FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas held its second scrimmage of the preseason with two weeks until the season opener against Western Carolina in Little Rock.

Sam Pittman said Saturday’s scrimmage got started with a bang with Isaiah Sategna returning the opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown.

“We were live again on punt and kickoff return,” Pittman said. “Opening kickoff of the game, (Isaiah) Sategna took it 100 yards. Took if for a touchdown on the opening kickoff, and it was a live rep. Obviously, as happy as I am for the kickoff return team, the kickoff team gave up a 100-yard return. But that was a good way to start the scrimmage.

“If I was disappointed in anything, it would be the number of times we got called holding on the edge on offense. Our defense cleaned up their penalties until the last two-minute drill and we got a couple on that. Other than that, I thought the defense flew around and played well. We’ve got some guys back. (Anthony) Booker was back this week. Pooh (Paul) was not in there yet, and 51 came back on offense, Devon (Manuel). Last week, Nathan Bax had an injury. We expect him to be back.”

Pittman said with the format set up this way he felt one side of the ball probably had the better day.

“I thought it was a good, physical battle,” Pittman said. “We had a couple big plays taken back by holding penalties on offense. I think you have to understand, too, the format. If I’m understanding, you want to know who played well and if there’s a winner and a loser. If that was the case and we called it, I’d probably say the defense got the better of the offense. But that’s if we’re looking at ones, twos and threes.

“The format is set up that the offense gets the ball 75 yards away from scoring a touchdown and they’ve got probably 10, maybe 11 plays possibly to score. Really what we’re looking for is making calls, who’s physical, who’s coming around, who can tackle, who can run the ball, who can catch and things of that nature. About 140 plays, maybe more because we did get the ball back in two-minute.”

Pittman also liked what Cam Little, Max Fletcher and Devin Bale did on special teams.

“Another highlight, Cam Little kicked a 59-yard field goal today,” Pittman said. “I think he was 100 percent on his. We might have missed one or two with the twos. Cam, boy he’s kicking the ball really well. Punted the ball well. Punted the ball really well. Both of them, 37 (Bale) and Fletch. A lot of good things.”

After the first scrimmage Pittman was very disappointed in the pass protection. He talked about how it was on Saturday.

“I thought our pass protection was better,” Pittman said. “It’s hard when you’ve got 7 (Trajan Jeffcoat) coming off the edge. That’s a bad man back there. It’s going to take a really good offensive lineman … Here’s the other thing with him, we’re not going into the scrimmage saying we’re going to slide to him, we’re going to chip him or we’re going to do all those things. We’re trying to see if we have somebody that can block him. I did think the protection, even though we’ve still got a long way to go, I thought it was better this week than it was last week.

“And I’ll be honest with you, Andrew Chamblee… Devon Manuel hasn’t played a lot. You can ask 7 about that too, but he doesn’t go against him quite as much as he does the other side. I think Chamblee had a really good week, and I think he’s solidified at worst that second-team left tackle spot. I thought they did better this week in the pass protection, but I think we have a pretty good front. They’re very difficult to play, especially when they’re loaded. Scrimmages, you’re always trying to get that quarterback and receiver game and you’re hoping in practice you see the run game and you feel like you’ve got a good run game or run stopping game. But in scrimmages it seems like you always err on throwing the football more.”

Chamblee is a 6-foot-6, 304-pound redshirt freshman who has the size and length the NFL looks for in left tackles. He and Manuel, 6-9, 310, who is a redshirt sophomore, will continue to battle for the spot filled by Luke Jones last season.

Pittman said Sategna, AJ Green, Lorando “Snaxx” Johnson and Bryce Stephens are in the mix at kickoff returner.

“Nah it’s still a battle in there,” Pittman said. “I think we’ll decide it some time in the middle of next week. I think we have to because Wednesday we start prep on Western Carolina. We’ll review the tape and go from there. But I can promise you it didn’t hurt him.”

Classes start on Monday at the UA. Pittman talked about the focus now that the classes begin and season is nearing.

“Love it,” Pittman said. “I think in camp, I think you have to talk to your kids. To a man, they really liked the early morning practices. And we’re going to keep that. They liked it. They practiced hard. We’re going to be ready for the heat in two weeks because we’ve got two weeks of afternoon practices. Before you ask me about the air conditioning, it’s supposed to be ready to go on Monday.

“But I thought camp went great. I think we’ve got a good culture. We got hot today you know. There was a little bit of tempers flaring out there, back and forth. We got hot. But when you’re hot you’ve got to control those things. It was a great learning experience for us today. We’ve got a good, tough football team and I like where we’re at after two weeks. I really do. A lot.”

Pittman had praise at wide receiver for Andrew Armstrong, Isaac TeSlaa and Jaedon Wilson.

“Yeah, I think two of the three we’re pretty locked in on and we’re close to the third,” Pittman said. “We’re going to play six or seven, but I do think two of them, two of the three are probably a little ahead of the other guys and we’re pretty close on who the other one would be to start, but we’re going to need six of them to play there. 

“I like [Wilson] in there. Well, you know we’re trying to see if he’s one of our three top receivers to run out there with the first group. I like him out there, he got his shoulder a little banged up on Thursday. Put on a green jersey, practiced and then practiced in the scrimmage. He was just not live with the ball in his hand. But everything else he was live. I didn’t want to disrespect the defense in that way. But yeah, I think that’s a good lineup with (An)Drew (Armstrong), (Isaac) TeSlaa and Jaedon (Wilson) in there.”

Arkansas will return to the practice fields on Monday.