January 1, 1999
Ole Miss (10-3, 0-0) vs. Vanderbilt (9-3, 0-0)
Saturday, January 2, 1999
7:30 p.m. (CT) Memorial Gym
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
4 Jason Smith (Sr.) F 6-6 220 11.8/4.6 Wheatley, Ark.
24 Marcus Hicks (Jr.) F 6-6 200 13.2/5.7 Jackson, Tenn.
13 Johnnie Rogers (Sr.) F 6-9 220 4.5/2.9 Laurel, Miss.
22 Michael White (Sr.) G 6-1 180 3.2/2.4 Tempe, Ariz.
33 Keith Carter (Sr.) G 6-4 195 15.9/4.4 Perryville, Ark.
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
3 Jason Flanigan (So.) G 6-1 175 4.9/2.6 Little Rock, Ark.
11 Hunter Carpenter (Sr.) G 6-0 180 5.7/0.7 Little Rock, Ark.
12 Jason Harrison (Fr.) G 5-5 150 5.2/2.0 Little Rock, Ark.
20 Matt Pruitt (Fr.) G 6-4 185 3.3/1.4 Jonesboro, Ark.
21 Darrian Brown (Fr.) F 6-6 200 6.0/2.7 West Memphis, Ark.
23 Syniker Taylor (Fr.) G 6-2 195 Gulfport, Miss.#
25 Lataryl Williams (Jr.) G 6-6 200 5.6/2.1 Oxford, Miss.
44 Rahim Lockhart (So.) F 6-8 250 8.2/5.0 Mendenhall, Miss.
54 John Engstrom (Fr.) C 7-0 245 1.1/2.1 Paragould, Ark.
% # will miss the 1998-99 season as a result of a broken
left fibula and dislocated ankle suffered in football practice
Nov. 4 % redshirted in 1997-98
OLE MISS TO OPEN CONFERENCE PLAY ON SATURDAY AT VANDERBILT
The Ole Miss Rebels (10-3, 0-0 SEC) will open Southeastern Conference play on Saturday, Jan. 2, 1999, when they travel to Nashville to meet the Vanderbilt Commodores. Game time is 7:30 p.m. (CT). The contest will also be the league opener for Vanderbilt. Both teams enter Saturday's game having won eight of their last 10 games. In their last outing, the Rebels defeated Prairie View A&M, 111-50. The Commodores also posted a win in their last game, a 113-71 victory over Alabama A&M.
BARNES IN FIRST YEAR AT HELM OF REBEL PROGRAM
Rod Barnes is in his first season at the helm of the Ole Miss Rebel basketball program. He posted his first victory as head coach on Nov. 13 when the Rebels defeated Alabama State, 87-45. He now has a 10-3 record after the Rebels defeated Prairie View A&M, 111-50 on Dec. 29. Barnes was hired as the Rebel head coach on April 9, 1998, after Rob Evans left to take the head coaching position at Arizona State on April 6. A 1988 graduate of Ole Miss, Barnes served as an assistant under Evans from 1993-98. During his time as an assistant coach, the Rebels compiled a record of 76-63 and won back-to-back Southeastern Conference Western Division titles and received consecutive NCAA Tournament berths in 1997 and 1998. Barnes played at Ole Miss from 1984-88 and was named All-SEC his senior season. He still ranks on the Ole Miss career charts in scoring (16th; 1,201 points), assists (2nd; 456) and steals (6th; 154).
The Commodores enter their Southeastern Conference opener on Saturday having won eight of their last 10 games. Vanderbilt has a perfect 8-0 record at home. The tandem of junior Dan Langhi and sophomore Greg LaPointe is leading the Vanderbilt offense. Langhi is the squad's top scorer with a 17.9 average, while LaPointe is second on the team in scoring with an 11.4 average. Langhi leads the Commodores on the boards, averaging 7.3 rebounds per game. Sophomore forward Anthony Williams has also made his presence felt on the boards, as he is averaging 7.2 rebounds per contest. Freshman Deandre Moore leads Vanderbilt with 45 assists, while James Strong, who leads the SEC in steals, is also tops on the team in that statistical category with 45 steals. Vanderbilt, as a team, is averaging 81.1 points per game, while holding the opposition to 69.2 points. The Commodores are shooting 43.9 percent from the field and 36.9 percent from the three-point arc. Vanderbilt is out-rebounding its opponents by an average of 4.6 boards (39.4-34.8) per game. The Commodore defense has forced 228 turnovers and is holding opponents to 30.7 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
