Men's Basketball Game Notes
Jan. 8, 2002
PROBABLE STARTING LINE-UPS
- Auburn Probable Starters -
REBEL GAME NOTES
OLE MISS TO HOST AUBURN IN SEC HOME OPENER WEDNESDAY: The Ole Miss Rebels (11-3, 0-1 SEC) will host their Southeastern Conference home opener Wednesday, Jan. 9 when they meet the Auburn Tigers (8-4, 0-1 SEC) at Tad Smith Coliseum. Game time is 7:00 p.m. (CT). Ole Miss saw its seven-game win streak come to an end Jan. 6 with an 82-76 setback at Tennessee. Prior to that loss, the Rebels had won seven straight with victories over Louisiana-Monroe, Memphis, UT-Martin, IUPUI, UTEP, Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Lipscomb. The Tigers also had their four-game win streak come to an end with an 83-77 setback to Arkansas Jan. 5. Auburn had won four straight with wins over Marshall, South Alabama, UNC-Asheville and Southern Miss.
BARNES IN FOURTH SEASON AS REBEL MENTOR: Rod Barnes is in his fourth season at the helm of the Ole Miss Rebel basketball program. The 2001 Naismith and CollegeInsider.com National Coach of the Year, Barnes has compiled a 77-38 record. He has led Ole Miss to an 11-3 mark this season. Last year, Barnes, the 2001 Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year, guided Ole Miss to a school-record 27 wins (27-8 record) and the program's first trip to the NCAA Tournament "Sweet Sixteen." The winning season and postseason tournament berth both were the fifth-straight for Ole Miss.
Barnes was hired as the Rebel head coach on April 9, 1998. A 1988 graduate of Ole Miss, Barnes served as an assistant under Rob 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 (17th, 1,201 points), assists (2nd, 456) and steals (6th, 154).
OLE MISS-AUBURN SERIES: Wednesday's game will be the 103rd meeting between the two schools, with the Tigers holding an all-time series lead of 62-40. The series began in 1927. Last year, Ole Miss swept the season series, winning 74-70 in Auburn and 64-62 in Oxford. The Rebels hold a 29-20 series lead in games played in Oxford, and have won 23 of the 35 meetings versus the Tigers in Tad Smith Coliseum. Auburn's last victory over Ole Miss in Oxford was a 74-59 win in the 1998-99 season (Jan. 13, 1999). That Auburn win ended the Rebels' school-record 29-game homecourt win streak. Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes is 3-3 versus Auburn and 2-1 against the Tigers in Oxford.
SCOUTING AUBURN: The Tigers enter Wedneday's contest with an 8-4 overall mark and a 0-1 record in Southeastern Conference action. Auburn dropped its SEC opener with an 83-77 setback at home to Arkansas. Prior to that loss, the Tigers had won four straight games. Derrick Bird leads four Tigers in double figures with a 12.3 average. Marquis Daniels (12.1 ppg), Brandon Robinson (10.3 ppg) and Adam Harrington (10.0 ppg) are also averaging double digits. Robinson is the squad's top rebounder (5.9 rpg) and three-point threat (42.1 pct.). Marco Killingsworth leads the team from the field with a 58.7 shooting percentage. Daniels, who moved to the point guard spot this season, leads the team with 58 assists. Auburn, as a team, is shooting 44 percent from the field, 35 percent from the three-point line and 58 percent from the foul line. Opponents are out-rebounding Auburn by a narrow margin of 0.4 boards per contest (37.4-37.8).
OLE MISS IN SEC HOME OPENERS: The Rebels have an overall record of 33-35 (.485 winning percentage) in Southeastern Conference home openers. Ole Miss has won four of its last seven SEC home openers. The past two years, the Rebels have dropped narrow losses to nationally-ranked Florida 75-71 (1999-2000) and Georgia 70-66 (2000-01) in their league home openers. Prior to those two setbacks, Ole Miss had won three straight SEC home openers. The Rebels' last SEC home-opening victory a 78-60 win over Alabama in the 1998-99 season.
