Lineup Changes Possible For Razorbacks

FAYETTEVILLE -- Arkansas coach Stan Heath said there was no shortage of reasons the Razorbacks left Ole Miss on the wrong end of a 73-70 loss Wednesday.

"I think we saw poor defense, poor rebounding, not-great shooting and not-great passing and those aren't ... add them all up together, it's not a good recipe at all," Heath said. "It's one of those recipes you might throw up with."

One of the issues, Heath said, was at the point guard position. Starter Dontell Jefferson had five points, three assists and three steals, but added five turnovers to that mix. It was the fourth time this season and third in the last five games with five turnovers for Jefferson.

"I'll probably shake some things up," Heath said. "I wasn't happy with our play at the point guard spot."

Heath said freshman Sean McCurdy or senior Eric Ferguson would likely start in place of Jefferson against Florida on Saturday.

McCurdy and Ferguson have a combined one start this season. Jefferson has started every other game.

The Razorbacks (16-8 overall, 5-6 SEC) play two games at home before hitting the road to Tennessee. After Wednesday's loss, Arkansas is 3-27 on the road in SEC play under Heath.

Thursday, with a day to reflect on the loss which put Arkansas' NCAA Tournament hopes in doubt yet again, Heath re-emphasized that the Hogs failure to adjust to the Rebels' defensive pressure cost them.

"(Ole Miss was) really being aggressive with the pressure and our response was to drive it," Heath said. "And we drove into a lot of trouble sometimes and we weren't patient enough to wait until those guys got set and deliver the pass.

"We talked about it, emphasized it. It was a key point at half, but we just didn't get it done."

Arkansas' inside players struggled even getting shots.

Seven-footer Steven Hill took no shots, a first for him this season. Charles Thomas and Darian Townes combined for just eight shots. The three combined for just eight rebounds.

Ole Miss center Dwayne Curtis didn't have a similar problem finding shots and pulling down rebounds, finishing with 19 points and 13 rebounds on 6-of-12 shooting.

Senior guard Jonathon Modica said the Razorbacks' guards will take the blame for not helping out the inside players.

"They really pressured me and Ronnie (Brewer)," Modica said. "They denied us a whole lot but we're veteran players and we've got to find a way to not let those things happen. ... Our guards and definitely going to take full responsibility for all that.

"We didn't get the ball to our big guys, me myself included and that's something we can't let happen again."

Modica said the inside game's lack of production offensively could fuel a lack of production on the other end as well.

"We're asking those guys to do a lot defensively and rebound the ball well and the least we can do is reward them and give them the ball. A guy like (Hill) has to touch the ball, he has to draw some attention for us to be successful."

Hill, though, also took responsibility for Arkansas' lackluster performance.

"A lot of that responsibility still falls on us," Hill said. "We've got to, in a way, create some of our own touches by getting some rebounds, getting down the floor, getting some easy baskets."


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