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Powell, Peterson Will Play Thursday

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A year after opening the season with just six scholarship players in uniform, Arkansas will have a full roster when it hosts Grambling State on Thursday in Bud Walton Arena.

Razorbacks coach John Pelphrey said Tuesday both forward Marshawn Powell (ankle) and guard Jeff Peterson (hamstring) will be available in the season opener. Both missed one of two exhibition games in the preseason and saw only limited action in the game they played.

“There’s no way either of them could be 100 percent and that may be a little bit longer here before we get to that,” Pelphrey said. “But it’s not going to be a case where they’re playing 40 minutes anyway. So with the time they’re out there, we want them to go as hard as they possibly can. We’re not afraid to use our bench. We’ve got some guys over there that are working very hard. So even though those guys, individually aren’t at 100 percent from a conditioning standpoint, they’re still able to help in limited, less time.

“We’re not worried about numbers right now with either one of those guys. They’re ready to go.”

Powell, an all-SEC selection in the preseason and the Razorbacks’ leading rebounder last year, played in Arkansas’ exhibition against LeMoyne Owen on Nov. 6, scoring seven points and grabbing four rebounds. He missed last week’s exhibition against Victory University, however, as Pelphrey elected to rest him as he recovers from a broken foot suffered in August.

“He’s doing well and he’s getting closer,” Pelphrey said. “I’m not sure the number they threw out there after the first exhibition game, 55 or 60 percent, or whatever. I would say he’s 80-plus right now.”

For Peterson, a transfer from Iowa, Thursday will mark the first in-season game played in nearly 21 months.

“I think any time you have something that important to you and have it taken away, you tend to appreciate it a little bit more,” said Peterson, who redshirted last season. “Coming out here, even last year going through practice and things like that, it just helped me work a little bit harder and play a little bit harder, and just things like that just to see how quickly something can be taken away from you. It helps you see you should appreciate something while you have it.”

“I’m excited to play with my teammates. We’ve got a great group of guys and are just ready to get started.”

Arkansas showed more of an up-tempo pace in the two exhibition games, forcing 32 turnovers in last week’s 109-74 win over Victory University. Peterson said he feels that tempo fits his style of play better than the slower pace he was a part of at Iowa.

“I’m used to pushing the ball up the court my whole life; just going up and down,” Peterson said. “I think my time at Iowa helped me learn some things and how to play. It’s important for a point guard to know when to push the ball and when not to, so it did help me in that aspect to know when to slow up and things like that.”

The Razorbacks and Tigers will tip-off at 7:05 p.m. Thursday night.

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Run Sparks Arkansas Win

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Arkansas used a 25-0 run late in the first half to take the lead and the Razorbacks never trailed again in a 109-74 exhibition win over Victory University on Thursday.

The run gave Arkansas a 45-31 lead after trailing by as many as 11 points in the first half. The stretch lasted 5 minutes, 59 seconds, with 10 different Razorbacks scoring at least one basket.

Rotnei Clarke’s 3-pointer gave the Hogs their first lead of the game at 34-31. Playing in his first game of the preseason, Clarke scored a team-high 17 points.

Glenn Bryant added 15 points and eight rebounds, while Julysses Nobles (13), Michael Sanchez (11) and Delvon Johnson (11) each scored in double-figures.

Arkansas was without Marshawn Powell, who continues to come back slowly from a broken foot suffered in August. Powell had been used in a limited role in the Razorbacks’ exhibition last weekend.

Arkansas hit 43 of 87 shots on the night. The Razorbacks added 21 offensive rebounds and 32 forced turnovers – 23 of which came on steals.

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Powell Won’t Play Tonight

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Arkansas forward Marshawn Powell isn’t dressed out in uniform and won’t play in tonight’s exhibition against Victory University at Bud Walton Arena.

The sophomore is continuing to recover from a broken foot suffered in August. It is believed he is being held out of tonight’s game as a precautionary and will be available for next Thursday’s regular season opener against Grambling State.

Powell played in last Saturday’s exhibition against LeMoyne Owen, scoring seven points and grabbing four rebounds in a limited role.

