HOGS spring game looms
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas head coach Sam Pittman said Tuesday — with two practices and a Red-White scrimmage remaining —. that his team has had a phenomenal spring.
“I’m really pleased with what we got done in 12 practices,” Pittman said. “We’ve been very physical for those 12 practices. But overall, I’m really proud of what we got done.”
The Hogs will practice Thursday and Friday before Saturday's 12 p.m. Spring Game at Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
The scrimmage will open to fans, and there will be no admission feel. It will also be available on ESPN plus and SEC Network plus.
Pittman said the scrimmage would start with No. 1 offense going against the No. 2 defense for 9-12 plays, followed by the No. 2 offensive vs. the No. 1 defense and then the No.. 3 offense vs. No. 3 defense.
“The next time we come back out, it’ll be good on good, so 1 vs. 1, 2 vs. 2, and 3 vs. 3," Pittman said.
The Razorbacks will then get situational — working on third-and-long, four-down plays and 2-minute drills.
Pittman said special team units will take part, with 3 kickoffs, 2 punts and 9 field-goal attempts.
Pittman said the Hogs will give fans a good idea of what to expect in 2023.
“We're going to play our brand of ball,” Pittman said, pointing to new offensive coordinator Dan Enos (replacing departed Kendal Briles) and new defensive coordinator Travis Williams (replacing Barry Odom). “Everyone knows what Dan did and everybody knows what T-Will did over at Central Florida, so we’re really not interested in hiding anything. We’re just trying to get better. So, we’ll roll the ball out there and have a good scrimmage.”
PITTMAN EXCITED FOR FUTURE
Pittman said he believes the Razorbacks' culture is as good after going 7-6 in 2022 as it was after going 9-4 in 2021.
“Our new coaches have a lot to do with that, but we have a lot of good kids on our team that are working extremely hard," said Pittman, who brought in new defensive coordinator Williams, co-defensive coordinator Marcus Woodson and secondary coach Deron Wilson on the defensive side, along Enos after last season. "It’d be hard to not be more pleased.”
Pittman said he believes that there will not be a "mass exit" of players once the transfer portal reopens on Saturday.
Arkansas has eight scholarships still available, and Hogs coaches will be looking for more interior players and safeties.
4-STAR RECRUITS COMMIT
Four-star recruits Juju Pope (Batesville, Miss.) and KJ Jackson (Montgomery, Ala.) became the fourth and fifth commitments to Arkansas' 2024 recruiting class.
Pope (6-0, 195) totaled 82 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 9 sacks, 9 pass deflections, and an interception for South Panola High School during his junior season. Pope chose the Hogs over Alabama, Michigan, Oregon, and others.
Jackson announced his commitment on Twitter one day after Pope, writing: “Fayetteville, I’m home." Jackson (6-4, 217) completed 136 of 198 passes for 2,809 passing yards and 42 touchdowns for St. James High School last season. Jackson also considered West Virginia, North Carolina, Tulane, and others.
Pope and Jackson join fellow commits Dion Stutts, Noreel White, and Kavion Henderson. The Razorbacks 2024 class currently ranks 20th by 247sports and 17th according to On3.
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