Arkansas prepped for makeup exam

By: Tom Murphy
Published: Sunday, December 7, 2014
Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson reacts during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Iowa State, Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson reacts during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Iowa State, Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014, in Ames, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

FAYETTEVILLE -- Arkansas knows it can't afford another sluggish road start today at Clemson, S.C.

"We should be hungry," Arkansas senior Alandise Harris said. "We've just got to come with it."

The No. 18 Razorbacks (6-1) fell behind quickly at No. 20 Iowa State on Thursday, gave up 64-percent shooting and lost 95-77 in their first appearance in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge.

Today, Arkansas travels to Clemson (4-3) for a 4:05 p.m. tipoff at 10,000-seat Littlejohn Coliseum.

"It's another test," Arkansas Coach Mike Anderson said. "We didn't pass the test against Iowa State."

Clemson hasn't been as dynamic offensively as Iowa State, averaging 68.4 points per game. The Tigers' three losses, including one at home to Winthrop, all have been by five points or less. Clemson also defeated LSU 64-61 in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

"Defensively, they want to pack the paint so you've got to make shots, and at the same time they want to grind it out," Anderson said.

Clemson is coming off a 69-64 home loss to Rutgers in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The Tigers have balanced scoring, but they can't match Arkansas' depth. Clemson's five starters -- guards Damarcus Harrison (11.9 points per game) and Rod Hall (9.1), forwards Jaron Blossomgame (11.3) and Donte Grantham (10.4) and center Landry Nnoko (11.6) -- account for 79 percent of the team's scoring.

Arkansas' starters -- guards Ky Madden (11.4), Michael Qualls (14.6) and Anthlon Bell (11.9) and big men Bobby Portis (15.1) and Harris (8.2) -- account for 69 percent of the team's scoring.

Clemson Coach Brad Brownell describes 6-10 sophomore forward Bobby Portis as "an out-of-this-world talent" while praising the athletic ability of Michael Qualls and the veteran leadership of guard Rashad Madden.

"It's an older team, one with experience," Brownell said. "Offensively, they move the ball and are very unselfish."

Arkansas struggled defensively against Iowa State, allowing the second-most points in Anderson's tenure.

The Tigers have had defensive issues of their own.

"Our minds have gotten away from what helps us win," Brownell said. "We haven't defended at a very high level most games. We have had some very good first halves but we've struggled in the second, where sometimes we have difficulty scoring and it breaks our will a little bit."

Sports on 12/07/2014

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