Newport's Stafford Making His Move

Khairan Stafford

Arkansas is taking a long look at Newport senior linebacker Khairan Stafford (6-3, 225, 4.6), who was at the Razorbacks' Elite Camp on Thursday and is considered one of the state's best linebackers.

Arkansas is always in the market for linebackers and one of the state's best put in an impressive performance at the Razorbacks' Elite Camp on Thursday.

Newport's Khairan Stafford (6-3. 225, 4.6) – a cousin of former Razorback defensive end Justin Brown – was one of the better prospects among the 70 or so on hand.

"It went great," Stafford said. "I feel like I am a great tackler, but I have got to get better in pass coverage, I want to get better in man-on-man coverage. That is the area that if I improve that I believe I can be a well-rounded linebacker. I do try to learn from mistakes and get better and try not to let it happen again.

"Today helped on that," Stafford added. "They helped me with my footwork, stance and all that. I also learned how to get my base down, how to tackle the right way."

Stafford had 108 tackles last season, including 28 that resulted in lost yardage. He also had seven sacks, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries despite missing almost two full games.

He was one of four Greyhounds to attend camp on Thursday along with offensive lineman Jessie Simmons (6-4, 265), cornerback Deandre Elston (5-11, 180) and 2016 tailback Carl Turner (5-10, 210).

"Our goal is to win the state championship," Stafford said. "That is our one goal and it is everyone on the team's goal – to win another championship for Newport. It is going to take hard work in practice every day and we can not take any days off."

Stafford is getting interest from a trio of SEC schools – Arkansas, Ole Miss and Missouri.

"I've been to Ole Miss twice and I am here at Arkansas," Stafford said. "I feel like Ole Miss is close to offering me."

Stafford and his teammates were on hand for Arkansas' Red-White game on April 26 and got to meet head coach Bret Bielema and linebackers coach Randy Shannon.

"I like all their coaches and got a chance to meet Coach Bielema and really liked him," Stafford said. "He is a really cool guy. I also got a chance to meet the linebacker coach – Coach Shannon – and he was also very cool. I know that he used to coach at Miami when they were really good and coached Ray Lewis.

"I am a big Ray Lewis fan," Stafford added. "I like the way he plays football, pumps everybody up and then goes out there and makes plays and executes, every day, every play."





Newport standouts Khairan Stafford, Carl Turner, DeAndre Elston and Jessie Simmons were on hand for Arkansas' Elite Camp on Thursday.

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