Appearance different, reps same for QBs on Day 1

By: Matt Jones
Published: Friday, August 3, 2018
Arkansas quarterback Ty Storey takes a snap during practice Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, in Fayetteville.
Photo by Walt Beazley, Arkansas Athletic Communications
Arkansas quarterback Ty Storey takes a snap during practice Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, in Fayetteville.

— Ty Storey took the first snap Friday evening in Arkansas' first preseason practice.

Wearing a silverish no-contact jersey, Storey worked with what amounted to the first-team offense during a simulated drive in which no defenders were on the field. During the 20 minutes of practice that were open to media, the redshirt junior quarterback from Charleston appeared to go first in quarterback drills.

But what happened behind closed doors? Receiver Jared Cornelius said it was much like the spring when Storey and redshirt sophomore Cole Kelley split time with the first offense.

"Whoever the first quarterback on the field that y'all saw, it wasn't like that (the entire practice)," Cornelius said. "They were getting equal reps."

Arkansas coach Chad Morris praised "some good things" that all quarterbacks did Friday.

"We rotated whoever got the first rep...and then the next period they flip flopped," Morris said. "I'm just trying to push these guys and challenge them."

Cornelius indicated both quarterbacks had some sharp throws during the closed portion of practice. He singled out a throw "to a small window" by Storey during a 7-on-7 period, and a deep pass over the top of the defense from Kelley to freshman Mike Woods during a team period.

"They both have their strengths and weaknesses," Cornelius said. "They are consistent and can both put the ball in little windows, and they both make great decisions. I'm excited to see how the competition shakes out between those two guys. It's only going to make the team better - two guys fighting for one spot can only make us better."

Senior offensive guard Hjalte Froholdt said he has seen competition between Storey and Kelley since spring practice ended. Even in the weight room, the film room or the meeting room, the quarterbacks are battling to be No. 1.

"There is always competition," Froholdt said, "but at the same time they're still teammates.

"If you don't strive to start, then why would you be here? If you don't strive to be your best to, say, become the starting quarterback, then why would you be here? I think both of them are doing everything in their power to reach that goal."

Part of the battle is to be a leader of the offense.

"They are both great leaders," Cornelius said. "That's what you want out of a starting quarterback. That's why it is going to be so hard to pick who starts for us on a Saturday."

Kelley was noticeably thinner Friday than during the Razorbacks' spring game in April. He weighed in at 255 pounds on Thursday, down 20 pounds from when he began conditioning under first-year strength coach Trumain Carroll.

"He's slim," Cornelius said. "He's a skinny guy.

"That's what he's been working on, trying to be more of a dual-threat guy. A lot of people from the outside have said that is his weakness, so he has a chip on his shoulder to become better at that."

Cornelius added that Kelley still adds some power to Arkansas' run game when needed. He ran several times out of the shotgun in short-yardage situations last season in a package the former staff referred to as Steamboat.

"He thinks he's a fullback," Cornelius said. "He's still going to try to run over guys on Saturday."

Storey is still listed at 215 pounds. His body fat was measured at 10.9 percent Thursday.

"All the quarterbacks look good (physically)," Froholdt said. "Daulton Hyatt was a little skinny kid and he's starting to get some muscle on him. Ty is looking pretty athletic as well. The guys have bought in. It just goes to show their dedication."

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