FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas will hold its third and final preseason scrimmage today.
The Razorbacks held scrimmages the past two Saturdays and with the first game slated for Aug. 31 this will be the final one. So it would seem to be a very important one for any positions still unsettled including quarterback.
“I’m not naming one, but I will tell you this I’m looking for consistency again,” Chad Morris said. “Second, I’m looking for guys that are gonna be making plays both on the line of scrimmage, out in space on the back end. There will be some guys that will be limited tomorrow. There will be guys that will be doing a lot of movement tomorrow. There will be a lot of roster movement happening out there tomorrow in the scrimmage.”
Nick Starkel and Ben Hicks are still battling for the quarterback job. Starkel talked about the importance of today’s scrimmage.
“Yeah, I think every scrimmage is big, especially for the quarterback position and just being able to feel what it’s like to be in a game almost, with them,” Starkel said. “The last scrimmage was a little different. A lot of first downs and didn’t really get a feel for how the offense could work when you get a drive going. But I think tomorrow is going to be a really good sense of how we can get our tempo going and everything.”
Hicks also talked about the importance of today’s scrimmage.
“I think it’s as big as any of them,” Hicks said. “You take one day at a time, get ready to practice and get the guys in the end zone. That’s the main thing we’re looking for, a guy that’s going to get us in the end zone and help us win games.”
How close are you to knowing the depth chart for the first game?
“I think we’re close,” Morris said. “I felt that way coming out of our second scrimmage. As we mentioned with our staff, we wanted to have a general idea of the guys that we felt like we were really count on going into Week 1 and start repping those guys and that’s what we’ve done this week. Not necessarily setting that depth chart, but we’re pretty close in a lot of our areas right now.”
Morris also talked about the things he’s looking for from the defense during today’s scrimmage.
“Upfront, as I’ve shared all camp, how disruptive those guys have been with Sosa (Agim) and T.J. Smith,” Morris said. “I really want to see, we really have a really good idea of who our top guys are, but you’re going to win in this league with guys behind them. So, developing that second guys that is going to be able to come in in a major rotation is going to be critical for us. Collin Clay has had a really good camp and he’s been getting a lot of reps. Bubba (Marcus Miller) has done some really good things, I know he’s running with the 2s.
“Again, I expect to see that from a defensive front standpoint. (Mataio) Soli, again, a lot like a lot of the freshmen right now, they’ve all kind of hit a wall, but they’ve worked extremely hard pushing through it and our older guys are helping push them through. So, we’ll see Soli tomorrow and expect to watch his progression. At the linebacker position, which I think has been solid for us all camp with Hayden Henry and Grant Morgan, [Deon] Edwards, D’Vone McClure. I think these guys have done a good job at rotation and getting themselves ready. We just got to create the depth that’s what we’re trying to battle and create.”
Tight end Grayson Gunter has been getting first-team snaps with Cheyenne O’Grady out. Gunter talked about today’s scrimmage.
“I think it’s just a fine tune day,” Gunter said. “You just got to go out there and work on their assignments. Focus on your technique and get better every day.”
Like Morris, safety Kamren Curl feels today’s scrimmage will help solidify the depth chart.
“I feel like it is pretty important to finalize the depth chart, especially with guys going down and needing to see who can step up later and play with the ones and twos,” Curl said.
Arkansas will hold its scrimmage at 4:25 p.m. Following the scrimmage, John Chavis and Joe Craddock will be available to the media.