RAZORBACKS REPORT: Receivers on edge a process

By: Bob Holt , Tom Murphy
Published: Thursday, November 15, 2018
Arkansas receiver Jordan Jones reaches for a ball during the third quarter of a game against Vanderbilt on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Fayetteville. The pass was incomplete.
Photo by Ben Goff
Arkansas receiver Jordan Jones reaches for a ball during the third quarter of a game against Vanderbilt on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, in Fayetteville. The pass was incomplete.

FAYETTEVILLE -- University of Arkansas Coach Chad Morris said the Razorbacks will attack the edges better and more frequently with receiver runs and screens as the offense evolves.

This year, with a few exceptions, runs by the receivers have been a challenge, such as Deon Stewart's 7-yard loss in last week's 24-17 loss to LSU.

There was also another negative play involving a receiver.

The Razorbacks ran a pop pass for sophomore Jordan Jones on a second and 7 in the second quarter while trailing 14-0, but the play never materialized.

Jones, going in motion from right to left, crashed into tailback Rakeem Boyd a split second after he snagged the forward pitch from Ty Storey and fell for a 5-yard loss.

"That was obviously disappointing," Morris said. "That's something we've done for, golly, as long as I can remember, and I've never had something like that happen.

"Their defensive end did a great job of charging up the field, which caused Jordan to deepen his path and Rakeem stepped out in front of him. So that's unfortunate."

Since T.J. Hammonds went 64 yards for a touchdown on a pop pass at Colorado State, the Razorbacks haven't exploited the edge very often on receiver runs.

"You want to get to the edge," Morris said. "You have to get the ball outside, have to get the ball to your playmakers on the edge, whether that's through speed sweeps, whether it's just quick screens out to the edge.

"When you do get a screen out there, you have to hat them up and you have to be able to make something happen. But that's part of who we are, where we're transitioning."

Out and in

The Razorbacks worked outside with a wind-chill factor in the mid-20s Tuesday.

"There wasn't a lot of standing around out there [Tuesday]," Coach Chad Morris said on his weekly radio show Wednesday.

The team moved into the Walker Pavilion on Wednesday, not to escape the temperature -- which was slightly warmer -- but to practice for the noise the Razorbacks will face Saturday at Mississippi State.

The team piped in loud crowd sounds, with cowbells included, at the high-decibel indoor workout.

"If you were at practice today, you heard them, and my ears are still ringing," Morris told Chuck Barrett on his radio show.

Weather words

Offensive lineman Hjalte Froholdt and linebacker De'Jon Harris had divergent views on the cold weather and snow that hit the University of Arkansas campus this week.

On Monday, the day of the most significant snow, the Denmark-born senior Froholdt posted a Twitter message that read: "Love this weather."

Harris, who hails from Harvey, La., in metro New Orleans, had a different view of the frigid blast.

"I hate this weather so much man!" Harris wrote on his Twitter account Wednesday.

NFL thoughts?

Junior linebacker De'Jon Harris, who leads the SEC with 105 tackles, was asked this week whether he had given any consideration to declaring for early entry to the NFL Draft.

"I don't think about all that," Harris said. "I just go out and do what I've got to do to try to help better this team."

Harris was asked whether entering the draft is something he might think about after the season.

"Whenever my time comes, I'll be ready for it," he said.

McTelvin Agim, Harris and cornerback Ryan Pulley comprise the top tier of Razorbacks who could file paperwork with the NFL asking for a draft grade.

Pulley, asked a couple of weeks ago about that possibility, also deflected the question.

11 a.m. again

Arkansas will have its fifth 11 a.m. kickoff of the year at Mississippi State on Saturday.

"Well, we've definitely been used to 11 a.m. games, so we know how to respond to that," Coach Chad Morris said. "Our guys are going to get up and be ready to go.

"The one good thing about 11 a.m. games, you don't have to sit around the hotel all day. These guys will get up. We'll do all of our meetings here Friday and get on the plane, travel and get up ready to go Saturday morning."

For a change, the Razorbacks will be the road team for a morning kickoff. Their first four 11 a.m. games were at a neutral site against Texas A&M in Arlington, Texas, and in Fayetteville against Alabama, Tulsa and Vanderbilt.

Getting home by early Saturday evening is especially helpful to Arkansas' coaching staff this week because the Razorbacks' season finale at Missouri is on a Friday.

Jeopardy! bump

Freshman linebacker Bumper Pool, whose name was part of the answer on an episode of the daily quiz show Jeopardy! last week, spoke about the incident during his appearance on the weekly radio show On the Air with Chad Morris on Wednesday.

"I saw it on Twitter from a fan, who tweeted it at me," Pool said. "At first I didn't think it was real, that someone had just made up some kind of Jeopardy! question. Then it just kept coming. Then my dad sent it to me in our family group message. I was like, 'That's crazy.' Then Arkansas Twitter took over."

Pool's mention came under the category 2018 College Football Names, with the answer "Bumper Pool bounces running backs around as a linebacker for the Razorbacks of this school."

The defending champion Mary Ann Borer gave the correct answer, "What is the University of Arkansas?"

Young dings

The scrimmage work being conducted since the open date for Arkansas' developmental players led to a couple of injuries.

Quarterback Daulton Hyatt suffered a sprained ankle, while defensive end Courtre' Alexander injured a shoulder.

"Courtre' had surgery on his shoulder," Coach Chad Morris said. "He'll be back [after] a two- to three-month recovery on that. We anticipate Daulton being back fairly soon, but he's still struggling with that."

Burlsworth finalists

Finalists for the ninth annual Burlsworth Trophy -- named in honor of former Arkansas All-America guard Brandon Burlsworth and recognizing the top player who began their career as a walk-on -- were announced Wednesday.

The three finalists are California running back Patrick Laird, Clemson wide receiver Hunter Renfrow and Wyoming free safety Marcus Epps.

The winner will be announced Dec. 3 at a luncheon at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Springdale.

Sports on 11/15/2018


Have a comment on this story? Join the discussion or start a new one on the Forums.