Pelphrey: Beverley Not In Slump

FAYETTEVILLE — In 10 games this season, Arkansas sophomore guard Patrick Beverley has converted at least half of his field-goal attempts only twice. In the Razorbacks' three most-recent contests, the 6-foot-1 Chicago native has failed to score more than 10 points and has missed 14-of-15 3-point shots.

You might say Beverley is in a slump. Actually, don't say that. You might anger Arkansas coach John Pelphrey.

"I would never say slump," Pelphrey said. "That's something that I would never say. That's taboo, like talking about the shanks in golf, or the yips. You don't talk about that stuff.

"I don't want Patrick focusing on whatever his numbers. His defense and rebounding are probably at career highs right now. His coachability is at an all-time high. He sacrifices his body, he flies around. Again, shooting is fickle. I can't dispute the numbers, but he'll make his share."

That obviously started Sunday. Pelphrey said Beverley was "awesome" shooting during Arkansas' practice, making 5-of-5 from 3-point range.

Beverley said Monday he hadn't lost any confidence despite making just eight of his 33 shots in Arkansas' past three games. Arkansas point guard Gary Ervin said he and his teammates wouldn't let him, anyway.

"That's the biggest thing on this team," Ervin said. "When somebody's down, we have to pick them up and be positive. He's not knocking down the shots, but I don't think he's sulking his head down and losing any confidence.

"He's a strong mental guy."



Knack For The Boards

Ervin and Pelphrey used the same word Monday when talking about sophomore forward Michael Washington and his explosion of offensive rebounds Saturday in a loss to Oklahoma.

It pertained to Washington's instincts.

"He's got a knack, he's got a nose for that ball," Pelphrey said. "And he's in there. It's not like he's standing around the 3-point line, watching somebody else play. He's always in there. ... He's been offensive rebounding at an alarming rate.

"You just kept thinking (Saturday), ‘Wow, Mike got another one, Mike got another one, thank goodness Mike got that one because we really needed a bucket.'"

Washington had a career-high nine offensive rebounds Saturday, and he has grabbed at least two offensive rebounds in seven of Arkansas' 10 games.

"He just has a knack for the basketball," Ervin said. "And it starts in practice. In practice, he goes for offensive rebounds all the time."



Tip-Ins

The number of 3-point misses in Saturday's loss bothered Pelphrey, but the context of those misfired shots bugged him even more. "Don't shoot a shot that has a 6 percent chance of going in," Pelphrey said, describing several of Arkansas' first-half misses from beyond the arc. ... Pelphrey said he had no plans as of now to play center Steven Hill and Darian Townes at the same time. He said he didn't feel comfortable with either player handling power forward duties in his system. ... The Razorbacks' effort at Sunday's practice encouraged Pelphrey. "I don't think anybody enjoys losing," he said. "They came out in a good frame of mind and worked hard."



WEDNESDAY'S TICKET

NORTHWESTERN (LA.) STATE AT ARKANSAS

WHEN: 7:05 p.m. TV: ARSN (Cox Ch. 9)

WHERE: Bud Walton Arena

RADIO: KXIO-FM 106.9; KEZA-FM 107.9; KKEG-FM 92.1; KFPW-AM 1230; KQBK-FM 104.7; KHGG-AM 1580; KHGG-FM 103.1; KDYN-AM 1540; KDYN-FM 96.7; KTTG-FM 96.3

RECORDS: NSU 4-7, Arkansas 8-2

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