When Michael Washington went to the bench just 36 seconds into the game Friday night, you could feel the entire crowd sink into their seats. With five players already suspended and our All-SEC senior now likely out for most of the first half, it felt like a win against Alcorn State might be even tougher than expected.
Fortunately, sophomore Rotnei Clarke wasted no time getting the crowd of nearly 8,000 back on its feet as he began a scoring rampage that resulted in a school and Bud Walton Arena record of 51 points and finished the game with 13 three-pointers which is now the school and SEC record.
By the time Michael Washington came back near the end of the first half, the Hogs were so far ahead that his two quick fouls were no longer of any concern.
Halftime score? 71-26.
There’s plenty more to talk about, though. For example Jemal Farmer’s 28 point/12 rebound debut, Marshawn Powell’s double-double, the two practice squad players who actually got to play (sans names on their jerseys) or the practice squad guy (Cody Lay) who got a steal and a layup.
But all of that is (unfortunately for those named above) overshadowed simply by the fact that just eight minutes into the second half, Rotnei Clarke was leading the entire Alcorn State team by a score of 41-39.
Jemal Farmer summed it all up pretty well on Twitter later that night:
rotnei clarke had 51 For us ….crazy right lol
Final score? 130-68.