Hey Matt.......................

…on my question in your mailbag article:

“Who will be the next former walk-on who becomes a starter? Johnny Gibson is the first of the CBB era. Who will be the next one? - Hogmodo”

None of the players cited were starters except maybe Richardson when we started the game in a nickel package. I see Johnny Gibson as a former walk-on who could be a full time starter and might end up being really good. Do you see Rossler ever being one of the starters at defensive tackle in the 3-4? Since the normal 3-4 has a big noseguard and two big tackles, Rossler seems like a spot player mainly on passing downs. Do you see any other walk-ons being more than just a backup in the future?

They all were starters. I looked it up before I wrote that. Go look up their bios and the stats from the seasons they played and you’ll see they all started games.

I don’t think Roesler is going to play tackle. I see him more as an end and a standup linebacker. I think the “Hog” position is he where he has worked at linebacker. Will he start? Not sure, but I do think he’ll be in the rotation at the least.

This year I think the walk-ons/former walk-ons with the best chance to start are Karl Roesler and Kevin Richardson. I think Connor Limpert probably has a chance to be the kickoff starter, too.

Looking ahead, there seems to be some excitement surrounding Grant Morgan at one of the middle linebacker positions, but his day might not come for another couple years.

I am hoping for someone in between Johnny Gibson and J.J. Watt becoming an impact former walk-on Razorback. Kevin Richardson starting as a nickelback or Alan D’Appollonio being the punt snapper. or Mitchell Loewen and Patrick Arinze getting a start on senior day is not quite what I am looking for. They all were good backups and role players. Grant Morgan becoming a starting middle linebacker sounds like a possibility. The offensive line seems to be a position where a lightly recruited player might develop into a starter. Is there anymore like Johnny Gibson in the program?

The walk-ons who could help on defense could be a linebacker, Grant Morgan or Josh Harris. We’ve all seen what Kevin Richardson can do, and that’s be a solid player. But they are hardly anything close to a J.J. Watt. Johnny Gibson’s story still has to develop. I’m not sure I would list him in the great walk-ons in Arkansas history just yet. Could someone do what he did? Probably because it hasn’t been a really great story just yet.

So, Johnny Gibson has a ways to go to be the next Burlsworth at Arkansas?

I don’t want to say anyone can be the next Burlsworth. That’s breathing some rare air. Johnny and Brandon are not in the same category. They sent Gibson to the third team because he wasn’t taking care of all of his details. That would have never happened to Brandon. He was obsessive compulsive. He did details. He was a detail freak. No, I don’t think Johnny Gibson is going to be the next Burlsworth. He’s talented. He has quick feet. But I don’t think he can run like Brandon. Brandon ran like a deer.

There are two guys in this offensive line that impress me with foot speed perhaps comparable to Brandon Burslworth. That’s Frank Ragnow and Colton Jackson. Both can fly. Very athletic. That’s what Brandon had, great athleticism and ability to run. He’d block the man over him, get a piece of a linebacker and then chase down a safety.

Gibson has ability. But I haven’t seen it on a consistent basis yet. Consistency was what Brandon was all about.