Hated Piggies Invade the Drum

Former SWC rival Arkansas takes on Texas at the Erwin Center tonight at 8pm, and tickets are still available.  I'm sure Wells will have a thorough preview up this morning, but here are some links to stories about the rivalry and tonight's game:

The rivalry:

Tonight's game:

Tech loss:


The last time these teams met in the Erwin Center was March 1991 when Texas upset the then-No. 3 Hogs 99-86 in Arkansas' last regular-season SWC basketball game before departing to the SEC.  Most BON'ers are probably too young to remember the glory days of this rivalry, especially the prima donna antics of former coach Nolan Richardson.

"That game marked Strollin' Nolan's first appearance at the Erwin Center since the day that prompted the nickname. On Feb. 4, 1990, Arkansas beat Texas 103-96 in overtime, a game the Longhorns easily could have won.

Third-ranked Arkansas was loaded, with Miller, Todd Day and Lee Mayberry, players who would become NBA first-round draft picks in 1992.

Texas had Lance Blanks, Travis Mays and Joey Wright, the BMW scoring machine. Mays and Blanks were NBA first-rounders later in the spring of 1990.

Given a chance to secure victory in regulation, Mays, the Longhorns' best free-throw shooter, missed the front end of a one-and-one with 12 seconds to play.

Mayberry then hit a 25-foot three-point shot, sending the game into overtime.

The story had subplots. Why didn't the Longhorns guard Mayberry more closely, preventing the long trey? Why didn't they foul him before the shot?

But most enduring was the story of Richardson, who left for the locker room with 14 seconds to go in regulation and returned for overtime without incurring a technical foul.

Richardson initially said he felt ill, later conceding he was merely sick of the officiating.

The next day, the chief rules interpreter for the NCAA said Richardson had deserved a technical for leaving the coaches box in front of his bench, which would have resulted in two free throws for Texas.

Thus the Legend of Strollin' Nolan."

I used to hate this team more than the Land Thieves, primarily because so many of the games seemed to have questionable officiating and more drama on the sidelines than on the court.  Arkansas dominated the SWC kind of like Kansas has dominated the Big XII, and watching the ongoing futility of Texas teams year after year was extremely frustrating.  The talent levels on the two teams this year couldn't be more different than in the heyday of the 70's and 80's, so I'm expecting a far different result tonight.

Tech handed Arkansas their backsides on their home court on Saturday, winning 71-56.  I'll take Texas at home 89-65.

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