Dan Mullen held his weekly press conference this afternoon as the No. 23 Bulldogs (3-0) prepare for a home date with South Alabama (1-2) on Saturday (6 p.m., PPV). I believe it was the shortest presser of the season. To the highlights.
• We start with a lengthy injury report. Wide receiver Arceto Clark, who took a big hit early against Troy and never returned, is expected to play this week. Tight end Brandon Hill (ankle), who missed the Troy game, is questionable. “He is pretty adamant that he’ll be ready to play, and our trainers think he’ll be ready, but I want to see how practice goes with him,” Mullen said.
Reserve receiver Sam Williams (concussion) is out of practice today but should be ready Saturday. Starting right guard Tobias Smith (knee), who did not play at all at Troy, “is between questionable and probable. I want to see how well he looks throughout the week with him. One of our original plans was to let him play that full game against Auburn and then potentially shut him down a little bit afterwards. I’m sure he wants to get back out there on the field. I got to see how he holds up this week.”
Mullen said tight end Malcolm Johnson (pectoral), who’s not yet played this year, remains doubtful, but he hopes to have him back for the Kentucky game on Oct. 6. And finally, “They feel (cornerback) Corey Broomfield still has a shoulder deal but he has played all year with it. We expect him to play.”
• From his opening comments: “It feels pretty good to be 3-0. And that’s the great thing, I think it’s a little easier to learn when you’re looking at your mistakes after a win than sometimes in a loss. Because in a loss you’re looking at your mistakes and saying what could have happened? You look at a win, you still feel good about the win and are looking at hey, I have to be better, I have to do things better. And the working part of it will be a little tougher on them too, because of coming off a win.”
• On South Alabama: “I know being a newer program, they have a lot of similarities offensively to the team we played this past week in Troy. A very similar offensive system they run, they’re going to spread you to try to create mismatches, try to get everybody out covering the pass game and try to run the football.”
• On WR Chad Bumphis, who had 180 yards and three TDs vs. Troy: “You want your seniors to play their best football, and I think he is playing the best football of his career.”
• On the poor defensive play at Troy: “I think we had 22 missed tackles and I think 18 missed assignments and you know a couple of loafs, which you can’t have. I think the tempo got to some guys at times. The guys weren’t lined up in place and we weren’t ready to go. The big part were the missed tackles that allowed them to keep drives going. The tempo never became the factor until they were driving the ball down the field. Then the tempo would become the factor.”