There isn’t much actual news that takes place during SEC Media Days, but Bret Bielema did drop one tidbit of important information when he announced the transfers of defensive back Willie Sykes and receiver Eric Hawkins.
Hawkins is not terribly surprising. He was consistently mentioned as one of the fastest players on the team during his years in Fayetteville (believe he also participated on the track team) but struggled to get playing time. He did spend some time as a kickoff returner, returning 10 kickoffs last season and averaging over 22 yards per return.
He’s an Arkansas graduate so he’ll be able to go somewhere and play immediately as a graduate transfer.
Sykes is more of a surprise. He played last season as a true freshman defensive back and on special teams. He made nine tackles and was frequently mentioned among the promising young players on the team. Arkansas doesn’t have a ton of depth at defensive back, so, while Sykes likely would not have been a starter this season, it still will have some impact.