Versatile Ledbetter Settles In For Spring

Arkansas believes it has added a versatile defensive lineman that will have an immediate impact in Jeremiah Ledbetter (6-4, 275),who had a whopping 15.5 sacks last season for Hutchinson, Kan. Community College and who is soaking up every thing he can in the Razorbacks' spring drills.

New Arkansas defensive lineman Jeremiah Ledbetter knows what is expected of him and is confident that he will be able to make things happen this upcoming season for the Razorback football team.

Ledbetter (6-4, 275), the former junior college All-American and current Arkansas early enrollee, will just have to see where that will be because he has the versatility to play all four positions on the Razorbacks’ defensive line.

“I am just here to help this team win at any position I can,” said Ledbetter, who starred for Hutchinson, Kan., Community College. “Anything I can do, I’ll do it. I feel like I can play anything that they need me to play to the best of my ability.

“They had me lined up at the 3-technique at the start and they might move me out to defensive end as time progresses.

“…I prefer defensive end, but anything this team needs, I will do.”

Ledbetter, who will have two seasons to play for the Razorbacks, had 78 tackles as a sophomore and 24.5 tackles for 133 yards in lost yardage.

He had 15.5 sacks, 7 quarterback hurries, 2 fumble recoveries and 2 blocked kicks, but has quickly found out the next level has a different speed of practice.

“These practices are way more intense (than junior college), lot more things go on, just everything is good and fast,” Ledbetter said.

Ledbetter has certainly caught the eye of Razorback defensive line coach Rory Segrest in the team’s first four spring practices.

“He is a versatile guy and he potentially could play that many, but we are trying to keep things simple for him right now,” Segrest said. “Really we just want to see him play. I don’t want him thinking, confusing himself on things.

“I just want to see where he is at from a physical standpoint and once we kind of see where he stacks up, then we will try to start narrowing down those positions for him.

“Right now he has got one spot. He may end up moving but we have got him where he is right now and we will just try to let him learn from there.”

Ledbetter joins true freshman and fellow early enrollees Hjalte Froholdt and the injured Daytrieon Dean as incoming defensive linemen.

“Same thing with the younger guys that we brought in,” Segrest said. “They are a talented group and we are expecting those guys to come in an contribute and obviously Ledbetter is one of those main candidates.”

Arkansas took a week off for spring break before returning to the field on Tuesday.

“Getting back out there today, coming back from spring break, it felt good,” Ledbetter said. “We just had to get back into the motion of things and just every down and every play go hard, listen and do the things we need to do on and off the field.”

Ledbetter is excited about being a part of a defensive line that has a host of candidates to replace Trey Flowers and Darius Philon.

“We are looking pretty good as a group, fundamentally sound and just listening to our coaches and perfecting our craft and what we do,” Ledbetter said. “We have a good group of guys and we are here to make something happen.”

Ledbetter is originally from Florida, but matriculated to Kansas for junior college.

“It was a good starting point for me, going to Hutch,” Ledbetter said. “It was just the basis of learning the defensive line and me putting on weight…I came in at 240 and just progressed to be the best I could be on and off the field.”

He credits Hutchinson head coach Rion Rhodes for his development.

“Coach Rhodes, he is a great guy and brought me in straight out of high school thinking that I can make difference,” Ledbetter said. “I was small at first, but he knew I could fill the position over time as a star player on his defense.

“Now I just have to take what I learned there, what I am learning here and my ability and get it done on this level. I know I can.”

Hawgs Daily Top Stories