No. 24 Arkansas Hits The Road To Take On Auburn
AT A GLANCE
With wins in five of its last six games, No. 24 Arkansas opens a two-game road week at Auburn on Tuesday in the lone meeting between the two programs in the regular season. The Razorbacks have used stingy defense to post back-to-back 20-point SEC wins for the first time since 1993 while they will look hold onto at least a share of second place in the league standings with a win. All four (2-2) of Arkansas’ SEC road games have been decided by five points or less.
• Arkansas (No. 24) is one of five SEC teams in the ESPN RPI Top 40.
• Arkansas is one of five teams in the nation with two top 25 RPI road wins.
• Over its last two games, Arkansas’ opponents have 31 made field goals and 44 turnovers.
• Arkansas leads the SEC in six categories, including scoring (79.3) & offensive rebounds (13.6).
• Sophomore BOBBY PORTIS is averaging 19.0 points and 10.2 boards in SEC play.
Arkansas has held its last five opponents to less than 65 points. It marks the first time in program history that the feat has been accomplished in SEC play and the first since 1984 in Southwest Conference action.
|NO. 24/23 ARKANSAS (18-5, 7-3) AT AUBURN (11-12, 3-7)|
DATE | TIME
|Tuesday, February 9, 2015 | 8:05 p.m., CT|
SITE | ARENA
|Auburn, Ala. | Auburn Arena (9,121)|
TV | VIDEO
|ESPNU | ESPN3 | WatchESPN App|
|Rich Hollenberg (PBP), Dino Gaudio (Analyst)|
|Razorback/IMG Sports Network|
|Chuck Barrett (P-B-P) & Scotty Thurman (Analyst)|
|Twitter | Facebook | Instagram|
|#Fastest40 | #BeatAuburn|
@RAZORBACKMBB FAST BREAK FACTS
• Ranked No. 24 in the Associated Press Poll.
• Part of a three-way tie for second place in the SEC at 7-3.
• Best start through the first 10 SEC games since 1997-98.
• Won back-to-back SEC games by 20 points for the first time since 1993 … never won three straight by 20 points.
• Currently No. 24 in the ESPN RPI with seven wins over the top 100.
• One of five teams (Duke, Kansas, Providence, Virginia) with two top 25 RPI road wins – Georgia (No. 21) & SMU (No. 23).
• No. 6 seed in the East Region in Joe Lunardi’s most recent Bracketology released on Feb. 9 that included six SEC teams.
• Rank in the top 20 nationally in points (79.3/14th), offensive rebounds (13.6/19th), assists (16.8/11th), assist/turnover ratio (1.4/14th) and turnover margin (+4.3/10th).
• Own a 4-2 record in SEC games decided by five points or less and have won three conference games after trailing at the half.
• Won 24 straight games when leading at the half.
• Portis leads the SEC in overall scoring (17.7) and in league play (19.0).
• Own a 15-0 record when forcing 15+ turnovers.
• Committed 15+ turnovers four times while opponents have done so 15 times.
• Lead the SEC in assist/turnover ratio (1.4), turnover margin (+4.3) and steals (8.0).
TURNING UP THE HEAT
Arkansas enters Tuesday with a streak of five games holding an SEC foe to less than 65 points, a first in program history and the first time the feat has been accomplished in league play since 1984 in Southwest Conference action. Below is a look Arkansas’ improvement on defense the last five games.
Category Last 5 SEC Games First 5 SEC Games
Points Per Game 55.4 81.2
FG Pct. .354 (96-271) .507 (137-270)
3PT FG Pct. .239 (21-88) .477 (41-86)
RAZORBACKS IN THE NATIONAL POLLS
Arkansas returned to the Associated Press poll for the fifth time this season at No. 24 on Monday. The Razorbacks are 5-4 as a ranked team in 2014-15, while it’s the latest in the season that they’ve been ranked since the end of 1998-99.
Head Coach: Mike Anderson (Tulsa ‘82)
Record at Arkansas: 77-44 (4th Season)
Overall Record: 277-142 (13th Season)
Vs. Auburn: 5-0
Head Coach: Bruce Pearl (Boston College ‘82)
Record at Auburn: 11-12 (1st Season)
Overall Record: 473-157 (20th Season)
Vs. Arkansas: 5-3
Arkansas has won seven straight games against Auburn to own a 31-16 series edge. The Razorbacks are 3-0 at Auburn Arena since it opened in 2010-11. Eight of the last nine meetings have been decided by 10 points or less.
GAME TO REMEMBER
On January 15, 1994, Arkansas set a program SEC record for points scored and avenged a last second loss at Auburn the year before in a wild 117-105 win over the Tigers at Beard-Eaves Memorial Coliseum. A year removed from losing at Auburn on three-pointer by Wesley Person with two seconds left, Arkansas was able to pick up its first road win at Auburn behind 32 points from sophomore SCOTTY THURMAN. Thurman’s third career 30-point game in SEC play featured 12-of-18 shooting from the field as he out-dueled Person who had 28 points on 6-of-15 from three. Arkansas held a one-point lead, 57-56, at the half and went out to the double figure win thanks to 60 points in the second half.
STARTING 5 QUICK 5 HITS
#31 | Anton BEARD (G)
• Started the last three games (3-0), averaging 28.0 minutes.
• Averaging 8.3 points the last six games.
• Reached double figures four times in SEC play after once in non-conf.
• Set season-bests for points (12) and three-pointers (3) at Tennessee.
• Has taken a team-high 12 charges.
#00 | Rashad MADDEN (G)
• 16 points shy of 1,000 for his career.
• His 109 assists are the most by a Razorback since 2008-09.
• Eighth all-time in assists (315), just four behind Todd Day.
• Team leader with a plus/minus rating of +208 on the year.
• Second in the SEC in assists (4.7) and free throw percentage (.893).
#24 | Michael QUALLS (G)
• Seventh in the SEC in scoring at 15.1 points per game.
• T-2nd in the SEC with eight 20-point games, including 30 vs. Bama.
• Owns two of the top four scoring performances by an SEC player this year.
• Has appeared on the #SCtop10 11 times in his career.
• Increased scoring average by 10.5 points since his freshman season.
#02 | Alandise HARRIS (F)
• Returned to the starting lineup six games (5-1) ago.
• Had back-to-back double figure performances at Mizzou & vs. Tennessee.
• Scored 1,116 points over his career at Arkansas and Houston.
• Went 7-for-8 from the field for 15 points during SEC road win at Georgia.
• Out of his 19 double figure outings at Arkansas, 12 have come off the bench.
#10 | Bobby PORTIS (F)
• Averaging a double-double (19.0 & 10.2) in SEC play.
• Eight of his team-leading 10 double-doubles have come in the SEC.
• One of three high-major players averaging 17.5 points and 8.5 rebounds.
• Leads the SEC in scoring (17.7) and field goal percentage (.562).
• Career-best 18 straight games in double figures.