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Rice Has Probably Been in Mind All Fall Camp

With fall camp in the rearview mirror, the focus shifts to the opener Sept. 4 against Rice, but the guess is Sam Pittman has thought about it longer.

Fall camp is in the rearview mirror and the season is coming up fast in the windshield.

That's Rice and Sam Pittman knew that and also knows how searing the heat will be in Razorback Stadium and he did everything possible to get the team ready for that.

It's been hot enough this week in Fayetteville to accomplish that.

"The past three days have been hot, obviously," said center Ricky Stromberg after practice Wednesday. "We have to attack it because our game against Rice is at one o'clock. Have to be prepared for the heat if it's going to be hot that day."

Fans are all excited about the second game against Texas the following week. T-shirts with "Beat Texas" are already becoming as common as stop signs in the area.

But if they don't get past the Owls on opening day the matchup with the Longhorns isn't going to be nearly as interesting.

Being ready for it is the key to handling it, said defensive end Tre Williams and even with some of practices at the indoor facility, you just have to be ready.

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"Preparation is key," he said. "Hydration. We have water and Gatorade outside the meeting rooms.

"It doesn't even matter starting off in the indoor or going outside. It's humid in the indoor, as well. So, we got outside and it's just as hot. It's about preparation to not cramp and be ready for the game."

With the past year being completely out of whack with virtual classes due to COVID concerns, Stromberg forgot that walking to class also helps with conditioning.

"it brought back freshman memories," he said Wednesday. "Oh my gosh. I got to class and I was drenched, sweating, huffing and puffing. I was sitting there trying to catch my breath.

"Everyone else is sitting in there just preparing for class, and I was just had all my freshman memories brought back like, 'Oh, I forgot about this.'"

But now it's about getting ready for scrimmages where they'll keep score and it matters.

Everybody is hoping the practices in the summer heat pay off in September wins.