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 Draft Scout College Football Player News: Arkansas
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  05/21/21 - Austin NixrJr/2023, Arkansas, 6-2, 312 (DS#999 OG) + More +

  The college sports landscape is on the precipice of change, with several states -- including Alabama -- passing name, image and likeness legislation that will allow student-athletes to profit off their personal brands. With Alabama's law set to go into effect July 1, Auburn has taken a step toward helping its athletes "make some money" on the NIL front. The program on Thursday announced the launch of SPIRIT, a comprehensive NIL program designed to "educate and empower student-athletes and prepare them to optimize upcoming NIL opportunities." The new program, which is akin to the one announced a couple weeks ago at Alabama, will include assistance from industry-leading experts when it comes to brand management, social media best practices, time management, financial literacy, financial aid and more.

Under the state's NIL law, which Gov. Kay Ivey signed last month, universities are required to conduct financial literacy and life skills education for their student-athletes. "At Auburn, we are in a relentless pursuit to be the best, while delivering outstanding experiences contributing to our student-athletes' success," athletics director Allen Greene said in a release. "As we embark on the new world of name, image and likeness we strive to implement bold and forward-thinking strategies to create cutting edge solutions." - Birmingham News


(DS#999 OG) rJr/2023 OG Austin NixArkansas
News Source: Birmingham News
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  05/21/21 - Taurean CarterrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-3, 291 (DS#999 DT) + More +

  After feeling his way through the 2020 season and earning a start against LSU toward the end of Arkansas' SEC-only schedule, Carter was overcome with a sense of belonging. The 6-3, 300-pound tackle believes he can compete and more than hold his own against high-caliber offensive linemen and is a fit in the conference. The former Mansfield (Texas) Legacy standout's numbers last season don't jump off the page. He finished with 11 tackles, which was sixth most among the Razorbacks' defensive linemen. But included in his statistics were confidence-building moments and games, particularly against Georgia (2 tackles), Tennessee (3) and LSU (3). It was a significant stepping stone for Carter, who spent the 2019 season on the Razorbacks' scout team and did not travel to road games. Sam Pittman pointed to the lineman as a player who stood out in spring drills and made individual strides.

Arkansas center Ricky Stromberg, who faced off with Carter often during team work, commended him for the manner in which he used his hands as a weapon. Carter's work with his hands gives way to getting extension on his matchup and shedding blocks to make plays. "I love to try to work with my hands," Carter said this spring. "You can't do nothing without your hands, so I try to slow my processes down and think about bringing my hands to the fight. Every time I come off the ball I think of it as a fight. "I'm still working on it. I'm not where I want to be, but I continue to work on it." - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#999 DT) rSo/2024 DT Taurean CarterArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  05/12/21 - Nicholas FulwiderrJr/2023, Arkansas, 6-6, 301 (DS#999 DE) + More +

  Arkansas defensive tackle Nick Fulwider has entered the transfer portal, a UA source confirmed on Tuesday. The 6-7, 290-pound redshirt junior from Tyrone, Ga., had not been able to crack the two deep for the Razorbacks. Fulwider had played just five snaps in one game, the 2018 season opener against Eastern Illinois, and did not record any statistics. The Razorbacks have had five defensive linemen transfer or announce their intention to transfer since the season ended, with Fulwider joining defensive ends Julius Coates and Blayne Toll, and tackles David Porter and Enoch Jackson Jr. Arkansas has transfer defensive tackles Markell Utsey (Missouri) and John Ridgeway (Illinois State) and transfer defensive end Tre Williams coming to campus for the 2021 season. - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#999 DE) rJr/2023 DE Nicholas FulwiderArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  05/10/21 - Tre WilliamsrSr/2022, Arkansas, 6-4, 260 (DS#999 DE) + More +

  When former Missouri defensive end Tre Williams entered the NCAA transfer portal in April, the University of Arkansas made contact and the decision to become a Razorback was an easy one. "It was just a perfect fit for me," Williams said. "To have the opportunity to remain in the SEC and play every week and compete against the best is what I love to do." Williams, 6-5, 260 pounds, originally entered the portal in December and committed to Houston in January. He recorded 85 tackles, 15 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks in four seasons for the Tigers. He inked with Missouri in 2016 when Arkansas defensive coordinator Barry Odom was the Tigers' coach. "Getting the opportunity to play for coach Odom again was also another big draw," Williams said. "He's a good man, a good coach and a great defensive mind." Williams' goal is to get drafted and play in the NFL. "I think that Arkansas is a place that can allow me the opportunity to accomplish those goals," he said. An ESPN 3-star prospect out of Columbia (Mo.) Rock Bridge High School, Williams chose the Tigers over Arizona State, California, Kansas State, TCU and others. - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#999 DE) rSr/2022 DE Tre WilliamsArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  05/04/21 - Feleipe FranksrSr/2021, Arkansas, 6-7, 234 (DS#12 QB) + More +