"TAD PAD" SWEET "TAD PAD": Yes, all the home win streaks are over, but Tad Smith Coliseum (a.k.a. the "Tad Pad") is still one of the toughest arenas in the nation for opposing teams to play. Ole Miss has won 83 of its last 92 games (.902 winning percentage) at home, including homecourt winning streaks of 15 and 29 games. Ole Miss is 5-1 at the "Tad Pad" in 2001-02. In the past 10 seasons (1992-93 throught 2001-02), Ole Miss has an overall home record of 111-30 (.787 winning percentage).
REBELS ALL-TIME AT THE "TAD PAD": With their victory over No. 14-ranked Oklahoma in 2000-01, the Rebels posted their 300th victory in Tad Smith Coliseum. Ole Miss has an all-time record of 316-156 (.669 winning percentage) at the "Tad Pad." Tad Smith Coliseum opened in the 1965-66 season.
"TAD PAD" RENOVATIONS COMPLETE: Renovations began on C.M. "Tad" Smith Coliseum (a.k.a. "Tad Pad") this summer, and the second wave of upgrades were completed before the Rebels' two exhibition games. The first change had new upholstered, chair-back seats, all in blue replace the old seats. As a result of the new seating, capacity jumped from 8,135 to approximately 8,700. Other new additions for the 2001-02 season included a Pro Star Video Board, two full display scoreboards and a state-of-the-art sound system.
HAPPY BELATED BIRTHDAY WISHES FOR COACH: Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes celebrated his 36th birthday Jan. 8. Here's wishing Coach Barnes a belated happy birthday.
BARNES REACHES 70: Rod Barnes posted his 70th victory as head coach at Ole Miss with the Rebels' 92-45 win over Morris Brown Nov. 28. He has a current record of 77-38, and reached the 70-win plateau the fastest of any coach in Rebel basketball history. His 78 victories are the fifth most by a head coach in Ole Miss basketball history. The following lists the winningest coaches in Rebel history:
NO EARLY TV LOVE FOR THE REBELS: With its game at Tennessee Jan. 6 taken off television, Ole Miss will be the lone Southeastern Conference team not to have a game televised by week's end. The Rebels' contests versus Auburn Jan. 9 and Mississippi State Jan. 12 will not be on television. Ole Miss, though, will see the television lights after this week, playing three of its next four contests on television (at Kentucky, Jan. 15, at Arkansas, Jan. 19, South Carolina, Jan. 26).
DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE...PART I: For the fourth consecutive year, Ole Miss entered conference play with double-digit victories. The Rebels took an 11-2 mark into their SEC opener at Tennessee Jan. 6. In the last 10 years (including 2001-02), the Rebels have posted a 90-32 record (.738 winning percentage) versus non-conference opponents. The following shows Ole Miss' record entering Southeastern Conference action the last four years (all under head coach Rod Barnes):
Year Record 1998-99 10-3 1999-2000 12-1 2000-01 12-1 2001-02 11-2 Totals 45-7
ALLEN HAS CAREER GAME VERSUS TENNESSEE: Talk about a "break-out" game. Well, junior Derrick Allen (Gadsden, Ala.) had one in the Rebels' 82-76 setback at Tennessee Jan. 6. The 6-foot-8 forward recorded career bests for points (22), field goals (6), free throws (10) and assists (5). He also grabbed nine boards in the game. His previous scoring high was 14 points in a 71-67 Ole Miss victory over Memphis Dec. 7. Allen is averaging 10 points and 6.5 boards and is shooting 59.7 percent frm the field and 80.6 percent from the charity stripe. He is ranked among the SEC leaders in free throw percentage (8th) and rebounding (12th).
DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE...PART II: The Rebels sure are doubling their pleasure in the scoring column in 2001-02, as five players are averaging double digits. Sophomore Justin Reed (Jackson, Miss.) leads the team with a 14.5 average, followed by sophomore Aaron Harper (Jackson, Miss.) and junior David Sanders (Jackson, Miss.) at 11.3 ppg, senior Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) at 10.9 ppg and junior Derrick Allen at 10.0 ppg.
NO. 11 LOOKING TO BECOME NO. 26, NETS CAREER HIGH 23 VERSUS TENNESSEE: Senior Jason Harrison, who wears jersey No. 11, entered the 2001-02 season with 766 career points and needed 234 to become the 26th player in Ole Miss history to reach the 1,000-point plateau. Harrison is on track to do so.
After 14 games, the 5-foot-5 guard has scored 153 points (10.9 average) and now has 919 career points.
