FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas has rarely played a linebacker other than Brooks Ellis or Dre Greenlaw over the last two seasons.
Ellis, a senior, has made 32 consecutive starts at middle linebacker while the sophomore Greenlaw has started the past 15 at weak-side linebacker. The Hogs don’t often deploy a strong-side linebacker.
While Ellis and Greenlaw are clearly better than the other options, linebackers coach Vernon Hargreaves says it’s time to give some other players a look to help create depth behind the two. Ellis and Greenlaw did not perform to their usual standard in a 45-24 loss to Texas A&M last Saturday.
“With the (Texas A&M) game like it was, it was tied up and I didn’t think that was the right spot for a young guy to go out there against a team like that in that environment,” Hargreaves said. “But it’s going to happen. And I’m going to force it to happen. We just need to do it just so we can have that depth at our disposal.”
Hargreaves listed freshman De’Jon Harris, junior Dwayne Eugene and senior Josh Williams as players who could see increased playing time. On the depth chart, Harris is listed as the backup to Ellis, Eugene the backup to Greenlaw and Williams the starting strong-side linebacker. Hargreaves also mentioned sophomore defensive end Randy Ramsey could fill in as a strong-side linebacker if needed.