Clarke To Return

New Arkansas head basketball coach Mike Anderson confirmed during a radio interview Wednesday that leading scorer Rotnei Clarke will be returning for his senior season, that Marshawn Powell will be out six to eight weeks and that he and his staff were settling in and ready to move the program forward.

Arkansas basketball coach Mike Anderson announced Wednesday that his entire Missouri staff would be making the move to Fayetteville and he'll also be keeping the Razorbacks' leading scorer around.

While there has been plenty of speculation over the future of Rotnei Clarke, Anderson said on "Sports Talk with Bo Mattingly" that Oklahoma's all-time leading prep scorer would be playing his senior season at Arkansas.

Clarke averaged 15.2 points this past season and had asked for his release right after the season.

"I had a chance to visit with he and his parents when I first got here and even as recently as yesterday I visited with him," Anderson said. "I think Rotnei is at peace and he wants to have a special senior year and he wants to do it in a Razorback uniform."

That also appears to be the case for junior-to-be Marshawn Powell, who has also been a subject of transfer speculation and is also injured.

"He's super excited," Anderson said. "Let's put it that way…He is in a cast right now for probably about six to eight weeks. It is not necessarily the same injury. He is doing the things that I have asked of him at this point."

Anderson announced via a release earlier in the day that assistant coaches T.J. Cleveland, Matt Zimmerman and Melvin Watkins would be making up his Razorback staff.

He also confirmed that director of basketball operations Jeff Daniels and strength and conditioning coach David Deets will also be joining him in Fayetteville.

"I'm very excited to have these guys join me at Arkansas," Anderson said in a release. "They are very familiar with the system that I want to run. We enjoy working with one another and to me that makes the ultimate team. Having those guys want to be a part of what we are doing at Arkansas provides continuity which will ultimately help build a better team." Cleveland, Anderson's nephew, is a former Razorback who played from 1999-2002 while Arkansas native Zimmerman was an Arkansas manager from 1987-90.

Watkins was a head coach at Texas A&M and North Carolina-Charlotte before joining Anderson's staff.

That staff expects to be coaching Arkansas' five signees according to Anderson.

"I really think they will at this point in time," Anderson said. "I have had a chance to talk to them all. When I came in, I hit the ground running to meet with them and make sure those guys knew we wanted them to be a part of what we think is going to be a special place and some special years."

Anderson mentioned that the current Razorbacks have a long way to go to be in shape for one of his practices.

"If we started practice today, they wouldn't last but about 30 minutes," Anderson said.

But he does think the players are stepping up to the challenge of the individual and team workouts they can have through April 15.

"I think they are challenged by it and want to show me what they are capable of doing," Anderson said. "The slate is clean. What you did in the past, well, that's just what you did. Now you get a chance to show me on and off the floor what kind of player and what kind of person you are going to be."

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