The University of Arkansas at Monticello football team hosted the 2021 spring game at Willis "Convoy" Leslie Cotton Boll Stadium on Thursday with the White Team defeating the Black Team 23-14. The Weevils will wrap up spring ball next week with three more practices.
"Very happy with the overall production during spring," Coach Hud Jackson said. "With everything these young men had to overcome, to have a great spring was amazing. Lots of things we got better at and there are still lots of aspects we have to continue to work on. We feel like we have a positive energy around our program with lots of support and we want to build on that."
The 2021 spring game featured the Weevils split into two squads. UAM welcomed honorary coaches to lead the offenses for each team with Paul Griffin leading the White Team to victory over Scott Saffold and the Black Team.
"Our spring game was great. Great crowd and energy! Our players enjoyed the game-like environment," Jackson said. "Thought we had several guys step up and make some plays. Now our focus turns to getting bigger and stronger over the summer so we will be ready come August. The culture and chemistry of this team is amazing! Eat'em Up!"
The two teams ran 101 plays (White 63 and Black 38) on offense with the White Team outgaining the Black Team 246-186. The White Team did its most damage on the ground, rushing for 153 yards while passing for 93 yards. It was mostly an air attack for the Black Team as it posted 159 yards through the air and 27 on the ground.
Wide receiver C.J. Parham was named the Black Team offensive player of the game. He hauled in five catches for 60 yards and two touchdowns.
Running back Devontae Dean led the White squad, averaging 10.3 yards per carry on seven rushes for 72 yards and one touchdown to earn offensive player of the game.
"I have been really proud of the effort our guys on offense have had throughout our practices this spring," offensive coordinator Ryan Lusby said. "With everything these student-athletes have been through in the last year it has been great to get back on the field with them. I am truly excited about the direction our offense and our program are going in. It was awesome to see such a great crowd out to watch our guys in the spring game."
Defensive lineman Tahji Gilbert led the charge for the White Team, registering two tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks to earn defensive player of the game.
For the Black squad, Lataveon Champ picked up defensive player of the game after allowing no completions on five targets while adding two pass break ups, two solo tackles and one assisted tackle.
"I have been really proud of the work our guys have put in on defense in practice this spring," defensive coordinator Walker Ashburn said. "With everything our student-athletes have battled through in the past year it's great to be back on the field with them. I have been very happy with the development of our young guys through the process from fall to spring."
The Weevils kick off the 2021 fall season at 6 p.m. Sept. 2 at home against Southern Nazarene.