  Four former Arkansas football players signed undrafted free agent deals on Saturday. Quarterback Feleipe Franks, who transferred to Arkansas after three seasons at Florida, signed with the Atlanta Falcons. Franks threw 17 touchdowns against four interceptions in 2020. From 2017-19, he threw for 4,593 yards, 38 touchdowns and 17 interceptions with the Gators, leading Florida to a 10-3 record and No. 6 final ranking in The Associated Press Top 25 Poll in 2018. Running back Rakeem Boyd and defensive back Jerry Jacobs, two players who opted out of the Razorbacks' 2020 season, signed with the Detroit Lions. Xavier Kelly, a transfer defensive lineman from Clemson, signed with the Baltimore Ravens. He finished with eight tackles, including one sack, in nine games played last season. - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#12 QB) rSr/2021 QB Feleipe FranksArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  05/02/21 - KJ JeffersonrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-3, 236 (DS#23 QB) + More +

  Now wishing well whatever Feleipe Franks' professional future, Sam Pittman treasures Franks' Razorbacks past. And Franks' Razorbacks present. For while Franks quarterbacked his last game for Pittman's Razorbacks closing 2020, the via University of Florida graduate transfer remains Arkansas embodied through his 2021 successor. Third-year sophomore KJ Jefferson, Pittman believes, isn't the quarterback he is today without last season's eight games apprenticing behind Franks before starting Game Nine. Jefferson subbed for an injured Franks completing 18 of 33 passes for 274 yards and three touchdowns and rushing for another TD starting Arkansas' 50-48 loss at Missouri. Meanwhile now second-year freshman No. 2 quarterback Malik Hornsby progressed in practice at his own pace behind Franks and Jefferson. Jefferson and Hornsby continued stepping up in the spring from what they began in Franks' shadow last fall. "What Feleipe did he bought our young kids time to develop," Pittman said. "That time obviously was shown when KJ went out the way he played against Missouri. We needed that." - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#23 QB) rSo/2024 QB KJ JeffersonArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/29/21 - George CaratanSr/2022, Arkansas, 6-2, 213 (DS#999 P) + More +

  An Arkansas specialist has entered the NCAA transfer portal. George Caratan, a punter who saw the field in three games in 2020, intends to leave the Razorbacks' program. He is the fourth Arkansas player to enter the transfer portal since the end of spring drills. A transfer from Michigan who arrived on campus ahead of last season, Caratan averaged 45.4 yards on 16 punts in 2020. Four of his punts were downed inside the 20 and four traveled 50-plus yards. Caratan had a long of 52 yards. He also had two punts blocked against Georgia and Auburn, and Reid Bauer assumed punting duties for a majority of the remainder of the schedule. - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#999 P) Sr/2022 P George CaratanArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/25/21 - KJ JeffersonrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-3, 236 (DS#23 QB) + More +

  KJ Jefferson heads toward the end of the school term and upcoming summer workouts comfortably in the QB1 spot at the University of Arkansas. But there's no time to get comfortable for the 6-3, 240-pound redshirt sophomore after holding on to the top job on offense throughout the 15 practices of spring. "Basically, I build off the confidence and trust in my teammates," Jefferson said after Saturday's Red-White spring finale. "Each and every day I try to at least grab one O-lineman, and I work with him. Just so I can trust him, and he can trust me, and just keep doing that throughout with all my teammates." Second-year Arkansas Coach Sam Pittman touted the leadership skills of Jefferson throughout the spring and the trust his teammates are putting into the third-year quarterback from Sardis, Miss. "I think he's certainly maturing," Pittman said Saturday. "He's got command of this team. His teammates believe in him. That's hard. You have to earn that at quarterback and he certainly has." - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#23 QB) rSo/2024 QB KJ JeffersonArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/20/21 - KJ JeffersonrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-3, 236 (DS#23 QB) + More +

  In one half, Arkansas quarterback KJ Jefferson put on display an improved touch on passes down the field Saturday in the Razorbacks' spring game. The frontrunner at the position entering the summer, Jefferson was locked in on his first four throws and guided his White team to a 17-3 lead after one quarter. He did not see the field in the second half, and the Red team ultimately finished the day with a 30-20 win to cap spring drills. Star receivers Treylon Burks and Mike Woods were on the receiving end of Jefferson's first four attempts, and three of the completions went for explosive plays.

