Austin Capps has Speed and Size

Austin Capps' and Cole Kelley's high school coaches discuss what each player brings to the table for the Razorbacks.

Despite being the second-most heralded in-state defensive line signee in the state, Austin Capps is a solid addition for Arkansas.

The four-star defensive tackle from Star City was rated as the No. 173 overall prospect in the country, something his high school coach, Jett Furneaux, saw coming four years ago.

"When he walked in as an eighth grader, he weighed 290 pounds and he was 6-3," Furneaux said. "When you see an eighth grader that looks like that, you know there's something special about him."

Since then, he has grown to be 6-4 and 320 pounds, but still has the speed and hand-eye coordination of someone much smaller. You don't have too look any further than the baseball diamond to see his full array of skills.

"He hit .480 two years and he can steal second base," Furneaux said. "That's something you're not going to see from a 320-pound kid."

Because of that, Furneaux wanted to take advantage of Capps' time with the Bulldogs, playing him on both sides of the ball as a senior. He played every snap of every game at left tackle while also playing nearly every snap on the defensive line.

As a junior, he played some fullback and tight end, as well.

Capps hasn't played a down for Arkansas yet, but Furneaux said he already knows he'll be a special player for the Razorbacks.

"We knew it his junior year when we were watching him run down the line of scrimmage and tackle running backs on the edge on jet-sweeps," Furneaux said. "From a three-technique, he was making plays on the outside zone.

"This year, when he had a bigger role on our offensive line, is when we really knew there was something special about him. The way he can dominate kids off the ball, I've never seen anything like it."

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When Ricky Town transferred to Arkansas from USC, some fans wondered if it would affect Lafayette (La.) Teurlings Catholic quarterback Cole Kelley's committment to the Razorbacks.

Instead, Kelley never waivered and signed with Arkansas earlier this month.

That may have shocked a few, but those that really know Kelley weren't surprised at all. Teurlings Catholic head coach Sonny Charpentier is among those that weren't surprised, mostly because he's seen him in a similar situation.

During Kelley's sophomore season, he served as the Rebels' backup quarterback, behind a senior.

"He knew, as well as I probably knew, that he was more talented than the senior, but the senior deserved it," Charpentier said. "He was a consummate team guy and when he got his opportunity, he went in and played well, but never complained and never cried about not getting more snaps."

Kelley also benefits from a wealth of football knowledge thanks to his family. His father, Roger, played at Louisiana-Monroe, while one of his older brothers, Lance, played at Louisiana-Lafayette.

"He's the youngest of three boys, which means he's naturally a little more advanced," Charpentier said. "He's grown up around the game and his football IQ is one thing that he does have. He's one of those guys that gets it pretty quick and doesn't get fooled very often. And if he does get fooled, it's hard to fool him twice."

Despite Kelley losing most of his supporting cast from his junior season, he managed to put up similar numbers in 2015. His passing yards increased from 2,980 to 3,203 and he threw one more touchdown (28) as a senior than in his junior campaign (27).

"With his abilities, he was able to make guys around him his senior year better," Charpentier said. "He showed patience when he needed to be patient and let his teammates grow as the season went on. We fought a lot of injuries his senior year.

"He was the one constant that we knew we could count on week-to-week as far as what he was going to bring to the table."


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