Recap from second spring scrimmage, Bielema presser

By: Jimmy Carter
Published: Saturday, April 15, 2017
Arkansas running back Devwah Whaley carries the ball during a drill Saturday, April 1, 2017, during practice at the university practice field in Fayetteville.
Photo by Andy Shupe
Arkansas running back Devwah Whaley carries the ball during a drill Saturday, April 1, 2017, during practice at the university practice field in Fayetteville.

— Live updates from the second spring scrimmage and Bret Bielema's post-scrimmage press conference.

Scrimmage updates

— Cole Hedlund, Connor Limpert and Jon Fagg each hit all 4 of their field goals. Hedlund made from 28, 33, 38 and 45.

— Looks like Frank Ragnow won't scrimmage again and Jared Cornelius will join him. As a result, Rawleigh Williams is returning punts. Jordan Jones back there, too.

— Taiwan Johnson, Brooks Ellis and JaMichael Winston are here watching.

— Johnny Gibson running with the first team at RG over Jake Raulerson. The staff had indicated Gibson wouldn't work with the starters this spring, so this is a change from that.

— Jordan Jones working opposite Deon Stewart with the first-team offense. So he's ahead of La'Michael Pettway early after having a big showing with the second-team offense last week.

— Ty Storey is the second quarterback, just like last week.

— Josh Liddell working with the twos early.

— Cole Kelley made a really nice, strong throw on a quick out to T.J. Hammonds. Right on the money.

— Austin Allen's first deep ball of either scrimmage floated on him. Was intended for Deon Stewart about 45 yards downfield and Ryan Pulley knocked it away. Was close to picking it.

— Pulley then came back and broke up a pass on the sideline the next play. Great break on the ball and arrived at the same time as the receiver. Got up and was pumped, let Allen hear about it.

— Juan Day is obviously the fourth back at this point, but he's had some nice cuts and big gains against the reserves both scrimmages. Just had a 15-yarder. Impressive considering all he's gone through.

— Daulton Hyatt again the sixth quarterback to get in, behind walk-ons Carson Proctor and Jack Lindsey.

— Slow start for Austin Allen. He's 1 of 4. Missed some throws.

— The defense has done a better job against the run. Solid tackling.

— Brandon Martin absolutely trucked De'Andre Coley after hauling in a pass from Ty Storey over the middle. Wound up being a 21-yard gain and got the sideline pumped.

— Michael Taylor didn't start, (Roesler), but had a tackle for a 6-yard loss on Whaley.

— Pulley stopped Martin a yard short of the first down on a deep out, got up and held up his fist. He's had a really nice day.

— Defense bringing pressure this week. Kevin Richardson free on a blitz, so the play was blown dead. Little after-whistle dust-up between Hjalte Froholdt and Armon Watts.

— Liddell working as a nickel with the second team a bit. Had a nice breakup on a pass to Nance.

— Situational red-zone work now.

— Colton Jackson jumped with the ball on the 7, which really upset Bret Bielema: "You can't do that! Not down here! Not down here!"

— Pulley penalized for PI after getting hung up with Jordan Jones on a back-shoulder throw in the end zone.

— Cole Hedlund hit a 24-yarder from the left hash. Reid Miller the holder.

— Cheyenne O'Grady made a really nice cut after catching a short pass to shake Michael Taylor. His combination of size and quickness is really impressive.

— Several false starts in the red zone.

— Cole Kelley has taken 4 "sacks." Not getting the ball out.

— Maleek Williams scored from 3 yards out on a delay. Nice hole and beat the defense to the pylon. First score of the day and it came against the second unit in red zone work.

— Austin Allen's first touchdown of the two spring scrimmages was an 18-yarder to La'Michael Pettway, who beat Henre' Toliver and was pretty open in the end zone.

— Roesler accidentally knocked Allen down. Whistle blew and he tried to pull up, but his momentum carried him into Allen.

— Bielema got onto Rawleigh Williams for reaching out for the end zone.

— Hedlund just missed a 38-yarder off the right upright. From the right hash.

— Laser from Kelley to Martin for an 18-yard touchdown in the back of the end zone. Martin gave a slight nudge to Liddell to get open.

— Limpert hit a 21-yarder from the right hash.

— Proctor found Tobias Enlow for a 19-yard TD, Lindsey to Warnock for a 15-yarder and Hyatt to Kofi Boateng for an 11-yarder.

— Reid Miller getting some first-team safety reps opposite Santos Ramirez in the first move-the-ball segment of the day.

— Arkansas' starting corners have continued to be really impressive. Henre' Toliver with the PBU on an Allen pass intended for Pettway.

— Kevin Richardson with a big TFL for a 7-yard loss. Combined with a false start, it killed the offense's first drive.

— Richardson with a big PBU, physically broke up a pass intended for Hammonds.

— First-team offense has by far its best sequence of the day, going 72 yards in 3 plays with a score. Devwah Whaley popped a 51-yarder, breaking through an arm tackle and bolting down the sideline to the 11 before Ramirez tracked him down. Rawleigh Williams scored on the next play. Defense had done an otherwise really good job against the run.

— Kelley has taken 5 sacks.

— Kelley was picked off by De'Andre Coley. Pump faked, then threw off his back foot behind Jack Kraus. Bounced off Kraus' hands into Coley's. Not Kelley's best day.

