FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas coach Mike Anderson should have one more player available off his bench against Alcorn State tonight.
Fred Gulley, a Fayetteville High graduate and former Oklahoma State guard, is expected to be eligible to play after sitting out the past year because of NCAA transfer rules. Gulley left Oklahoma State last fall and enrolled at Arkansas, where he has practiced with the team in preparation for the second half of this season.
“Fred would give us another guy, a guard, depth-wise, I think it’ll be good for our team,” Anderson said. “He’s an experienced guy that’s played at this level before.”
Gulley’s final grades from the semester must be posted before he is able to return to the court. Anderson said Thursday he believed that would happen. If it doesn’t, Gulley will have to wait until Arkansas’ next game on Dec. 20 against Robert Morris.
Either way, Anderson said Gulley is ready to contribute after sitting out for a year.
“He’s a guy that for about the last week and a half you can see his juices are going,” Anderson said. “He’s speeding up a little bit. … I think he’s excited about it. Of course he’s from Fayetteville, so it gives him a chance to play at a place he probably dreamed of playing at as a kid. Now that dream can become a reality.”
Gulley will be part of a backcourt rotation that already includes starters B.J. Young, Mardracus Wade and Rashad Madden. The 6-foot-2 Gulley, who averaged 2.1 points and 1.2 assists in 48 games (29 starts) with the Cowboys, can play both guard spots for the Razorbacks and Anderson said he will really help the Hogs defensively.
“He’s going to bring aggressiveness,” Wade said of Gulley. “He’s going to bring leadership. He’s going to bring someone who can get in the lane and penetrate and kick out to shooters or dump down. He’s very quick. And he’s very poised. He’s going to help us out a lot. So I’m very excited for him to be out here.”
— Robbie Neiswanger