RADIO/TV INFORMATION: The game is being broadcast on radio over the Arkansas Razorback Sports Network, which includes more than 60 affiliates. Mike Nail handles the play-by-play while former Razorback and NBA player Joe Kleine is the color analyst.
500 WINS: UA head coach Nolan Richardson became the 18th active NCAA Division I head coach with 500 career victories when the Razorbacks beat North Carolina-Greensboro, 89-74, on Dec. 10 in Fayetteville. In his 17th season at Arkansas, and his 22nd overall, he is 505-199 (.717). In 17 years at Arkansas, he is 386-162 (.704).
THE GEORGIA SERIES: Arkansas leads the series 11-4 with a 5-0 record in Fayetteville and a 4-1 mark at neutral sites, but Georgia leads 3-2 in Athens. The Razorbacks have won the last four meetings.
NO TV TIME: The Georgia game is just the third of the season which has not been televised. The Razorbacks have been televised 15 times to date. UA plays three more games this year that will not be televised: at Alabama, and at home vs. LSU and Vanderbilt.
OLE MISS RECAP: Ole Miss dominated the boards, 46-27, and outscored Arkansas 18-8 at the free throw line as the Rebels beat the Razorbacks for the ninth time in 11 meetings, 70-64. Arkansas forced 20 turnovers, but the Hogs shot just 41 percent and turned the ball over 15 times. Aaron Harper and Derrick Allen had double-doubles for Ole Miss with 17 points and 10 rebounds, and 10 and 16, respectively. UA rallied from a five-point halftime deficit and took a 35-34 lead with 16:26 to play, but Harper scored the next eight points. Jannero Pargo led the Hogs with 14 points on five of 12 shooting. Brandon Dean had 11 points before leaving the game with a strained right knee in the final two minutes.
DEAN INJURY UPDATE: Senior Brandon Dean, who was having the best year of his career and the best season for any of the Razorbacks, was knocked out of the Ole Miss game in the final two minutes when he was fouled going in for a layup. An MRI on his right knee revealed no ligament or cartilage damage, however he could miss up to a month with a sprained knee and a bone bruise. He began motion treatment Monday, Jan. 21. There is no timetable for his return, but he is not expected to play against Georgia.
LAST YEAR AGAINST UGA: In the regular season finale for each team, Arkansas shot 49 percent and forced 21 turnovers as the Razorbacks recorded an 82-67 victory. UA made 13 of 26 threes while UGA was two of 10. Teddy Gipson scored 16 points, Blake Eddins and Brandon Dean 12 each, and T.J. Cleveland 10. D.A. Layne had 14 for the Bulldogs while Robb Dryden added 12 and Anthony Evans 11.
LAST TRIP TO ATHENS: Five players scored in double figures and Arkansas shot 49 percent while Georgia shot 36 percent as the Razorbacks posted a 74-54 victory on Jan. 12, 2000. Chris Walker scored 16 points, Joe Johnson and Alonzo Lane 13 each, and T.J. Cleveland and Teddy Gipson 10 each. Anthony Evans led Georgia with 15 points. Shawn Fields had 11 points and 10 rebounds.
AT HOME ON THE ROAD: Maybe not, but since Arkansas is 7-4 at home this year, the Razorbacks may be happy to hit the road where they are 3-1 in road games this year. As per NCAA standards, the Illinois (Chicago) and Oklahoma State (Little Rock) games are considered neutral site contests, so Arkansas is 3-1 on the road with wins at Tulsa, Memphis and Auburn, and a loss in the last road game, at LSU. Going back to last year, again not counting neutral site games in the NCAA and SEC tournaments, the Razorbacks have won five straight road games (South Carolina and Alabama). The Hogs dropped their first three road games last season (OSU in Tulsa is considered a neutral site contests).
GIPSON CLOSING IN ON 1,000TH CAREER POINT: Senior Teddy Gipson is attempting to become the second Razorback to score his 1,000th career point this year. Brandon Dean’s 18-point performance against South Carolina on Jan. 16 put the Monroe, La., native in Arkansas’ 1,000-point club. Dean became the 26th Razorback to score 1,000 career points and already ranks 25th on the list with 1,018 points. Dean entered the year with 775 points.
