Cook in, Garland out for Red-White scrimmage

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Thursday, October 19, 2017
Arkansas' Arlando Cook (5) battles Texas' Tevin Mack (0) for a loose ball during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016, in Houston. Arkansas won 77-74. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Arkansas' Arlando Cook (5) battles Texas' Tevin Mack (0) for a loose ball during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016, in Houston. Arkansas won 77-74. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

— The rosters for Friday's 7 p.m. Red-White basketball scrimmage were released Thursday.

Senior Arlando Cook is in and freshman Khalil Garland is out.

Cook has been suspended and away from team activities since his arrest for first-degree assault, public intoxication and disorderly conduct on Sept. 1. He was allowed to return to practice Wednesday, but is still suspended from playing games, Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said.

Cook’s suspension from team activities lasted seven weeks, but Anderson said he feels like it is time for him return. The September arrest was Cook's second alcohol-related arrest in less than a year.

“So I'm comfortable with that as we continue to get the facts rolling in what has taken place,” Anderson said. “He's still suspended from playing. That won't be determined until obviously the case against him is hopefully resolved.”

Anderson said he has a better handle now about the incident with Cook (6-8, 215 pounds), a senior from St. Louis. According to a police report, Cook was spotted hitting another man during an early-morning altercation on Dickson Street.

“I think you start getting information I wasn't privy to that early on, so we're getting some of the information,” Anderson said. “So not only that he's been out seven weeks, think about seven weeks that's a long time away from your team. So part of that suspension him being away and at the same time what has taken place, I'm sure he's remorseful for it and hopefully he'll get to move forward as well as this team.”

Garland (6-5, 190) has a medical issue that was discovered over the summer. Anderson has not disclosed the nature of the problem, citing privacy laws.

“Khalil is still not practicing at this point in time,” Anderson said. “Not in the competition part of it, but still participating in some things we're doing. Everybody else is ready to go forward.”

Doors will open at Bud Walton Arena at 5 p.m. Friday with an autograph session set for 5:45-6:45 p.m. Fans are asked to bring canned goods.

“We want them to all come out and obviously admission is free,” Anderson said. “We want them to bring canned goods, nonperishable items. Hopefully we can load up some trucks and not only help people here in Arkansas, but maybe where the hurricanes have taken place and need food maybe we can help in that capacity. To me Arkansas is not only helping Arkansas, but helping the USA.

“I'm looking forward to getting out in front of the fans. We'll have some officials coming in, some SEC officials. We've got popcorn popping, you've got fans in the stands now I want to see not only how our seniors and underclassmen react but also our freshmen. This is a learning process for those guys.”

Arkansas will have two exhibition games the following two Fridays against Central Missouri (October 27) and Missouri Western (Nov. 3). The Razorbacks are scheduled to open the season against Samford on Nov. 10.

Arkansas was picked sixth in the preseason SEC poll and received two votes in the USA Today Coaches' Top 25 poll that was released Thursday.

“This team here - and you can here it in my voice - I am really excited about,” Anderson said. “It’s not just coach speak. It’s because I have had a chance to be around these guys and we purposedly recruited these guys and hopefully it will get a chance to be the perfect storm.

“I probably have a mountain on my shoulder now. It used to be a log, now it’s a mountain. You know what, every year I say those polls are somebody else’s opinion. Everybody has an opinion. I know who we have out there on that floor and in that locker room.

“It’s a team that was picked last year way below (where we finished) and we were one of the hotter teams playing going down the stretch. It’s not even where you start, to me.

“Everybody starts 0-0. It’s where you finish and how you finish. I think that’s the most important thing. I know guys get tired of hearing that, but I wasn’t my wife’s first choice. I was probably her fifth choice. So it turned out pretty good.”

Anderson is stressing defense to his squad.

“I said it at media day, I want our team to be one that’s known defensively, that’s really getting after people, pressuring people, whether it be in half court or full court,” Anderson said. “We’ve got to learn a little rotation, the little nuances of defense. Not only that, but we have to do it from the start, middle and finish. Offensively, just kind of continue to get familiar with one another, be a team that’s going to have that depth. That’s what we’re working on, creating that depth.”

Fans will get their first looks at freshmen Daniel Gafford and Darious Hall during the Red-White game. Both will play for the White team that also will feature seniors Daryl Macon, Jaylen Barford and Dustin Thomas.

“Daniel, as I said, there are days that he looks like the best player out there and there are days he looks like not the best player out there,” Anderson said. “You can see the potential there.

“One guy that really every day now is starting to stand out is Darious Hall. His versatility, his toughness, his athletic ability, his determination. Each and every day he’s picking up on some of the things that we really embrace and talk about. He’s playing instinctively defensively, rebounding the basketball. He’s really a tremendous rebounder for his size."

A successful Red-White game would be an injury-free one.

“I want to see no one get hurt, first of all,” Anderson said. “That’s the most important thing in the Red-White scrimmage. I want to go out and have fun. I want to see a little resemblance of some of the things we’ve been working on. A team that can not only shoot the basketball but can create for others, rebound the basketball.

“We’ve been really working, really grinding hard, just getting after it. So I want to go out and have some fun.”

Red-White Rosters

White

G Daryl Macon

G Jaylen Barford

C Daniel Gafford

F Dustin Thomas

F Darious Hall

F Gabe Osabuohein

G Jonathan Holmes

Red

C Trey Thompson

F Arlando Cook

G Anton Beard

G C.J. Jones

F Adrio Bailey

G Jalen Harris

G JT Plummer

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