Non-Conference Schedule

Anybody hearing anything on us possibly being in a pre-season tournament for our non-conference schedule? Right now we only have 3 games outside of Arkansas on our non-conference (@Minn, @OkState, Neutral Site Texas). So that leaves 10 games in Arkansas. I think that may be a little too many home games in the committee’s eyes, since Little Rock is considered a home game. Also, I’m not sure Minnesota and Ok State are going to be that good next year. Minnesota is coming off a horrible year and Ok State has a new coach and they are in the big 12.

If we don’t do a pre-season tournament, I’d at least like to see us do another neutral site games just to make our SOS a little stronger. Committee has made it quite clear if you don’t challenge yourself and play away from your arena in the non-conference, they won’t put you in the tournament (see South Carolina last year).

Also, a question for Dudley and RD. Why do we keep agreeing to playing in Little Rock as a home game in basketball? And then when we lose to mid-majors it absolutely kills our RPI, like when we lost to Mercer last year.

If they have a contract to play in Little Rock every year, wouldn’t it be more beneficial to get like a permanent rivalry game there with a nearby opponent and agree upon it being a neutral site game? The Illinois/Missouri rivalry game that is played in St.Louis comes to mind as a good example of something we should do.

Seems like it would make sense to try to get this going with Memphis. Memphis and Fayetteville are both about 2 1/2 hours away from Little Rock. And even if Memphis isn’t willing to do that. You got UALR, UCA, and ASU all in state that would love the opportunity. And even if their RPI isn’t that great, it still hurts your RPI less than if you lose to these other mid-majors there, when it’s considered a home game.

Evidently you have not been paying attention. Arkansas does not play in-state opposition. Ever. In any sport. For the last 70-odd years. The one exception being when the NIT put us with ASWho in 1987. We also would have played UALR in the NCAA in '89 if they had beaten Louisville in the first round (obviously they didn’t). I happen to agree with the policy. Right now a person can be a fan of both UA and ASU, for instance, because they’re never asked to choose between the two. Playing an in-state opponent forces some people to make that choice.

We play in NLR because crowds at BWA during Christmas break are universally terrible (students have gone home, etc.). The NLR game is not always a no-name opponent; we played Houston in Verizon a few years ago and lost as Alandise Harris went off. As for RPI, who you play is a lot more important than where you play, and IIRC Verizon is considered a “neutral” court for RPI purposes, so it’s just the same as your Illinois-Mizzou example from that standpoint.

Memphis does not want to play us, in BWA, FedEx Forum or NLR. Calipari made the decision to end the series and Pastner opted to continue that.

I’ve been paying attention and it still makes no sense to me. Every other state has multiple universities that play each other. Arkansas is the only one that does not. If we had a rivalry with UALR once at year at Verizon Arena and they happen to beat us every now and then, it’s not going to have Razorback fans converting over to Trojan fans, And I doubt a recruit is going to base which school they goto on one game… SEC>Sun Belt. If anything if the rivalry gets a nice buzz, it may benefit both schools and get more casual fans going to those games and following the teams. Everybody loves a good rivalry game.

And you are mistaken my friend, the game at Verizon arena absolutely counts as a home game for the Razorbacks, always has. As far as RPI concerns if you lose to a team like Mercer, Houston, whoever that has a sub 200 RPI, it’s considered a bad home loss on your resume which REALLY hurts your RPI more than anything else. On the flip side you lose to a team with a 200 RPI on a neutral site, it still hurts, but a little less. We’re talking a few RPI points and well as SOS being a few points higher. And on selection Sunday, we know those few points matter. Especially if you’re on the bubble.

Here’s the offical site for RPI. … etball-rpi

Notice it has Razorbacks as 0-3 on neutral site. The neutral site games they include are Georgia Tech (NIT Tipoff), Standford (NIT Tipoff), and Florida (SEC Tournament)

Also, as opposed to football, there is a ton of hoops talent in LR in the next several classes.

Until BWA returns to its old form, early and often, the criticism.

Finally, I think they LR game counts as a neutral and I believe that is a “better” win for RPI/BPI purposes.

It’s an odd gripe but an unsurprising one.

