Sam Pittman knows the atmosphere against No. 15 Texas will be electric.

Arkansas is set to take on the Longhorns at 6 p.m. CST on Saturday in Fayetteville. It will be the first meeting between the schools since 2014 when the Razorbacks earned a 31-7 victory in the Texas Bowl.

Pittman, then the offensive line coach for the Hogs, remembers the feeling he got upon arrival for that game. It’s one that even the biggest games of his career couldn’t compare to.

“I remember the atmosphere,” Pittman said during his Monday press conference. “I remember getting off the bus before the game and it felt like you were at the Cotton Bowl. It felt like you were at the Sugar Bowl. As a matter of fact, a few years later with Georgia we went to the Sugar Bowl and I didn’t feel like the atmosphere was as good as it was that day when we played Texas in the Texas Bowl. It was a dynamic atmosphere. I remember getting off the bus and going, ‘Wow.’ The crowd was electric the entire night.”

The Hogs are fresh off of a 38-17 victory against Rice on Saturday. Despite trailing 17-7 in the third quarter, they outscored the Owls 31-0 the rest of the way to claim the victory.

The defense made its share of plays to fuel the run, including interceptions from Jalen Catalon and Montaric Brown. But if Arkansas hopes to emerge with an upset on Saturday, it will need even more from the unit.

Texas is coming off of a 38-18 victory against No. 23 Louisiana in Week 1. Offensive mastermind Steve Sarkisian is in his first year leading the Longhorns. He directed the Alabama offense in 2020, leading them to a national championship as the nation’s top-ranked unit.

Bijan Robinson presents the biggest threat for the Longhorns. The speedy running back is also the starting punt and kick returner. He can make an impact in both the running and passing game and finished with 176 total yards and two touchdowns against the Ragin’ Cajuns.

“Robinson is hard to tackle,” Pittman said. “He has elusiveness in space, but he also runs over you. There’s a reason they have him returning kickoffs and punts. He’s fast and tough to bring down. I’ve never seen a guy recently who was the starting tailback and also starting punt and kick returner. They obviously think over there about him what I do. He’s a special, special player.”

Arkansas did a phenomenal job stopping the run this past weekend. The Razorbacks gave up only 82 yards on the ground and 2.1 yards per carry. Pittman said he liked the pressure the defensive line caused and is happy with the depth up front.

However, will that be enough to stop a much more talented Texas rushing attack?

The Longhorns’ quarterback situation is unique. They started redshirt freshman Hudson Card against Louisiana but also played junior Casey Thompson near the end of the third quarter. Card finished as the leading passer with 224 yards and 2 touchdowns. Card was the No. 2 dual-threat QB in the 2020 class, ranked just behind Alabama’s Bryce Young and ahead of starting SEC QBs Luke Doty and Haynes King.

He projects to start again and it will be interesting to see whether Thompson plays at all.

“I like Card a lot because he’s got enough mobility to hurt you,” Pittman said. “That’s certainly special. Early in the Louisiana game, he hurt them with his feet. He seems like a really fine player who has good touch on the ball. He’s commanding that offense. He understands all the checks and things of that nature.”

Pittman and the Razorbacks saw Sarkisian last season at Alabama. The Crimson Tide lit up the scoreboard in a 52-3 victory. Pittman said he has watched film from that game in preparation for Saturday, but is taking it with a grain of salt. Texas, while talented, isn’t Alabama.

Still, he knows Sarkisian will have the offense ready and has the utmost respect for the coach.

“We certainly have looked at it,” Pittman said. “We’d be a fool if we didn’t. At that point he may have been a little more conservative than what they normally would be. It was the last game of the year and they’re trying not to get anybody hurt. They’re going into the SEC Championship Game and all those things. So I think he may have played us a little conservative based on what we saw in previous games of his.

“I think the guy is as good an offensive coordinator as there is in the country. I’ve thought that for a long, long time. I think the national championship he called and then you look at the way he called the game on Saturday, he’s a phenomenal offensive mind.”

An upset of Texas would be the Razorbacks’ first victory against a top 15 team since 2016. If Pittman and company hope to get there, it starts with slowing down this offense.