Rocket Sanders (knee) out Saturday vs Kent State

One of the bigger questions about individual players on the Arkansas football team heading into the 2023 season was about Rocket Sanders.

The junior running back’s 2022 campaign saw him behind only Darren McFadden and Alex Collins on the single-season yards rushing list. The output combined with the expectation for this season vaulted Sanders as high as a second-team All-American in the preseason.

And while duplicating those 1,443 yards on the ground was always going to be a tall order, it’s almost a lock to not happen now.

Arkansas coach Sam Pittman didn’t declare Sanders as officially out for Saturday’s Week 2 game against Kent State, but the hints he dropped were enough. And considering the running back hadn’t practiced in the entire first half of the week, playing time seems unlikely against the Golden Flashes.

The bigger concern is out how long Sanders will be out. If he misses Week 3 against Brigham Young, it could be a serious issue. The Cougars are a sight better than Western Carolina and Kent State.

Pittman isn’t worried right now, at least.

“You never want to lose a player for a game or two or whatever it may be, but that room is loaded with really good players,” Pittman said. “Jimmy (Smith) has done a nice job recruiting that room, so we feel very confident in that room if Rocket wasn’t able to play, we’d be fine.”

Story originally appeared on Razorbacks Wire