Mercer actually wasn’t a terrible game for us to schedule in Little Rock. That loss, while disappointing, would not have been much of a hit to our computer rankings had they not had a horribly tragic February. A player was murdered, which could have sent any team into a tailspin. That obviously made basketball not very important, but on top of that from a basketball standpoint Lewis, their leading scorer who torched us, was suspended for the final 13 games. They were like 18-6 when all that hit but won one game in their final 10. That should have been a 24 or 25 win team.

You can call for in-state games until your face is as red as our road jersey and it won’t change a thing. The policy would not have lasted 70 years if the PTB didn’t think it was a good idea. The ASU game in '87 would have been a perfect opportunity to change it, since we played an in-state rival and nothing really changed (although if ASU had held on to a 22-point lead that night, it might have done a lot of things, including getting Nolan fired). I frankly don’t care what the other 49 states do. The schools in the other 49 states don’t have two home football stadiums either, but it’s like pulling teeth to try to get that to change.

By the way, because of the Christmas break factor, playing one basketball game in NLR is much more defensible than playing one football game in WMS, IMO.

My RPI point remains: It’s much more important who you play than where. If Verizon is considered home court, it’s a 0.6 multiplier for a win, 1.4 for a loss. Neutral court is 1.0 either way. But if you lose to a good team at Verizon, not that big a deal. If you lose to a bad team anywhere, you deserve the RPI hit you’re going to take. And Niels is correct that Mercer wasn’t going to be a bad loss until they went into the tank in February.

Yes, we should never question anything the PTB does, they are always right on everything. There’s MANY fans that feel the same way as I do, I didn’t just randomly think about this the other day. On another board we had a discussion last year about this that was several pages long. Even football fans don’t like the Little Rock game being one of their home games. CBB has made his thoughts on the Little Rock game very public. In both football and basketball we are basically giving away one of our home games each year. No other team in the nation does this. If it was that great of an idea not to play other schools in your state, you would think we wouldn’t be the only team doing this right?

And your right for a loss it’s a 1.4 multiplier instead of a 1.0 for a loss if it was considered a neutral site game. Like I said earlier, that can make a small difference in your RPI. And I know you’ve watched Selection Sunday before, when your on the bubble any little thing helps. Most of the teams on the bubble resume aren’t that different, any little thing you have that can separate you helps. Wouldn’t you agree? And as far as what you were saying about the game is there because kids are on Christmas break. You do realize we play several games in Bud Walton arena, including conference games when kids are on Christmas break right? We played North Florida, Vanderbilt, and Miss St. last year during Christmas break in Bud Walton. I’m not sure why you even brought that up, it has absolutely nothing to do with getting the game changed from home game to neutral game.

I’m not sure what you’re upset about. Any hog fan should want whatever helps give the hogs the best chance of getting in the tournament. That’s all I care about. I don’t care where we play. I just think it’s a disadvantage to drive 2 1/2 hours and play in an arena the team does not normally practice in and call it a home game, when no other team in the nation has to do that.

You guys are missing my whole point. Which is why are we still doing the Little Rock game as a home game, when it’s not. Driving 2 1/2 hours and playing in an arena you don’t normally play in is not a home game. I don’t care who we play there, let’s get it considered a neutral site game so if we win we get more points to help our RPI. I don’t care if it’s only a few points, when your on selection Sunday any little thing helps. And the committee has said and shown they give more merit to teams that win away from home. When LR is considered a home game, they can’t give us that credit.


I believe both of your questions have been answered. You just don’t like the answers, so you say they haven’t been answered.

We play in LR for publicity and because time of year. You can disagree with whether that is a good idea or if you believe it, but it’s the answer.

As for who we play there, you can question the PTB all you want. You can kick and scream and write articles on why we should change. It won’t change. I don’t want it to change and many agree with that. I’m all for debate, but this one has been debated and it won’t change.

Between your two issues, I’d focus my energy on moving the basketball game out of state to a neutral site before I focused on creating an instate rival.

I get your point, and I’m not thrilled about having a game in Little Rock simply because we don’t play well there. However, I assume the staff doesn’t have much of a choice as to whether we play a game there or not. Given that they have to schedule a game there, an opponent like Mercer that was projected to be a high-quality mid-major was a good choice.

