There is plenty of pressure on Bobby Portis entering the 2014-15 season. It didn't appear to bother him in the season opener.
The Arkansas sophomore scored a game high 24 points on 9-of-11 shooting as the Razorback pulled away from Alabama State to claim a 97-79 win at Bud Walton Arena.
Arkansas trailed in the early moments of the second half as four Razorbacks finished in double figures. Anthlon Bell had 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, including a perfect 4-of-4 from 3-point range.
"The second half, I thought they really went out and executed the game plan," Arkansas coach Mike Anderson said. "They really just wrenched up our defense. We did a good job of paying attention to details as opposed to the first half."
Alabama State was able to hang around thanks to their 3-point shooting as they were 9-of-12 in the first half but went 0-of-6 from beyond the arc in the second half. DeMarcus Robinson led the Hornets with 21 points while Bobby Brown finished with 14.
Michael Qualls and Alandise Harris finished with 13 points as the Arkansas depth started to show in the latter parts of the second half.
"That's the beauty of our team," Arkansas guard Manuale Watkins said. "We got a group of guys that can come out and give energy and then there's no let off with the next group of guys. A lot of teams in college basketball can't say that. So, we've got 10, 12 guys that can come out and bring the same amount of energy against tougher teams and I think that showed how they kind of died out at the end. They kind of ran out of gas and we just stepped on the pedal."
Arkansas will host Wake Forest on Wednesday.