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Hogs’ Warren Thompson One of WRs That May Keep Malik at QB

Razorbacks coach Sam Cunningham on developing group
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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Maybe the wide receivers will be okay.

Since the Missouri game last season, everybody has been wondering what Arkansas was going to do replacing Treylon Burks and his production.

At least through the first week of fall practice, the group is getting a lot of praise and Thursday evening it was Warren Thompson's turn.

Warren Thompson-Practice

"As improved as anybody," Sam Pittman said after practice. "He’s in a really good space. He’s comfortable."

Last season, Thompson averaged 16 yards on 19 catches for 304 yards and a couple of touchdowns. Apparently, that was while he was trying to figure out things in the SEC.

"He went through a year last year where he didn’t know if he wanted to be here, go home, who’s my friends," Pittman said." He had a lot of things going on, I think, last year. You’d have to talk to him. But I think he’s in a good space."

We haven't had Thompson in the media room so that's a question to be asked. In fall camp, though, he's making plays.

"He’s always been very talented, but he’s catching a contested ball and catching some you’re going, ‘Man, how’d he catch that one?’" Pittman said. "He’s always been fast ... he hasn’t always used it ... but he is now.

"I’ve been really pleased with him."

But apparently we're going to have to find out if KJ Jefferson considers him one of his primary targets.

Malik Hornsby-KJ Jefferson

"You’d have to ask KJ it because I think KJ looks for him now," Pittman said.

It's part of a position with a lot of moving parts and trying to sort things out for offensive coordinator Kendal Briles, wide receivers coach Kenny Guiton and the coaching staff.

But the group has improved to the point where Malik Hornsby may be a full-time quarterback now.

"Jaedon Wilson has started playing ball," Pittman said. "You’ve got (Isaiah) Sategna coming on. You’ve got Warren Thompson playing as good as he has right now.

"(Jadon) Haselwood the same thing. He was ‘a guy’ honestly in spring ball. Now he’s a football player.

"You’ve got Ketron (Jackson). You’ve got Matt Landers. So now all of a sudden you’ve got all these wideouts that are playing pretty good ball."

That's a long list of names Pittman covered Thursday afternoon.

But the question of Hornsby playing outside is something we probably really won't know the honest answer about until they line up Sept. 3 against Cincinnati in Razorback Stadium.

"That doesn’t mean that Malik won’t continue to go out there," Pittman said. It’s just harder to put him out there if we have to take somebody off the field."

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And my thinking before was that he would be by far the best one we had out there. If he still is, we’re going to put him out there. If not, we’ll decide that a little bit after Saturday, a little bit. We’re going to put him out there, just how much.

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