Scottie Bordelon is a reporter for the Hawgs Sports Network. He has a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Arkansas and previously covered high school sports for the Times Record in Fort Smith and the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He was the 2022 Arkansas Sportswriter of the Year.
Sanders' status uncertain for Kent State game
Arkansas running back Raheim Sanders scores a rushing touchdown, Saturday, Sept, 2, 2023, during the first quarter of the Razorbacks' 56-13 win over Western Carolina at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock. Visit nwaonline.com/photo for the photo gallery.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas running back Raheim “Rocket” Sanders’ status for Saturday’s game against Kent State is uncertain.
Razorbacks coach Sam Pittman said Wednesday on the SEC coaches teleconference that the tailback is dealing with some swelling in his knee that popped up Sunday.
“We’re waiting to see exactly what that is,” Pittman added. “He got looked at yesterday, getting looked at today. We’re not positive where that will go at this point. We’re still waiting to find out exactly where he’ll be for this week or even the next week.”
In portions of practice open to reporters Monday and Tuesday, Sanders was inactive and wore a sleeve on his left leg as he worked out behind the end zone on the team’s turf practice field.
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The junior was largely bottled up in the Razorbacks’ season-opening win over Western Carolina last Saturday. He finished with 42 yards, with a long of 14, on 15 carries but scored twice on the ground.
“I don’t think [the knee] played any impact on him,” Pittman said. “I do believe that, yes, it happened during the game. There was a little bit of swelling on Sunday. Obviously [he] didn’t say anything about it until Sunday, when the swelling came up.
“It could have impacted him, but with him not saying anything until Sunday, I would assume it didn’t. Again, I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen with him at this moment.”
Sanders will not practice Wednesday either, Pittman said on a Zoom with local reporters, leaving him limited at best against the Golden Flashes. Pittman added he does not believe the injury will be a lengthy one.
On the SEC teleconference, Pittman noted running back Rashod Dubinion “has been healthy all week.” He had three carries for 15 yards in the opener.
“I feel really good,” Pittman said when asked about depth at tailback. “You never want to lose a player for a game or two or whatever it may be, but that room is loaded with really good players. And we like Isaiah [Augustave] as well. He got some carries last week and looked pretty good to me. Very physical runner.
“[Running backs coach Jimmy Smith] has done a nice job recruiting that room, so we feel very confident in that room if Rocket wasn’t able to play, we’d be fine.”
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