Arkansas returned to the practice fields outside Walker Pavilion on Tuesday, kicking off its bye week prior to a road trip to Kentucky on Oct. 12. A few notes and observations:
Razorbacks quarterback Nick Starkel was dressed out for the workout. Starkel, who left Saturday’s game against Texas A&M with a left arm contusion, wore a red sleeve on the arm Tuesday and continued to take first-team reps. Starkel did, though, fumble a snap from center Shane Clenin when the 1s were on the field for team work.
Coaches mixed things up on the offensive line. The first group was (L–>R) Myron Cunningham, Kirby Adcock, Clenin, Ricky Stromberg, Ryan Winkel. Starting left guard Austin Capps was present at practice, but left tackle Colton Jackson (foot) and Ty Clary were not on the field during the open viewing window. The second team offensive line was (L–>R) Chibueze Nwanna, Dylan Rathcke, Beaux Limmer, Luke Jones, Brady Latham.
Running back T.J. Hammonds and A’Montae Spivey split a majority of the reps at tailback with the 1s and 2s. Rakeem Boyd, wearing a green jersey, and Devwah Whaley were held out. Still no Chase Hayden, who Chad Morris said last Wednesday would not play against Texas A&M with a concussion. Morris added, as far as he knew, Hayden would only be out one week.
Second-team receivers were John David White, Shamar Nash and Karch Gardiner, who got on the field in the Razorbacks’ loss to San Jose State. This is a good indication of how thin Arkansas is at receiver at the moment. Jimmie Stoudemire also got reps in with the 2s.
Defensively, starting linebacker De’Jon Harris and defensive tackle McTelvin Agim were held out of the team period of practice. Harris was replaced at the second level by Grant Morgan, who finished with one tackle against the Aggies, and Jonathan Marshall filled in for Agim. Gabe Richardson was replaced by Jamario Bell, who totaled two sacks on Kellen Mond. Freshman Mataio Soli lined up at the opposite end.
The second-team defensive line was made up by Collin Clay, Isaiah Nichols, Marcus Miller and Eric Gregory, who finally saw reps with the 2s with Bell filling in for Richardson. Linebackers were Andrew Parker and Hayden Henry, and Britto Tutt and LaDarrius Bishop manned the corner spots. Tutt made a nice play and broke up a Ben Hicks pass 10-15 yards downfield.
Wide receiver Trey Knox was not present at practice. He dressed out but did not play on Saturday with a hip injury. De’Vion Warren, who was placed in concussion protocol following the San Jose State game, was at practice and fielding punts in the early going. To me, it did not look like he was running full speed. Jordan Jones was back on the field again Tuesday. He returned to practice last Wednesday for the first time since early in fall camp. He has dealt with a high ankle sprain that required surgery. Jones did not take part in the team period, but was involved in position drills.
Boyd was at practice, and I’m sure the staff is giving him some rest this week. He went down with what looked to be a shoulder injury in the second half against the Aggies, but he did return to the game. He has rushed for 483 yards this season, which is No. 2 in the SEC behind Mississippi State’s Kylin Hill.
Tight end Cheyenne O’Grady, who turned in a great game Saturday with eight grabs for 91 yards, was also in green. Coaches are also likely lightening his load this week, too.
Freshman defensive end Zach Williams was back at practice wearing a green jersey. Morris said after the Colorado State game that Williams was battling a knee injury. He looked to be moving just fine. Senior defensive end Gabe Richardson was also in green. He had a trainer place a band aid under his left eye before practice began. There has been no word on if he is injured. He played one of his best games against the Aggies, finishing with five tackles (3 solo), a TFL and a forced fumble that led to Harris’ 6-yard scoop and score.
OL Colton Jackson
OL Ty Clary
WR Trey Knox
WR Mike Woods
RB Chase Hayden
WR Deon Stewart (torn ACL; out for season)
DL Dorian Gerald (strained artery in neck; out for season)
OL Noah Gatlin (torn ACL; out for season)
WR Daulton Hyatt