FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas is set to face Portland State in the season opener on Saturday at 3 p.m. inside Razorback Stadium. The second season under Chad Morris seems like year one on the offensive side with eleven new starters slated for game one from the first game in 2018. But the offense is better off with more talented quarterbacks, wide receivers and a deeper offensive line to go with a talented group of veteran running backs.
Razorbacks head coach Chad Morris, offensive coordinator Joe Craddock and defensive coordinator John Chavis met with the media on Monday to discuss the naming of Ben Hicks as the starting quarterback for week one. Also discussed on offense the youth at wide receiver. Craddock addressed that on Monday.
“The guys we recruited and brought in have done some really good things out there and really shown some flashes of why we recruited them. Obviously losing Deon and Jordan Jones to injury, a little while with Jordan at least, only excels those freshmen and put them in those spots a little quicker. Expecting to get Jordan back, obviously. I’ve been really pleased with fall camp. I think we’ve thrown a lot at those guys in terms of installs and plays and they’ve done a really good job of learning on the fly. Obviously there were a lot of mistakes that were made but breaking down the training camp with school starting so late, the walk-through and to go back and correct those mistakes has been huge for their development. So I’ve been pretty pleased where they’re at. Obviously lot of people were asking me at the golf tournament deal about Trey Knox. Listen, Trey hasn’t played a snap for us yet. We hope that we see in games obviously what we’ve seen in practice, but he’s got to go to make plays on the field too.”
Check out the entire Craddock press conference in the video below.
On defense the Hogs have six true or redshirt freshmen on the two deep depth chart. Defensive coordinator John Chavis welcomes the challenge with those young players mixing with a group of veterans.
“I like to describe it like this, I like coaching a young football team. When they’re young sometimes they don’t know they don’t know. They will work hard, play hard and do those type things. I’ve been around that other stops we were every bit as young as this team is and they grew into really good football teams and that’s what we intend to do here with some of these young guys. Some of them are very talented. Some of them will get an opportunity to play and play early. We’ve got to have them. Depth is a big issue when you start looking around the SEC. If you don’t have depth you may play good at times, but when you get into some of those games where you’ve got to play 69 to 89 plays, but when you play that many plays you’ve got to have depth. We like to keep our guys to around 50 plays.”
Check out more from John Chavis in the video below:
Stay tuned to the Pig Trail Nation for complete coverage leading up to, during and after the season opener and every game this season for the Hogs.