before a football game, Saturday, September 8, 2018 at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo.
Photo by Charlie Kaijo
Arkansas Razorbacks head coach Chad Morris watches his players before a football game, Saturday, September 8, 2018 at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colo.

Chad Morris hit the same messages on his statewide radio show that were the basic premises when he visited with the media Monday and twice Wednesday.

“I tell our players to keep putting good days in the bucket,” Morris said Wednesday night at The Catfish Hole.

“If you keep stacking them together, good things will happen.”

There were several thoughts about “the storm” the Hogs are in after a 1-2 start as they prepare for the SEC opener against Auburn. Game time is 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

Morris was asked what lessons were learned in an equally tough start in his first year at SMU.

“The first thing, you don't flinch,” Morris said. “You don't blink. As a coach, you keep loving these kids. I want every one of them to know I love them.

“We are going to get better every day and we are not going to waiver. We are in a storm. It won't be the last storm they are in during their lives. Everyone knows what you do in a storm, you buckle down. We don't see the sun, but it's out there. We will get through it and we will be stronger.

“I told them right after the game that I love them. I care. We hurt, but we are going to get through it.”

The message was to fix the basic problem that stops all football teams: too many turnovers. The Hogs had six pass interceptions that led to 24 points in the 44-17 loss to North Texas.

“We had self-inflicted wounds,” Morris said. “We go back to basics, ball security. We can fix that.”

There were other simple messages.

“No one feels sorry for us,” Morris said. “No team feels sorry for us. We have to pick ourselves back up. They are going to follow me.”

The first question on the show concerned his choice to switch quarterbacks once again. Ty Storey will start for the Hogs at Auburn after Cole Kelley got the start against North Texas.

“We have gone back and forth since April,” Morris said. “They've battled and competed. We were completely comfortable going with Cole last week. But the quarterback's main job is to protect the football. Now I've told Ty, 'Go do this.'”

Linebacker Dre Greenlaw is expected to play this week.

“We are glad to have Dre back,” Morris said. “Really, this is his first week back. He was out there bouncing around today. We are being very cautious with him. We kept him in a (limited contact) green jersey.”

The Hogs continue to juggle players on the offensive line. Hjalte Froholdt moved back to guard this week with Ty Clary taking snaps at center. Noah Gatlin, Colton Jackson and Shane Clenin are splitting time at tackle, with Clenin working as the backup on both sides.

"We are a work in progress in the offensive line," Morris said. "(True freshman) Noah Gatlin has started the last two weeks (at left tackle). Colton got a couple of series last week and he's working his way back into game shape. It's hard to play a true freshmen at this level, but it's even harder to do that in the offensive line."

Morris said the challenge this week is to protect the football, something the Hogs did not do last week.

"It's back to basics," he said. "You take care of the football and the defense has to take the ball away.

"(Auburn's) front seven on defense is very sound and deep. But we have to hit the wide open receivers and be a surgeon with the football. That's what I told Ty he has to do."

The crowd will be almost all Auburn.

"We have to bring our own energy," Morris said. "I told our players to pack their energy."

Discussion

Have a comment on this story? Join the discussion or start a new one on the Forums.