Offensive Line Receives Passing Marks in Opener

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FAYETTEVILLE, AR – SEPTEMBER 3: Colton Jackson #74 of the Arkansas Razorbacks drops back to block during a game against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Razorback Stadium on September 3, 2016 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. The Razorbacks defeated the Bulldogs 21-20. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas’ offensive line showed vast improvement in Saturday’s 20-13 victory over Portland State compared to the 2018 season opener.

On Saturday, Arkansas ran for 204 yards and two touchdowns on 42 attempts. They only allowed one sack on the day.

That is compared to the 2018 55-20 victory over Eastern Illinois. Arkansas rushed 37 times for 80 yards and allowed one sack.

Arkansas Coach Chad Morris was asked how he felt the offensive played on Saturday?

“I thought that we played well,” Morris said. “We did. There are some things that we’ve got to do better. We’ve got to get up to the second level a little better. I think that we did a good job of covering them up. Want to get a little more knock-back, play a little bit lower, but overall they played well, they did. But like everyone else, we’ve got to improve. I thought we protected our quarterback well, very well.”

Arkansas started two seniors, a pair of juniors and a third-year sophomore. Colton Jackson started at left tackle and Austin Capps at left guard giving the Razorbacks a pair of seniors on the left side. Ty Clary at center and Myron Cunningham at right guard were the juniors and Dalton Wagner at right tackle is a sophomore.

That looks like more of an experienced offensive line than it really is. For instance, Jackson has 22 starts to be the most experienced offensive lineman. Clary has 16 starts and is a true junior having never redshirted.

Though Capps is a senior that was his first career start and he spent his first two years on defense. In 2018, he played in 11 of the 12 games with 193 snaps, 151 at left guard and 42 at right guard.

Cunningham also got his first career start for Arkansas. He is a junior, but came from junior college at midterm and was a tackle at Iowa Central Community College.

Wagner is a third-year sophomore, but Saturday was just his second start. He started the Tulsa game last year when Jackson couldn’t go.

So while on paper it appears the Razorbacks have an older offensive line, but the truth is while it may not be young, it’s very inexperienced.

Arkansas will hit the practice fields today at 4:30 to continue to prepare for Saturday’s game against Ole Miss.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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