Bret Bielema addresses Brandon Allen's car, depth chart in press conference
In a press conference initially intended to discuss the official depth chart prior to Arkansas Razorbacks’ opening game against Auburn this Saturday, head coach Bret Bielema found himself addressing more than just starters and backups.
Reports surfaced earlier today that starting quarterback Brandon Allen’s truck was torched overnight outside of his residence. Bielema first heard about the situation early this morning around 4 a.m. when he received a phone call from his quarterback.
“He called to let me know that his car was on fire and he was watching it from across the street,” the second-year head coach said. “Obviously, the authorities were there. They started a formal investigation. I don’t know too many details right now, but I do know BA is completely safe. That was our first priority – to make sure everybody was safe and taken care of.”
Unfortunately for Allen, this was not the first time his car had been the victim of vandalism. Last season following a loss to Mississippi State, his car was egged. Bielema refrained from making any more comments regarding Allen’s car being torched overnight at the request of the police department.
Aside from the Allen situation, Bielema primarily addressed the recently released depth chart as game day quickly approaches. Although the Razorbacks’ finished winless in the SEC last year, Bielema is confident heading into the 2014 season in just his second season as head coach of the Hogs.
One of the key positions battles was at running back. With three talented backs in Alex Collins, Jonathan Williams and Korliss Marshall, there was uncertainty about who would be the starter for the Hogs. And it appears that is question still waiting to be answered.
“I listed all three of our running backs as a tie because really each guy has a set plan,” Bielema said. “All of them have a different style and a little different of a game.”
Collins returns after posting a 1,000-yard season as a true freshman with Williams finishing close behind him at 900 rushing yards. Arkansas is one of two teams in all of college football that return two running backs with 900 or more rushing yards.
Another interesting aspect to the depth chart is the two slots for tight end. Bielema explained he expects to use more two-TE formations this season. Hunter Henry and AJ Derby currently hold the starting spots.
Once again on the defensive side of the football, the Hogs will be led by seniors Trey Flowers and Alan Turner. Brooks Ellis will get the start at middle linebacker after a strong end to his freshman season.
In the last two weeks, Bielema added that his players have come on strong in practice and he believes they’re ready for Auburn on Aug. 30.
“What I am excited about, I think our depth chart in particular, is the consistency that we’ve had really the last 10 days of preparation”
The Razorbacks will kick it off against the Auburn Tigers at 4 p.m. EST this Saturday.