Basketball 2020-21

This team is set to be the best Razorback Basketball team since the national runner up team of1994-95. This team has all the ingredients to compete at the highest level. The head coach and his assistants and staff are top notch. The team has size, basketball skills, scoring from all 5 positions, and will have to be hard nosed on defense to play for Muss.

I am sure that it will take a little time to mesh all the new players into the system, but by conference time, we will be able to feel like we can win every game. Do I think that is likely in an improved SEC, doubtful. But they will be able to play with and beat any of the blue bloods and any upstart that might the surprising teams of the year. In my opinion, the only thing that can stop this team is the awful COVID-19. So everyone, please be safe, follow all the cumbersome and annoying rules to control this horrible disease. No one likes to stay home, wear a mask, social distance, and avoid parties and other gatherings where one’s exposure to the disease is high.

I know others have been affected by COVID and I miss my old life but everyone needs to do what they can to stay healthy and get COVID behind us.

Love the enthusiasm and I think this team could be a Sweet 16 team if everything falls into place. BUT, last years team, though small, had a lot of SEC experience on the roster. We’ve got very good talent but only two players with any major SEC experience, a bunch of young freshmen, and a few talented guys from other leagues. We’ve got the pieces to be a legit SEC contender and tourney team, but we must hope the team meshes quickly.

Yeah, everyone needs to slow their roll on this being the best team since ‘95.

It has the potential to be really good, yes, but let’s watch them play a game first.

I keep remembering a team that had the eventual national champions darn near buried with three minutes left in the second round until a lot of weird things started happening like officials swallowing their whistles. That was only three years ago.

Exactly. And I don’t even know if it will be better than Portis’ sophomore year team.

It could be the best team since '96. I’m not gonna rule that out. But we’ll find that out on the court. If we get there.

I agree that this is a very exciting time, and I cannot wait to watch Muss start melding these players.

But Portis and qualls were a good group.

Hannah’s and Macon and barford was a good group.

And man, dean gibson and Bradley, our last sweet 16, was very good.

If this group can make the sweet 16, we’ll all be doing back flips

GHG

I had not heard “best sine 94-95” labeling until now. But I have seen and heard the “best team in 25 years” phrase used quite a lot in the last month or so.

I think when people say that, they mean the best finish in 25 years, i.e. going to Sweet 16. I think that is very possible with some good breaks along the way.

I don’t think they necessarily mean “the winningest team” in 25 years. In order for that to happen, this team will have to record a Top 10 season in terms of wins in the history of Razorback basketball. Because Portis-Qualls team recorded 6th best season with 27 wins and Macon-Barford-Hannahs team recorded 9th best season with 26 wins.

As far as talent, most of us are prisoners of the moment. And the way recruiting is hyped, the current team always seems the best since something. There was a lot of talk of that with the freshman class of Joe, Embery, Sills, Phillips, Henderson, Chaney, and transfers Jones and Harris plus Garland added to Gafford. But all of them were newcomers.

What this team has going for it is a nice blend of veterans and highly rated freshmen and they are fully loaded with 13 scholarships. And they have a chance of justifying the hype. To me, there are two question marks that need to be answered.

Is there someone on this team that can rough it up inside and get those rebounds in traffic? With Iyiola out, I don’t see that player yet on this team. And I bring up Iyiola, because I don’t know much about him and was hoping he could be that guy.

Second question is who replaces Mason Jones when you got to have a basket. Mason kept us in a lot of games and won some games last year by late in the clock heroics. Can Isaiah do that? Did not see that in his game last year. Can Moses do that as a freshman? Sills did not do that last year. None of the grad transfers or transfers have that in their resume. Can KK or Davis develop into that? Now some will argue that the way this team can shoot, you just have to find an open shooter. But it is not that simple. You have to have the nerves and be fearless to pull that off. And unless you have done it before, it is hard.

I think answers to those two questions will determine how good they will end up.

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Even if the starting five is not the best since ‘96, the talent up and down the roster sure makes the potential of this team very exciting. I know last year we saw the team rely on a limited rotation, and this may be Coach’s preference, but it would seem we could have the option to create some real challenges with different lineups and substitution patterns.

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I think Muss plays with what he has, and last year he didn’t have any real depth. This year, more people with experience, more options.

We have some people who are big enough to bang inside. Smith, Jackson, Jaylin, even Ethan who did very well against Tennessee’s bigs in BWA last year. I would have put Iyiola on this list until the ACL went poof. Vanover? We’ll see. He seems to have put on some weight. Cal listed him at 225; we have him at 247.

After what has happened to Hog football and all the miserable things going on with Covid, being excited by this staff and team feels very good and a six pack of optimism tastes sweet.