— Second straight week the hurry-up segment for the first-team offense fizzled out quickly. Scoota Harris with a nice deflection on an Allen pass that could've easily led to a pick.

— Maleek Williams lost a fumble. Josh Harris forced, Coley recovered.

— Scoota Harris drug Whaley down for a loss of 5. Completely unblocked.

— First-team defense forced another 3-and-out. So that's 2 quick possessions out of 3 in the move-the-ball segment for the offense.

— Nice stop by Kyrei Fisher on Maleek Williams on the edge. Drove Williams out of bounce, preventing him from turning the corner. Two true freshmen.

Bret Bielema

— Very positive day. Got more reps for ones and twos than a week ago.

— Giovanni LaFrance is coming on. Might have him next week or the week after. Korey Hernandez is getting close, but didn't go. Jared Cornelius tweaked his hamstring a bit and they weren't going to rush him back. Should be fine but don't know that they'll bring him back for a scrimmage.

— Rawleigh Williams tweaked his ankle, but it shouldn't be serious. Austin Cantrell got hit on the knee late. Austin Capps bruised his butt on Tuesday after being pushed over a pile, but played through it. Got the wind knocked out of him today.

— Too many penalties. Told the officials to call it really tight. Line hears the call from 3 different QBs with Allen, Storey and Kelley. Have to clean it up, especially in the red zone.

— Defense was aggressive. Gave them more pressures to execute.

— Coaches will be on the road all day Monday recruiting. Tuesday will be the final helmets-only day of the spring. Next Saturday there won't be a scrimmage, full-fledged, grind-it-out practice.

— Michael Taylor had his first scrimmage in a year and a half of football last week and it was coming at him kind of fast. Was better today. Quick hands.

— On having 8-9 sacks: Ragnow was out and Paul Ramirez' grandmother passed, so he wasn't there. Lot of moving parts. Blew the whistle premature whenever they got close to Allen.

— Was upset with Johnny Gibson, but he's done everything they've asked. Doing everything right.

— Juan Day is playing as well as he has since he's been here. Tall back who's got a little juke in him. Had a lot of injuries and bad luck, but would love to get him on the field this fall.

— Adding blitzes helps the defense and keeps the offense from knowing where people are coming from. Kevin Richardson is explosive.

— Without giving away who he wants, he's reached out to the coach he'd like for the 10th assistant. Still one more hurdle and it won't be implemented into next January. Will be interesting timing with typical coaching changes.

— Spring game being televised means there'll be things on both sides of the ball they don't showcase.

— Did some up-downs after for the offense because of penalties. Plus tomorrow's Easter and they're backing off them Monday.

— Used Josh Liddell at the other safety and nickel. Thinks there's 6-8 DBs. Kolten Hernandez could help. Not allowing cut tackling, which still hurts defense.

— Britto Tutt played well in his first scrimmage. He wanted to go today. Very intelligent and very long.

— Brandon Martin had a big-time catch for a TD. He and Jonathan Nance have really good ball skills, understand route concepts. The early enrollees have been a special addition this spring.

— Still a couple big plays, but did minimize those. Some came as a result of hamstringing the defense. Had a great teaching point with Pulley on turning around and lookign for the ball.

— Santos Ramirez has matured. Josh Liddell and Kevin Richardson have always been good leaders. Henre' Toliver made a couple nice plays today.

— Josh Harris left Tuesday's practice with a strain on the knee and sat out Thursday, but sucked it up today. He and Grant Morgan have great heart.

— T.J. Hammonds struggled last week, but has a lot of pride and talent. Transition to WR has been natural. Didn't put any balls on the ground today. Tough to tackle in the open field.

— Dan Enos is a shooting star. Does a great job identifying what guys do and don't do well. Stays away from guys' weaknesses. Does a good job utilizing new guys like Martin, Hammonds and Cheyenne O'Grady.

— Bijhon Jackson took a big jump today at nose guard. Sosa Agim and Briston Guidry bring some of the same things. Armon Watts was in a nice battle with Froholdt the other day and kind of threw him. T.J. Smith is quiet. Weighed about 230 when they started recruiting him and is about 275 now. Fell in love with Guidry's athleticism when he first saw him.

— Alexy Jean-Baptiste broke his foot last week similar to some of the other ones. Had surgery Monday and is looking at a four-month recovery.

— Blake Johnson rolled his ankle in some activities away from football that he wasn't happy about. Removed him from the program for now and sent him home for Easter. Will make a decision Monday on his future. He's "in extreme timeout." Doesn't expect guys to stay at home and watch movies, but doesn't want them to do anything to take away from the program.

— Athletically and body-type, can't find anything better than what Colton Jackson has. Will have some good competition with Ramirez, who was playing well before his grandma passed.

— Nice thing about the 3-4 is you don't know where pressure is coming from. Allen steps up better in the pocket than the others. Enos got all over Cole Kelley because he tried to jump out to the right instead of stepping up.

— Ty Storey is as sharp as they come mentally. Throwing well. Kelley sometimes tries to baby the throw. Needs to step into it.

— Rawleigh Williams is not an option at punt returner despite fielding some today. Could be a kick returner.

— The multiplicity and variation they have with the 3-4 is great.


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