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It doesn’t seem possible that the University of Arkansas, which played in the NCAA Tournament last season, could lose 84-67 to the team that finished in last place last season.

That said, Ole Miss clearly was the better team Saturday in Oxford, Miss.

The game plan was two-fold on defense: don’t let Daniel Gafford beat you, and the All-SEC power forward only had two insignificant field goals; and guard the perimeter, which worked well enough.

Offensively, the Rebels pounded the paint and outscored the Razorbacks there 44-28.

Make no mistake, new Rebels Coach Kermit Davis inherited some players. The cupboard wasn’t bare like when Mike Anderson came to Arkansas eight years ago.

For whatever reason, last year’s Ole Miss team didn’t mesh with head coach Andy Kennedy, and he left the team late in the season.

Davis, a little old school and a little new school, got the Rebels to buy in to defense and high-percentage shots for the post players.

Arkansas is separating itself slowly but surely from another appearance in the NCAA Tournament, but the Hogs can get back on a winning track Wednesday when they host Missouri at 8 p.m.

The Hogs need more discipline on shot selection. They were 6 of 23 on threes while Gafford got just 6 shots. They need to be more consistent on defense, especially when switching, and they need to find that chemistry they had earlier in the season.

There’s 14 games to be played plus the SEC Tournament. Now’s the time to start peaking.

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Comments

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  • Retiredofit
    January 19, 2019 at 4:49 p.m.

    Peak? How about show up for a full game! A lot of talent being wasted right now. If you only have one big man inside you can’t win. Double and triple teaming Gafford should lead to closer basket attempts, but no we shot from three point land and don’t even try to rebound. This is coaching not youth. The youth statement was over after the third game. Got to coach them. Year in and year our the our teams always look the same at this point. Tired legs and bodies equal short shots! Hmmmm maybe we shouldn’t play a game before a game 😳

  • arejayjr
    January 19, 2019 at 5:56 p.m.

    Duke has four freshmen. and seem to have no trouble. Coaching is non-existent on this team.

  • Waitjustaminute
    January 19, 2019 at 6:26 p.m.

    I think we're in the first stages of a Bret Bielema-like downhill slide. It's not going to end up pretty.

  • MaxCady
    January 19, 2019 at 7:42 p.m.

    What does Anderson do at practice, just roll the ball out on the floor??!! I don't know what they're playing but it's not basketball.

  • joebub61yahoocom
    January 19, 2019 at 9:49 p.m.

    It is a young crew. Let’s see how it all plays out. Mike’s not a dummy.

  • MM03
    January 20, 2019 at 12:10 a.m.

    As Wally says, that was 8 years ago when the cupboard was bare at Arkansas. 8 years later, mediocre Mike has done virtually nothing. 3 NCAATs in 7 years and a 2-3 record in NCAAT. In year 9 or 10, Mike is not suddenly going to begin challenging KY for SEC champ and getting to Sweet 16 and Elite 8 every couple of years. He's shown all he has already.

  • joebub61yahoocom
    January 20, 2019 at 1:45 a.m.

    Nolan got the prize. That high arc 3. We celebrated. We had the men. Mike gets the men there is no doubt he will strike fear in any challenger.

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