Arkansas gets inside info from former South Carolina RB David Williams

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Presumably, David Williams will have no shortage of motivation Saturday when Arkansas plays at South Carolina.

The Razorbacks running back is having the best year of his career after spending the previous three seasons with the Gamecocks. Unfortunately, Williams won’t be available to the media this week, so we won’t be getting his thoughts on facing his former team.

But we do know he’s helping out the Razorbacks defense with some inside information on his former team.

“I think there is insight that a player can always provide physically about kids,” Arkansas defensive coordinator Paul Rhoads said. “You can get an idea of what their strengths are and what their weaknesses are, potentially.”

Any advantage is welcome for a defense that is giving up 34 points per game to FBS opponents so far this season.

More importantly, Williams should be a significant factor on the field. He leads the Razorbacks with 279 yards from scrimmage this season, which includes 76 receiving yards. He also has scored a team-high 5 touchdowns in four games this season, equaling his career total for the Gamecocks. With Williams working alongside fellow tailbacks Devwah Whaley and Chase Hayden, the Hogs are averaging 205.2 rushing yards per game.

Career stats for Arkansas RB David Williams:

Yr Team G Rush Yds TD
2014 South Carolina 8 45 256 2
2015 South Carolina 12 86 299 0
2016 South Carolina 9 56 239 3
2017 Arkansas 4 43 203 5

While the change of scenery has been good for Williams, a senior from Philadelphia, it may never have happened without the approval of South Carolina coach Will Muschamp.

At the SEC meetings last spring, Arkansas coach Bret Bielema and athletic director Jeff Long approached Muschamp to ask if he’d be on board with Williams transferring within the conference. SEC rules prevent such transfers without a waiver from the league commissioner. Without Muschamp’s stamp of approval, that likely would’ve been more difficult. But Muschamp agreed to give Williams another shot within the league.

“I’m happy for David,” Muschamp said. “David is a good young man. He did everything we asked when he was here at South Carolina. He’s a first-class person. He’s a really good football player. I wish he was here, but at the end of the day, he wanted a fresh start.”

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