That's when he met with the media for a season-ending press conference that encompassed a variety of topics.
A 12-1 start turned into a 14-16 finish, the 2-14 SEC record the worst at the school in 38 seasons and one that saw lots of disciplinary issues throughout.
"For me right now the focus is that I want to see these young men take ownership of their basketball team, take responsibility for each other and for there to be honor and respect among the team," Pelphrey said. "Police themselves so to speak.
"I get to hear all the time what we are going to do, where we are going to go – all these type of things," Pelphrey added. "They need to show me. We need to see some of that experience take hold. It shouldn't be all the time somebody having to be over your shoulder watching you and telling you to get it done. Let's take ahold of our basketball team and you guys have ownership of it."
Pelphrey noted that he expects all players to return although Michael Washington may indeed test the waters by putting his name in the NBA draft, doesn't have any plans to change his staff and will meet with athletic director Jeff Long soon.
"I think we will talk about things that could make the Arkansas basketball program the best it can be," Pelphrey said.
The Arkansas program lost six seniors from a team that went to the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 2008.
They also lost junior Patrick Beverley before season, Marcus Monk during it and had to depend on several first-year players, but Pelphrey said it is hard to pin the slide on any one thing.
"I have thought about that a lot and I don't think there is an easy one-word answer for you," Pelphrey said. "I wouldn't want to say a bunch of excuses either – because that is what they will be.
"But I think the thing that I would refer to is that I understood who we were coming into the season, I knew it was going to be a challenge," Pelphrey added. "Obviously losing six seniors and (junior star) Patrick (Beverley) and Marcus – I could never imagine Marcus Monk being as good as he was and then we lost him – that's a lot of guys in a short period of time.
"But I would say that if you want put it all on one thing – we just didn't play well enough at the right time," Pelphrey said.
Washington, a 6-10, 240-pound junior, averaged 15.5 points and 9.8 rebounds per game this past season while being a second-team All-SEC selection.
He is considering putting his name into the NBA draft - at least early to get info on if he might be a first-rounder or not.
"I don't know that he has a clear cut answer there," Pelphrey said. "It is certainly his right to test the waters so to speak."
Pelphrey said he will help Washington all he can, but it is his family that will make the decision.
"We will gather some information, but obviously this is a Mike and his family decision," Pelphrey said. "It is not a John Pelphrey or University of Arkansas decision. We will support him to make the best decision possible. We aspire for all these young men to have a chance to play at a higher level and obviously Mike has worked hard to garner some recognition."
Pelphrey said that he thinks Washington is conflicted to a certain extent.
"I think he would like to come back for his senior year, but he also wants to see what interest might be out there," Pelphrey said.
"My sense has been is that if he can be a first-round draft pick – that's one thing – but if not come back and let's work and see if we can't develop into that."
Pelphrey acknowledges that keeping Washington around would certainly make the 2009-2010 Razorbacks better.
"It would be big," Pelphrey said. "He is a second-team all-league player and Michael made great, great strides from his sophomore to junior year. He has got a chance to make a similar jump again as a senior."
Pelphrey has met with some players – who got back from spring break for school on Monday - and will meet with the others quickly.
"To my knowledge, yes," Pelphrey said when asked if he thought all would return. "But I have been doing this for awhile and there is usually some sort of attrition. But as of today in the conversations I have had, I haven't heard otherwise."
Freshmen small forward Jason Henry ended the season on indefinite suspension and was suspended three times during the season.
"I think obviously he has made some strides," Pelphrey said. "Certainly academically we have got a lot of work to do here to finish this thing up. That is where we are really focusing with him."
The coach is expecting Henry to be back for next season.
"I believe so," Pelphrey said. "He was at breakfast check this morning so that is a good start. He is on the team and I don't anticipate taking him off the team."
Arkansas signed three players in the fall – 7-0, 230-pound center Anthony Borden of West Memphis; 6-8, 250-pound power forward Marshawn Powell and 6-5, 215-pound guard/forward Jemal Farmer of Cloud County Community College.
Pelphrey expects all to be on the team next fall although one or two may have to wait to get cleared during the summer.
"We are optimistic," Pelphrey said. "We are hopeful that one of them and maybe more will be able to get into summer school and then the rest be here when the fall semester starts."
He noted that Washington's status really couldn't factor into recruiting in the spring.
"We are always going to be out here scratching around and trying to find a piece to add to the puzzle to make our team better," Pelphrey said. "Not that it couldn't happen, it very well could, but it is very, very difficult right now to say that Michael is not going to be here next year so let's go replace a second-team all-league guy. That is difficult.
"We have a number of front court players in the program and we have signed two more," Pelphrey said. "…If we find somebody that could help us, it would be a different story. We are always recruiting."
Pelphrey did acknowledge that his team was looking to add players in the spring.
"Guys that can help us – big wings, bigger athletic guys," Pelphrey said. "We also need a better ballhandler at the point guard spot.
"We are going to sign some people in the spring, but how many people I don't know."
There were times when Arkansas played just 6 or 7 players a game and had only 9 on scholarship at the end of the season – including a former golfer who started as a walk on.
Having more numbers next season certainly can't hurt.
"I think it will have a tremendous effect," Pelphrey said. "Depth and competition is good. It's going to make Courtney Fortson better. It is going to make Michael Washington better, which will in turn make our basketball team better. The harder practice becomes, the easier the game will be.
"…We will be able to play 8, 9, 10 guys and constantly press, driving people crazy and not have to be worried about foul trouble and fatigue. That will be somebody else's problem."
The NCAA did ask the UA administration back in January for some details on the program – something a source notes concerns some recruits in Mississippi and involves lots of schools those recruits visited during the summer.
There have been no allegations of wrongdoing to this point.
"I don't think it is quote-unquote just recruiting details, but encompasses some other areas," Pelphrey said. "From my understanding, it is an inquiry. I don't really forsee any issues with that.
"I know that myself and the coaching staff – it is very important for us to follow the rules and the guidelines and the spirit and intent of those things," Pelphrey continued. "We believe in doing things the right way just as the way we do our team the right way, school and playing the right way. It is no different than anything else, we don't take any shortcuts.
"I don't see anything there than what they say it is," Pelphrey added.
Pelphrey, a former Kentucky star who played for or coached with Eddie Sutton, Rick Pitinio and Billy Donovan, admits this year was extremely tough on him and everybody involved.
"You probably learn more about yourself when things are going well and nobody wants to win more than a coach," Pelphrey said. "Nobody is closer to it than we are.
"Because of where I had a chance to play, who I have had a chance to be around as examples – I have been very, very fortunate and blessed," Pelphrey said. "Nobody enjoys the victories more than I, but we also understand how elusive winning can be."
The only worse season Pelphrey has had in seven years of head coaching was a 10-18 mark his third year at South Alabama.
His team followed that up by 24-7, winning the Sun Belt regular season and tournament titles and making it to the NCAA Tournament.
"The two times I have been in this type of setting where you are not quite winning as much as you would like – I think about how close the games were competed and had the opportunity to do it," Pelphrey said. "It's pretty amazing stuff. It really is.
"So no matter what it feels like, what has happened a month before, you still need to show up, work and get ready to go because you are going to have a chance," Pelphrey continued. "When you wake up, you better be ready. That is always easier said than done."
There was one thing he was certainly proud about even as the season hit the skids.
"I am very proud of our basketball team in that we never shut it down," Pelphrey said. "That is a tribute to those young men, to the assistant coaches and obviously to our fans because they never shut it down either. They kept cheering for us, showing up. I think they kept believing. We just needed to play better in some games."