OXFORD, Miss. - Chris Warren scored 22 points and handed out six assists as Ole Miss easily handled East Tennessee State 71-50 on Saturday.
Warren was 7 of 13 from the field, including 6 of 12 from 3-point range. Reginald Buckner added 16 points and blocked seven shots -- both career highs. Zach Graham came off the bench to score 14 points.
ETSU, which has played in the past two NCAA Tournaments, had already surprised one Southeastern Conference team this season, beating Mississippi State 63-62 on the Bulldogs' home court on Dec. 11. But the Buccaneers were buried from the start against Ole Miss, falling behind 13-0 in the opening minutes.
ETSU pulled within five points at 31-26 late in the first half, but the Rebels scored the next nine points to take a 40-26 halftime lead. The Buccaneers had a size advantage, but Ole Miss countered with a small, quick lineup, which was led by Warren's 12 points and five assists in the first half.
Ole Miss (7-2) led by double digits the entire second half.
Warren came into the game averaging more than 18 points per game, so his hot shooting wasn't a surprise. But Buckner's offensive performance was a rare sight -- and it's something that the post-starved Rebels would love to see more of as SEC play approaches.
Buckner scored almost all of his points at point-blank range, sneaking behind ETSU's zone defense and catching passes for easy dunks or layups.
On defense, the 6-foot-8 sophomore provided his usual intimidating presence in the paint. He set the school's record for blocks by a freshman last season and is on pace to shatter the career mark.
Mike Smith scored 18 points to lead the Buccaneers, making 10 of 11 free throws in the process. Isiah Brown added 12 points. ETSU (5-4) shot just 31.4 percent from the field.
The Buccaneers had the rebounding edge, 40-35. Both teams will play their next three games in the Cancun Governor's Cup in Mexico starting on Dec. 22.
The SEC Storied documentary "It's Time," centered on the the inspirational friendship between former Vanderbilt football player Brad Gaines and former Ole Miss football player Chucky Mullins, will premiere on Tuesday on the Vanderbilt campus and will debut on... read more
This is a new concept we've created for the Ole Miss Sports Blog that we're calling Observations from the Best Seat in the House. The idea of this weekly feature will be to bring you all some of our observations... read more
The No. 18 Ole Miss football team won the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game defeating Boise State 35-13. The Rebels move into Southeastern Conference next week with a road test at Vanderbilt from Nashville's LP Field, home of the Tennessee Titans. The... read more
ATLANTA -- Boise State had been the highest scoring team in the nation, averaging 40.2 points per game dating back to the 2000 season. Highlighted by four interceptions, eight tackles for loss and big hits by several different players, the... read more
ATLANTA -- After an up-and-down first half, which included a touchdown and three interceptions, senior quarterback Bo Wallace and the Ole Miss offense found their stride in the second half, particularly in the fourth quarter. Leading 7-6 early in the... read more
Three areas to watch as Ole Miss opens its 2014 season in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game against Boise State from Atlanta's Georgia Dome. Contrast in Experience Boise State has one of the youngest teams in the country with 67 freshmen... read more
Here are three pieces to keep in mind as we look ahead to the Ole Miss volleyball team's season-opening weekend in Buffalo, New York, starting with Canisius on Friday morning, the first of four matches over three days at the... read more
For high school football players in Georgia, all roads lead to the Georgia Dome and the state championships. For a handful of Rebels, those roads lead home, as Ole Miss opens the 2014 season against Boise State in the Chick-fil-A... read more
ESPN.com's Brett McMurphy asked each of the 65 coaches from the Power Five conferences to describe their team in one word. Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze's word? Relentless. The same can be said of the Ole Miss defense. And... read more
After playing 110 minutes in a 1-1 draw with Georgia on Friday night, Ole Miss responded with a gutsy 1-0 win over Iowa State on Sunday afternoon. The defense, led by senior goalkeeper Kelly McCormick was the story of the... read more
Big time crowd for @SECNetwork live sports event debut. Record attendance of 1,823 for @OleMissSoccer Let's finish strong.-- Ross Bjork (@RossBjorkAD) August 23, 2014 Ole Miss kicked off the 2014 season in thrilling fashion, rallying to a 1-1 draw with... read more
Like defensive coordinator Dave Wommack, defensive line coach Chris Kiffin has been pleased with his players throughout fall camp, particularly the depth bolstered by the return of junior defensive end C.J. Johnson and the addition of sophomore Fadol Brown and... read more