Effort not a problem for Arkansas in loss at Baylor

Just two weeks after being disappointed with his team’s lack of competitiveness in a 97-84 loss at Vanderbilt, Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman was pleased with the effort he put in. seen from his Hogs in Saturday’s 67-64 loss at Baylor.

Of Arkansas’ seven losses this season, four have ended in exactly three runs, including the loss to the Bears.

“I’ve never had a season like this since I’ve been coaching and coaching for a long time,” Musselman said. “Like I said, I feel for the locker room. Three games could rock…Four, whatever, yeah. I don’t…I just hope we can find a way to keep improving.”

To the Razorbacks’ credit, they held the second best team in the nation in adjusted offensive efficiency at under 70 points for only the sixth time this season. It was also the third straight game in which opponent Arkansas scored less than 70 points.

The Bears missed 16 of their final 17 shots to end the first half, and they were shooting just 24.2% from the field, while the Hogs were shooting 60.9% on 10 fewer field goal attempts at halftime. time. The storyline changed in the second half, when Baylor shot 46.2% from the field and went to the free-throw line 15 times, compared to the four trips Arkansas made on the charity strip.

Baylor were in the bonus just under 15 minutes into the game, and that proved crucial. Arkansas forward Jalen Graham said early fouls killed the mood of the game.

“We’re out, that’s all I can say about it,” Graham said. “I’m not too happy about it. There were a lot of things that could have been called both ways, but that’s the way it is. We just have to keep playing hard and see what we did wrong, mistakes and just get back on track.”

Asked about the Bears reaching the bonus so early in the second half, Musselman said it was a big game-changer.

“I’m not going to talk about… How much does it change when somebody’s in the bonus who shoots fouls as good as their players?” Musselman said. “It’s a game-changer… I mean, five minutes into half time…”

Although the Bears made more trips to the charity strip, Arkansas didn’t help themselves with 15 turnovers and five missed free throws — four of which came from Graham, who was 0 of 4 at the line. Graham also had four three turnovers with his four points, nine rebounds and four assists.

“(Three) turnovers from this position is a bit too much and like I said the (three) turnovers and the 0 for 4 from the foul line, we have to convert when we get the small chances we did tonight to get to the line,” Musselman said.

Even after all the mishaps, turnovers, fouls and missed free throws, Musselman’s team was in a prime position to tie the game at the final buzzer.

Davonte Davis was on the free throw line with just two seconds left, and his missed free throw led to a perfectly executed play called “Dagger”, where the ball was knocked down on a wide open Joseph Pinion in the corner. Pinion got his shot, but it wasn’t fair and the Hogs fell to 0-5 on the road this season.

“Joesph looked good,” Musselman said. “Sometimes a hit goes wrong. It’s hard to ask a guy who’s been sitting around for so long.”

Although his team lost in heartbreaking fashion, Musselman’s post-game reaction was very different from what it was two weeks ago, when they lost in embarrassing fashion at Vanderbilt.

One thing that can be said about the Razorbacks right now is that they fight when they step out on the field, and that’s all a coach can ask for.

“The one thing you always expect from your basketball team is to play as hard as you can,” Musselman said. “Everyone who was here came away and saw a great basketball game. I feel for the locker room. They’re giving it their all. I mean, it’s a ranked home team that just beat the Kansas.”

The Razorbacks (14-7, 3-5) will have another quick turnaround with the Texas A&M Aggies (15-6, 7-1) coming to town on Tuesday. Teams will be announced at 6:00 p.m. CT inside Bud Walton Arena and the game will be broadcast on ESPN2.

Leave a Comment