Hofstra entered his game with 24th place Arkansas on Saturday, has proven twice this season that it can take on ranked enemies. But Pride was trailing 0-2 in those games, which lessened the thrill of then-No. 15 Houston and then-No. 20 Maryland last month.
That means there’s a sense of conviction – and finality – for their game against the Razorbacks at Simmons Bank Arena in North Little Rock, Arkansas.
“That’s the topic tonight,” said Hofstra freshman coach Speedy Claxton told reporters after the game. “We have one more on our schedule, and don’t let it slip away.”
Hofstra heeded Claxton’s message in an 89-81 nasty victory Arkansas impressed most of all by who led the effort and what his team went through in the 36 hours leading up to the top of the table.
The Pride’s trip from New York went wrong Friday in Washington DC when their scheduled flight to Little Rock was canceled after boarding, leaving the team’s 23-person tour group reeling. Hofstra couldn’t get that many people on another flight in such a short amount of time, so the team spent the night at an Embassy Suites in D.C. before opting for the final option for a banking sports division. booklet.
Claxton said: “We had to put in some extra money that we don’t normally want to spend, and we signed the contract this morning.
Claxton said his players could get some sleep before the game, but between the game’s day flight and the usual lack of space to watch tutorials, the circumstances weren’t ideal to face a great show of Arkansas.
“We really had to play quickly,” said Claxton.
It works great. Hofstra, haven’t beaten a ranked team since 1976, outperforming Arkansas 44-26 in paint color, thanks in large part to the way Abayomi Iyiola, an Arkansas transfer, who finished with 18 points and 14 rebounds. After spending two seasons with the Razorbacks and appearing in just one game after getting through a torn ACL, the 6-foot-9 forward has ignited his old squad.
“I think he played better than everyone on our squad,” said Arkansas coach Eric Musselman. “All you have to do is select the statistics table.”
The loss marked two in a row for Arkansas, which rose to 10th in the AP Top 25 in late November but will almost certainly find itself outside of Monday’s poll. Aside from the defeat against a team led by one of his former players who flew in a few hours before the game, there was another personal connection to Musselman in Saturday’s loss.
As head coach of the Golden State Warriors in the early 2000s, Musselman coached Claxton. That relationship has paid dividends for Claxton this season when he called his former coach to inquire about Iyiola after Iyiola entered the transfer portal.
Musselman gave it positive reviews, and Iyiola ended up in Hofstra. Then, after several months and a frantic trip with an unexpected stop in Washington DC, Claxton and Iyiola secured victory over the man who had coached them both.
“It’s hard to play against an old team the year after you leave them,” Claxton said. “That’s why this match is even more important for us, because we wanted to do it for Bey. I’m glad we finished it.”
https://www.cbssports.com/college-basketball/news/former-arkansas-player-is-the-man-of-the-hour-for-late-arriving-hofstra-in-upset-of-the-no-24-razorbacks/ Former Arkansas player was man of the hour because Hofstra was late because he was upset with Razorbacks No. 24