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Veterans Admitted Free Thursday

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In honor of Veterans Day, past and present military personnel will be given free admission to Arkansas’ exhibition game against Victory University on Thursday night, the University of Arkansas announced Wednesday.

Those wishing to take advantage of the offer will need to show their ID on the south side of Bud Walton Arena at the ticket office.

“We want to take the opportunity to share a small token of our appreciation with all the men and women who have served and protected our country as part of our armed forces,” UA athletics director Jeff Long said in a statement. “Whether they are serving currently or have done so in the past, we are grateful for their sacrifice and their commitment to all of us and our great nation.”

Arkansas’ final exhibition of the preseason will tip-off at 7 p.m.

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Men’s hoops hosts Victory

The Razorback men's basketball team hosts Victory University on Thursday at 7 p.m.

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Peterson, Clarke to Return Thursday

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Arkansas fans will get their first look at guards Jeff Peterson and Rotnei Clarke on Thursday when the Razorbacks host Victory University in the final exhibition of the preseason.

Peterson, a transfer from Iowa, hasn’t played any this preseason with a hamstring injury. Clarke missed the Red-White scrimmage and the exhibition over the weekend with a suspension for a violation of team rules.

“We’d like to have those guys get some reps,” Arkansas coach John Pelphrey said. “I’d like to have all those guys get some reps. It’s probably more important for me than anything else, to see how we’re responding, and find the right combinations, good rotations and those types of things.”

Pelphrey said Peterson’s role will be limited, similar to that of Marshawn Powell in the Razorbacks’ 101-60 win over LeMoyne Owen on Saturday. Powell scored seven points and grabbed four rebounds in his first action back from a broken foot.

“Jeff is practicing more,” Pelphrey said. “We’re leaving him in for some competitive parts of practice.

“The goal for the next two days is some 5-on-5 stuff. We’ll take him out of the some of the other stuff. But we’re going to get him out there in some 5-on-5 situations.”

Clarke is Arkansas’ leading returning scorer after averaging 15.1 points per game last season.

“It will be good to have Rotnei back out there with us and get his input,” Pelphrey said. “He’s been practicing very well.

Arkansas and Victory will tip-off at 7 p.m. Thursday night at Bud Walton Arena.

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Powell Back in Limited Role

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Arkansas forward Marshawn Powell has returned to practice in a limited role, Razorbacks coach John Pelphrey said Friday at the team’s annual media day.

Powell, who broke his foot in August, was unable to begin preseason drills with the rest of the team earlier this month. Pelphrey said it’s unclear whether Powell will play in either of the team’s exhibition games against LeMoyne Owen on Nov. 6 or Victory University on Nov. 11.

“I wish I could play (in the exhibitions) but I am just really looking more at the season,” Powell said. “I don’t have to be back for the exhibition season. It’s not going to hurt me.”

Powell averaged 14.9 points and a team-leading 6.7 rebounds per game last year en route to Freshman all-SEC honors. Earlier this week he was voted first-team all-SEC by league coaches.

Arkansas begins its regular season Nov. 18 against Grambling State at Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville.

Clarke Takes Suspension in Stride

Sophomore Rotnei Clarke said Friday he understands the reasons he was suspended for two games during the exhibition season and is learning from the mistake.

“It is something that happened in the past,” Clarke said. “It’s over with and it’s being dealt with now. We have moved on. I have talked to Coach (Pelphrey) and I have talked to my teammates and I am just moving on.

“I’m just going to have a good attitude and stay positive. I expect to be a team leader this year and be a more vocal leader this year and I am excited about this season.”

Clarke will sit out the Nov. 6 exhibition as part of the suspension but will return for the Nov. 11 exhibition against Victory. He is still practicing with the team, Pelphrey said, even getting time at point guard with Jeff Peterson sidelined by a hamstring injury.

Clarke is Arkansas’ leading returning scorer from last season at 15.1 points per game.

Sanchez Better

Arkansas forward Michael Sanchez looked to be in better shape than ever before Friday. Both he and Pelphrey said he was in the best shape of his life after playing in only four games last season with a case of plantar fasciitis.

“He’s more trim,” Pelphrey said. “He’s a better basketball player.”

Sanchez averaged 5.9 points and 4.9 rebounds while starting 28 games two years ago.

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