Fayetteville, Ark. – The University of Arkansas concluded their 2013 spring practices with their annual Red-White game on Saturday. With each ending of off-season practices and scrimmages comes a depth chart for players, coaches, and fans to mull over for nearly four months contemplating the start of the 2013 college football season.
A once over glance of the depth chart shows a hint of favoritism towards upper classmen, size as opposed to catching ability at tight end, and the incoming junior college players recruited in the 2013 class will be backups as opposed to immediate upgrades at needed positions as initially thought.
After years in former head coach Bobby Petrino’s offense who would have expected Mitchell Loewen (Lahaina, Hawaii) at 6’4”, 265 pounds, to be the Hogs No.1 tight end. Chalk it up to a change in philosophy, power running game verses high-powered passing game. Loewen, a sophomore, was an undersized offensive lineman at 285 pounds entering into the 2012 season who will now be a perfectly sized SEC tight end.
At wide receiver seniors Demetrius Wilson, Julian Horton, and Javontee Herndon all claimed starting spots with underclassmen Mekale McKay, Keon Hatcher, and D’Arthur Cowan named to second team spots.
Little changed along the offensive line with the exception of one-time starter sophomore Mitch Smothers moving from tackle to center under Petrino is now a starter at left guard.
Undersized but extremely athletic Grady Ollison is listed as the starter at right tackle. One has to immediately hope that Ollison, 6’5”, 274 pounds, will be able to put on at least 25 pounds over the summer to handle SEC defensive ends in the fall.
Red-shirt freshman along the defensive line impressed the new staff occupying three of the four positions along the second string; Wise, Philon, and Winston.
Notably absent from the depth chart, due to injury, was All-SEC Freshman linebacker A.J. Turner. Turner will get his shot in the fall to supplant junior Braylon Mitchell and senior Austin Jones.
After a stellar freshman and sophomore campaign, place kicker Zach Hocker looked lost during his junior season. The senior to be kicked well in the Red-White game connecting on 3 of 3 field goal attempts cementing his place with the new staff as the team’s No. 1 kicker.
Perhaps the biggest question mark going into spring drills was who will be the new guy under center replacing Tyler Wilson, if possible. Senior quarterback Brandon Mitchell gave up his junior season as a QB to slide over and catch passes from Wilson in 2012.
Sophomore quarterback Brandon Allen got quality time filling in for Wilson in the second half of the Louisiana-Monroe game and started against eventual National Champs Alabama. While the results were not pretty the experience has seemingly paid off with Allen claiming the role of starter going into fall practices.
Arkansas 2013 Post Spring Depth Chart
Demetrius Wilson (Sr., 6-3, 181)
Mekale McKay (So., 6-6, 195)
Julian Horton (Sr., 6-1, 202)
Keon Hatcher (So., 6-2, 208)
Javontee Herndon (Sr., 6-1, 194)
D’Arthur Cowan (So., 6-3, 187)
Mitchell Loewen (So., 6-4, 265)
Austin Tate (Sr., 6-6, 266)
David Hurd (Sr., 6-6, 309)
Austin Beck (So., 6-7, 296)
Mitch Smothers (So., 6-4, 313)
Johnathan McClure (Jr., 6-4, 321)
Travis Swanson (Sr., 6-5, 314)
Luke Charpentier (Jr., 6-4, 312)
Brey Cook (Jr., 6-7, 318)
Cordale Boyd (Fr., 6-3, 311)
Grady Ollison (So., 6-5, 274)
Chris Stringer (Jr., 6-7, 318)
Brandon Allen (So., 6-3, 214)
Brandon Mitchell (Sr., 6-4, 239)
Jonathan Williams (So., 6-0, 220)
Nate Holmes (So, 6-1, 176)
Kody Walker (So., 6-2, 244)
Kiero Small (Sr., 5-10, 246)
Patrick Arinze (Jr., 5-10, 254)
Chris Smith (Sr., 6-3, 266)
JaMichael Winston (Fr., 6-5, 254)
Robert Thomas (Sr., 6-3, 318)
Darius Philon (Fr., 6-3, 284)
Byran Jones (Sr., 6-2, 310)
DeMarcus Hodge (So., 6-1, 340)
Trey Flowers (Jr., 6-4, 256)
Deatrich Wise Jr. (Fr., 6-6, 265)
Braylon Mitchell (Jr., 6-3, 229)
Austin Jones (Sr., 6-2, 230)
Daunte Carr (Jr., 6-3, 229)
Robert Atiga (Sr., 6-3, 237)
Jarrett Lake (Sr., 6-3, 220)
Otha Peters (So., 6-2, 232)
Tevin Mitchel (Jr., 6-0, 181)
Carroll Washington (Jr., 6-0, 182)
Rohan Gaines (So., 5-11, 190)
Tiquention Coleman (Jr., 5-10, 198)
Eric Bennett (Sr., 6-0, 191)
Alan Turner (Jr., 6-0, 198)
Kelvin Fisher Jr. (So., 5-11, 200)
Jared Collins (Fr., 6-0, 169)
Will Hines (So., 6-1, 191)
Zach Hocker (Sr., 6-0, 182)
John Henson (Jr., 5-11, 165)
Zach Hocker (Sr., 6-0, 182)
Toby Baker (Fr., 6-3, 193)
Alan D’Appollonio (Jr., 6-0, 221)
Drew Gorton (So., 6-0, 196)