1. Injury Updates: Arkansas defensive coordinator Robb Smith said cornerback Tevin Mitchel and defensive end Deatrich Wise should be available to play Saturday.

1. Injury Updates: Arkansas defensive coordinator Robb Smith said cornerback Tevin Mitchel and defensive end Deatrich Wise should be available to play Saturday.


Mitchel has been sidelined the first two games of the season because of the hamstring injury he suffered in preseason camp. Arkansas coach Bret Bielema mentioned earlier this week there was a chance Mitchel could redshirt the season if he didn’t return soon, but the senior was back with the team for Tuesday’s practice.


Smith said Mitchel’s return — as well as safety De’Andre Coley (hamstring) — is valuable as the Razorbacks prepare to defend Texas Tech’s Air Raid offense. The Red Raiders, who will line up in four receiver sets, average 365 passing yards a game.


"Tevin is looking good," Smith said. "Excited for him. He’ll have a role for us. We can move him around a little bit and do some things and help us with some matchups, especially with four wide receivers on the field."


Wise has been limited because of a sprained knee he suffered during preseason camp. The defensive end recorded two tackles in a reserve role at Auburn, but the Razorbacks held him out of last week’s 73-7 win against Nicholls State.


Sophomore JaMichael Winston is still expected to start at defensive end against the Red Raiders, but Smith said Wise should help Arkansas’ defensive front. He’ll be part of a defensive end rotation that also includes Trey Flowers, Tevin Beanum, Brandon Lewis and freshman Anthony Brown.


"He’s done some things this week and we expect him to have an expanded role on Saturday," Smith said.


2. Texas Hogs: Arkansas running back Jonathan Williams will be playing in his home state for the second time in his career. While Lubbock is nearly a 5-hour drive from his hometown of Allen, Texas, Williams said he considers it a homecoming.


And he wants to play well in his return to Texas.


"I’m excited just because I’m a Texas kid and I get to go back to Texas," Williams said. "They didn’t recruit me out of high school. It’s just fun going back to Texas and being able to play in front of my family."


Williams is one of 19 players on Arkansas’ roster from the state. The group also includes cornerback D.J. Dean, nose guard Taiwan Johnson, defensive end Deatrich Wise, receiver Eric Hawkins, cornerback Tevin Mitchel, running back Denzell Evans, kicker John Henson and tight end Alex Voelzke.


It won’t be their last chance to play in Texas this season. Arkansas will return to the state in two weeks to play Texas A&M in Cowboys Stadium on Sept. 27.


3. Jefferson’s New Role: Offensive lineman Cameron Jefferson hasn’t cracked the starting rotation in his first two games. But he has worked been on the field in a variety of roles.


Jefferson played offensive tackle, tight end and fullback for the Razorbacks in last week’s 73-7 win against Nicholls State. He also spent time at guard in camp.


"It tells you he’s smart and it tells you he’s athletic," Arkansas offensive line coach Sam Pittman said. "Anybody that can play those four positions is pretty darn salty. We’re asking him to do a lot, because he can."


Arkansas asked Jefferson to take on some work at tight end and fullback in hopes of getting more size at the position. The 6-foot-6, 307-pound Jefferson played 36 snaps last week, splitting his time between three positions. He also had two numbers, wearing No. 89 as a fullback/tight end and changing into No. 79 to play tackle.


Jefferson said the last time he played tight end was in high school. He doesn’t mind.


"It gets me on the field and using the talent that God gave me," Jefferson said.


4. Extra Points


• Arkansas offensive coordinator Jim Chaney said it’s no secret how Texas Tech plans to defend the Razorbacks. The Red Raiders will pack the box with defenders. "They’re going to load them in there and see if they can stop the run," Chaney said. "That’s what I would do. (Texas Tech defensive coordinator Matt Wallerstedt’s) a fine coordinator, been around the game a long time. I’m sure he’s got a plan, as do we, and we’ll see which one can go out and execute."


• The Arkansas-Texas Tech game will be played 11 years to the day of the Razorbacks’ last nonconference road win. Arkansas beat Texas 38-28 in Austin on Sept. 13, 2003. The Razorbacks are 0-3 in nonconference road games since, losing at Southern Cal (70-17 in 2005), Texas (52-10 in 2008) and Rutgers (28-24 in 2013).


• The SEC Network’s pre-game show – SEC Nation – will air live from Fayetteville before the Arkansas-Alabama game on Oct. 11. The pregame show airs from 9 to 11 a.m. from an SEC campus each Saturday during the season. The Oct. 11 broadcast will originate from Victory Village North, located above Lot 44 on campus.


— Robbie Neiswanger • Arkansas News Bureau