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Arkansas HC Sam Pittman Discusses Treylon Burks’ Reported Conditioning Issues

Syndication: The Tennessean George Walker IV / / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Tennessee Titans are counting on rookie wide receiver Treylon Burks to make an immediate impact in 2022. Following the departures of A.J. Brown and Julio Jones, Burks is expected to quickly claim a top-three receiver role in the Titans’ new-look offense. Burks’ participation (or lack thereof) throughout rookie minicamp and organized team activities (OTAs) left plenty to be desired. Alleged weight and/or conditioning raises were raised, as was Burks’ struggles with asthma.

Burks’ head coach last season was Arkansas’ Sam Pittman, who recently discussed Burks’ reported issues in great detail with 3HL. Some of what Pittman had to say qualifies as concerning.

“The community is going to be proud of him once he gets in shape,” Pittman said. “I’m assuming he didn’t show up in great shape. It was the same thing when he was a sophomore. He wasn’t in great shape. He couldn’t last through practice. It’s not that he quit, he just couldn’t do it anymore. He was out of shape. I don’t know what hunting hogs does for your cardiovascular, but evidently, not a whole lot.”

The comments qualify as fairly concerning, especially given this isn’t the first time Burks has allegedly dealt with weight/conditioning issues. Titans fans will also remember that coach Pittman also coached Isaiah Wilson at Georgia, which probably adds an unfair layer to this conversation.

“I remember last year against Rice, he had dropped some passes and wasn’t playing well,” Pittman continued. “He wasn’t a major factor in that game. He got some confidence as the game went on, and the next game started showing what was [worthy of] a first-round draft pick. You’re going to get a great team leader.”

Rice was the first game on Arkansas’ 2021 schedule. Burks recorded just five receptions for 42 receiving yards. He recorded a similar stat line the next week against Texas, stringing together five receptions for 37 yards. Burks exploded against Georgia Southern in Week 3, catching three balls for 127 yards and a touchdown. He followed that up with a 6-167-1 performance against Texas A&M in Week 4. Burks finished the season with 66 receptions for 1,104 yards and 11 touchdowns.

It’s worth noting Pittman did make some favorable comments as well.

“You have a strong teammate with great ball skills, especially once he gets confidence going,” Pittman added.

You can hear Pittman’s comments for yourself.