Razorback Watch

FIRST DOWN: No Defensive Changes Expected Arkansas defensive coordinator Willy Robinson said he doesn't want to "panic" after watching the Razorbacks give up 530 yards of total offense in Saturday's 52-41 loss to No. 21 Georgia.

So instead of making major changes to his starting lineup, Robinson said he intends to keep things the same.

"That same group of guys that did some bad things did some awfully good things, so I mean, we're not going to panic," Robinson said following Wednesday's practice. "We got a lot of football left.

"One thing that they did do on a consistent basis (against Georgia) was fly around to the football and swarm to the ball."

Robinson said backup free safety Elton Ford could figure into this week's game at third-ranked Alabama. The sophomore has been bothered by a sprained ankle, and the coaches are slowly bringing him back from a serious neck injury that ended his freshman season.

"He's starting to come back," Robinson said. "He's starting to get healthy, and he's starting to put it all together."

Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino has been critical of his defense since the group allowed Georgia quarterback Joe Cox to pass for 375 yards with five touchdowns and one interception.

Petrino indicated Wednesday that he hasn't ruled out the possibility of making some changes to his defensive rotation. He said the coaches will continue to evaluate each position over the next few days and make changes, if necessary.

Said Petrino: "So we got lots of time before the game."


• Freshman offensive tackle Anthony Oden appears to be in position to make his first career start after working with Arkansas' first-team offensive line during Wednesday's practice. Oden was filling the spot previously held by junior Ray Dominguez, who committed several penalties against Georgia.

w Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino said he has spoken to backup defensive end Damario Ambrose about his arrest Tuesday on a misdemeanor charge of failure to appear. Petrino didn't provide any details on how the junior could be punished.

"Yeah, I've talked to him and everything we do there (as far as punishment) is in-house," Petrino said Wednesday on a Southeastern Conference's coaches teleconference.

A warrant was issued for Ambrose's arrest after he failed to appear in Johnson City Court to take care of a traffic ticket he received in January. The junior has yet to record a tackle in two games this season.

• Petrino said on his radio show that running back Michael Smith (shoulder) continues to practice, though he was held out of contact drills Wednesday.

• Arkansas tight end D.J. Williams has been named the first weekly nominee for this year's FedEx Orange Bowl/FWAA Courage Award. The award is presented every December to a player who displays courage on or off the field.

Vicky Williams, D.J.'s mother, took her children and fled to Little Rock in the summer of 1999 to escape her abusive ex-husband. David Williams, D.J.'s father, is serving time in a Texas prison for attempted murder and aggravated assault on a public servant.


Arkansas punter Dylan Breeding grew up an hour from Alabama's campus, so naturally he wanted to play for the Crimson Tide.

While Arkansas coaches haven't settled on a punter for Saturday's game, the freshman admitted he's looking forward to possibly kicking in front of his friends and family members in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

"I'm really excited because I'd always grown up rooting for the Tide, and I'd always been to all the games (there)," said Breeding, a native of Helena, Ala. "It'll be awesome to go down there and punt."

The freshman has been shaky over his first two games as Arkansas' punter. His only punt in a 48-10 win over Missouri State sailed 36 yards, and he averaged just 37.3 yards per punt in Saturday's loss to Georgia.

Breeding was called for a delay of game penalty prior to his final punt, which traveled only 28 yards. That gave the Bulldogs a chance to drive downfield and extend their lead with a 31-yard field goal with 2 minutes, 10 seconds remaining.

"Me being sort of nervous and anxious to kick it, it messes up my technique and sometimes I don't hit the ball as solid," Breeding said.

Arkansas special teams coordinator John L. Smith evaluates Breeding and fellow punter Briton Forester every week. Smith said he hasn't settled on a starter for this weekend.

"It's just like every position on the football team; you're going to continue to evaluate. And whoever may be doing better may be the guy that week," Smith said. "But if you're the guy and you're in front, you better have some pressure on you not to goof it up."

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