Arkansas will begin its’ 30th season in the SEC this fall. It is hard to believe that is has been that long. At Arkansas Fight, we are starting a series looking back at Arkansas basketball since entering the SEC. Each week, we will take a look at each SEC team and their history with Arkansas. We’ll dive in to the biggest games and outstanding performances. Next up is Kentucky.
Arkansas All-Time Record versus Kentucky: 11-33
Arkansas All-Time SEC Record versus Kentucky: 11-29
Home: 7-8 Away: 3-15 Neutral: 1-10
Biggest And Best Games Of The Series
February 9, 1994
#3 Arkansas 90 @ #4 Kentucky 82
A top 5 matchup in Rupp Arena between these 2 teams was primetime television. Many members of the 1994 championship team are on record saying that this win over Kentucky gave the belief that they could all the way that season. Kentucky led by 6 at halftime, but Arkansas dominated the 2nd half outscoring the Wildcats by 14. The Hogs shot 50% for the game and held Kentucky to 38.2%.
March 10, 2000
Arkansas 86 vs. #16 Kentucky 72 – SEC Tournament Quarterfinal
The Arkansas historic SEC Tournament run in 2000 went through Kentucky. The Wildcats finished 2nd in the East and were looking to win their 4th straight SEC Tournament. Arkansas was looking for revenge after losing to Kentucky in the SEC Championship game the previous year. The Hogs came out firing from the jump and led by 14 at half. Arkansas had 5 players in double figures while forcing 27 Kentucky turnovers.
January 14, 2014
#13 Kentucky 85 @ Arkansas 87 OT – Qualls Buzzer Beater
This game was close for its’ entirety. Bud Walton Arena was rabid as usual! Ky Madden and Michael Qualls both had 18 points and Bobby Portis posted at double-double. I will never forget where I was when Madden heaved that fadeaway 3 with Qualls running the baseline for the rebound and put back dunk at the buzzer. My college dorm exploded. We run up and down the halls as other people began doing the same! One of the greatest buzzer beaters you will ever see!
January 25, 1992
#9 Arkansas 105 @ #8 Kentucky 88 – First SEC Matchup
The first Arkansas/Kentucky matchup in the SEC was a Top 10 battle. Rick Pitino led the Wildcats with future Arkansas Head Coach John Pelphrey as his star player. Pelphrey scored 22 in this game, but it wasn’t enough as 6 different Razorbacks were in double figures. Arkansas shot 49 free throws plus 50% shooting from the field. Kentucky held a 1 point lead at halftime, but the Hogs dominated the 2nd half by outscoring Kentucky by 18.
March 25, 1978
#5 Arkansas 59 vs. #1 Kentucky 64 – National Semifinal
This is the biggest matchup with Kentucky in school history, but probably the most forgotten. It was the Final Four! The Triplets led the Hogs against the #1 ranked Wildcats. Marvin Delph and Sidney Moncrief played the entire game. Arkansas missed 9 free throws in a game they lost 5. I imagine that this still haunts them to this day.
Scotty Thurman – February 9, 1994
We highlighted this game earlier, but not Scotty Thurman’s performance. Thurman had 26 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists on 9 of 18 shooting. Efficient as usual for Thurman.
Corliss Williamson – January 29, 1995
This was another Top 10 matchup that we didn’t highlight, but Corliss went off! Kentucky’s Tony Delk had 31 points, but Williamson countered with 28 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 blocks, and 2 steals. The Hogs snuck by with a 2 point win.
Rotnei Clarke – February 23, 2011
John Pelphrey was able to defeat his Alma Mater in his final season as head coach at Arkansas, but that may not have happened without Rotnei Clarke. Clarke scored 26 points while shooting 11-12 from the free throw line. Arkansas won 77-76.