FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas will be at home on Saturday to host Western Kentucky in the final game of the season in Reynolds Razorback Stadium.
It will be Senior Day and Chad Morris is hoping to see the group go out with a victory. He’s also hoping for the fans to show up and help cheer the team to the win.
“These guys have gone through a lot these seniors have,” Morris said. “They have gone through a lot of transition, change and they’ve been extremely resilient. They keep coming back and coming to work and giving everything they’ve got. They deserve everybody’s best. They deserve every one of our staff, coaches, underclassmen. They deserve their best. Our fans, come out and support them.
“Again they are pouring their heart and soul out. When you able to look and see a Scoota (Harris) and watch the way he plays, Sosa (Agim) and these seniors. It’s special to see these guys just keep pouring and giving everything they’ve got into it. It’s in practice. It’s every day in practice. I encourage to get these guys out this week with some positive.”
Arkansas will have its third starting quarterback this season as John Stephen Jones, a redshirt freshman, gets the start. He will be backed up by true freshman KJ Jefferson. Morris talked about how Jefferson might be used.
“Obviously there’s a plan for when we’ll get him in,” Morris said. “I don’t know exactly when, but there is a plan to get him in and get him some reps and get him going. We’re about both these guys. They’ve had a really good week of pratice. It started Sunday. I’m excited for them.”
After both have played do you go with the hot hand?
“You get in and try to find the guy that’s creating a groove,” Morris said. “You get in there and get things rolling and you stay with who’s moving the football. But also there’s opportunities to get both these guys in whichever one has the hot hand. They’re able to come in, do multiple things to help you out in certain situations.”
Both Jones and Jefferson are running threats so Arkansas has looked to expand the offense with them in the game.
“They’ve done a really good job,” Morris said. “This is something these guys have been working and getting reps for several weeks even going back to fall camp. But really the last month or so just bringing them along. They’ve both done a great job with it.”
With Jones starting how has he responded to that and his teammates to him as well?
“He’s doing a really good job,” Morris said. “The guys are excited. They’re just excited to get back out on the field. Get out here and play and get out there Saturday for our Senior Day. They responded well yesterday was a really good practice. Lots of great energy. John Stephen brings a spark to us and we’re excited to see what he can do Saturday.”
Jones has led Arkansas on some long drives when he’s got the chance to play in the last two games. What has Morris seen in that regard?
“Well, his decision making is really good,” Morris said. “Coming out of the Alabama game and all the read game we asked him to do, he did not miss a read, which was a credit to those long drives that we’ve had. Just his decision making and his ability to move the chains with his feet.”
Morris also talked about the injury situation with senior offensive guard Austin Capps, sophomore offensive guard Kirby Adcock and junior wide receiver De’Vion Warren.
“You know, he was back out there yesterday in a regular-colored jersey,” Morris said of Capps. “We do anticipate him being back out there today, and he was getting starting reps yesterday, so it was good to get him back in a groove. He’s been out the last few weeks, so trying to get some of the rust knocked off of him a little bit and continue to get him better today and tomorrow. So yes, I anticipate him being in the starting mix.
“De’Vion is out. He will not play this week and we’ll see where he’s at after the open week. Kirby is in green again today so we’ll see how he progresses today. Still day to day.”
Mike Woods will be the offensive captain this week. He was also a captain for the Ole Miss game.
Arkansas and Western Kentucky will kickoff at 11 a.m. on Saturday with the game televised on the SEC Network.