FAYETTEVILLE — The game ball that flew into the scoreboard in Bud Walton Arena at the end of Arkansas’ 87-85 overtime win against Kentucky isn’t coming down.
Arkansas coach Mike Anderson confirmed that the Razorbacks plan to leave the ball in the structure as a tribute to the victory over the 13th-ranked Wildcats.
It was thrown into the scoreboard by Kentucky guard Aaron Harrison, who was attempting a full-court pass with two-tenths of a seconds remaining. The Wildcats were attempting a length of the floor pass after Michael Qualls had given the Razorbacks the lead with a put-back dunk off a missed 3-pointer by Ky Madden.
NCAA rules stipulate that a player can’t catch and shoot with 0.3 seconds or left, so the only way a team can make a field goal is with a tip-in. Harrison’s pass never made it downcourt, flying between the scoreboard and a connecting structure that hangs down below it. The ball landed in the canopy where it still rested Thursday.
The pass resulted in a change of possession and Arkansas inbounded a new ball to wrap up the win. Arkansas can lower the scoreboard to pull the ball out, but Anderson and the Razorbacks don’t want to move it.
"We’re going to leave that up there," Anderson said Thursday. "So when people come in here, they’re going to wonder, ‘Is that ball still up there or not.’ That’s what they’re going to ask for years to come. … I think it’s good. I think it’s neat."