Glenn Bryant (6-7, 190), who blocked 8 shots and had a plethora of high-flying acrobatics in the UA's two exhibition games, has finished his two-game suspension.
He will make it seven scholarship players available Friday night at 7:05 p.m. for the Razorbacks (1-1) as they host Appalachian State (2-1), who beat Arkansas 74-67 two years ago in North Little Rock.
Arkansas has three scholarship players suspended and Michael Sanchez not available to play because of injury.
Pelphrey noted that Bryant has been very anxious to play in a real game.
"The exhibition guys are important for those guys, but then you have to miss those regular season games and it's tough," Pelphrey said. "I have paid attention to him. He is excited. He knew the number of days it was going to take for him to get back."
Bryant, averaged 13.5 points and 8 rebounds in the two exhibition wins.
He is a former Oak Hill Academy standout who blocked over 200 shots last season – including a whopping 120-plus on the perimeter.
"If we can get him out there and have him finish some plays and be an athlete, get some offensive rebounds and certainly help us with our defense around the basket – that'd be great," Pelphrey said. "He needs to come in and give us something off the bench."
Pelphrey says Bryant has had a great attitude in practice while serving the suspension, which occurred because of his involvement in an incident at a UA fraternity house in late August.
"He's been tremendous," Pelphrey said. "He really has. He's impressed us. It's caught our attention how well he's listened, how well he is trying to pick up things…He has been attentive, he is a high energy guy and I think he is getting better."
Arkansas junior small forward Jemal Farmer, who is playing an average of 33 minutes per game, said he will be happy to get a little more rest with Bryant back.
"I'm glad to have Glenn back because he brings a lot of energy," Farmer said. "Plus he's another body and we definitely need that.
"…I know he's real excited to get back and help the team anyway he can," Farmer added. "He's another presence in the middle that will help us out."
Appalachian State is once again led by by Buzz Peterson, who left the school to take a head coaching job Tulsa and then moved on to Tennessee.
While senior center Michael Washington is the only Arkansas player that will play tonight that was in the previous game between the two, Appalachian State has four.
Those are led by 6-10, 285-pound junior center Isaac Butts (13.3, 9.3) and 6-1 senior guard Donald Sims (13.0) and Kellen Brand (12.7).
Sims had 24 points with 4 3-pointers in the upset of Arkansas while Butts had 8 points and 6 rebounds and Brand 5 points and 6 boards.
"I believe that they have four guys at least that played against us in (North) Little Rock and played well," Pelphrey said. "Sims had a tremendous game, Butts was a part of a front court that day that played outstanding against our front court and we had a pretty good front court.
"It will a big challenge for us," Pelphrey said. "They have a new coach in Buzz and they are going to change defenses and probably pressure us a little bit and be very, very aggressive with those guards off the bounce. Butts is more than capable of catching the ball in the low post and getting some angles."
Appalachian State shot 67 percent from the field in that win over Arkansas, including 80 percent in the second half while going 11 of 14.
"I think they got out and kind of controlled the game a little bit," Pelphrey added. "We kept making runs, but never could get enough. We were playing real well at the time either."
Pelphrey admits the loss was one that was very disappointing.
"It was tough," Pelphrey said. "It was right before Christmas and probably the first time I have been home for Christmas in a long time – in 12, 13 or 14 years. Basketball is bad for the holidays unless you win. That stuff is in my mind."
Farmer will join Washington (11.5, 3.5), sophomore shooting guard Rotnei Clarke (33.5), freshman power forward Marshawn Powell (16.0, 11.0 ) and freshman point guard Julysess Nobles (8.5 points, 8.0 assists) in the UA starting lineup.
Nobles has dished out 16 assists and had just 5 turnovers in 72 minutes of action.
"I could not ask more out of him of staying the course and not turning the ball over and being coachable," Pelphrey said. "He is a tough little kid now. He is tough. I am all over him every single day in practice and he looks me dead in the eyes and says ‘yes sir.' To me that is a big-time sign of toughness."