In the Rebels' contest at Tennessee Jan. 6, the Little Rock, Ark., native scored a career-high 23 points, surpassing his previous best of 22 points against Arkansas in the 1998-99 campaign (freshman year). He also hit a career-best seven field goals versus the Volunteers.
HARRISON CLIMBING ASSISTS CHART: Senior Jason Harrison is looking to surpass the 100-assists plateau for the third straight year, and he is well on his way to that accomplishment. After 14 games in 2001-02, Harrison has 65 dishes for a 4.6 average. At his current pace, Harrison would hand out 138 assists this season.
Harrison dished out 115 assists as a sophomore in 1999-2000 and 104 as a junior in 2000-01. The 5-foot-5 guard entered the 2001-02 campaign with 305 career assists, and now has 370 assists. He is tied for the No. 4 spot on the career assists chart.
If Harrison reaches the 100-assists plateau this season, he would become only the third player in Rebel history to accomplish the feat three straight years. Rod Barnes and Sean Tuohy also did so. Harrison would also join Barnes and Tuohy as the only Rebels to pass out over 400 assists in a career. The following lists the Rebels' career assists leaders:
Rebel Career Assists Leaders
DEFENSE IS GETTING THERE: Unlike past years, the Rebel defense - the staple of the Ole Miss basketball program - began 2001-02 a little behind the offense. But, the young Rebels are getting back to playing defense the Ole Miss way, and it is showing in the numbers. In the first six games, Ole Miss' opponents were shooting nearly 45 percent from the field and 40 percent from the three-point line, while scoring close to 65 points per game. Those statistics have dropped the last eight contests to 37.4 percent from the floor, 26.9 percent from the arc and 61.8 points per game. The following shows the Rebels' progress:
Rebel Defense Clamping Down
DOWN BUT NOT OUT: The John R. Wooden Award Midseason Committee released its national poll of the Top 30 Midseason Candidates for the 2001-2002 Wooden Award Player of the Year and All-American Team Dec. 28, and Ole Miss sophomore Justin Reed did not make the list. But, that does not mean Reed is out of the running for Wooden postseason honors, as players who do not make this list are still eligible for consideration for the Wooden Award.
Reed was one of six SEC players among the 2001-02 Wooden Award preseason candidates, joining Kentucky's Tayshaun Prince and Keith Bogans, Florida's Udonis Haslem and Brett Nelson and Tennessee's Vincent Yarbrough. Those SEC players making the midseason list were Prince, Haslem and Florida's Matt Bonner.
DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE...AGAIN: Justin Reed has been doing that a lot lately, and it comes just as the Rebels head into conference play. In Ole Miss' two games versus Arkansas-Pine Bluff and Lipscomb, the 6-foot-8 forward posted double-doubles. Reed had 16 points and 10 boards versus Arkansas-Pine Bluff Dec. 29 and followed that with a 12-point, 10-rebound performance against Lipscomb Jan. 2. Reed now has three double-doubles this season (tied for fourth in the SEC) and six for his career. The following lists Reed's double-double performances:
"FOX"-HUNTING ON DEFENSE: After a sub-par December, it seems as if freshman Kendrick Fox (Oxford, Miss.) is back in the groove - especially on the defensive end. In the Rebels' contest at Tennessee Jan. 6, the 6-foot-7 forward blocked a career-high three shots and had one steal. Fox also hit a key three-pointer in the second half versus the Volunteers.
