FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas returns to the friendly confines of Bud Walton Arena for its next game, a Saturday afternoon affair against the Vanderbilt Commodores that will air on the SEC Network at 12:47 p.m. Fans in attendance will receive foam fingers and Arkansas students can expect Razorback headbands as well.
Arkansas (14-14, 7-6 SEC) is coming off a tough loss at LSU where nothing seemed to go right until the final moments of the game. Courtney Fortson scored 18 points and Rotnei Clarke added 14, but 21 turnovers and under 40 percent shooting from the floor proved to be a lethal combination for the Razorbacks. The Hogs are however, winners of their last four home games and have not lost on their home floor in more than a month.
The Razorbacks are going to need spirited play from their front court to handle the height and length of the Commodores. Vanderbilt runs 6-7 or better across the front line and Arkansas will need Marshawn Powell, Glenn Bryant and Delvon Johnson to be at their best. The Razorbacks will also need preseason All-SEC forward Mike Washington on the court, but his effectiveness will depend on how quickly his sprained ankle can heal.
Vanderbilt (21-6, 10-3 SEC) is playing for seeding in the NCAA Tournament and still holds hope of a conference divisional title, but will need help in order to get there. The Commodores are coming off a tough, two point, win at home against the Georgia Bulldogs and have just one day to prepare for Arkansasafter their game on Thursday night. Jermaine Beal leads Vanderbilt in scoring at 14.9 points per contest, but A.J. Ogilvy is widely regarded as one of the top big men in the league and is averaging 13.8 points and 6.1 rebounds per contest.
The Arkansas-Vanderbilt game will be broadcast on the SEC Network at 12:47 p.m. on Saturday afternoon. The contest can also be heard on radio across the state of Arkansas on the Razorback Sports Network from ISP with Mike Nail and Rick Schaeffer giving the calls. Nail is in his 29th and final season as the play-by-play voice of the Razorbacks.
Looking past the LSU contest, Arkansas goes on the road to face the Tennessee Volunteers on Wednesday, March 3.