But instead, the second-year Arkansas coach is staying positive knowing that the team's recent run of bad luck will pass.
"You need to conduct yourselves the right way when things are going great and everyone is telling you how great you are, even if you aren't that great," Pelphrey said. "When things aren't going so well and everybody maybe kicking you in your teeth, it's probably not that bad, either."
The Razorbacks (12-5) have lost their four conference match-ups by an average of 15 points, including a 73-51 loss to Auburn Saturday – the program's worst home loss since Harry Truman was in the White House.
Freshman guard Rotnei Clarke said the team isn't feeling down on itself.
"We're confident because we know what we can do as a team and what we can establish as a team," Clarke said. "It's tough going 12-1 and dropping four straight, but that's behind us and we're reaching forward and making new goals for ourselves."
Pelphrey said the key is to practice what you preach.
"We tell the players to not let the last play affect the next one," Pelphrey said. "I think as a coach and as a leader, I have to demonstrate that, too. Certainly it is very difficult and very challenging.
"But I'm so excited about what's going to happen in these next 12 games and for the future. I know if we work hard and do what we're supposed to do, we're going to be really, really good."
Arkansas' press defense has been spotty in SEC play and the Razorbacks have been shut out twice in four games in transition baskets.
Pelphrey said the key to an effective press is making baskets, something his team has struggled with mightily.
"It's hard to press when the ball won't go in the basket," Pelphrey said. "You have to score to press on a make and we aren't pressing on misses."
Arkansas is hitting just 39 percent of its shots in league action and is shooting even worse from beyond the arc, just 13-of-75. To make matters worse, opponents have hit 39 treys against the Razorbacks in four games.
"We're trying this next game to get a hand out and at least get them inside the 3-point line where they can't get the shot up," Clarke said. "Coach Pel says if you let them get it up, that's the end result. You never know what's going to happen. If we can stop them from shooting the ball, we control the destiny of where it goes."
But shots aren't the only deterrent from Arkansas being a pressing team, Pelphrey said, as depth has been a problem, too. Against Auburn the Razorbacks were without Brandon Moore (suspension) and Marcus Monk (eligibility question), and were dealt another blow when Jason Henry was unable to go full-speed in the second half as he battles back from a knee injury.
"You have to make adjustments as the game goes along," Pelphrey said. "There will come a point in time where we'll never take a possession off from pressing, but we're not quite there yet."
Henry battling injury
Henry is questionable for Thursday night's game with Alabama. Arkansas was scheduled to practice twice Tuesday and the freshman guard didn't work out with the team during the morning session.
Pelphrey said it was doubtful he would go in the afternoon.
"We're taking it day-by-day," Pelphrey said. "It's a lot of rehab."
Henry underwent a knee scope Dec. 29 and returned just eight days later in a limited role against Texas. He has played in every SEC game for the Razorbacks and scored a career-high 19 points in a loss at Ole Miss two weeks ago.
Arkansas will definitely be without Moore against the Crimson Tide, serving an indefinite suspension for a DWI, and Monk's availability is still up in the air, though he is working out with the team, Pelphrey said.
Alabama coach Mark Gottfried resigned Monday in his 11th season at the school. Gottfried's dad, Joe, is the athletic director at South Alabama where Pelphrey coached from 2002-07.
"My thoughts and prayers are with him and his family," Pelphrey said. "There are two sides to (coaching). Everybody gets excited about new coaches, but there is also someone's family being adversely affected. I never like to see that happen to anybody."
Alabama will be coached on an interim basis by longtime Gottfried assistant, Phillip Pearson.
Arkansas freshman Michael Sanchez said he expects Alabama's best shot, citing the way LSU rallied after John Brady was fired midway through last season.
"I think it might motivate them, intensity-wise," Sanchez said. "That could be a chance for that team to come together. We've got to come out with more intensity that we've had all year against Alabama."
John Pelphrey discusses his coaching philosophy during four-game losing streak.