By Otis Kirk
Junior safety Kamren Curl hasn’t even been on Arkansas’ campus for two complete years, but he is now the veteran leader of the secondary.
Curl is the most experienced player in the secondary as no seniors are in the group. Curl will be a junior this fall who hasn’t redshirted.
“It’s crazy,” Curl said. “Just like I’ve got to step up. I just turned 20 and I’m the most experienced guy. So I’ve got to grow up. That’s what I’ve been doing since I got here. My first game when (Ryan) Pulley got hurt I had to step up. So it’s nothing new.”
Who are some of the leaders on defense this spring?
“Scoota (Harris) is the main leader,” Curl said. “Sosa (Agim). I’m trying to step up to be more of a vocal leader. We’ve just really got guys stepping up because we lost a lot of leaders really with Santos (Ramirez), Pulley and them. We’ve got more guys stepping up to try to be leaders this year.”
Does your leadership come naturally or are you more of a leader by example rather than vocal?
“Really I’ve just been leading by example, but they want me to be more of a vocal,” Curl said. “I feel I’ve been making strides so that’s what I have been working on this spring. Being more of a vocal leader on and off the field.”
With spring break looming next week, Arkansas will now get a break following today’s practice. Will the time off allow you guys to get some of the injured healed up for the final two weeks?
“It will just give us some rest so we can come back and finish,” Curl said. “Take our mind off football for a little bit them come back ready to go. We have to be back next Sunday (March 24) for a team meeting.”
How do you like the split of seven practices and then finish up after spring break?
“It’s cool.” Curl said. “It’s makes us have to finish. We can do good these first seven and then the last eight. It really makes us finish after spring break.”
Jarques McClellion said the defense got four turnovers today. Do you know who they were?
“They might have been all fumbles,” Curl said. “B (Brenden) Young had a big hit. He knocked the ball loose and that set the tone for practice. Busta (Montaric Brown) forced a fumble and we scored with that. T.J. Smith scooped it and got to the end zone.”
How are Joe Foucha and Myles Mason, two young safeties, doing?
“Joe is stepping up,” Curl said. “Me and Joe, I’m back there talking to him. Joe is a safety and stepping up. Myles is too. I’m taking him under my wing and teaching him stuff.”
Overall, how is this spring going through two weeks?
“It’s been going real good,” Curl said. “We have had a real good spring. I think the whole team is having a real good spring. It’s a different feeling out there. It’s more competition I feel we’re coming together real good.”
In 2018 in 11 games, all starting, Curl had 53 tackles, including 27 solo, five pass breakups, one quarterback hurry and a forced fumble. How have you been doing individually this spring?
“I feel like I have made some strides,” Curl said. “I feel bigger, faster so I feel I’ve been doing pretty good.”
Do you feel the team can rebound from last year’s 2-10 season?
“Nobody wants to go through that again,” Curl said. “Nobody liked that. We’re gonna do whatever we can, compete harder. Like I said, it just feels like a different feeling around the whole facility.”