Scouting the Arkansas Razorbacks


Kentucky head coach John Calipari talks to Freshman guard Immanuel Quickley while walking off of the court. UK men’s basketball team played against Auburn at Rupp Arena on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019 in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Michael Clubb | Staff

Jake Maynard

Kentucky is on the rise, and CBS’ latest Bracketology update has the Wildcats as a one seed in the Midwest division for their recent success. Arkansas, on the other hand, has been struggling. The Razorbacks have a 14-13 record this season and are 5-9 in conference play. On Feb. 20, Auburn beat Arkansas 79-56, and three days later, the Wildcats beat Auburn even worse than Auburn beat the Razorbacks, 80-53. ESPN gives Kentucky a 95.6 percent chance of victory.

Head Coach: Mike Anderson (ninth year with Arkansas; 165-99 overall record)

Record: 14-13, 5-9 in SEC play; 5-game losing streak

Likely Starters:

#0 Desi Sills: 6’2 Freshman Guard. 3.9 PPG and 1.7 APG.

#1 Isaiah Joe: 6’5 Freshman Guard. 14.1 PPG and 2.6 RPG.

#5 Jalen Harris: 6’2 Junior Guard. 8.4 and 5.4 APG.

#10 Daniel Gafford: 6’11 Sophomore Forward. 16.6 PPG and 8.9 RPG.

#13 Mason Jones: 6’5 Sophomore Guard. 13.9 PPG and 4.0 RPG.

Kentucky versus Arkansas







Opp. PPG




. 480

. 445

Opp. FG%

. 403

. 425


. 359

. 324


. 747

. 662




Reb. Margin















Daniel Gafford

Some NBA scouts projected Gafford as a lottery pick last year before he decided to return to Arkansas for his sophomore season. Gafford’s shot-blocking ability and low post scoring are his two greatest weapons, and perhaps the two greatest assets of the entire Arkansas team.

Luckily for the Wildcats, Gafford gets into foul trouble easily. The big man averages 2.8 fouls per game. With P.J. Washington’s post offense flourishing, he should get plenty of looks down low, and with UK playing in the post Gafford should have more opportunities to foul than usual.

Pressure the Ball

Arkansas is a very turnover-prone team, averaging 13.8 a game. Kentucky’s defense has been efficient this season, especially when Ashton Hagans is having a good game. If Hagans, Keldon Johnson and Tyler Herro can pressure the ball, Arkansas will give up plenty of fast break points.

The game is scheduled for 9:00 p.m. on Feb. 26 at Rupp Arena. For fans who are unable to attend the game, it will be televised on the SEC Network.