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OPINION | WALLY HALL: It's OK for fans to be disappointed after loss

by Wally Hall | February 15, 2022 at 2:45 a.m.

There was a similarity in Arkansas' 68-67 loss to Alabama and the Super Bowl.


The Los Angeles Rams' 23-20 win on the NFL's biggest stage was not a very good game.

It had highlights, but from start to finish, it just wasn't great entertainment.

The commercials were good, and many between the ages of 35-55 probably loved the halftime show. It was a good show overall, but there just seems to be too much Hollywood surrounding the Super Bowl these days.

As for the Razorbacks, it was good that it was disappointing for the fans because it means they care.

After beating No. 1 Auburn last Tuesday the stage was set for disappointment. What was the hardest to handle was the Razorbacks took a 67-66 lead with 48 seconds to play after trailing by 13 with 9:01 left, and for the first time in 10 games they weren't able to put an opponent away.

Understand Alabama is talented. They have basically been underachieving until Saturday.

The Crimson Tide defeated then-No. 3 Gonzaga 91-82, beat Houston, Tennessee and Baylor.

Yet, they lost to Davidson and Georgia.

No doubt they had a chip on their shoulders Saturday. They had something to prove.

Now they are 6-6 in SEC play and look a little more worthy of their NCAA NET ranking of No. 22. Arkansas is No. 33, and that's definitely on the right side of the NCAA Tournament bubble.

What did the Razorbacks in on Saturday was they had trouble scoring.

All total, they missed 48 of 70 shots (31.4%), and after smoking Auburn at the free-throw line by making 26 of 32, they made just 17 of 24 against the Tide.

It wasn't surprising they were 6 of 21 on threes because they are not a great three-point shooting team, although Stanley Umude did hit three of seven. He has been improving in SEC play, going 20-51 (39.2%), while the team is 31% in league games.

Arkansas' leading scorer JD Notae got in early foul trouble and played less than four minutes in the first half.

In the second half, he scored 12 points but never seemed to get into the flow of the game, and the Tide dogged his every step.

They knew he was the leading scorer in the SEC and Arkansas' go-to guy.

That's why when he got the ball with 24 seconds to play, they double teamed him into no man's land.

He started left, was forced back to his right and eventually into the corner where he attempted an off-balanced shot.

Some have questioned why he didn't pass out of that situation or why Eric Musselman didn't take a timeout.

First, Musselman's philosophy is to not call a timeout and let your opponent set a defense.

Second, you want the ball in the hands of your leading scorer with the game on the line.

Lastly, Bama defended him like he was standing between them and victory, and they were right.

So after winning nine consecutive games, including an incredible win over Auburn, the Razorbacks lost one that the fans expected them to win.

The players, Musselman and his staff were more disappointed than anyone.

The kids played their hearts out.

Their souls were in it every second.

They didn't show up at Coleman Coliseum on Saturday and had a cold shooting game.

Umude was the only Razorback to make more than 50% of his shots Saturday, but the problem wasn't from a lack of effort or focus. It was just one of those days.

All teams have them.

Like the Super Bowl, it was a little disappointing, but that means the fans are feeling passionate, and the apathy that was growing until last season has left the building.

Print Headline: It's OK for fans to be disappointed after loss


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