Arkansas Razorbacks Basketball Preview: Red-White Game Recap

Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

The White team defeated the Red team 112-102. But that doesn't really matter. Here are some takeaways from the scrimmage.

We'll say this up front, be wary of total stats from the game. Ten players scored in double figures, and five had over 20 points. The players made it clear in postgame interviews that they were putting on a show for the fans and that the defensive intensity would be turned up for the first exhibition game against Missouri Southern on Friday.

How about all the new forwards?

They looked solid. Alandise Harris led all scorers with 26 points and led the Red team with 9 rebounds. You'd definitely hope for more than just two blocked shots total from Harris, Kingsley, and Portis, but again, this wasn't a defensive showcase. But there's definitely a lot of potential there and fans should be excited to see that trio together. Hopefully Kingsley won't be the cliche big man who struggles from the free throw line (he was 0-for-4).

Is Bobby Portis for real?

Appears to be. At 6'10" and a high release on his jump shot, it's basically unblockable. He started off the scrimmage with a missed three, but settled in later in the first half and hit a couple of very nice jumpers off the glass from both sides of the post. He finished with 18 points. Only three free throw attempts but I think we'll see him get to the line more frequently. Definitely the smoothest player on the team.

Is Rashad Madden a capable point guard?

He's a capable player, but he didn't look quite like the traditional point guard many may be hoping for. He was the only player on the Red team with multiple assists in the first half (he finished with 8), but he also led the team in turnovers. But I do think a Rashad Madden this year who is much more comfortable and will have a bigger impact than we've seen in his first two years. His development should be exciting to watch. But let's limit his three point attempts (he was 2-7). Look for him to have a higher scoring average and assist average than last year (was 4.2 and 1.8 last year).

Is the three point shooting improved?

Hard to say. Both teams combined were 18-for-46, but were clearly led by Green-Light Bell, who was 4-for-5 in the first half (but finished 5-for-9). Jacorey Williams and Fred Gulley both had good showings from behind the arc. Madden and Michael Qualls both struggled, going a combined 3-for-13. It's important not to take those numbers like it's a real game, as the team was clearly doing more of putting on a show for the fans a la the NBA All-Star Game than going through a full, tough scrimmage. Mardracus Wade, if you're wondering, didn't shoot much from three (1-for-2) but was very effective, scoring 19 total points.

Who's going to replace BJ Young's backcourt scoring?

We'll see a lot more of Bell this year. He'll be relied on to at least hit a few threes each game. I think we'll also see Wade increase his scoring from last year's 6.5 points per game. Even if his three-point shooting doesn't completely rebound, he seems to be able to get points from inside the arc and get to the free throw line (he was 6-for-7 from the line). And as previously mentioned, expect more from Madden as well.

Is Coty Clarke going to be the new team leader?

He'll be among them. He was sort of quiet in the first half with just four points (albeit with six rebounds), but came on strong in the second half and finished with 15 points and a team high 10 rebounds. In the first six minutes of the second half he scored 9 points. I expect to see him increase his average from last year of 7.6 points per game. The Hogs will likely need him to average in double figures this year.

Are we going to see more highlight reel dunks from Michael Qualls?

Oh yes. Very much yes.

Biggest surprise in the game?

Fred Gully tied for second on the team with 24 points, and was 5-for-6 from three. Anderson said after the game that Gully is "very much improved from last year," so hopefully he'll be a solid contributor. The other big surprise was that we didn't see much from Kikko Haydar, who went scoreless in his 21 minutes.

Red Team:

G - Rashad Madden, Kikko Haydar, Fred Gulley, Manuale Watkins

F - Alandise Harris, Bobby Portis, Moses Kingsley

White Team:

G - Mardracus Wade, Rickey Scott, Anthlon Bell, DeQuavious Wagner

F - Coty Clarke, Michael Qualls, Jacorey Williams, Keaton Miles

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