Morgan nominated for “Academic Heisman”
FAYETTEVILLE – University of Arkansas linebacker Grant Morgan was named a semifinalist on Wednesday for the William V. Campbell Trophy, commonly known as college football’s “Academic Heisman” Trophy.
The Greenwood super senior is a semi-finalist for the second year in a row for the award which recognizes a varsity athlete as a combination of academic achievement, football performance and leadership.
Morgan won All-America second team honors by Walter Camp and the American Football Coaches Association after tying the lead of FBS with 12.3 tackles per game. Elected team captain for the second year in a row, Morgan enters Saturday’s game with 25 tackles, 3.5 tackles lost and 2 assists.
The old walk-on earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology in 2019 and a master’s degree in operations management in 2020.
The National Football Foundation will announce 12 to 14 finalists on October 27, and each of them will receive a graduate scholarship of $ 18,000. The winner will be announced on December 7th.
A reporter who covers Georgia asked Arkansas coach Sam Pittman for an update on quarterback KJ Jefferson’s knee as lead of a two-part question during the SEC conference call from Wednesday. Pittman responded at length to Part Two, on his knowledge of Georgian staff.
After finishing, the reporter continued, “What about KJ?”
Pittman replied, “Ah, I didn’t answer the question.”
End of the conversation.
Jefferson trained with a brace on his left leg after touching the top of his knee following a side thrust from Aaron Hansford of Texas A&M last week. He left the game for three sets to allow numbing gel to take effect and completed the last two sets.
Another SWC series
Arkansas sparked yet another Southwestern Conference rivalry, this time hosting a home football series against Texas Tech in 2030-31.
Arkansas officials announced the two games set for Wednesday, four days after the Razorbacks finished a 3-0 streak against former Southwestern Conference opponents Rice, Texas and Texas A&M with a 20-game win. -10 on the Aggies.
The victories against the Longhorns and Aggies were particularly satisfying for Arkansas fans as these teams were ranked 15th and 7th respectively. Beating them on national broadcasts helped the Razorbacks climb the national polls to No.8 in the Associated Press Top 25 ahead of Saturday’s 11 a.m. game against Georgia’s No.2.
The Razorbacks will open the series with the Red Raiders in Lubbock, TX on September 14, 2030, and then host the game the following season on September 13, 2031.
The schools split a two-game series in 2014 and 2015, each winning on the other’s field. Arkansas earned a 49-28 road victory in Game 1, while Patrick Mahomes and the Red Raiders scored a 35-24 victory at Reynolds Razorback Stadium the following season. Arkansas leads the series 29-8 with a 47-26 victory in 1957.
Georgia Special Teams Coordinator Scott Cochran, the longtime strength and conditioning coach in Alabama who rose to fame after appearing in a Regions Bank commercial with coach Nick Saban, is still on medical leave with the Bulldogs but is getting closer to a comeback.
“He’s in town right now as we speak,” Georgia coach Kirby Smart said Wednesday. “He’s a bit at home visiting his family. He is with us temporarily and sees friends and people. I hope he will join us in the next few weeks.
Montaric Brown’s second interception of the season was a dive right off the turf that was knocked over by a Texas A&M player’s helmet and linebacker Bumper Pool’s hand. The interception early in the fourth quarter led to a shot on goal for Arkansas that extended their lead to 20-10.
“It was crazy,” said cornerback LaDarrius Bishop, Brown’s cousin and Ashdown High teammate. “It was a game-changer there. I kept telling him, ‘You really changed the game, like you changed the game.’ “
Sam Pittman revealed after the Razorbacks’ victory at Texas A&M that it was the first time freshman AJ Green has flown.
Junior fullback Trelon Smith said the rookie handled him well.
“AJ… it was his first time flying, but you know, once the plane was in the air, the nervousness was gone,” Smith said. “He was perfectly fine. “
Green did a different kind of steal when he gave a short pass from KJ Jefferson, broke three tackles and ran 48 yards for a touchdown and a 17-0 lead over Arkansas early in the second quarter.
Georgia tight end Brock Bowers is the reigning SEC Freshman of the Week after a huge performance in the Bulldogs’ 62-0 win at Vanderbilt.
Bowers led the Bulldogs in receiving for the fourth straight game with four catches for 69 yards with two touchdowns.
Bowers also scored 12 yards around the score for his first rushing touchdown. He is the first Georgian player since Sony Michel against Kentucky in 2017 to score three touchdowns in a game. The rookie leads Georgia with 18 receptions for 272 yards and 4 touchdowns.
“Anytime you use a young freshman as much as Georgia uses Bowers, you know they have incredible confidence in him,” Arkansas coach Sam Pittman said. “He’s definitely earned that respect from their coaching staff with how much they use him because they use him in so many different ways.”
A Wall Street Journal reporter interviewing Razorbacks who played for Pittman when he coached the Arkansas offensive line from 2013 to 2015 said Pittman made up a phrase – Swag-jo – that had to do with trust.
“You know the old saying ‘mojo?’ “I just said ‘swag-jo’,” Pittman said on Wednesday’s SEC conference call. “I don’t know why I said it, but the kids seem to like it and accept it.
“I don’t know. I don’t think I have any sentences, but it seems the state of Arkansas is hanging on to pretty much everything I’m saying right now. But we’re just trying to motivate them in practice and definitely try to build their confidence.
The “Yes! From Pittman came with him when he first took the job from Arkansas in December 2019, and his “Turn on that damn jukebox!” now comes after every Razorback victory.
The Razorbacks limited Texas A&M tight end Jalen Wydermyer to a catch for 18 yards as the Aggies failed to establish a down pass attack.
Wydermyer burned Arkansas with 6 catches for 92 yards and 2 touchdowns in the Aggies’ 42-31 win at College Station, Texas last year.
Arkansas is tied with Baylor for the second-highest number of college team appearances in AT&T stadium history. The Razorbacks are 5-6 in the stadium, with a 29-16 win over Kansas State in the 2012 Cotton Bowl added to their streak against the Aggies. Texas A&M is 7-5 at the stadium and has the most appearances.