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Arkansas did not find itself ranked in the Top 25 of the 2023 college football coaches poll. The Razorbacks received votes, but didn’t make the cut.
However, there is a real opportunity for the Hogs to make some noise this fall. Sam Pittman is in his fourth year as head coach and returns a vicious 1-2 punch in the backfield.
Arkansas’ starting quarterback and running back are both tall and combine to weigh nearly 500 pounds.
K.J. Jefferson passed for 2,648 yards and 28 touchdowns while rushing for 640 yards and nine touchdowns on 158 carries. He is back for year five and hopes to not only make some noise in terms of big wins, but also wants to propel himself into an early-round NFL Draft pick.
Standing right next to the 6-foot-3, 247-pound quarterback is 6-foot-2, 242-pound running back Raheim ‘Rocket’ Sanders. The rising junior started all 13 games last season and ran for 1,443 yards and 10 touchdowns.
All of the Razorbacks’ success will go through those two guys— and the offensive line.
Sanders in particular will be a huge factor in Arkansas’ record this season.
He is going to get a heavy workload in 2023 and deservedly so. The former four-star recruit has emerged as one of the top ball-carriers in college football.
As he enters his third year in the SEC, Sanders is reportedly bigger than he was just eight months ago. The 242 number might be understated, or if accurate, every pound is muscle.
That was on full display during fall camp on Monday.
Arkansas was in pads and Sanders welcomed a freshman defender to college football with a vicious truck stick. And it seemed like he pulled up instead of really running through the challenger.
Here’s another look, listen to the pop:
The Hogs are hitting! Sanders is going to be a force in the Southeastern Conference and any opposing defensive backs who are going to get down field to meet him in the hole are wished the best of luck.