VANDERBILT PROBABLE STARTERS
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
15 Vince Ford (Sr.) F 6-5 200 8.6/3.2 Centreville, Ill.
32 Anthony Williams (So.) F 6-7 235 7.8/7.2 Waverly, Ala.
52 Greg LaPointe (So.) C 6-10 235 11.4/4.7 Mt. Pleasant, Mich.
5 Atiba Prater (Jr.) G 6-1 180 3.6/1.9 Stone Mountain, Ga.
13 James Strong (Jr.) G 6-3 195 8.4/2.9 Huntsville, Ala.
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
42 Dan Langhi (Jr.) F 6-11 215 17.9/7.3 Benton, Ky.
10 Sam Howard (Fr.) G 6-3 185 9.7/2.0 Nashville, Tenn.
3 Michael LeBlanc (So.) F 6-7 200 8.3/2.8 Sugar Land, Texas
20 Deandre Moore (Fr.) G 5-9 165 4.8/2.1 Norwalk, Calif.
OLE MISS-VANDERBILT SERIES
Saturday's game will be the 97th meeting between the two schools. The Commodores hold an all-time series lead of 61-35. The series began in 1925. Last season, Ole Miss posted an 87-76 victory in Oxford on Feb. 11, 1998. The Commodores hold a commanding 42-6 lead in games played in Nashville. Vanderbilt has won the last 11 meetings versus the Rebels in Nashville. The last time Ole Miss defeated the Commodores in Nashville came in the 1982-83 season, a 77-62 win on Jan. 5, 1983.
BARNES AMONG ELITE COACHING GROUP
Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes is a member of a very special group in Rebel basketball history with his 10-3 start to the 1998-99 season. He is one of only three coaches in Rebel basketball history to start their first season with a 10-3 record or better. The other two coaches are B.Y. Walton (10-2; 1911-12) and Homer Hazel (12-1; 1925-26). Prior to the Rebels' loss at Memphis on Dec. 12, Barnes was only the second coach in Ole Miss basketball history to begin his first season at the helm with a 7-1 record.
Hazel (1925-26) was the only other Rebel coach to begin his first campaign with a 7-1 record. In that 1925-26 season, Hazel went 16-1 before losing the last game of the season for a final record of 16-2 in his first year.
BARNES MAKES SEC DEBUT ON SATURDAY
On Saturday, Ole Miss first-year head coach Rod Barnes will make his second debut this season. Barnes will make his Southeastern Conference coaching debut versus Vanderbilt. Since Southeastern Conference basketball play began in the 1932-33 season, Rebel coaches have a 4-10 overall record in conference debuts. Ed Murphy was the last Rebel coach to record a victory in his SEC debut, a 73-63 victory over LSU on Jan. 5, 1987. On Nov. 13, Barnes made a successful coaching debut as the Rebel mentor, as Ole Miss posted an 87-45 victory over Alabama State. The following chart shows what the former Rebel head coaches did in their SEC debuts:
REBELS IN CONFERENCE ROAD OPENERS
Ole Miss has an all-time record of 7-58 in Southeastern Conference road openers. In the past six seasons, the Rebels are 2-4 in SEC road openers. Ole Miss, however, has posted victories in its last two SEC road openers. In 1997-98, the Rebels defeated Alabama, 74-63 in Tuscaloosa in their first conference road game, and in 1996-97, Ole Miss won its conference road opener with a 91-74 victory over Arkansas in Fayetteville. The Rebels have never won their SEC road opener in three consecutive years in the program's history.
STEALING HIS WAY UP THE CHARTS
Senior Jason Smith (Wheatley, Ark.) jumped up to the No. 2 spot on the Rebel career steals chart after recording eight swipes in the three-game Puerto Rico Holiday Classic Dec. 21-23. He now has 165 career steals and is second only to Eric Laird (1982-85), who had 179 steals in his career. In the tournament, Smith passed Joe Ayers and Gerald Glass. This season, Smith is second on the team in steals with 27.
SMITH REACHES 1,000-POINT MILESTONE
Senior All-SEC candidate Jason Smith reached the 1,000-point milestone for his career during the Rebels' trip to the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic Dec. 21-23. Smith netted 36 points in the tournament's three games, and after scoring seven points versus Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29, he now has 1,015 career points. For the season, Smith is third on the team in scoring with an 11.8 average.