It’s a game that we should win, and, if Mercer had played to their potential, they could easily have been another team on the schedule that made the NCAAT. Mercer-like teams are not those that normally kill you in computer rankings. For a worse opponent we take a computer hit for showing up. With regards to a better opponent our results in Little Rock are more like that of a true road game. If that’s the case, I’d rather go ahead and get the credit for a true road game or play in BWA where we have an excellent chance of picking up a quality win.

You obviously didn’t read anything I said. I have absolutely no problem playing a game in Little Rock. The problem I have is it being considered a Home game rather than a Neutral site game, in the eyes of the NCAA committee. The committee puts more merit in a neutral site game than home game, that’s a fact and something they have been vocal about requiring teams to play more neutral/away games in the non-conference. In a year that is vital for us to make the tournament, bringing up a discussion about our non-conference schedule and ways to strengthen it seems appropriate to me.

You resorting to name calling because you didn’t comprehend what I’m trying to say is what’s unnecessary. And I don’t need you telling me what I need to focus my energy on and what I can and can’t debate. If I have a hog basketball topic that I want to discuss, I’ll discuss it. If my posts are bothering you, you’re welcome to ignore them and go post in a topic that you’re interested in.

Like I said, I don’t care about us playing in Little Rock or who we play. My thing is why is it considered a home game rather than a neutral site game. Was hoping Dudley or RD could share some light on that. Seems like we could grab some team rather it be in Arkansas, Texas, Tennessee, etc that’s within a few hours away that would be willing to do a deal to play every year in Little Rock and consider it a neutral site game.

As of last week, the Razorback schedule still had one non-conference game to finalize before it will be ready to be released.

Arkansas continues to play in North Little Rock for its Central Arkansas fans, because it has several players from the area, will continue to have players from the area and because there is not a big $$$ difference in doing so.

Football - on the other hand - makes $3 million more per game on average playing in Fayetteville instead of Little Rock.

When football and basketball are paying for every other men’s and women’s sport - except baseball - it makes a big difference.

Arkansas is not going to schedule an in-state team. And that’s ever unless something drastically changes. It’s just not going to happen.

It is my opinion that Arkansas basketball is about to get to the point where it is not going to be worried about its schedule keeping it out of the tournament - especially with the new SEC guidelines.

Arkansas’ players and coaches also use the trip to visit children’s hospitals and other things

That statement right there is all that needs to be said on this subject.

Dudley, Thanks for that explanation. But, I think you missed what I was asking as well. I don’t think anyone understood what I was asking. Maybe, I need to articulate a little better because I was throwing a bunch of scenarios around.

So… Here’s my question. Why is the Little Rock game considered a home game to the NCAA, rather than a neutral site game? Because technically it is a neutral site game. For example when Missouri plays in St.Louis it’s considered a neutral site game for them.

Everybody in this thread is getting upset because they think I’m suggesting removing the Little Rock game, no where in any of my posts will you find that. I’m just curious for our RPI purposes.

Because Arkansas gets all the $$$ and has all the tickets.

It is no more a neutral site game than a a football game at War Memorial.

It’s simply up to them to play better.

Gotcha, so it’s just about the money/ticket distribution on why they use it as a home game. That’s all I was trying to find out, wasn’t trying to ruffle any feathers with the Little Rock fans on here. I just didn’t know how it worked, cause like I said other teams play in-state games in different arenas, but they consider it a neutral site game. I just always thought It would make more sense for us to do the same to help RPI, and wondered why we didn’t. But, you answered the question. Appreciate it Dudley.

That’s a terrible idea IMO until we prove that we can win a game there. Have you looked at our record in North Little Rock? We’ve lost to OSU, Illinois (2), Baylor, Texas Tech, Houston, UAB, and Mercer there. The wins are Rice, Centenary, Jacksonville St., North Texas, etc. We’ve yet to beat a decent team there. I don’t want to lose to Memphis once a year in Little Rock. It’s a large enough sample to imply coincidence is not the reason for our struggles. I really wonder if the physical differences in backdrop between BWA and Verizon affects our shooting. We already play lousy there. Now give half the tickets to the opposition. I’d rather get a win over a not-too-bad mid-major and then go play a true road game.