BOMBS AWAY!, HARPER CLIMBING CHART: Sophomore Aaron Harper is the Rebels' primary three-point shooter, and so far in 2001-02, he is living up to that reputation. The 6-foot-7 guard/forward has hit 35 treys this year and is moving up the Ole Miss career three-pointers chart. The following shows the career leaders for the Rebels:
Rebel Career Three-Pointers
HITTING THE GLASS BY COMMITTEE: Entering the 2001-02 season, Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes knew his Rebels had to make up for its lack of inside presence. He challenged his off-guard trio of juniors David Sanders and Emmanuel Wade and sophomore Aaron Harper to improve their numbers on the boards, and they have responded. All three players have increased their rebounding production from last year, and the following shows that:
OLE MISS PICKED THIRD IN SEC WEST BY MEDIA: The Ole Miss Rebels were picked to finish in third place in the SEC Western Division in a vote by media members at the annual conference media day Nov. 1 in Birmingham, Ala. Alabama was picked to win the SEC Western Division championship, while Kentucky was selected to win both the SEC overall title and the Eastern Division crown. The following shows the media's picks for the 2001-02 campaign (first-place votes in parentheses):
OLE MISS SECOND MOST WINS SINCE 1996-97: The Rebels have, indeed, been one of the Southeastern Conference's most successful teams in recent years - especially since 1996-97. Ole Miss has won 119 games (overall games) since 1996-97, the most by any SEC Western Division team. The 119 victories are also second among all league teams, only trailing Kentucky's 154 wins. The following charts show the Rebels' success (including the 2001-02 season):
Most Overall/SEC Wins By SEC West Teams
Most Overall/SEC Wins By SEC Teams (Top 6)
THE REBELS' NEW SIXTH-MAN: The last three years, Jason Harrison was the Rebels' "super-sub," thriving in the role of Ole Miss' sixth-man. With Harrison moving into the starting lineup at the point in 2001-02, head coach Rod Barnes has been looking for someone to become the Rebels' sixth-man, and Emmanuel Wade may be taking over that role.
In Ole Miss' last seven games, the Marianna, Ark., native is averaging 9.7 points and 3.9 rebounds, while shooting 45.5 percent from the three-point line and 77.8 percent from the charity stripe. He also has come up big for the Rebels during the seven-game stretch, hitting the game-clinching free throws to seal the 71-67 victory over Memphis Dec. 7 and recording five steals in the SunClassic Tournament Dec. 21-22. In the Jan. 6 contest at Tennessee, Wade hit three big treys in the second half to help the Rebels get back in the game.
AT THE HEAD OF THE CLASS(ES): Well, Jason Harrison is only one player, but he is the 2002 Rebel senior class. And, he is closing in the record for most victories by a class in a four-year span. Entering Southeastern Conference play, this year's senior class has 77 victories, which is 11 shy of the record of 88 wins set by the 2001 seniors (Jason Flanigan, Rahim Lockhart, Jason Holmes and John Engstrom). The 2001-02 senior class has also been a part of the 2001 SEC Western Division championship squad and has been to three straight postseasons (2 NCAA, 1 NIT). The following chart lists the most successful classes in Ole Miss history:
REED-ALLEN TANDEM ON A TEAR: The Ole Miss inside tandem of junior Derrick Allen and sophomore Justin Reed has been working well of late, and that is bad news for the opposition. In the Rebels' last eight games, Allen has averaged 12.1 points and 7.4 boards, while Reed has posted averages of 14.3 points and 7.4 boards. Both are also shooting nearly 50 percent from the field (Reed, 48.8 percent, Allen, 57.4) and over 75 percent from the charity stripe in the last eight games, all Ole Miss victories. In fact, the Rebels are 6-0 when Allen and Reed both notch double figures.
REBELS WIN SUNCLASSIC TITLE: Before the Christmas break, Ole Miss traveled to El Paso, Texas, to participate in the 41st annual Sierra Providence SunClassic. The Rebels posted victories over IUPUI (77-70) and host UTEP (68-58) to claim the two-day tournament crown. It is the second regular-season tournament title for Ole Miss under head coach Rod Barnes. In 1999-2000, the Rebels won the inaugural SoCon Holiday Hoops Tournament championship.
REED, ALLEN WIN HONORS AT SIERRA PROVIDENCE SUNCLASSIC: Sophomore Justin Reed and junior Derrick Allen received tournament honors following the Sierra Providence SunClassic championship win over UTEP. Reed was voted the tournament's MVP. He averaged 16.5 points and 7.0 rebounds in the two contests. Allen was named to the SunClassic All-Tournament Team. In the two games, he averaged 9.5 points and 9.0 boards.
REBELS HOT FROM THE LINE: Despite having a slump from the foul line in the last two games, the Rebels are still hitting a league-leading 75.8 percent (257-of-339) from the charity stripe. In 12 of 14 games, Ole Miss has shot 70 percent or better from the foul line, including over 80 percent five times. The Rebels also have three players - Derrick Allen, Jason Harrison and Justin Reed - ranked among the SEC individual leaders in free throw shooting percentage.
