Time For A Razorback Ranking
Who is the best basketball team in the SEC? While the consensus before the season got underway was the Tennessee Volunteers, thanks to the play of the 12-1 Arkansas Razorbacks, it may be time to rethink that answer. Last night, John Pelphrey’s team handled yet another highly-ranked Big 12 foe — the Texas Longhorns — and are now looking to make a splash in the Top 25 rankings and the SEC regular season, which starts on Saturday for the Razorbacks against the Mississippi State Bulldogs.
Against the Longhorns, Arkansas was powered by Stefan Welsh and Michael Washington in the scoring column and it was Washington who punctuated the win with a nasty dunk over just about everybody on the Texas roster (the dunk is around the 3:05 mark in the above video).
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see much of the game last night, so it’s hard to directly comment on what went on; although, looking a little deeper at Arkansas’ schedule and their roster, the accolades everybody is giving them after beating Oklahoma and Texas in a one-week period may be a tad premature. First off, the Razorbacks haven’t left the confines of Bud Walton Arena since November 26, having played their last nine games at home.
Second, the Razorbacks roster is not the definition of a “deep team.” Pelphrey’s starting five is very good but his bench, well, isn’t. What happens when one of the starter studs gets in foul trouble or worse? Against Texas, the Razorbacks got a whopping two total points from their bench, but as long as those starters are available, Arkansas will continue to be a tough out for anyone they play.
They should, for what they’ve done against the Big 12′s elite, be ranked in next week’s poll. Of course, if Rick Stansbury and crew come into Bud Walton and beat the Razorbacks on Saturday, they may not crack that particular rotation.