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Lake Highlands grad, 2009,  Austin Jones will start as middle linebacker for the University of Arkansas this Saturday.

Jones went off to the Air Force Academy in 2009, after helping the Wildcats to district, area and regional championships in ’08.

The force was strong with this Wildcat who during high school “was voted first-team all-district for his senior season performance, which included 160 tackles. As a junior, he recorded 100 tackles and one interception. He also earned academic all-state honors,” according to the Arkansas athletics media relations office.

The competition gets bigger and better after high school though. And Jones had to figuratively work his bum off to earn his spot. After transferring to Arkansas, he trained with the scout team for two seasons, while continuing to earn academic honors. He did see action twice last season and recorded one tackle. But this, folks, is Jones’ big year. He, fellow senior Jarrett Lake and junior Braylon Mitchell are listed in press materials as starting linebackers.

The 3 p.m. game airs Saturday on Fox Sports Network. Look for Jones. He is #49.