Lowe and Peters pick passes in Hog newcomer's first practice
FAYETTEVILLE - Freshman safety Defonta Lowe of Bearden intercepted the first pass thrown his way as Arkansas newcomers opened practice at the 103-degree heat apex Thursday afternoon.
The Razorbacks veterans held their first practice Thursday evening.
Lowe and heralded freshman linebacker Otha Peters of Covington, La. both picked off passes by overworked quarterback Taylor Reed. Reed, the redshirting transfer from the University of Memphis and the son of El Dorado Coach Scott Reed, did all quarterbacking with walk-on holder/scout team quarterback Brian Buehner not completing Thursday's workout.
The Razorbacks didn't recruit any QBs last year. Senior first-team All-SEC quarterback Tyler Wilson and reserves Brandon Mitchell, actually slated to play more receiver than QB now, and redshirt freshman Brandon Allen are working with varsity.
In shorts without contact, freshman D'Arthur Cown, Mekale McKay, Keon Hatcher, Eric Hawkins and touted junior college transfer receiver Demetrius Wilson pass the eye test as receivers.
Nate Holmes appears the quickest freshman running back. Holmes still has a way to go before cracking the varsity lineup with seniors Knile Davis, Dennis Johnson and Ronnie Wingo returning. However, Holmes might play right away as a punt returner with All-American Joe Adams graduated. Adams heir apparent Marquel Wade is off the squad for disciplinary reasons.
Not everybody practicing Thursday was a newcomer or a redshirt freshman. Fifth-year senior defensive tackle Lavunce Askew of Camden-Fairview, who redshirted in 2011, and junior backup fullback Morgan Linton of Lonoke got extra attention working with newcomers.
HOGS RANK TOP 10; JOHNSON WATCHED
The Razorbacks begin ranked No. 10 by the USA Today's Coaches poll released Thursday while adding another player to a preseason watch list that will be evaluating a national postseason award.
Senior kick returner-running back Dennis Johnson, an alum of Texarkana's Arkansas High, was named to the Paul Hornung Award Watch List."