More Running Backs Needed

Arkansas' coaches have wanted to get more running backs involved in the offense. But the need for a quality backup behind starter Michael Smith became even more apparent last Saturday.

Smith carried an even larger load in the 25-22 win at Auburn. He rushed a career-high 35 times for 176 yards and a touchdown, causing him to cramp up during the game. The increased workload left Smith feeling more sore than usual Monday.

The only other running back to get a carry was freshman Dennis Johnson, who gained five yards on his only run.

Arkansas offensive coordinator Paul Petrino said Tuesday there is a chance that Johnson and freshman De'Anthony Curtis will take some of the load off Smith in Saturday's game at Kentucky.

"I think each week that goes on we feel a little bit more comfortable with them being in there," Petrino said. "So I think this week you'll see the two of them in there a little bit more."

Petrino said he has had concerns about Johnson and Curtis in pass protection. That might not be a problem against Kentucky, though.

"This might be a game where they have a chance to play a little bit more because (the Wildcats) don't blitz a whole lot," Petrino said.



Williams Hurting

Arkansas tight end D.J. Williams was feeling the affects of a sore knee Tuesday. But the sophomore — who leads Arkansas with 28 catches for 315 yards and two touchdowns — said it shouldn't keep him out of Saturday's game at Kentucky.

Williams was banged up at Auburn. He remained in the game, but was limping around practice Tuesday.

"It's no biggie," Williams said. "It's no problem. It will be good to go. I just have to get the soreness out. That's what they've been saying. It's just day-by-day. I think it will be all right."

Paul Petrino said Williams should be fine for Saturday's game, too.

"I think he'll be all right," he said. "I think he'll be fine. He moved all right and he'll be just fine."



He's a Lefty

Arkansas receiver Joe Adams' touchdown pass to Casey Dick against Auburn took the Tigers by surprise. But Adams said the hand he threw it with — his left — took even more people by surprise.

"I'm left-handed," Adams said. "I don't know if everybody knew I was left-handed because I heard some people that were like, ‘Wow, he threw it left-handed and he's right-handed.' I was like, ‘No, I'm left-handed.' But it made it sound better."

Either way, it ended up being the first touchdown pass of Adams' young career. He said he had the option to either throw or run the ball and felt like the Razorbacks were going to score either way.

"Since Casey was over there with the big eyes standing over there in the end zone, I threw it to him," Adams said.



Welcome Back, Mitchell

Nose tackle Ernest Mitchell returned to practice Tuesday, an indication that he might be a step closer to rejoining the Razorbacks sometime soon.

Mitchell underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn lateral meniscus in his left knee. At the time, Arkansas defensive tackles coach Bobby Allen said the senior could be out 4-6 weeks.

Mitchell has been rehabbing the past two weeks and he participated in drills with the other defensive linemen during the first part of Tuesday's practice.

Freshman Zach Stadther has filled in for Mitchell, who recorded 16 tackles and a half-sack while starting the first four games of the season.

"He's working hard," Stadther said. "He's going to get back in the next couple of weeks."

Hawgs Daily Top Stories