Woods brought in a 33-yard touchdown pass to get White on the board, then Burks had a 31-yard score toward the end of the first quarter. "I'd have to go look back at every throw that he made, but I can tell you this: When I was standing out on the field, I was going, 'It'd be hard not to like this kid at quarterback,'" Razorbacks coach Sam Pittman said. "He's big, he's strong, he's commanding and he was on point. "I don't know every single throw that he made, but I know as a head coach I was sitting back there going, 'I'm damn glad he's our quarterback." - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#23 QB) rSo/2024 QB KJ JeffersonArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/18/21 - Taurean CarterrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-3, 291 (DS#999 DT) + More +

  Taurean Carter is moving on up this spring for the Arkansas Razorbacks. An ankle injury to returning starter Isaiah Nichols at defensive tackle has slowed the Springdale junior much of the spring, and Carter has gotten plenty of work on the first unit for the University of Arkansas defense. Coach Sam Pittman, asked on Wednesday who has surprised him this spring, brought up Carter first. "Taurean Carter's had a really good spring," Pittman said, "along with Zach Williams, who is at 265 now. "The D-line has surprised me. They're playing better ball than possibly what I might have thought."

The 6-3, 298-pound redshirt sophomore saw action behind Jonathan Marshall and Nichols in eight games last season and notched 11 tackles and a pass breakup. When covid-19 decimated the Hogs' front for the LSU game late in the season, Carter got a start and held up well against the Tigers. "Looking at the amount of plays that I had and the stats I was able to come up with at the end of the year, I feel like I'm fit for this conference and I'm able to compete," Carter said. "I just have little things I've got to work on, such as finishing. Finishing to the quarterback. Putting effort here and there." - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#999 DT) rSo/2024 DT Taurean CarterArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/18/21 - Jashaud StewartSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-2, 223 (DS#999 OLB) + More +

  A pair of former Arkansas high school standouts have made strides toward creating larger and more secure roles for themselves in 2021. Zach Williams (Joe T. Robinson) and Jashaud Stewart (Jonesboro) are fighting this spring to become mainstays along Arkansas' defensive line this fall. They have caught the attention of Razorbacks coach Sam Pittman in the process. A sophomore last season, Williams gained valuable experience as he played in nine of 10 games. He earned four starts, including three in a row against Mississippi State, Auburn and Ole Miss. His play led many to believe he could be a major factor in the future.

For Stewart, he saw the field in eight games in 2020, but did not record any statistics. Based on what the second-year head coach has seen through 14 practices, he expects Stewart's name to echo in stadiums in the fall, especially if the 6-2 defensive end adds 10-12 pounds to his frame. "He plays with a tremendous amount of energy, he chases the ball, and you're going to get him every snap," Pittman said Wednesday. "Whatever he's got in there, that's what you're going to get every snap. And I don't believe you have to be a senior to lead. I think you've got to beat somebody out then you become a leader, and that's what he's done. "He's moved up the depth chart and he's made guys that are ahead of him and behind him play harder. The bottom line is he's relentless with his effort and he's going to make a lot of plays. He's not the biggest, not all of those things, but he is one hard-working, hard-playing guy." - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#999 OLB) So/2024 OLB Jashaud StewartArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/15/21 - Myron CunninghamrSr/2022, Arkansas, 6-6, 325 (DS#2 OT) + More +

  Cunningham is practicing this spring at 325-327 pounds, a weight he believes is going to benefit him in 2021. A transfer from Iowa Central Community College, he was listed at 290 pounds in his first season with the Razorbacks in 2019. Through 13 days of spring ball, Cunningham's focuses have been his hand placement, his eyes and reading the defense pre-snap. His footwork at 325 pounds has been a point of emphasis, too. "I've gotten used to it, I feel like," he said. "I feel like it's only going to help me being at that weight this season...I've got to get back to just moving quick like I used to, but that's about it." Defensive end Zach Williams has noticed Cunningham, who has made 20 starts in two seasons with the Razorbacks, improving his play with his hands. "You've got to make sure you get correct hand placement with him, because if not he'll just grab on to you," Williams said. "He's a big boy. There's no way of getting off of that. "I think the best thing with him is his hands. He's pretty good with them." - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#2 OT) rSr/2022 OT Myron CunninghamArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/12/21 - Simeon BlairrJr/2023, Arkansas, 5-10, 204 (DS#29 SS) + More +

