Arkansas coach John Pelphrey said the freshman has been suspended indefinitely from the team. He announced the surprising move during his Thursday afternoon news conference. Pelphrey said the decision was his, but declined to offer specific reasons for the suspension.
"I'm not going to give you why I'm doing it, but I'm going to give you my feelings on what I expect, what I think is important," Pelphrey said. "Here at the University of Arkansas, I think we deserve a disciplined program."
Fortson is averaging 14.6 points and 6.5 assists a game for the struggling Razorbacks, who fell to 1-8 in Southeastern Conference play after the 75-62 loss at Auburn on Wednesday night.
Fortson fouled out of the game with roughly five minutes remaining and received a technical foul as he was leaving the court. Fortson told reporters after the game he was just trying to get an explanation from officials.
When asked if the technical was the reason Fortson was suspended Thursday, Pelphrey said: "Is this an isolated incident? No. ... They don't suspend me when I get (technicals)."
Fortson — who also was suspended for the Red-White Game on Oct. 24 — did not practice with the team Thursday and Pelphrey offered no timetable for his return.
Without him, the Razorbacks will be severely shorthanded against the Wildcats. Arkansas, which is also playing without forward Marcus Monk, will turn to Stefan Welsh, Rotnei Clarke and Marcus Britt to handle the point guard position.
When asked what it will take for Fortson to earn his way back, Pelphrey listed his expectations for everyone.
"I expect the Razorbacks to get out there and play hard," Pelphrey said. "I expect the Razorbacks to have an unbelievable attitude, to encourage teammates, to understand what it's all about to be part of a team. To do your job and to handle adversity. I think we should act a certain way whether we're winning or whether we're losing."