FAYETTEVILLE - Arkansas is the final Southeastern Conference team to start its spring practice session. The Razorbacks will do so Tuesday.

FAYETTEVILLE - Arkansas is the final Southeastern Conference team to start its spring practice session. The Razorbacks will do so Tuesday.

On Monday, ahead of the unofficial start to the 2016 football season, coach Bret Bielema discussed program changes, plans for the future, and, to the shock of no one, the battle for Arkansas quarterback.

"Everybody wants to talk about quarterback," Bielema said.

He was not about to tip his hand any further than he has the last four months. Austin Allen is the starter. Beyond that, who knows. Bielema may not, even. He talked about a pecking order in January based mostly on tenure and suggested the same thing Monday.

Now talent will win out. Ty Storey has been around for a full calendar year and Ricky Town a full season. Those two redshirt freshman and Rafe Peavey, a sophomore, will have equal opportunity to take the clear back-up role. It is possible, depending on their individual springs, they could wrest the job from Allen.

But make no mistake. The job currently belongs to Austin Allen.

"I think Austin’s had a great spring, really wants to take the next step," Bielema said. "It’s going to be fun to watch him go out there. Next three guys, between Peavey, Storey and Ricky Town … I think those guys are all kind of equal and we’ll see exactly where they go and how fast they can work themselves through it."

Replacing Brandon Allen at quarterback is not the only place where Arkansas has a hole. Three starters are gone from the offensive line. The best tight end in college football, by Bielema’s estimation, is gone; as are the top two running backs from the last three total seasons. And although Arkansas returns more on defense, it is a defense that ranked 11th in the SEC and last in pass defense. Changes are coming there, too.

"Obviously you want to find out your starters at certain positions. We sent six guys to the combine on the offensive side of the ball. A lot of really good players have left our roster," Bielema said. "You’ve got to find the guys that step into their roles and then figure out who is behind them."

Ideas Along the Two Lines

Bielema said he was not going to release a depth chart yet if at all, but he did go through the roster position-by-position at the top of the press conference.

From left to right on the offensive line are Brian Wallace and Colton Jackson at left tackle; Hjalte Froholdt and Jalen Merrick at left guard; Frank Ragnow, Froholdt and Zach Rogers at center; Johnny Gibson and Deion Malone at right guard; Dan Skipper and a "variety of guys rolling through right tackle."

Paul Ramirez and Jake Heinrich will join the team in the fall from junior-college and high school, respectively.

Along the defensive line Tevin Beanum holds his starting job at one end, backed up by Jamario Bell and McTelvin Agim. The opposite side is Deatrich Wise Jr. and JaMichael Winston. Taiwan Johnson and Bijhon Jackson anchor the nose guard and Jeremiah Ledbetter moved in from end to play defensive tackle with T.J. Smith.

The defensive line unit is expected to be the best on the entire defense if not the team both from a talent and depth perspective.

"We are excited for that D-line group and see who comes out of it on top. I think we should have tremendous competition," Bielema said.

New Looks, Numbers

There was no depth chart released ahead of spring practice, but there was a roster. On it were a number of jersey number changes.

The most significant change is senior wide receiver Dominique Reed. His number will change from 87 to 3. Other players expected to be contributors who changed numbers were safety Ryan Pulley (10 to 1), cornerback Willie Sykes (7 to 15), Froholdt (91 to 51), Smith (54 to 52), and tight ends C.J. O’Grady (15 to 85) and Jack Kraus (36 to 87).

Others were wide receiver Troy Allison to No. 20, defensive back Matt Dodson to No. 26, running backs Denzell Evans to No. 34 and Damani Carter to No. 46.

Some players whose eligibility year was in question had answers, too.

O’Grady will be a redshirt freshman despite playing a couple snaps last season. Austin Cantrell, an H-back, will be, as well. Those two missed Sunday’s pre-spring meeting and will be punished when practice begins Tuesday.

"If it’s not important to them it’s not important for me for them to see the first practice," Bielema said. "They won’t be running with the 1s, at least for sure and limited reps in the two-deep until they get more mature with what we’re asking them to do. I do think those two can help us eventually down the line when it gets to be more important to them."

Linebacker Randy Ramsey, who did not play last year after being removed from the team, retains sophomore eligibility after playing two seasons ago. His fellow linebackers Josh Williams and Nicholas Thomas-Smith were listed on the roster after their future being in-flux for most of the winter. Jamario Bell, who was in Bielema’s doghouse after class attendance issues, was also on the roster. Josh Allen, who came to Arkansas as an offensive lineman but was moved to defensive line earlier in the spring, has been removed from the team for a violation.

Follow Eric on Twitter: @ericwbolin

The rest of the Non-Depth Chart Depth Chart

Quarterback: Allen, Peavey, Storey, Town

Running back: Kody Walker, Juan Day, Denzell Evans (Rawleigh Williams III is limited)

Fullback: Chris Jones, Damani Carter

Wide Receiver: Dominique Reed, Keon Hatcher, Cody Hollister

Wide Receiver: Drew Morgan (limited), Jared Cornelius, Deon Stewart/LaMichael Pettway

Tight End: Jeremy Sprinkle, Will Gragg, O’Grady/Cantrell (Jack Krause is limited)

Strongside linebacker: Randy Ramsey, Khalia Hackett

Middle linebacker: Brooks Ellis, Kendrick Jackson/Josh Harris

Weakside: Dre Greenlaw, Dwayne Eugene (Josh Williams is limited)

Cornerback: Jared Collins, Ryan Pulley

Cornerback: Henre’ Toliver, Kevin Richardson (D.J. Dean is limited)

Free safety: Josh Liddell, Nate Dalton

Strong safety: Santos Ramirez, De’Andre Coley

Kicker: Cole Hedlund/Lane Saling/Adam McFain

Punter: Toby Baker, Blake Johnson