In The Past

Arkansas head coach John Pelphrey knows he must get his Razorbacks (8-11, 1-3) over their 31-point beat down by No. 1 Kentucky before Mississippi State (15-4, 3-1) arrives in Fayetteville on Thursday night.

The fans won't be forgetting new No. 1 Kentucky's 31-point thrashing Saturday of the University of Arkansas any time soon.

But UA head coach John Pelphrey said he and his Razorbacks (8-11, 1-3) have to do so to be able to contend with visiting Mississippi State (15-4, 3-1) on Thursday night at 8 p.m.

"Hopefully we will respond in a way that as an athlete you have got to have a short memory," Pelphrey said. "If you are worried about you last shot that didn't go in, chances are it is going to hurt you. We need to take the same approach to this game.

"I mean don't discredit it totally, but you have to have a short memory," Pelphrey added.

Arkansas freshman power forward Marshawn Powell said the loss was an eye-opening experience.

"I never played against nobody that was that big, that strong, and that fast," Powell said. "They should be the No. 1 team in the country."

Pelphrey said he probably wasn't going to have the team watch tape of the game as there was not much his team could really get out of that.

That was just fine with Powell.

"I was hoping that we don't watch anything.,' Powell said. "…"It can't get any worse than that."

But Powell made it clear that his mentality hasn't changed and fans should not be folding their tents because of the loss.

"…We're just ready to come back in here and work like we always do," Powell added. "The season ain't over with."

The Wildcats looked dominant in jumping out to a 10-0 lead and never being headed and leading by 40-plus points at times.

"Obviously going in you have a concern about what is liable to happen and I guess it happened in two minutes, we are down 10-0 and I have to call a timeout," Pelphrey said. "In watching the Louisville game, when they played Louisville kind of the same thing happened.

"I am not sure what the time on the clock was, but it was still a 12-point game and Louisville stayed down 12 most of the first half, but was able to kind of hang in there," Pelphrey added. "But we couldn't score. It was very, very difficult around the basket, we had some opportunities that got blocked and others we didn't make."

The Wildcats had a full week of rest while the Razorbacks were coming off a tough loss less than 48 hours earlier to Florida.

"I don't know how much of an impact it had," Pelphrey said. "If you are going to try and analyze it and try to figure it out then there are probably a lot of reasons that go into that. At the end of the day they played better than we did."

Mississippi State jumped out to a 19-point first half lead before holding on to down Arkansas 82-80 in Starkville just two weeks ago.

The Bulldogs will be coming into this game off a 62-57 loss at Alabama in which they shot a season-low 32 percent from he field.

One thing that Arkansas must do in the game with Mississippi State and one at Ole Miss (15-4, 3-2) on Saturday is keep senior center Michael Washington on the floor.

Due to foul problems, he has played just 37 minutes total in the last two games.

"It's hard, there is no doubt about that," Pelphrey said. "Good player, he is a leader, he is vocal out there, a little bit of a coach on the floor oddly enough. That is not really Mike's personality, but he has kind of done it more this year than he ever has. He has really helped Marshawn and some of the younger guys.

"When he is on the sidelines, he is vocal, too, but we obviously need him on the court," Pelphrey added. "He scores, he rebounds, he makes the middle of our defense good because he takes charges."

Pelphrey thinks it is a combination of factors.

"I think he has some tough luck with some of these calls, too," Pelphrey said. "But obviously it is a probably a combination of all of it. He has had some foul issues in the past, him being one of the better players thus part of the game plan is to go at him, and we have had a couple of road games where sometimes tough calls go against you."

Hawgs Daily Top Stories