FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Arkansas’ men’s basketball team fell 84-78 to Mississippi State on Tuesday night inside Bud Walton Arena.
The Razorbacks are now 12-4 overall and 1-3 in the SEC. Arkansas is back in action Saturday at home against Missouri (5 p.m. CT, SEC Network). The Bulldogs improved to 11-4 and 2-1 in conference play. It was just their sixth win ever in Fayetteville.
Here’s the rundown of what Arkansas coach Mike Anderson had to say following the loss:
- Anderson’s opening comments: “Obviously disappointed with our performance tonight. Obviously it starts with me preparing our guys to play against a Mississippi State team that was, I thought, hungry and very, very confident.”
- Anderson on Mississippi State guard Quinndary Weatherspoon, who had a game-high 25 points: “I thought Weatherspoon got them started making a tough shot with a hand in his face. That’s one of the things we talked about before the game in the scouting report is they’re going to shoot 3-point shots. We’ve got to be there and we’ve got rebound the basketball. Those things there came back to haunt us. Because now you don’t get rebounds and we end up fouling and now they get to the free-throw line.”
- Anderson felt like Mississippi State dictated the pace of the game. “It’s a game I thought was played at their pace for the most part and we saw the results. Like I said, Witherspoon, we had no answer for him. The freshman, Holman, he did a good job of getting to the offensive glass.”
- Anderson on SEC play: “My message to our guys is that the sense of urgency in conference play is every game. You’ve got to have short-term memory. We went to Tennessee and won then we go and play Kentucky for about 30 minutes. That’s history. Now you’ve got to get back and get prepared for a team that’s going to come in and try to steal on your home court and that’s what took place. “
- Mississippi State exposed some holes in Arkansas defensive consistently throughout the game, according to Anderson. “Very, very disappointed in our effort. For the most part in the game I just didn’t think we were linked up. They found that one weak link and as they did it they exploited us. Give them credit. They did an outstanding job of answering the call anytime we made a run at them.”
- “I appreciate all the fans that came out and tried to will us to a win. This team will get better, but I thought we took a step back.”
- Anderson On if this team can bounce back from a 1-3 start in SEC play: “We will. I think we will. We have so many new parts and that’s what we’re seeing. When adversity takes place, you find out a little bit more about yourself. We’ll find out more about ourselves on Saturday.”
- Anderson says it’s a matter of having the right mindset. “I didn’t think we came with the right mindset tonight.”
- Though he believes they can turn it around, Anderson is still worried about where his team is at. “I’ve got tremendous concern, but at the same time it’s one game. It’s four games into conference play. We can turn it around and we will.”
- Anderson on Mississippi State’s 41-29 rebounding advantage over Arkansas: “They got their bodies in there, they made an effort to get their bodies in there and they got to the ball. That’s all about want to. That’s about toughness and heart and going and getting it.”
- Anderson says the key is getting back on the same page and understanding what they want to do defensively going forward. “We’ve just got to figure out what works for this team. The thing I see is we don’t make the subtle adjustment. We’ve got to make those adjustments.”
- Anderson the play of guard Daryl Macon: “I want him to play some defense and get better defensively. I think that’s the biggest key. I want him to get better defensively and our defense will create offense for us.”