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Arkansas State football in the midst of a busy June

Arkansas State head football coach provided a summer update
Arkansas State head football coach provided a summer update
Published: Jun. 4, 2021 at 6:32 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 7:46 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Spring ball is in the rear view and a busy summer is underway for Arkansas State football.

Workouts are in progress while newcomers are seeing their home for the first time.

“I was like a proud dad,” head coach Butch Jones said on Friday. “I kinda sat back and I wanted to watch their facial expressions when they walked into our football facilities and our operations building. Every one, the same thing: Coach the videos were great, but nothing is like seeing it in person. Them getting around the coaches but us getting around their parents. And really we knew them, but all those relationships were formed on zoom and phone calls. So again, it was a great weekend. And I think that laid the foundation for us having a great week so far with workouts.”

There’s also a lot of movement in the transfer portal. Former Florida State quarterback James Blackman is participating in summer workouts along with JHS alum AJ Aycock.

“Been very, very pleased. (James) has a poise about himself, has moxie. Very very intelligent. And I’ve been exceptionally pleased with Layne Hatcher as well. Layne has actually taken him under his wing. Those two individuals have great chemistry right now. They’re working exceptionally hard. So that’s been the dynamic of our football team, is our older players really welcomed in all of our newcomers. And that’s been great to see. Any time you can add a person like AJ, not just as a football player, but as a person, and add him to your program, that does nothing but create value for us. "

Butch went to his old stomping grounds on Rocky Top to find defensive talent in Kivon Bennett and John Mincey.

“Very familiar with Kivon Bennett,” Jones added. “His father is Cornelius Bennett, who will be in the Hall of Fame, former player at Alabama. They were here all weekend going through orientation. And so we’re excited to bring him into our program, and have him be a part of our principles and values. John Mincey was an individual that we weren’t actually involved in the recruiting process. But obviously being at Tennessee and him being at Tennessee, we knew of each other. We wanted individuals that have competed at a very high level.”

Butch Jones Football Camps kick off this weekend.

“We start our camp circuit this Sunday. And we’re excited to welcome about 100 prospective student athletes to our campus. Then we’ll also have a Friday Night Lights camp as well, we’ll have over 200 participants as well. So that coupled with our coaches working around the country with the camps, and then our current team as well, it’s been extremely hectic. But a lot of energy, a lot of excitement right now on our campus.”

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