RazorbacksSports

Jones talks Razorbacks

Razorback senior offensive lineman Luke Jones (#70) from Little Rock, AR sets up to pass block against Cincinnati at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, AR.

By Otis Kirk

FAYETTEVILLE — Former Notre Dame transfer Luke Jones is now the starting left tackle on offense for Arkansas and is having a very good season.

The No. 10 Razorbacks are off to a 3-0 start and Jones has been one of the keys on the strong offensive line. Jones played in all 13 games in 2021 and 10 in 2020. While he had played in all 23 games since sitting out 2019 as a redshirt freshman, this is his first year to start. Following Tuesday’s practice, Jones talked about starting.

“It’s been fun going out there each Saturday and competing with the great team that we have now,” Jones said. “I’m just really excited to have the opportunity to be out there.”

Jones played at Pulaski Academy and was actually committed to Arkansas before opting to sign with Notre Dame. But Jones quickly discovered he wanted to return to Arkansas. Jones will get to start in AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys, on Saturday. That has him excited as well.

“It’s exciting,” Jones said. “It’s a great environment. We didn’t get to play there in 2020 in the COVID year. So, last year was the first time I got to play in that stadium. It’s pretty sweet. It’s a big arena and I’m excited for it this weekend.”

Jones and the Hogs will face the Aggies on Saturday night at 6 p.m. on ESPN.

“They’ve got a good D-line,” Jones said. “They’re a little bit younger, and we’re a little bit more veteran on this offensive line. So, I’m looking forward to Saturday. They’ve got a great defense. They’ve got a great D-line. It’s going to be a great game.”

One player who has helped make Jones an even better player is senior defensive end Zach Williams from Joe T. Robinson in Little Rock. Jones was asked if he knew Williams then?

“I heard about him when I was in high school in Little Rock,” Jones said. “Little Rock is a pretty small city, so all the good players get recognized really well. It’s great to go against him every day because he’s a really good player. He’s got great length and great speed. It’s a good opportunity for me to get to go against him on the edge.”

When Williams reported he was around 220 pounds. Jones talked about him now.

“He looks like a beast now,” Jones said. “He’s a real SEC defensive end. It’s a good opportunity to get to go against him.”

Arkansas needed Jones, Williams and all others to step up Saturday after Missouri State jumped out to a 17-0 lead. Jones talked about how the team handled that before rallying for a 38-27 victory.

“Everyone remained calmed and played our brand of football,” Jones said. “We knew it was going to comeback and we were going to get rolling. Everyone just staying calm and kept working.”

Getting a big performance from running back Rocket Sanders also helped.

“He’s a great running back,” Jones said. “It’s really fun to block for him. He’s a great kid. Always on time, always doing the right thing and it’s really fun to block for him.”

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