Ole Miss and Vanderbilt have played four common opponents this season. The Rebels have a 2-2 record versus those common opponents, while Vanderbilt is 3-1. The following chart compares the results of those four common opponents:
Ole Miss Result Opponent Vanderbilt Result
105-62 W (H) Austin Peay State 89-79 W (H)
67-62 L (N) Ohio State 92-86 W-ot (H)
78-72 L-ot (A) Memphis 65-56 L (A)
89-45 W (H) Alabama A&M 113-71 W (H)
BARNES THIRD FASTEST TO 10 WINS
With the Rebels' win over Prairie View A&M on Tuesday, Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes posted his 10th victory in only the 13th game in his first season at the helm. Barnes reached the 10-win plateau the third fastest of any head coach in Ole Miss basketball history. See the following chart:
Head Coach/Year Final Overall Recorded Game Which Record 10th Win
Homer Hazel/1925-26 16-2 11th
B.Y. Walton/1911-12 10-2 12th
Rod Barnes/1998-99 10-3* 13th
Lee Hunt/1982-83 19-12 16th
Ed Murphy/1986-87 15-14 17th
George Bohler/1935-36 11-9 17th
Frank Johnson/1938-39 10-16 25th
Cob Jarvis/1968-69 10-14 23rd
Bob Weltlich/1976-77 11-15 23rd
Rob Evans/1992-93 10-18 27th
* denotes current record
DID YOU KNOW?
Saturday's match-up between Ole Miss and Vanderbilt will feature head coaches at the helm of basketball programs where they also played. Rod Barnes played at Ole Miss from 1985-88, and is the first Rebel head coach to have played his collegiate basketball at Ole Miss since Cob Jarvis. Jan van Breda Kolff, who is in his sixth year at his alma mater, starred for the Commodores from 1972-74. The 1974 Southeastern Conference Player of the Year, van Breda Kolff led Vanderbilt to the conference title in 1974.
CARTER JUMPS TO NO. 12 ON CAREER SCORING CHART
Senior All-America candidate Keith Carter (Perryville, Ark.) moved into the No. 12 spot on Ole Miss career scoring chart after scoring 46 points in the three-game Puerto Rico Holiday Classic. Carter now has 1,347 career points, after exploding for a season-high 28 points in the Rebels' win over Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29. Up next for Carter is Tim Jumper (1988-91), who scored 1,375 points in his career. In the Rebels' victory over Alabama A&M on Nov. 23, Carter passed his head coach, Rod Barnes, on the Ole Miss career scoring chart. Barnes scored 1,201 points in his career from 1985-88.
A WINNING CLASS
The 1999 senior class will go down in Ole Miss basketball history as helping produce one of the most successful runs for the Rebels. Theses six seniors have helped the Rebels to win consecutive Southeastern Conference Western Division titles, the first regular season championships of any kind for the Ole Miss basketball program. They also helped Ole Miss earn back-to-back NCAA Tournament berths. Well, the senior class seems to be on track for another first in Rebel basketball history. The 1999 senior class has posted 64 victories, which is the second most for a four-year span in Rebel basketball history. The following charts lists the most successful (in terms of number of victories) in Ole Miss history:
Four-Year Span No. of Wins
1979-80 to 1982-83 70
1995-96 to present 64
1935-36 to 1938-39 63
1994-95 to 1997-98 62
1978-79 to 1981-82 62
1923-24 to 1926-27 62
1980-81 to 1983-84 61
1936-37 to 1939-40 61
1934-35 to 1937-38 61
CARTER NAMED PRESEASON NAISMITH CANDIDATE
Senior Keith Carter was named as one of 20 preseason candidates for the 1999 Naismith College Player of the Year, as announced by the Atlanta Tipoff Club in early October. Carter is one of four players from the Southeastern Conference to be named among the preseason candidates. Georgia's Jumaine Jones, South Carolina's BJ McKie and Kentucky's Scott Padgett were also among the 20 preseason candidates for the player of the year honor.
This past summer, Carter played an integral role in helping lead the USA Goodwill Games Team to a 4-1 record and the gold medal. It was the first time that a USA amateur team had won gold in international play since 1986.
In the five games, Carter averaged 7.8 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists, while shooting 48.1 percent from the field and 40 percent from the three-point arc.
Following the 1997-98 season, the Perryville, Ark., native was named to the Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference second team. This season, Carter is averaging 15.9 points (leads the team) and 4.4 rebounds per game.
