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Bielema Press Conference Tidbits: Updates on Kody Walker, Randy Ramsey, Josh Williams, More

Bret Bielema met with the media Saturday afternoon to go over some of the most recent news and updates with the football program.

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  • Arkansas will begin an 8-week offseason conditioning program that begins in two weeks
  • Spring practice won't begin until after spring break this year. The last couple of years Arkansas started before spring break and then spring break off, but that won't happen this year. Spring break is March 21st - 25th, so I presume that means spring practice will begin March 29th.
  • The Red-White spring game will be held April 23rd. That's a much tighter window to get all the practices in than in year's past under Bielema - although it's probably closer to average among SEC programs.
  • Kody Walker is planning on coming back for his 6th season. Walker had indicated some uncertainty prior to the Liberty Bowl, but it appears he'll return as a senior leader and help the Hogs out at running back.
  • Randy Ramsey will most likely be with the team through the spring as a walk-on. Bielema has obviously changed his tune here. Not sure if something changed with Ramsey's situation or if the decommitment of Jordan Carmouche forced their hand a bit.
  • Rawleigh Williams III won't be involved in contact drills in the spring but he's feeling good and hopeful he'll be ready for fall.
  • Josh Williams' playing career seems to be in doubt. He had another procedure and lost a lot of calf muscle and Bielema has a hard time imagining he'll be able to play this fall. Bielema said he's considered hiring Williams as a linebacker assistant if he's not able to play. Of course, we're all cheering for Williams to make it back, but if not, hate that he went out on a bad play from Tennessee. It's great to see Bielema's already planning on helping him out no matter what happens.
  • Bielema hopes to sign 24-25 players this year with a goal of 12 offensive players, 12 defensive, and one coach's discretion. As of now the Hogs have 9 offensive commitments and 7 defensive. Players like Korliss Marshall and Josh Liddell - under the radar players who wanted to be Hogs at the last minute - are coach's discretion types of players.
  • As of right now, the quarterback depth chart is 1-Austin Allen, 2-Rafe Peavey, 3-Ty Storey, 4-Ricky Town. But things can definitely change in the spring. It's mostly just a result of time in the program right now.
  • The goal is to sign four-five offensive linemen (Arkansas currently has one signee and one commitment) and hopefully four linebackers (currently two commitments).
  • They'd like to add about 10 pounds to Jeremy Sprinkle, which seems frightening, but they obviously believe his ceiling is quite high and the Razorbacks could still have some of the best tight ends in the country next season.
  • The four offensive line coaches Bielema heavily considered were all NFL guys but he likes Kurt Anderson's approach to the game, energy and enthusiasm, midwestern roots, and that he's something of a tech geek. He obviously has great recommendations.
  • Kurt Anderson also came out after Bielema to meet with everybody. He gave the usual rah-rah about how excited he is to be here, loves the way Arkansas' offensive line plays, talked about his recruiting background in Chicago but also some in Texas, which is also where Bielema said he'd be recruiting primarily, but like Pittman, knows Arkansas needs to recruit nationally.
  • Coach Anderson seems to be a major hit with everybody.