HOGS: QB Starkel strategizes for Sat., Capps' return keeps OL fresh

HOGS: QB Starkel strategizes for Sat., Capps' return keeps OL fresh

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FAYETTEVILLE - Coach Chad Morris says Arkansas continues to respond well from its 31-17 SEC loss last Saturday at Ole Miss.

“I like where our mindset is right now and how we handled some adversity last Saturday night,” Morris says. “These guys came in Sunday and responded and I look forward to seeing what Saturday will bring for us (against Colorado State).”

Morris was asked about his team not responding well last year after blowing a 27-9 lead and losing at Colorado State 34-27. Underdog North Texas routed Arkansas 44-17 a week later at Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

Morris says he doesn’t want Ole Miss “beating Arkansas twice.” 

“I think we learned a lot last year after this Colorado State game,” Morris said. “I think that the lingering effects carried forward for a few weeks before we could shake it loose. That’s something that we talked about. But it’s a new team that’s an entirely different attitude of a team so I would not expect anything but a great response. They had a really good day yesterday, one of our better Tuesdays. Really good energy.”

Senior Austin Capps of Star City continues practicing on a limited basis while freshman Ricky Stromberg again works first-team right guard and junior college transfer Myron Cunningham works at left guard.

Cunningham started at right guard and Capps started at left guard in the season opener against Portland State but Capps injured his ankle. Stromberg and Cunningham were the right and left guard combo against Ole Miss.

Capps does more each day and it seems all three likely will shuttle against Colorado State.

“We anticipate Austin being back,” Morris says. “Ricky played really well. Really well. I anticipate that allowing us to create some depth. These guys  (the starting offensive line) are playing entirely too many snaps. You’d like to get a little bit off of them at some point during the game. With Austin being back, I think that provides those opportunities for us.”

Nick Starkel, a graduate transfer and former starter at Texas A&M draws his first Arkansas start this Saturday. Startle relieved Ben Hicks the second half against Ole Miss. Hicks started  Arkansas’ first two games.

“When you are named starter you have a different approach,” Morris says. “He's had a great approach this whole camp and into the first couple of games in preparation, but when you are named the starter and you are actively involved and part of the game plan, yeah I have seen a difference.”

How much input does Starkel have in Saturday’s game plan?

“We always communicate with the starter and ask him what he liked and what he saw,” Morris says. “As far as the install of the game plan and what we put in it's what he's comfortable with. Not necessarily what we're comfortable with or what I'm comfortable with. It's what he can do and execute. He's been very active and very much a part of it.”

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