  Arkansas coach Sam Pittman and receiver Trey Knox are in agreement about the type of player Simeon Blair is. A former defensive back and quarterback at Pine Bluff High School who threw for more than 1,600 yards and 20 touchdowns, Blair appears to have found a fit in the Razorbacks' secondary. And he hasn't been one to shy away from contact this spring. Pittman raved about the redshirt junior's confidence and playmaking after Arkansas' second scrimmage last weekend. He broke up two passes and came away with an interception on a ball he laid out for after it was tipped by freshman receiver Jaedon Wilson.

He has made an impression on Knox. In his six-plus minute interview with reporters on Thursday, the receiver twice labeled Blair a great player. "He will not hesitate to hit you," he added. "The boy is smart. He reads his keys. I mean, he's calling out plays just off of our alignment that we run, and they're jumping routes and they're over there making plays." Blair finished with 23 tackles in 2020 and broke up a pair of passes against Georgia in the season opener and at Mississippi State. His push to becoming a consistent piece in the back end of the Razorbacks' defense can be credited, in large part, to the work he has put in behind the scenes. - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#29 SS) rJr/2023 SS Simeon BlairArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/09/21 - Jalen CatalonrSo/2024, Arkansas, 5-10, 189 (DS#1 SS) + More +

  After putting together the kind of season that has come along only once over the last decade-plus, Jalen Catalon had one thing on his mind during the offseason. That was to become a more consistent player, he said Tuesday following Arkansas' 10th practice of the spring. Despite being the first SEC freshman since Tennessee's Eric Berry in 2007 to finish with at least 86 tackles and three interceptions, he's driven to be better. He totaled 99 tackles, broke up 4 passes and forced 2 fumbles although he missed the equivalent of one game in a 10-game All-SEC schedule due to targeting disqualifications.

Catalon, too, was a first-team Freshman All-American by the Football Writers Association of America, the first Razorback to earn the nod since Dre Greenlaw in 2015. But he has continued to work as if he was snubbed by voters. "I feel like I led more just by the way I play, but I realized that people pick up off my energy, and I feel like my words hold power to our defense and they listen," Catalon said. "I'm trying to be more of a leader as far as like me communicating that and showing my actions, and just being a consistent player to help my defense. "I feel like I made a lot of plays, but there were also a lot of plays I left out there last year in watching film with my coach this past year." - Northwest Arkansas Times


(DS#1 SS) rSo/2024 SS Jalen CatalonArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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  04/09/21 - Hudson HenryrSo/2024, Arkansas, 6-5, 249 (DS#4 TE) + More +

  There was a collision during Saturday's football scrimmage that involved Arkansas hard-hitting safety Jalen Catalon, which is in no way surprising. The difference in this one was tight end Hudson Henry (6-5, 255) delivered the brunt of the impact instead of being the recipient. "We don't want to get bullied. We want to be the bully," Henry said of the mindset of Arkansas' tight ends. "I made a great play on Jalen. We both had a pretty big collision on the sideline." Catalon, who is still delivering his fair share of big hits, is impressed with Henry's physical and mental growth. "He has definitely got a lot more physical," Catalon said. "You can tell he has started to gain a lot more confidence and is starting to realize his potential and what he has to offer for the offense and to give to the offense. "He is having a really good spring so far. He is having less (missed assignments) and you can tell he is flowing fast and moving fast. You can tell he knows most of what is going on. He has definitely gotten stronger. I learned that the hard way. He has definitely gotten a little bit stronger." Henry, the younger brother of both former Arkansas All-American tight end Hunter Henry and current Razorbacks linebacker Hayden Henry, has battled injuries throughout first two years in Fayetteville. He played in three games and a total of 52 snaps as a true freshman, and finished with 3 catches for 15 yards. - Northwest Arkansas Times

(DS#4 TE) rSo/2024 TE Hudson HenryArkansas
News Source: Northwest Arkansas Times
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