WHITE REACHES 300 ASSIST PLATEAU; TIED CAREER HIGH WITH NINE ASSISTS VERSUS PRAIRIE VIEW
Senior guard Michael White (Tempe, Ariz.) reached a milestone in his career when he recorded the 300th assist in the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic Dec. 21-23. White recorded his 300th assist in the Rebels' first-round victory over St. Joseph's on Dec. 21, and now has 314 assists for his career. This season, the 6-foot-1 guard leads the team in that statistical category with 41. In the Rebels' victory over Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29, White tied his career high with nine assists versus the Panthers.
(THREE-POINT) BOMBS AWAY!!!
The Prairie View A&M Panthers had to run for cover on Dec. 29 as the Rebels hit 12 three-pointers in their 111-50 win. It was the second time this season that Ole Miss had hit 12 three-pointers in a game, with the Rebels' first 12 three-pointer performance coming against Austin Peay State on Nov. 28. The 12 treys in both contests are the most by an Ole Miss squad since the Rebels nailed 13 three-pointers versus Arkansas on Jan. 18, 1992. Senior All-America candidate Keith Carter led the Rebel three-point shooting parade, hitting 8 of his 10 attempts from beyond the arc. Carter's eight three-pointers were a single-game record, breaking his own previous record of seven. Carter hit seven treys in the Rebels' 87-74 victory over Temple on Nov. 22, 1997.
SMITH BREAKS 500
Senior All-SEC candidate Jason Smith broke 500, and it was a good thing. With his five rebounds versus Temple on Nov. 18, Smith joined the 500-rebound club at Ole Miss. Smith now has 547 career rebounds, and is averaging 4.6 rebounds per game this season.
"GET THAT SHOT OUTTA HERE!"
That saying has become the personal motto for senior forward Johnnie Rogers (Laurel, Miss.) throughout his career at Ole Miss. The 6-foot-9 forward is second on the squad with 12 blocked shots in only eight games this year. In the Rebels' victory over Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29, Rogers recorded five blocks, increasing his career total to 99. His 99 blocks tie him with Ansu Sesay for third place on the career chart. The last two seasons, Rogers has led the Rebel squad in blocked shots with 39 in 1996-97 and 48 in 1997-98. Rogers' career high for blocked shots is six which he has set on three occasions. He recorded six blocks versus LSU (Feb. 18, 1998), Louisiana Tech (Nov. 19, 1997) and Davidson (Dec. 2, 1996).
HARRISON MAKES HIS MARK
For many freshmen, it takes time to make the adjustment to the collegiate level. Well, freshman guard Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) has made the adjustment and has made his presence felt in the Rebels' last two games. Harrison scored 10 points in each of Ole Miss' last two contests in the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic versus No. 23 nationally-ranked Oklahoma and Ohio State. He also recorded nine assists in the two games, including a career-high six assists in the championship contest versus the Buckeyes. In the semifinal game versus Oklahoma, Harrison hit 5-of-6 free throws in the final 1:30 to help the Rebels to the 75-72 upset of the Sooners. The next day, Harrison hit two key three-pointers to give Ole Miss a one-point lead late in the second half. Harrison is averaging 5.2 points.
REBELS PICKED TO FINISH THIRD IN SEC WESTERN DIVISION
In the Southeastern Conference media day voting, Ole Miss was picked to finished third in the SEC Western Division. Arkansas was the overwhelming choice to win the Western Division, with Auburn picked to finish second. Mississippi State was fourth followed by Alabama and LSU. In the SEC Eastern Division, Kentucky was picked to finish first followed by Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Vanderbilt. The Wildcats were also selected to win the overall SEC championship.
It will be a homecoming for junior Marcus Hicks on Saturday. Hicks is
from nearby Jackson, Tenn., and played his high school basketball at
Northside. Hicks is averaging 13.2 points this season...The Rebels have shot 50 percent or better from the field in nine of their first 13 games this season. Last year, Ole Miss shot 50 percent or better in 10 games, and in 1996-97, the Rebels hit 50 percent or better from the field in only five games...After his eight three-pointer performance versus Prairie View A&M, Keith Carter now has 206 career treys. Carter is only eight three-pointers shy of tying Joe Harvell (1990-93), who holds the school career record with 214 three-pointers...Senior Hunter Carpenter (Little Rock, Ark.) netted a career-high 10 points in the Rebels' win over Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29. He also set career highs in field goals (4) and three-pointers (2)...Senior Jason Smith recorded a career-best seven assists versus Prairie View A&M on Dec. 29. Smith's seven-assist performance broke his previous career high of six versus Alabama A&M on Nov. 23.