Injuries Hit Hogs' Secondary

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas' secondary is already thin on playmakers, and there's a chance the Razorbacks could be without two of their top cornerbacks this weekend.

Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino said Monday junior Ramon Broadway will miss Saturday's homecoming game against winless Eastern Michigan because of a serious hamstring injury. The status of fellow cornerback Rudell Crim, meanwhile, remains uncertain.

Crim has started all seven games this season, but he was unable to finish last week's 30-17 loss at Ole Miss after suffering a hip pointer. Petrino said the junior had X-rays, which came back negative.

"He's made a lot of progress since Saturday, so he probably has a chance to play (Saturday)," Petrino said of Crim.

Broadway could miss more than one game because a hamstring injury suffered at Ole Miss. Petrino said he's hopeful that the junior could return in time for a critical Nov. 7 game against No. 21 South Carolina in Reynolds Razorback Stadium.

Broadway started the first three games of the season, but since then has seen significant action as a backup cornerback. Freshman David Gordon would likely fill in for Broadway.

"He's not going to be able to get back this week. He's got a hamstring (injury) that's substantial," Petrino said of Broadway. "Hopefully, it gets healed up. One thing about Ramon is his history: he heals fast. So hopefully, he'll be back a week from now."

Determined To Go

Arkansas running back Michael Smith was considered a game-time decision against Ole Miss, but he had little doubt he'd play.

After missing a 23-20 loss at top-ranked Florida on Oct. 17 because of a hamstring injury, Smith returned and led the Razorbacks with six carries for 35 yards against Ole Miss. He also caught three passes for 19 yards.

But there was some doubt as to whether the senior would suit up against the Rebels. He was limited in practice leading up to the game, and Petrino was uncertain if his leading rusher would be able to play.

"In my mind, as soon as the Florida game was over, I was going to play last week," Smith said Monday. "It was a little difficult getting prepared for, but I'm glad that we got to that point where I could go out there and run around and give what I did have to help the team."

More Involved

Petrino is still looking at ways for Arkansas tight end D.J. Williams to get more involved in the offense.

The junior, who led the Razorbacks with 61 catches for 723 yards and three touchdowns last season, didn't catch a pass against Ole Miss. It marked the second consecutive game in which he didn't have a reception.

"That's something that I'm having a hard time with is we call numbers, we call plays for (Williams) and he's not getting the ball," Petrino said. "It doesn't seem like the relationship with him and (quarterback) Ryan (Mallett) is good enough as far as how open he's going to be or what's the time he's going to be open."

Petrino said several factors have contributed to Williams not being as involved in the offense this year. The tight end has had trouble getting off the line of scrimmage and getting open, and Mallett has had a tendency to look downfield too often for a deep pass to one of his receivers.

Williams is tied for fourth on the Razorbacks with 14 catches, and his 161 yards and two touchdowns through seven games in only a fraction of what he had at this point a year ago.

"(It's) something we're struggling with right now, and we got to work as hard as we can to find an answer," Petrino said. "... We got get him the ball."


Arkansas' Nov. 7 game against South Carolina in Reynolds Razorback Stadium will be televised by the SEC Network. Kickoff is scheduled for 11:21 a.m.

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