Rebels fall to Arkansas 69-57, lose Murrell to knee injury
OXFORD, Miss. – The struggles for the Ole Miss men’s basketball team continued Saturday as they fell to No. 25 Arkansas on the road, 69-57. The Rebels have once again fallen under .500 at 9-10 and are now 1-6 in SEC play.
The biggest storyline from the loss is the injury to star guard Matthew Murrell, who went down with a knee injury with just over 14 minutes to play in the second half.
The Rebels’ leading scorer had his right leg/ankle stepped on while trying to jump off that same leg to finish a layup. He was on the ground writhing in pain for a couple of minutes and unable to put any weight on the injured leg. Murrell was seen putting ice on his right knee on the bench, but he never returned to the game.
After the game, head coach Kermit Davis addressed the situation.
“On Matt’s injury, they’ll evaluate when we get back. We’ll know later tomorrow afternoon.“
Kermit Davis on Matt Murrell’s injury
Aside from Murrell’s injury, turnovers and second-half shot making were the two biggest woes for the road Rebels. Ole Miss piled up 17 turnovers, which led to 15 Razorback points.
“I thought our plan was good,” Coach Davis said after the game.
“I thought our guys stayed with our plan. It was turnovers and not being able to put together some back to back offensive plays down the stretch.“
Kermit Davis on the loss
The shooting percentages in the first and second halves could not have been more different. The Rebels shot 52% (12-23) in the first half, but a 38% (11-29) shooting performance in the second half was the squad’s demise.
The Rebels came out of the gate with a ton of energy in the first half. They were able to get easy baskets, as they totaled six dunks, including two monstrous jams from guard Myles Burns.
MYLES BURNS 🤯 pic.twitter.com/uNAfi5G7H1
— Ole Miss Men’s Basketball (@OleMissMBB) January 21, 2023
Jayveous McKinnis was the Rebels leading scorer in the first half with eight points. However, the Razorbacks took a three-point lead into the halftime break.
The second half began with offensive struggles from the Rebels. The lead for the Razorbacks ballooned to 21 with just over six minutes to go. An offensive spurt from the Rebels, however, cut the lead, but a 11-point deficit was the closest the Rebels could get. They were able to force 7 turnovers in the second half, but they were not able to score any points off them.
Two Rebels recorded double-digit points. Jayveous McKinnis had an efficient 10 points on 5-6 shooting. Guard Daeshun Ruffin also put in 10 points, but on 3-9 shooting. Forwards Jaemyn Brakefield and Myles Burns were also able to tack on 8 points apiece.
The Rebels (9-10, 1-6 SEC) will be back home for their next showdown that comes against Missouri this Tuesday (Jan. 24th). Tipoff at the SJB Pavilion is set for 6 p.m. CT on the SEC Network.
Trevor is a senior at Ole Miss pursuing a degree in Journalism with an emphasis in Sports Communication and Promotion. He has previous experience covering sports for another site, including a variety of Ole Miss sports. Growing up in New Orleans, La., he has the Pelicans and Saints running through his blood. He also grew up in an LSU family, but his love for Ole Miss continues to grow. Trevor hopes to cover sports back in his hometown after college. Laissez les bons temps rouler!