FAYETTEVILLE — The Arkansas Razorbacks today released their initial depth chart with a month to go until the 2014 season opener against Auburn.
The biggest surprise of the depth chart is the decision on offense to start 5 running backs in place of other skill positions at quarterback and wide receiver.
“We took a long hard look at our team from last season and the way we progressed in the offseason,” head coach Bret Bielema tells us. “We were 21st in total rushing, which is great. However we were 117th in passing yards and 107th in points scored. To me those numbers together mean something. So if we can eliminate the passing yards we feel we can bring points scored closer to our rushing ranking.”
Sophomore running back Alex Collins will start in the backfield beside Kody Walker at fullback. Running back Jonathan Williams will replace the quarter back position and running backs Korliss Marshall and Denzel Evans will replace the wide receiver positions.
New running backs coach Joel Thomas says he is impressed with the progression the five backs made in the off season. All players showed exceptional skill, far beyond the other offensive specialist players. Thomas also noted that Wide receivers JoJo Robinson and Keon Hatcher have transitioned to running back positions.
“We looked at the overall talent of our football team and realized that most of it exist in the running back position. We currently have zero passing plays in our playbook, I think we made the best move,” Bielema says. “We are working the entire offensive line and tight end Hunter Henry through running back training. My goal is to have 5-10 plays during the Auburn game where we have 11 guys on offense that are essentially all running backs. Imagine trying to tackle Dan Skipper once he starts running the ball.”
In other notes starting quarterback from the 2013 season Brandon Allen has requested a transfer to Fort Lewis College to play for John L Smith’s division 2 football team.