Unfortunately Arkansas never got its transition game going in College Station. More players didn't translate into more offense. Those ten players managed just 49 combined points against the Aggies as Arkansas got run out of Reed Arena 69-51 in the SEC debut for the home team.
By comparison Anderson used 15 players in Wedneday's 96-70 win over Mississippi State. Eleven played double digit minutes and they combined for 85 points.
So what was the difference?
It helped that Mississippi State is the most turnover prone team in the SEC at 18 per game. Arkansas came up with 14 steals and converted 29 Bulldog turnovers into 42 points.
But the biggest difference was the location of the game. It's one thing to rotate 12 players at home while pushing play to a tempo that Anderson likes. It's a lot harder to do that successfully on the road and yet that's what Arkansas will try to do Saturday in Columbia, South Carolina while seeking its first conference road win of the season.
Anderson is convinced that a deep bench is the key to a breakthough win away from home for the Razorbacks and he's encouraged that more of his reserves appear to be getting comfortable with extra playing time.
Against Mississippi State Jacorey Williams, Anthlon Bell, Coty Clarke and Michael Qualls combined for 37 points.
"The key now is to take that same mindset onto the road," Anderson stressed. "We've got guys on the bench who showed that they can give you big lifts and score. People have to figure out, who are they going to stop? When you've only got a couple of guys scoring it's easy for people to scout you and play against you."
Mississippi State actually hung with the Hogs in the first half, twice partially recovering from double digit deficits. But by the 10 minute mark in the game the visitor's seven-man rotation was gassed and the rout was on.
"This is something we practice every day," junior guard Fred Gulley said emphatically. "If you're not ready for what we're going to bring at you in the second half there's no way your conditioning is going to allow you to hang around with us."
There was another encouraging development in the game. The Razorbacks played perhaps their best half court offense of the season dishing out an astounding 27 assists on 33 made shots. Eleven different Hogs recorded an assist against the Bulldogs prompting a big smile from Anderson when he talked about ball movement after the game.
"We shared the basketball,' Anderson stressed. "We didn't hold onto it. I thought our guys were really engaged in terms of making the extra pass."
What Hog fans saw against Mississippi State was the way Razorback basketball is supposed to be played according to Clarke. "This is how this team is built," Clarke declared. "To move the ball and share the ball and play exciting basketball."
Anderson is hoping for an uptempo game against the Gamecocks and when play slows he would like to see the kind of unselfish halfcourt offense his team displayed Wednesday night.
"We've got to understand the things that we did well but play with another level of toughness," Anderson said of the upcoming trip to Columbia. "In the Ole Miss game it was tied up 52 all. They made a couple of baskets and I thought we kind of panicked."
"That's the time when you have to come down offensively and get what you want offensively and defensively you've got to have stops," Anderson added.
Arkansas and South Carolina will tip it off at 12:30 p.m Saturday in a game that can be seen on the SEC Network.