Week 2 was rough on Arkansas, as they were beat 16-12 by the unranked Toledo. With that said, the Hogs had a lot of setbacks that went against them against the Rockets, which they need to fix by Week 3, where they square off against the up-and-coming Texas Tech.
What Hog fans are worried about the most for this coming Saturday is the piling list of injuries that Arkansas has. Before the season began, they lost star running back Jonathan Williams, whose return is doubtful for the remainder of 2015. Then, just this week not one, but two of the Hogs’ starting receivers each went down with a broken foot (senior Keon Hatcher and junior Cody Hollister). So, it’s safe to say that the concern for who will catch the ball will be through the roof.
With the downed receivers, youngster Jared Cornelius and veteran Hunter Henry will likely be the top guys to throw to on Saturday. Head Coach Bret Bielema spoke up this week and said that JoJo Robinson will also start when in a three-wide set. Fans have been eager to see JoJo Robinson get some playing time, as the unknown receiver has had to ride the bench in his career at Arkansas for disciplinary reasons. In addition to Robinson, receiver Kendrick Edwards will be taken off the redshirt list and get some playing time for the Hogs.
The running game might be the key factor in beating Texas Tech. In 2014, the Razorbacks defeated the Red Raiders 49-28 while recording 438 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns. Of course, that was with the help of Jonathan Williams. Now, the Hogs will rely on Alex Collins, who posted 212 of those yards last year. In addition to Collins, Rawleigh Williams III will be the backup for the Razorbacks after former backup Kody Walker went down with a thumb injury against Toledo. Williams III didn’t show off in Week 1, but he is projected to be one of the elite running backs of the next generation of Razorbacks, and will soon step into Alex Collins’ shoes. We’ll see this week if that is truly the case.
Without a doubt, the Hogs are still the team we know and love, but this Toledo game was really a setback. Hopefully, the Hogs can regroup Saturday and show the country that they’re not out of the fight just yet. Not only will a win this week instill confidence back into the fans, but into the players as well.
Arkansas takes on the Texas Tech Red Raiders this Saturday,September 19 at 6:00 p.m. CT.