FAYETTEVILLE - The SEC recognized Arkansas junior guard Daryl Macon for his scoring efficiency, which also recognizes the rest of the Razorbacks for cooly delivering the ball to Macon’s hot hand.
That’s the give and take, Arkansas coach Mike Anderson believes, of the SEC Office in Birmingham, Ala. Monday naming Macon the SEC Player of the Week.
Macon, the junior transfer from Holmes Community College in Goodman, Miss. but an Arkansas native and high school graduate of Little Rock Parkview, bounded off the bench to score 13 points, including six of six free throws, in 21 minutes of Arkansas’ 83-76 SEC upset of then nationally 21st South Carolina last Wednesday in Columbia, S.C. and bounded off the bench again in last Saturday’s 98-80 SEC success over the Ole Miss Rebels at Walton Arena int 24 minutes scored 30 points hitting 10 of 13 from the field, including six of nine treys, while sinking 4 of 5 from the line and also dishing two assists.
“It’s probably the most efficient he’s played since he’s been here,” Anderson said Monday. “To me, that says a lot about not only him, but I think our basketball team. He was the hot man and I thought our guys did a good job of really getting him involved and getting the ball to him. When you look at those kinds of awards, it talks about also what our team is doing.”
What they are doing and what highly touted junior college transfer guards Jaylen Barford and Macon are doing is meshing.
“Guys are understanding what we’re doing now,” Anderson said. “This is the time of year you want things to starting coming together and guys really understanding the whole picture.”
Now, says Anderson the returnees and the two juco star guards, always confident in themselves. have become fully confident in each other.
That reflects in this current three-game Arkansas winning streak as the Razorbacks, 20-7 overall and 9-5 in the SEC, ready for Wednesday night’s 7:30 SEC game at Walton against the Texas A&M Aggies, 14-12, 6-8.
“It’s good to see Daryl play with a lot of confidence,” Anderson said Monday. “He’s not lacking confidence but it’s good to see him putting together some games. It goes hand in hand with winning. Our team is playing well and he’s playing better and he’s a big part of it.
“We know he’s capable of scoring, Our team is playing very unselfish now. We had 20 assists in the game against Ole Miss and he had some tremendous nifty passes.”
And received many a nifty pass, it seemed.
“Guys are passing up good shots for great shots,” Anderson said.
Between them senior guard Dusty Hannahs, 78 of 88 free throws for .886 percent, and Macon, 102 of 116 free throws for .879 percent, are making it uncomfortable for teams to foul late in the games that the Hogs lead and are able to keep the ball in their hands.
Macon and Hannahs complement each other in other ways. Earlier this season Macon started and Hannahs was scoring big coming off the bench.
The last few games Hannahs has started and Macon scored big coming off the bench. Since they are Arkansas’ top two scorers, Hannahs leads for all games averaging 14.7 with Macon next at 13.7 while for SEC games Macon’s recent 30 upped him to 15.1 to Hannahs’ 14.6 with center Moses Kingsley, 12.7 and Barford, 12.4 right behind, opposing defenses know either way a fresh shooter is apt to strafe them off the bench.
“These guys are getting quality playing time and now they’re turning those minutes into quality minutes.,” Anderson said. “That’s big for our basketball team. When you look at the guys coming off, not only Daryl at this point in time, and I consider those guys starters.”