If the Rebels are able to keep up this pace, they would break the single-season free throw percentage record of 75.2 percent set by the 1970-71 squad.
DISHING IT OUT: One of Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes' favorite lines to his players is "take care of your business." Well, senior Jason Harrison is listening to his coach, as he has taken very good care of the ball in his point guard role. After 14 games, Harrison has dished out 65 assists compared to only 33 turnovers for nearly a 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio. In three Rebel wins over Kansas State, Louisiana-Monroe and Lipscomb, Harrison had no turnovers.
REED PASSES 500, CLOSING IN ON 600: After the eighth game of his sophomore campaign, Justin Reed passed 500 - points, that is. He entered the Dec. 7 Memphis contest with 491 career points and netted 17 points in the win. He now has 588 career points. Last year, the 2001 Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year netted 385 points, and has 203 in 2001-02.
The Jackson, Miss., native is leading the team in scoring (14.5 ppg) and rebounding (7.1 rpg).Reed's 385 points last season were the third most by a freshman in Ole Miss history. Joe Harvell (395 points, 1990) and Tim Jumper (394 points, 1988) were the only two to score more than Reed in their freshmen campaigns.
OLE MISS ALSO HOT FROM THE FLOOR: In the early portion of the 2001-02 campaign, the Rebels have literally been "on fire" shooting the basketball from the field.
After 14 games, Ole Miss is shooting 48.8 percent from the field and 41.9 percent from the three-point arc. The Rebels are second in the SEC in field goal percentage and first in three-point field goal percentage.
ANOTHER THREE-POINT THREAT: One look at the Rebels' final stats of 2000-01, and opposing coaches could see that Ole Miss had only two major three-point threats in Jason Harrison and Aaron Harper returning for this campaign. Well, after the first 14 games of the 2001-02 season, those coaches may want to change their game plans, as David Sanders is proving to be another weapon beyond the arc.
After 14 games, Sanders has hit 15 treys and is shooting 55.6 percent from the arc. Last year, the 6-foot-3 guard had only seven three-pointers and shot 21.9 percent from the arc.
THE MAGIC NUMBER IS... Well, for the Rebels, it seems as if that number is 70. Since the 1996-97 season (including 2001-02), Ole Miss has an incredible 96-13 record (.881 winning percentage) when it scores 70 points or more. On the other hand, the Rebels are 22-40 when they net less than 70 points during that six-year period. Last season, Ole Miss had a 16-1 record when scoring 70 points or more, with the lone setback a 78-77 OT loss at LSU. This year, the Rebels are 9-3 when reaching that magical number of 70.
A NEW REBEL IRONMAN: It took 18 seasons, but the Ole Miss Rebel basketball program crowned a new ironman in 2000-01 as Jason Flanigan set a school record for career games played with 127. Flanigan broke the previous mark of 121 games played set by Roger Stieg, who played from 1980-83.
Well, Flanigan's record may fall after only one season. Jason Harrison has played in 115 games, including all 14 in 2001-02, and could set a new Ole Miss record this season.
RHODES TO PLAY, REDSHIRT LIFTED: Freshman Chris Rhodes (Houston, Texas) will now play the 2001-02 season as a result of John Gunn not being able to return to action this year. In his first action Dec. 7, the 6-foot-7 forward played four minutes versus the Tigers and has seen action in every contest since. Rhodes, a member of four-straight Texas state championships at Westbury Christian High School, averaged 20.4 points and 12.5 boards his senior season. Rhodes was named MVP of the Texas state tournament as a senior.
Freshman Jonathan Loe (Memphis, Tenn.) will be the Rebels' lone redshirt this season. The MVP of the 2001 Tennessee-Georgia All-Star Game, Loe averaged 20.9 points, 6.2 boards, 3.6 assists and 3.4 steals in helping lead Bartlett High School to the Tennessee Class AAA state title in 2000-01.
GUNN'S SURGERY A SUCCESS, OUT FOR 2001-02 SEASON: Junior forward John Gunn (Oxford, Miss.) underwent surgery in New Orleans, La., Nov. 9. The surgery to repair a lifelong kidney ailment was successful. The 6-foot-10 forward, however, will be out for the 2001-02
season. He went back to the doctor for a check-up Dec. 7, but was not released to practice. Gunn will apply for a medical redshirt following the season.
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