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story.lead_photo.caption Arkansas offensive linemen Dalton Wagner (78) and Noah Gatlin (73) participate in a drill Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, during practice at the university practice field on campus in Fayetteville. - Photo by Andy Shupe

FAYETTEVILLE -- The Arkansas Razorbacks' banged up offensive line has gotten a little thinner.

Senior tackle Deion Malone will miss the season because of a knee injury, Coach Chad Morris said after Tuesday's practice.


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Malone is the third offensive lineman to suffer a long-term injury, along with junior Colton Jackson (back) and freshman Ryan Winkel (pectoral).

Jackson, the projected starter at left tackle, is expected to miss at least six games. Winkel likely will miss the season and redshirt.

Malone, who moved back to offense from the defensive line for fall camp because the Razorbacks were lacking numbers on the offensive line, hasn't played in a game for the University of Arkansas since transferring from Northwest (Miss.) Community College in 2016, but he was working at second-team right offensive tackle.

Morris said Malone underwent surgery Monday night after being injured in a pass-blocking drill.

"It's unfortunate," Morris said. "It's an area we're already struggling with a little bit with some depth issues. But that's why they call it coaching. We'll continue to bring guys along."

Sophomore starting center Dylan Hays wore a green no-contact jersey for the second consecutive day while redshirt freshman Shane Clenin got first-team reps.

Jalen Merrick, a junior projected to be a second-team right guard, hasn't been at practice.

"Jalen was experiencing some headaches through the course of the summer," Morris said. "So we're just kind of doing some precautionary things, getting things checked out with him."

Morris hopes Merrick will practice within the next few days.

Malone, who originally signed with Arkansas as an offensive lineman, redshirted in 2016 and didn't play last season after moving to defense.

It's possible Arkansas could petition the NCAA to gain a sixth year of eligibility for Malone, though that seems unlikely considering this will be the third consecutive season he hasn't played.

"As far as [seeking more] eligibility, we'll go down the road with that," Morris said.

So close

Redshirt freshman safety Montaric Brown, one of the highest rated players in Arkansas' 2017 signing class, nearly had an interception return for a touchdown during Tuesday's practice.

Nickel back D'Vone McClure rushed off the edge and tipped a Ty Storey pass intended for De'Vion Warren. Brown made a good break on the ball to knock it away, but he couldn't quite hold on.

"He's actually having a really good camp through four practices," Coach Chad Morris said of Brown. "[The near interception] early on in practice, just reaffirms the type of camp that he's having.

"Obviously, there's things you've got to do to continue to get better, but he's having a good camp so far. We'll see how it goes."

Wide left, wide right

Connor Limpert and Preston Stafford both missed 47-yard field goal attempts during the portion of Tuesday's practice which was open to the media.

Limpert's kick was wide left and Stafford's wide right.

"We tried to put stress on them a little bit to see where they are," Coach Chad Morris said. "It was disappointing that they missed them, but again, you learn from it.

"You get one shot, one kick, here we go and then we have to roll to the next period. They go and get their work in.

"As camp goes, we'll continue to put them in a little bit tougher situations at times. It was a no-rush period. That's what was disappointing, but those guys will continue to work on it. It's not a concern right now."


Nickel back Derrick Munson stripped the ball from running back T.J. Hammonds, and defensive end Nick Fulwider recovered a fumbled shotgun snap that freshman quarterback John Stephen Jones couldn't handle.

Full pads

The Razorbacks will go in full pads today for the first time in fall camp.

"I'm excited about starting full pads," Chad Morris said. "I think that's going to be huge for us. We'll do a little good on good, and two on two we call Razorback drill."

PAT winner

Defensive lineman Gabe Richardson was selected the winner of the program's new "PAT" award, which stands for passion, attitude and trust. The selection was made at the end of summer workouts, which Chad Morris refers to as the fourth quarter of the offseason leading into camp.

"I've never really won anything," Richardson said. "I mean, I've won a few things, but never something for just like being myself.

"Honestly, I mean, you've got some haters out there, don't like who I am. Cool. You know I'm going to smile and wave, smile and wave. The PAT award, I'm very thankful for getting it just for doing something you do every day. For saying 'Hey' to people, waving, smiling."

Punting competition

Blake Johnson, a junior who was the No. 1 punter last season, is competing with freshman walk-on Reid Bauer.

"Reid Bauer is going to make a push," Chad Morris said. "He's not just going to surrender the job to Blake.

"We actually got in some, not necessarily live punting work, but against some rush today. It was good to see both Blake and Reid. I thought we did some good things there. We put in our punt situational stuff, so we will know more this week as we go. We are going to try and get in some live work and see how these guys respond this week."

Morris said both punters worked against a rush in Tuesday's practice.

Jersey data

Jersey number assignments for the new scholarship Razorbacks include, for defensive players, No. 5 Dorian Gerald, No. 15 LaDarrius Bishop, No. 16 Bumper Pool, No. 17 Joe Foucha, No. 18 Myles Mason, No. 19 Courtre Alexander, No. 28 Andrew Parker, No. 48 Nick Fulwider, No. 93 Isaiah Nichols and No. 99 Billy Ferrell.

Offensively, newcomers include No. 5 Rakeem Boyd, No. 8 Mike Woods, No. 9 John Stephen Jones, No. 13 Connor Noland, No. 14 Chase Harrell, No. 73 Noah Gatlin and No. 75 Silas Robinson.

Sports on 08/08/2018

Print Headline: Offensive line takes another hit

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