2009-2010 ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS BASKETBALL PREVIEW
The Arkansas Razorbacks have a proud legacy of success in the Southeastern Conference, and it is a history of success that fans of the program are desperate to return to. And entering the 2008-2009 season, there was reason for optimism as the team began play with a renewed energy that led to significant early season success. However, as quickly as the team started, the team finished that poorly, and the team's ultimate mark of 14-16 overall demonstrated that. However, the team's record within the SEC is probably more telling when attempting to evaluate the team's overall talent.
Last year, the team finished 2-14 in the SEC.
What makes the team's result last season that much more perplexing is the fact that, on paper, Arkansas seems to have a lot of talent on the roster. Indeed, the top of the roster was indeed loaded with talent. However, what really crushed this team down the stretch last season was the utter lack of depth. This is something that John Pelphrey is sincerely hoping is rectified via the recruitment process. And the team does have some talent coming in. But whether it will be enough remains to be seen.
The star of the class looks to be four star big man Marshawn Powell, who is probably going to enter the season more polished defensively than on offense. He will need to work at his offensive game, particularly when it comes to his game outside of the paint. Glen Bryant and Jemal Farmer are also expected to bolster the bench this season, although neither are expected to be particularly potent offensive contributors out of the gate.
Again, however, all these youngsters need to provide is depth. Warm bodies who can provide capable minutes. There is a lot of returning talent to shoulder the majority of the load on the offensive end.
Senior forward Michael Washington is going to have to carry much of the load this season. This big man averaged just over 15 points a game last year, and he will be relied upon to do that and more this season. Courtney Fourtson is an exciting young talent who, if his freshman year was any indication, is poised to be one of the league's breakthrough players as a sophomore. And shooting guard Rotnei Clarke, while only a sophomore, is one of the better complimentary players in the league.
Stefan Welsh, a senior shooting guard, provides veteran leadership off the bench.
The Arkansas Razorbacks are unquestionably talented. The question is, is that level talent deep enough into the roster for this team to compete over the course of the entire season. The feeling here is that the foundation is there, but that it just may be one year away from fully accomplishing that task, and the team will likely finish near the bottom of the conference for at least one more year.
If you haven't read it yet, check out our:
- John Pelphrey Biography --Arkansas coach
- 2008-2009 Arkansas Razorbacks Basketball
- 2007-2008 Arkansas basketball
- Arkansas Razorbacks Basketball History
- University of Arkansas Fayetteville Trip
Official Arkansas Razorbacks Basketball Website | Arkansas Razorbacks Basketball Fan Site | SEC Basketball Information | College Basketball Recruiting Info | Razorback Fight Songs | University of Arkansas Campus Newspaper |
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