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Arkansas Razorbacks at Kentucky Wildcats: Hoops Preview And Live Game Thread

Arkansas travels to frigid Lexington today to challenge Kentucky.

John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

Today, the Kentucky Wildcats hoops squad takes on the Arkansas Razorbacks in Memorial Coliseum. The Wildcats have fallen on tough times of late, losing 3 of their last five and falling to 3-3 in the SEC. If UK wants to entertain any hopes of winning the league this season, they need a victory over the Hawgs today to do it.

About Arkansas

  • Coach: Tom Collen
  • Record last season: 20-13 (6-10)
  • Record this season: 15-4 (2-4)
  • NCAA appearances: 10
  • Most recent NCAA appearance: 2012
  • Most recent NCAA win: 2012

Information courtesy of Women's Basketball State

Team stat comparison

Stat Arkansas Kentucky
RPI 62 26
Conf. PF 58 70.8
Conf. PA 59.8 68.5
Conf. OE 85.8 92.2
Conf. DE 85.2 88.9
Conf. EFG% 38.30% 42.90%
Conf. OR% 50.10% 51.40%
Conf. TO% 16.10% 18.90%

Arkansas Roster

# Name Pos Height Class Hometown Games PPG RPG APG
00 Jackson, Jessica F 6-3 Fr. Jacksonville, AR 19 16.4 6.1 1.3
1 Peak, Keira F 5-9 Sr. Clyattville, GA 19 10.4 4.6 1.4
3 Adams, McKenzie G 5-9 Fr. Frisco, TX 19 10.2 2.2 0.9
11 Berna, Calli G 5-10 Jr. Fayetteville, AR 19 6.9 4.5 7.7
13 Faussurier, Ana-Carlota F 6-2 Fr. Yecla, 12 2.8 1.6 0.2
15 Brooks, Kelsey G 5-9 Fr. Olathe, KS 19 6.7 2.5 2
20 Daniels, Aujontae F 5-8 So. Little Rock, AR 2 0.5 1 0
22 Pitts, Bria G/F 5-8 Fr. Broken Arrow, OK 12 3.4 0.8 1.1
25 Bailey, Joey F 6-1 So. Gunter, TX 19 2.4 2.8 0.8
32 West, Khadijah F 6-2 Fr. Shreveport, LA 8 1.2 1.5 0
33 Wolff, Melissa G 6-0 So. Cabot, AR 19 5 4.7 0.7
42 Bowen, Jhasmin F 6-1 Jr. Wichita, KS 17 9.9 5.5 0.9

Game Analysis

Arkansas is not a particularly big team, nor do they play an up-and-down style. They are mostly a half-court execution team that Kentucky will try to disrupt with their "40 Minutes of Dread" style, which has been only modestly effective this season, possibly due to the new rules interpretations.

Arkansas is not particularly threatening as a shooting team, but unfortunately, Kentucky has had a very tough time putting the ball in the basket. More troubling is the fact that Arkansas is a better team all around than Alabama, who defeated Kentucky by two last game.

Look for Kentucky to frantically try to turn the Razorbacks over and get out to a quick lead. If they fail in this regard, Kentucky will face a long, grinding half-court game, something at which this team has not been proficient. If Arkansas handles Kentucky's pressure, I give the Wildcats no better than a 50/50 chance at this game. Kentucky is in a major funk right now, and if that continues, this will be a struggle when it should be a reasonably likely victory.

This is a critical game for Kentucky, and they must feel the pressure. Losing this game would not only put them on their second 2-game skid of the season, but back-to back home losses would probably put the SEC championship out of reach, if it isn't already. Matthew Mitchell and his charges must be feeling significant schedule pressure, because it starts getting a lot harder from here. The Wildcats must face no less than 5 ranked squads in the next 10 games, 3 of them on the road.

This is one of those games, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, that falls under the category of "must win."