Arkansas Coach Bret Bielema and his team will get an open week following Saturday's game at top-ranked Alabama.
Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen got more passing work this week than any time since his injury in Week 3.
The Razorbacks will use the bye week to get some work in, but also the staff will do some recruiting.
“Monday, our guys will come in and get a chance to work with our strength staff and get a good lift,” Bielema said. “Seven of my assistants will be on the road on Monday from coast to coast and in the state of Arkansas.
“Most will be out a little bit Tuesday morning. They will come in and get great work Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. I will be back out on the road with a number of my assistants Thursday night and all day Friday. We'll maximize our allotment of [evaluations] we can do in the fall. I can't say anything to our prospects yet (NCAA rules), but we will go evaluate high school practices and game days on Friday.”
Bielema was asked on Thursday what he's telling recruits right now.
“Recruiting is so individualized in today's world,” Bielema said. “Whether you are talking to a committed kid from Arkansas, an uncommitted kid from Arkansas, a kid that has never been on campus, a kid that has been on an official visit to have seen campus and what we have, every message is different.
“One of the constants we can preach about is being in the SEC and having a chance to play regardless of position and a chance to come in here and have early playing time. The thing we've got to do is rely on relationships of old. Whether it be as my time somewhere else as a head coach or a coordinator. That was the part that was the strength of our recruiting class last year and I think it will be much the same this year.
“We've reached out to a bunch of areas we've been familiar with in the past. Chicago, Ohio, Minnesota, East Coast, New Jersey and Florida. The kids from Florida, one thing they love to do, if they are going to leave Florida they love to play Florida. That's a nice selling point for us as well.”
Another thing that Bielema can tell recruits is Arkansas' Athletic Director Jeff Long is firmly in his corner. On Thursday, Long took time today to praise the job Bielema and his staff are doing. Bielema was asked what that meant to him?
Junior linebacker Martrell Spaight will return to action this week against Alabama.
“It's a different thing for me,” Bielema said. “The last job I had I had worked for the guy literally as a defensive coordinator. I didn't know Jeff before I got here.
“He's getting to know me. I think what Jeff and the administration, and University in general, sees all the little things all the other people haven't seen just yet. Great indicators of what's to come from the way we handle our recruiting, our budget, our business and transparent relationship with administration. We're not looking to do anything behind your back, do everything we say we're going to do and back it up a hundred-time's over each day with the same guy. I think the spike in academics and the standard we are holding our guys to, on and off the field, our drug policy. All that stuff has come up in a positive upswing. It will eventually have the results carry over to what you want on the field.”
Bielema said other than cornerback Will Hines and defensive tackle Robert Thomas everybody should be able to play on Saturday. He also said that quarterback Brandon Allen got to throw much more this week than any other time since returning from the shoulder injury.
“All the week's prior he had just did handoffs on Tuesday,” Bielema said. “Nothing in the passing game where he could work on timing and rhythm with the receivers. To get that work on Tuesday was huge. On Wednesday he has worked every week since he has been back.
“He threw the ball really well today too. Just to get rhythm is huge. To get him back where he can practice as efficiently as he can to prepare for Saturday would be big.”
Arkansas will also get a linebacker back this week after he missed last week's game with a knee injury.
“Martrell Spaight practiced every day,” Bielema said of his linebacker. “He probably played his best full speed out there today without a brace or anything. He should be full go, ready to roll and excited about the opportunity.”
Bielema said Spaight will start unless Arkansas went with the nickel package on the first play. At cornerback, Carroll Washington will start against opposite Tevin Mitchel, but Jared Collins will see more time this week behind Washington.