Arkansas QB cleared to play against Rutgers
Fayetteville, Ark. • Tyler Wilson is back for Arkansas.
Now the question is whether the star quarterback can get the Razorbacks out of their funk.
Arkansas coach John L. Smith said Thursday that doctors cleared Wilson to return to action Saturday against Rutgers. Last season's first-team All-Southeastern Conference quarterback missed the Razorbacks' 52-0 loss to No. 1 Alabama last week with what he called a concussion.
The senior was injured late in the first half against Louisiana-Monroe the week before, a game Arkansas (1-2) lost in overtime after leading by 21 points in the third quarter.
The Razorbacks (1-2) fell from No. 8 to unranked with that loss, and their troubles continued against the Crimson Tide a game in which they were shut out for the first time since 1995. Wilson spoke after the game, trying to rally his teammates.
He'll have the chance to back up those words on the field against the Scarlet Knights (3-0).
"He is that energy, that vocal person that we need," Smith said. "His energy and that positiveness, it just kind of breeds and it keeps going and it spirals, and that's what we need."
Wilson, who is 30-of-47 passing with five touchdowns this season, took part in non-contact practice each day this week. He threw for 3,638 yards and 24 touchdowns last season, guiding Arkansas to an 11-2 record and Cotton Bowl win over Kansas State.
Without Wilson, the Razorbacks who have led the SEC in passing offense in each of the last three seasons were held to just 79 yards through the air. Redshirt freshman Brandon Allen and junior Brandon Mitchell combined to finish 11-of-25 passing with two interceptions.
USC's Kiffin back to normal media session
Southern California coach Lane Kiffin's latest media session lasted considerably longer than 29 seconds.
A day after Kiffin cut short his talk with reporters when he became irritated by a question involving an injured player, the 13th-ranked Trojans' coach answered all questions for nearly seven minutes Thursday.
Kiffin got upset Wednesday when his second question indirectly mentioned an injured player who had returned to practice, and he abruptly left the large media gathering a moment later.
USC introduced new rules this season banning media from reporting on injury news gleaned from watching practices. Kiffin banned a reporter from practice last week for reporting on an injury that didn't occur in practice.
The Trojans (2-1, 0-1 Pac-12) host California on Saturday.