With just hours left until Arkansas’ 2014 home-opener, the Razorbacks will have a great opportunity to snap their 10-game losing streak against a very overwhelmed Nicholls State football team.

Here are the intriguing storylines heading into the season’s first game at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

Key freshmen will see lots of playing time

Simply put, this game should be a blowout. In anticipation of a very uncompetitive game, head coach Bret Bielema announced that several freshmen will get a chance to play. Defensive backs Josh Liddell and Henre’ Toliver will receive a lot of playing time and a number of others should see the field. Developing depth will be key for Arkansas’ rebuilding project as Beliema continues to build the kind of football team he wants. They’ve already taken a step forward from Bielema’s first season to this year and the development of these young freshmen will be critical for furthering that progress.

Shoring up holes in the secondary

The Hogs have experience in the secondary with Alan Turner and Rohan Gaines at the safety positions, but with a nagging injury keeping Tevin Mitchel out the first few weeks of the season, the secondary has been a constant question mark for the Razorbacks. Nicholls State shouldn’t have much success this week, but the Razorbacks need to show improvement in their speed, press coverage and in their tackling. All three areas were severely lacking against Auburn a week ago, and with a Texas Tech matchup looming, the secondary needs to be much improved heading into next week.

Can AJ Derby continue his success?

Quarterback-turned-tight end AJ Derby had an impressive debut last week at his new position. The senior hauled in four passes for 40 yards and a touchdown with the score coming on an 18-yard leaping snag. Derby has garnered the praise of the coaching staff and starting quarterback Brandon Allen for how quickly he’s picked up the tight end position. At 6-foot-5, 255-pounds, Derby is a big and easy target for Allen, especially in the middle of the field. Arkansas should have a lot of success running the ball today, so that should also open up the play action for Allen and he’ll be looking Derby’s way often.