Scotty Thurman Remembers, Part Five: Celebrating Arkansas' 1994 Season

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Scotty Thurman Remembers, Part Five: Celebrating Arkansas' 1994 Season

Well, we’ve come to the end of our Q&A with former Razorback forward Scotty Thurman, one of the heroes of the 1994 national championship squad. However, our celebration of the 15th anniversary of that championship is just starting and will be underway all winter and spring. So, check the site frequently.

In today’s fifth and final installment—here’s part one, part two, part three, and part fourScotty gives his take on Coach Pelphrey, talks some trash about Pat Bradley, and gives props to former Hog sharpshooter Al Dillard. Many thanks to Scotty for his time, and many thanks to everyone who’s taken the time to read the Q&A. Now, on with the show.

 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Do you follow the current team much?

I do from time to time. I went and watched a couple of games last year. I’ll probably go watch a couple this year. I like Pelphrey. I think he’s going to do a good job if he stays. I’m sure if he’s offered the job at Kentucky, he may head out. There’s always speculation on that job.

If we can keep him, and they can start to recruit the state of Arkansas—you take Kentucky: Kentucky gets the best of the best in Kentucky, and then they go other places and get other people.

Pelphrey and his staff have to figure out a way to get the best players in Arkansas so they don’t leave. And then you go somewhere else and get the rest.

I coached an eighth-grade team. They’re ninth-graders now. Just having seen a lot of basketball as of late, Arkansas is not spending enough time at the high-school, junior-high level, developing the talent that we have right here, so that when they grow up—we may not get every kid that we helped get better, but we’ll get some of ‘em.

Look at Coach K—he doesn’t have to recruit North Carolina very hard. He gets who he wants (laughs). Anybody he wants, he can get. That’s the way it should be here. Anybody Pelphrey wants, he should be able to get. Until he gets that, and the kids get better here—you don’t have a pipeline. You’ve got to have kids in programs getting better. We don’t really have that here in Arkansas for the most part.

 

We did a Q&A with Pat Bradley last spring, and he said that he could beat you in a three-point shooting contest, so we wanted to give you the opportunity to agree or disagree with that statement.

from ViewImages.com

(Laughs) I’ll put it like this: I think Pat was a decent shooter in his day. I’ve got to give him that. He shot the ball well. But Pat could not outshoot me on his best day, and he definitely could not outshoot me now. So, it’s not even really possible. I can’t even imagine that, that he could beat me in a three-point shootout.

I like Pat. Pat’s a good guy. I give him a hard time all the time: It’s easy to make shots when they don’t really matter. When they don’t matter, anybody can throw one up, and it may bank off the glass.

But when it matters, and you’ve got people looking at you, looking at you and staring at you, a lot of people—they didn’t play in front of a lot of people when he was there because they really didn’t win much.

When you play in front of a lot of people, it matters a little more.

 

Was there anybody on that championship team or during your time in Fayetteville that could have beaten you in a three-point contest?

Probably Alex Dillard. Alex Dillard was the best three-point shooter I’ve ever seen in my life. Ever. And that’s including guys in the NBA.

Believe it or not, I’d do a little bet right now, and I’m not a gambling man. But I’d be willing to bet right now that Alex Dillard could beat anybody today. Because this guy lives in the gym. If he’s shooting regular three-pointers, then he’s definitely not going to miss many. Regular college three-pointers, those are like free throws to him.

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