Razorbacks host Houston in hardwood reunion of former SWC rivals

Arkansas freshman forward Adrio Bailey / ArkansasRazorbacks.com

The Arkansas Razorbacks played perhaps their best 40 minutes of basketball of the season last Saturday in a 99-62 rout of Austin Peay, but the Hogs will likely need to top that Tuesday if they hope to defeat the Houston Cougars, which visit Walton Arena Tuesday night.

Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. in the game that will be televised by the SEC Network.

Coach Kelvin Sampson’s Cougars are 6-1 on the season. Their only loss came was 84-65 on a night when the Tigers shot lights out. Houston also won a 72-71 decision over Vermont, but the Cougars rolled over the rest of their opponents by more than 20 points.

Arkansas coach Mike Anderson called Houston tough and gritty and added that’s a trademark of a Kelvin Sampson-coached team. He added that the Cougars are a veteran club that will attack Arkansas’ pressure defense and not get rattled by the environment.

Rob Gray, who averages 19.4 points a game, leads the Cougars, an old Southwest Conference rival of the Razorbacks. Damyean Dotson (13.9), Devin Davis (12.7), and Danrad Knowles (10.1) also average in double digits. Davis leads the Cougars in rebounding with 7.4 boards a game.

The Cougars are a very good shooting team, averaging 50.7 percent from the field and 54.7 percent from three-point range.

Anderson said Daryl Macon did not practice Sunday after hurting his ankle in the Austin Peay game on Saturday, but is expected to play on Tuesday.

The play of Adrio Bailey and C.J. Jones merited them more playing time, Anderson said, and he added their contribution should give him more options in how to deploy the team’s talent.