Chris Ash’s explanation on how Daunte Carr ended up at middle linebacker this spring isn’t exactly an inspiring tale.
Simply put, the Razorbacks didn’t have many options as they tried to put players in various positions before practices began.
“We had to put somebody there, you know?” Ash said. “He happened to be the biggest (linebacker), so we put him in the middle and we let him go.”
Ash isn’t concerned with how Carr got there, though. He’s happy Carr is still there.
Arkansas wrapped up its 14th practice of the spring and will move into Saturday’s Red-White Game with Carr working with the first-team defense at one of its most critical positions. It’s one of the spring’s biggest surprises considering Carr, who came to Arkansas as a safety, hasn’t produced much at any position in his career.
But when Arkansas was analyzing players during offseason conditioning drills, Ash said Carr’s abilities fit what they were looking for in a middle linebacker. So they lined him up there when practice began and Ash said he has “risen to the top.”
“He has shown a presence out there at the mike linebacker position,” Ash said after Thursday’s practice. “He is communicating better. He’s trying to become a student of the game. He’s becoming a more physical linebacker. All those things are making him better and they’re making us better. If you don’t have a mike linebacker right down the middle of the defense you’re going to be in trouble.”
Carr has held on to the first-team spot this spring while Robert Atiga is working with the second team. Austin Jones also has earned some work in the middle.
The three are part of an inexperienced group across the board. In addition to Carr, Braylon Mitchell and Jarrett Lake will scrimmage with the starters Saturday. None of the three have seen significant action in their time as Razorbacks.
So Ash said it’s a big day for Carr and the rest of the group, which remains one of the Razorbacks’ biggest question marks because of its inexperience.
“We’ve got three guys right now with the ones that haven’t played really in a game,” Ash said of the first-team group. “I don’t know how they’re going to respond in a game. Hopefully, Saturday will give us a little better indication.”
Dyer seeking third chance
Former Little Rock Christian and Auburn running back Michael Dyer is looking for a third chance at playing college football. And Dyer said in an interview with a Little Rock television station he’s hoping it will come at Arkansas.
Dyer, in an interview with KTHV, said it would be a dream to come back to play with the Razorbacks. He has not played football in more than a year after leaving Auburn following the 2011 season. Dyer transferred to Arkansas State to play for former Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn, but was dismissed after a state trooper reportedly found evidence of marijuana in his car during a traffic stop.
Dyer has spent the past year at Arkansas Baptist College and is reportedly on schedule to graduate this spring. Dyer’s uncle told AL.com the running back — who ran for more than 1,000 yards as a freshman and sophomore at Auburn — was supposed to visit with TCU in early April. He is expected to announce his plans soon, but there is no indication Arkansas plans to add Dyer to its roster for 2013.
“If I was given the chance, I would definitely do the best that I can for (Arkansas) and for the coaches and for the fans,” Dyer said in an interview with KTHV-TV. “To be able to play at home, I think any kid would love that dream to come back home and start over and play at home. But I’m just, you know, sitting here, I’m going to play it out and I’m going to let God do the rest for me.”