Arkansas Coach Mike Anderson hopes his team can win its fourth game in a row tonight for the first time this season.
B.J. Young is playing a more well-rounded game this season without having to carry so much of the scoring load.
The Razorbacks opened the season by winning its first three games, but then were beaten in their next three. Arkansas will play host to a high-scoring team in Northwestern State at 7 in Bud Walton Arena. The Demons (5-3) are not a patsy the Razorbacks can take lightly.
“They're a team that has played some teams that we have played,” Anderson said. “Oklahoma, they went to overtime with them. They're one of the leading scoring teams in the country averaging over 88 points a game.”
The Demons lost at OU 69-65 in overtime while Arkansas beat the Sooners 81-78 in Bud Walton Arena. LSU beat Northwestern State 102-95 and Texas A&M topped them 78-65 with both those games also on the road.
Arkansas (7-4) is coming off an impressive 95-68 win over Alabama A&M in North Little Rock. Prior to that, the Razorbacks beat Robert Morris 79-74 and Alcorn State 97-59. Anderson feels tonight's game will be a good one for fans to watch.
“Obviously, it's going to be an uptempo game,” Anderson said. “They're shooting 48 percent from the field. They will play 10-11 guys. A team that has got depth. It should be an entertaining game.”
DeQuan Hicks leads the Demons in scoring with 14.9 points per game coming off the bench. Shamir Davis averages 14.4 points, Jalen West 14.1 and James Hulbin 11.5.
“They've got balance,” Anderson said. “I think when you've got balance you've got a pretty good basketball team. They have multiple guys who can shoot the ball from the perimeter.”
Anderson watched the Demons' game against Texas A&M.
“They were there with A&M for a long time,” Anderson said. “I thought A&M's size was a big, big factor. They have quick guards that can really attack so we've got to really pay attention defensively and keeping people out of the lane. Not only that we've got to defend the 3-point shooters.”
As far as his team, the Razorbacks haven't played since last Saturday and Anderson wants to see if they still have the same intensity they played with at North Little Rock.
“They're anxious to play,” Anderson said. “You want to hopefully be playing better basketball than you were earlier in the year. The thing we have talked about our team is the effort. Our effort to the glass, on defense, pushing the ball and screening getting other guys open. Effort and attitude are very important this time of year.”
Arkansas will likely start Mardracus Wade, B.J. Young and Rickey Scott at the guards with Hunter Mickelson and Marshawn Powell inside. Scott has been playing well of late and has replaced Rashad Madden in the starting lineup.