UA’s All-Time Leading Scorers:
1. Todd Day 1989-92 2,395 points
2. Sidney Moncrief 1976-79 2,066
3. Lee Mayberry 1989-92 1,940
4. Scott Hastings 1979-82 1,779
5. Pat Bradley 1996-99 1,765
6. Joe Kleine 1983-85 1,753
21. Alvin Robertson 1982-84 1,097
22. James Eldridge 1968-70 1,090
23. Tommy Boyer 1961-63 1,067
24. Jerry Carlton 1960-62 1,042
25. Brandon Dean 1999-02 1,018
26. Robert McKenzie 1968-70 1,006
Teddy Gipson 1999-02 923
THREE STRAIGHT LEAGUE LOSSES: Arkansas dropped to 2-3 in the SEC with its third straight conference loss on Saturday. The three-game losing streak matches the longest ever for the Razorbacks in SEC play. The Hogs have dropped three straight four other times, the most recent last year when UA began league play 0-3 with losses to Mississippi State, Ole Miss and Vanderbilt. In 2000, UA had consecutive setbacks to LSU, Ole Miss and Auburn; in 1996 to Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama; and in 1993 to Vanderbilt, Auburn and Mississippi State.
JORDAN HITS THE GLASS: Freshman Berry Jordan had the first double-figure rebounding game of his career with a team-high 10 boards against Ole Miss. He had 10 of Arkansas 27 rebounds for the game. The double-figure board total is the first for Arkansas in 12 games, since Dionisio Gomez had back-to-back games of 12 rebounds against Tulsa and 11 against Oklahoma. Joe Johnson is the last freshman to get 10 rebounds in a game, claiming 10 boards, along with 22 points, in the 64-55 home win over Auburn on March 5, 2000.
HOME WOES: Arkansas is 3-1 in away games this year but 7-4 at home with losses to Wake Forest, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Ole Miss. Ole Miss joined USC, Oklahoma and Wake Forest as the only schools with a current two-game winning streak in Bud Walton Arena. UA’s next home opponent, Florida, won in its last visit to BWA.
TWO 30-POINT OUTINGS: Jannero Pargo has two 30-point games and five 20-point games this year. He had a career-high 32 points against Tennessee-Chattanooga and 30 at Memphis. His two 30-point outings are the most for a Razorback in a single season since Pat Bradley had 32 points against Western Carolina and North Texas in 1999. The last time a Hog had three 30-point games in a season was 1992 when Todd Day had 43 against LSU, 39 against Alabama and 35 against Auburn. Day’s performance against LSU is also the last 40-point game for Arkansas.
BENCH PRODUCTION: Arkansas’ style of play under head coach Nolan Richardson means the Razorbacks play more players than most other programs in the nation, so naturally the Hogs will get more points and rebounds off the bench than other clubs. So far this year, 35 percent of UA’s points (457 of 1,321) and 36 percent of the team’s rebounds (200 of 552) are coming off the bench. The highest bench totals came at Auburn when UA’s reserves scored 48 points and against Tennessee-Chattanooga when the bench claimed 19 rebounds.
HOGS PLAYED SIXTH-TOUGHEST SLATE: Several SEC teams have better records than Arkansas, but only one has played a tougher schedule, according to CollegeRPI.com. Kentucky has played the fourth-toughest schedule in the nation while Arkansas’ slate is rated the sixth-most difficult. Tennessee’s schedule is next in the SEC at No. 8 followed by Georgia at No. 36.
…In Arkansas’ seven losses this year, opponents are 153 of 213 (.718) at the free throw line while the Hogs are 88 of 154 (.571). In UA’s 10 wins, opponents are 162 of 255 (.635) while the Razorbacks are 144 of 225 (.640).
…UA is 1-2 against ranked teams this year, losing to then-No. 5 Illinois and then-No. 6 Oklahoma State, and beating then-No. 22 Mississippi State.
…In SEC play, Arkansas has more turnovers (77) than assists (64). For the season, UA has just four more assists (269) than turnovers (265).
