LITTLE ROCK — Senior Adrio Bailey began his college career at Arkansas, and with the 2019-20 regular season just five days away he’s looking to have a meaningful impact while helping usher in a new era of Razorbacks basketball.
Bailey (6-6 forward) is the eighth of 12 scholarship Hoop Hogs to be highlighted as a lead-up to the ’19-20 campaign.
What we already know: The Campti, La., native played in all 34 games last season, starting 26 times as he finished with averages of 18.6 minutes, 5.6 points, and 3.0 rebounds while shooting 44.1% on field goals (he went 2-of-12 from 3) and 63.2% on free throws … he got off to a blazing start as a junior, averaging 10.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, 1.4 blocks, and 1.3 steals while shooting 65.9% from the field as the Razorbacks went 6-1 through their first 7 games … but in the 7 games that followed, Bailey struggled through three scoreless games while averaging 2.3 points and 3.4 rebounds while shooting 20.6% from the field … those first 14 games were a reflection of the inconsistent, up-and-down contributions from Bailey in his first three seasons as a Hog, but so through two preaseason exhibiton games Bailey was solid: 11.5 points (on 9-of-9 field goals and 5-of-6 free throws) and 4.0 rebounds.
What to look for in ’19-20: Lack of skill and lack of consistency have plagued Bailey so far in his Arkansas career, but if he can bring energy defensively, attack the glass, and economize his offense within his strengths, he’ll forge a meaningful role on a team currently short on frontline options … so far so good as Bailey has locked in on being an opportunitsitc scorer — putbacks, transition buckets, and attacking from inside the paint — while being solid as a screener and handler in two-man scenarios with the guards … Bailey’s rebounding numbers have been respectable, but what does not show up in the boxscore is how active he’s been on the glass to keep the ball alive for teammates to come in and clean up … as a pleasant surprise, Bailey was the the most consistent big in the preseason, with the key being for him to consistently deliver the same kind of value and impact when it matters — over the course of 31 games in the regular season.
Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman talks about Adrio Bailey (late October): “I think Adrio, his role is defined. I think he knows what we want from him. He’s been really good hitting the offensive glass. He’s done a great job of dribble-handoffs when he’s the trail big. He’s a good passer for us out there. Then I think defensively, understanding our game plan. He’s got the ability to switch on pick-and-rolls. I think he’s kind of embraced his role and he’s had really, really good shot selection. I think that’s the biggest key, just how much his shot selection has improved in the last six months. Understanding good shot and what’s a good shot for him.”
2019-20 Projection: Starter or top 8 rotation.