Arkansas has plenty of questions on defense. But when it comes to the health of one key linebacker, the Razorbacks are getting the right answer.
Coach Bret Bielema said that junior linebacker Dre Greenlaw is back to “full go” after an injury that sidelined him for the second half of 2016 and all of this spring.
Greenlaw (pictured above) had 42 tackles in seven games during his sophomore season, but missed the final six games of the season with to a foot injury.
In January, Greenlaw reportedly had a second foot surgery, which raised questions about the pace of his recovery and whether he would be full strength in time for the start of the 2017 season. He wasn’t able to participate in spring practice.
Bielema said the team will monitor Greenlaw’s workload as fall camp progresses. So far, though, all is well.
“Right now, he’s full go,” Bielema said.
Greenlaw’s health is important for the Razorbacks, who struggled on run defense last season. Personnel losses from 2016 include middle linebacker Brooks Ellis and numerous starting defensive linemen.
Still away from the Razorbacks, though, are wide receivers Jared Cornelius and T.J. Hammonds. Bielema said that he believes both could be back by the start of the academic year, and Bielema expressed optimism that Hammonds, who has a knee injury, might be able to play in the season opener.
Cornelius, the top returning Arkansas receiver with 32 catches for 515 yards in 2016, has been sidelined with a back injury.
Bielema also said the arrival of graduate transfer running back David Williams from South Carolina and the emergence of freshmen Chase Hayden and Maleek Williams have driven Devwah Whaley to work harder in his bid to solidify his starting role.
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“I think the applied pressure of David Williams and Chase and Maleek has helped him realize, ‘Hey, I am not the man, all by myself. If I want carries, I’ve got to earn them,’ ” Bielema said. “So he’s been really, really good, locked in, phenomenal since fall camp started.”
The Razorbacks lost leading rusher Rawleigh Williams III during the spring, when he retired from football following his second serious neck injury.
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