…Over the last six games, senior Teddy Gipson is shooting 54 percent from the field (20-37), but he’s even hotter from beyond the arc, hitting 10 of 16 three-pointers (.625) while averaging 9.5 points a game.
…When true freshman J.J. Sullinger reaches double figures in scoring, the Hogs are 8-2.
…When Teddy Gipson hits a three-pointer, Arkansas is 7-3 this year.
…When T.J. Cleveland makes three or more steals in a game, UA is 5-0 this season.
…Arkansas is 32-11 when Brandon Dean scores in double figures.
…Alonzo Lane has made 50 percent of his shots, or better, in 49 of 81 games.
…Of Charles Tatum’s 98 career field goals, 61 are three-pointers.
SEC PREDICTIONS: Arkansas has been picked by the media to finish second in the SEC’s Western Division behind Alabama. The Hogs received five first-place votes to 15 for the Crimson Tide. Kentucky is the pick to win the Eastern Division and the overall title ahead of Florida. The rest of the order in the West is predicted to be Ole Miss third, Auburn fourth, LSU fifth and Mississippi State sixth. In the East, Florida is followed by Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia and Vanderbilt.
CONSECUTIVE POST-SEASON APPEARANCES: With last year’s selection to the NCAA Tournament, the Razorbacks made their 15th consecutive national tournament appearance. Over the last 15 years, Arkansas has played in the NCAAs 13 times and the NIT twice. Over that stretch, the NCAA years include 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1996, 1995, 1994, 1993, 1992, 1991, 1990, 1989 and 1988. The NIT seasons were 1997 and 1987.
TRAIL OF THREES: With eight three-pointers against Ole Miss, the Razorbacks have now made at least one three-pointer in 447 consecutive games. UA made at least one trey in every game it played in the 1990s. The last time UA failed to make a three was in a 99-92 win at Texas in January 1989, and the Hogs attempted just two three-pointers in that contest. Arkansas has played 511 games since the three-pointer was added to college basketball and failed to make a three in only six games. UA won each of those six games.
STARTING LINEUP: Your guess is probably as good as anyone else’s. In 2000, head coach Nolan Richardson used 22 different starting combinations in 34 games. Every player started at least once. In 31 games in 2001, 19 different lineups took the floor. Richardson has long been known for shuffling his starting lineup. In fact, at Western Texas Junior College, Richardson would hold coin flips to see who would get the starting nod.
Arkansas’ Game-By-Game Starting Lineups
Maine (11-12): Gipson, Pargo, Dean, Lane, Gomez
Wake Forest (11-16): Gipson, Tatum, Dean, Lane, Gomez
ORU (11-18): Gipson, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
Tulsa (11-28): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
OU (11-30): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Lane, Gomez
SWT (12-4): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
Illinois (12-8): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
UNCG (12-10): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
UTC (12-20): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
OSU (12-22): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez
Elon (12- 29): Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez
Memphis (1-2): Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez
Auburn (1-5): Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez
MSU (1-8): Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez
LSU (1-13): Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez
USC (1-16): Dean, Eddins, Gipson, Lane, Gomez
Ole Miss (1-19): Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Jordan, Gomez
Records for Starting Combinations:
Gipson, Pargo, Dean, Lane, Gomez: 1-0 (Maine)
Gipson, Tatum, Dean, Lane, Gomez: 0-1 (Wake Forest)
Gipson, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez: 1-0 (ORU)
Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Satchell, Gomez: 4-2 (Tulsa, SWT, Illinois, UNCG, UTC, OSU)
Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Lane, Gomez: 0-1 (OU)
Dean, Pargo, Gipson, Jordan, Gomez: 4-1 (Elon, Memphis, AU, MSU, LSU)
Dean, Eddins, Gipson, Lane, Gomez: 0-1 (USC)
Dean, Pargo, Sullinger, Jordan, Gomez: 0-1 (Ole Miss)
MEDIA SERVICES: UA Coach Nolan Richardson usually holds press briefings two days prior to each game at 2 p.m. in Bud Walton Arena’s interview room. Players are also available on those days prior to the start of practice. A transcript of Richardson’s press conferences is available on UA’s official web site, hogwired.com. Game notes are available through media teamlink.