We've already looked at the Hogs defense, now it is time to see what we're working with on offense. Last year the Hogs had the best offense in the SEC. This season should be more of the same. The Hogs have two legitimate Heisman hopefuls. The Hogs lost three great wide receivers and one of the best play callers in the college football, but they have reloaded and look ready for another impressive season.
Bobby Petrino may be gone, but his little brother Paul will be taking over as offensive coordinator and seems to be ready to step up to the plate. He has learned under his brother for years and went off on his own and found success at Illinois at the same position. Paul's time is now and all eyes are on him. This writer thinks he is ready and is excited to see what he can do. Let's now look at the position battles.
There isn't much to really say here. Everyone that knows anything about college football knows Tyler WIlson. The All-SEC quarterback looks ready to take this team to another level. He decided to come back his senior year to lead this team to a championship season.
The real question is who will be playing behind him. It is a battle of Brandons. The job looks to be Brandon Allen's, but Brandon Mitchell is an athletic freak. Mitchell is big and fast. Getting him on the field is necessary and that is why he will be playing wide receiver as well.
Brandon Allen has looked good all summer. There is a huge difference from the quarterback he was a year ago to now. He seems to be trusting the other 10 guys around him, and he looks more relaxed. I expect him to get most of the mop up duty. Mitchell may have a few plays here and there, but look for him to spend most of his time at the receiver position.
Knile Davis is back and looks better than ever. If you have seen any of his workout clips on the internet you know his strength is not in question. Will he regain his form before his season-ending injury a year ago? I think so. The guy is a beast and thats all you can really say about him.
His backups, Dennis Johnson and Ronnie WIngo Jr., will also see plenty of playing time. Johnson is a bowling ball who just plays football. He is a hard-nose runner who just seems to bounce off tackles. Wingo is a great pass-catcher out of the backfield. Wingo seems to have problems running between the tackles, but when he gets a little room he can make big things happen.
Freshmen Jonathan Williams was impressive in summer camp, so he may have an oppurtunity to play early.
The real bowling ball will be the starting fullback Kiero Small. He may be short but he can really pack a punch. I hope they have extra face masks ready, because Small broke over 20 of them last year. He will be able to open up holes no matter who is back there.
Arkansas really needs the OLine to step up this year. Last year the line was plagued with penalties and often had blocking let downs. Just look at the hits put on Tyler Wilson during the Alabama game. Im pretty sure my mom cried over some of the hits he took.
Starting center Travis Swanson and guard Alvin Bailey are both studs. These big boys will anchor the line and should be able to blow open some holes for the running backs and give time for Tyler Wilson to throw. Tackle Brey Cook had a good freshmen year, but was bumpy at times. A year in the program and weight room could only help Cook and this year could be a break out season for him. Guard Tyler Deacon and Tackle David Hurd are not household names, but they have both had good summers and have earned the starting job.
Look for Jason Peacock to take over one of the starting tackle jobs by the end of the season. He probably would be the starter now if it was not for some legal troubles. Mitch Smothers, Luke Charpentier and Chris Stringer will also see playing time as the year goes on.
Lining up a tight end will be Chris Gragg. Gragg has chance to be the top TE in the country. His size helps him block and his speed makes him a match-up nightmare. Austin Tate and Demetrius Dean should also see the field at TE.
The Hogs don't have a ton of depth on the Oline but they have quality starters, and more than capable back-ups.
Wide Receiver has been a position of consistency the past few years, but after the NFL draft took 3 starters away there is some unknown this year.
Cobi Hamilton returns for his senior season. Cobi has been a fan favorite and a star at the receiver position. This year should be more of the same. He should have a bigger role than in the past with Jarius Wright, Joe Adams and Greg Childs all going to the NFL.
True Freshmen Mekale McKay has earned a starting job and has the size and speed to make big plays. McKay could be the next great Razorback receiver. Former quarterback Brandon Mitchell also earned a starting job at the position. Mitchell's athletic ability is second to none. The 6-4, 230, receiver/quarterback proved he has the hands and the ability to be a big target for Tyler Wilson.
The receiver position is deep. Javontee Herndon, Keante Minor, and Julian Horton have all been in the program and know the offense. They will all have the chance to make plays on the field. True Freshmen Keon Hatcher and D'Arthur Cowan, as well as, JUCO transfer Demetrius Wilson should all see some passes thrown there way this season.