Nolan Richardson Press Conference Florida
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas plays its second eighth-ranked team in as many games when the Razorbacks travel to Florida (15-5, 5-4) for a noon Southeastern Conference contest Saturday. The game will be televised by Jefferson-Pilot. The Razorbacks (14-7, 5-4) are coming off an 82-77 overtime win over No. 8 Tennessee Wednesday. UT is ranked eighth in this week’s USA Today/ESPN Top 25 Coaches Poll while Florida, which lost at Kentucky Tuesday, 71-70, is No. 8 in the Associated Press poll.
“Florida is a tough place to play. We used to go there and it was all football, but Billy Donovan changed that. Their style of play is much more exciting than before. Today’s fan likes up-tempo basketball. Billy has those fans going. (Teddy) Dupay is fearless. It’s amazing that he’s done what he’s done (recovering from back surgery). I think he has a chance to play on the next level. We both had some players out early and have gotten them back. The difference is they get to play us on their home floor. They seem to shoot really well on their home court, as most teams do. When key players go down, it changes the makeup of your team. For us, it was (Carl) Baker this year and T.J. (Cleveland) last year. Joe (Johnson) is healthier. Maybe he isn’t worried about his ankle anymore. (Jannero) Pargo has stepped up and (Larry) Satchell’s presence has helped. It’s not all about injuries. It’s also about guys improving. Right now, we have a lot of confidence. When you go to someone else’s house, it’s difficult.”
The Tennessee game:
“We played hard and executed the way we’ve been doing. A lot of kids were balanced in their grading. (Alonzo) Lane made some big plays. A lot of people made big plays and a lot of them were on defense. We did a lot of things we’ll have to continue doing to stay in the hunt.”
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