Murphy Holloway (AP photo)
Jan. 27, 2012
Ole Miss Game Notes | South Carolina Game Notes
GAME 21: Ole Miss (13-7, 3-3 SEC) vs. South Carolina (9-10, 1-4 SEC)
Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012 | 6:00 p.m. CT
Oxford, Miss. | Tad Smith Coliseum (9,061)
Television: FSN (Dave Neal, play-by-play; Larry Conley, analyst).
Live Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network (David Kellum, play-by-play; Keith Carter, analyst).
Satellite Radio: SIRIUS 220, XM 199
Live Video: ESPN3.com (blacked out in states with an SEC school)
Live Audio: RebelVision
• Ole Miss sits in sixth place in the SEC Standings at 3-3.
• Andy Kennedy has the most wins by a Rebel coach in his first six years (118).
• The Rebels are 80-16 (.833 win pct.) in games played at Tad Smith Coliseum during Kennedy’s tenure.
• Ole Miss boasts an 8-1 record at home this season.
• As a team, Ole Miss ranks 15th in the most recent NCAA rankings with 5.5 blocks/game.
• In league play, the Rebels lead all SEC teams in rebounding (43.2) and rebounding margin (+9.8).
• The Rebels are 8-1 when they win the turnover battle and 5-6 when they have more turnovers than the opponent.
• Ole Miss is 11-2 when its opponent shoots below 40 percent from the field.
• Senior F Terrance Henry is the current SEC Player of the Week and has recorded back-to-back 20-point games.
• Junior F Murphy Holloway returned from a 3-game absence (sprained ankle) with a monster game against Arkansas (19 points, 14 rebounds). Ole Miss is 12-4 this year when Holloway plays the whole game.
• Junior F Reginald Buckner broke the school’s all-time career blocks record at Southern Miss. He now leads all active SEC players with 204 career blocks. He ranks 22nd nationally with 2.5 blocks/game.
OLE MISS HOSTS SOUTH CAROLINA SATURDAY
Ole Miss closes a two-game home stand on Saturday against South Carolina. The Rebels were edged by No. 13 Florida 64-60 on Thursday after jumping out to a 20-4 lead against the Gators in the opening minutes of the game. It was the first home loss of the year for Ole Miss, which is now 8-1 at Tad Smith Coliseum.
MEET THE BASEBALL TEAM
The Ole Miss baseball team, ranked No. 22 in the preseason, will sign autographs and hand out posters in the Tad Smith Coliseum concourse when the gates open for Saturday's hoops game vs. South Carolina.
SCOUTING THE GAMECOCKS
South Carolina enters the weekend with a 9-10 overall record and 1-4 mark in league play. After dropping their first four SEC games, the Gamecocks beat Alabama 56-54 in Columbia on Wednesday. South Carolina has strugged offensively this season (62.9 ppg), but the Gamecocks have relied on a stifling defense (62.6 ppg), which ranks fourth among SEC teams. Malik Cooke averages a team-best 12.5 ppg, while Bruce Ellington adds 11.0 ppg since returning from the gridiron to the hardwood. Damontre Harris grabs a team-best 5.2 rebounds per outing and ranks fifth in the SEC with 2.2 blocked shots per contest.
OLE MISS-SOUTH CAROLINA SERIES
Saturday’s game will be the 29th time the two schools have faced each other on the hardwood, with the series currently tied 14-14. Ole Miss lost to South Carolina 79-73 in Columbia last year, but got its revenge in the first round of the SEC Tournament with a 66-55 victory in Atlanta. Chris Warren scored 20 points in that tourney game, while Terrance Henry had a double-double with 14 points and 11 boards. Ole MIss has a 9-1 record against SC in Oxford, with the only loss coming in 2008 (80-77). Andy Kennedy is 2-5 against the Gamecocks (2-4 with Ole Miss, 0-1 with Cincinnati).
HOLLOWAY FACES FAMILIAR FOE
Though he never played a game at South Carolina, junior F Murphy Holloway is quite familiar with the program that he was a part of last season. Holloway transferred to SC due to a family situation after playing his first two years at Ole Miss. When his situation was resolved, he decided to transfer back to Ole Miss. Saturday could be the first time an SEC player has ever faced his former team while being a member of what once was also his former team.
IN THE RPI
Ole Miss is No. 42 in the nation in the latest RPI rankings, according to RealTimeRPI.com. Ole Miss has played the nation’s No. 36th ranked schedule and has faced nine teams with RPIs of 100 or better (3-6 in those games).
THROUGH 20 GAMES
Ole Miss is 13-7 through the first 20 games, which is the same record it had through 20 games last season. In fact, the Rebels have won at least 13 of their first 20 games in five of Andy Kennedy’s six seasons at the helm.
DEFENDING HOME COURT
Winning at home has been a trademark of Andy Kennedy’s squads since he took the reins in 2006-07. Ole Miss is 80-16 (.833 win pct.) in games played at Tad Smith Coliseum during Kennedy’s tenure, including an 8-1 record this season. Ole Miss has won 211 of its last 259 games (.815 win pct.) in Oxford dating back to the 1995-96 campaign. The Rebels have an all-time record of 444-195 (.695 win pct.) at Tad Smith Coliseum, which opened in 1965-66.
MOST WINS IN FIRST SIX SEASONS
With the victory over Louisiana-Lafayette, Andy Kennedy surpassed Rod Barnes for the most wins (114) in the first six seasons as Ole Miss head coach. Now with 118 wins, Kennedy already ranks third in school history behind B.L. “Country” Graham (144 wins in 13 seasons) and Barnes (141 wins in 8 seasons).
RIVALRY WIN SPARKS OLE MISS
Ole Miss used intensity and enthusiasm to defeat in-state rival and No. 15-ranked Mississippi State last Wednesday. Behind Reginald Buckner’s career-high 19 points and his 15 rebounds and three blocks, Ole Miss put on a show in front of a rowdy Tad Pad crowd. Nick Williams added 17 points, and the Rebels piled up 14 assists with a season-low five turnovers (had committed no less than 10 in any previous game). Ole Miss shot 50 percent from the field (27-54) and held the Bulldogs to 38 percent (23-61) on the night.
LOCKING DOWN ON “D”
Ole Miss has played some impressive defensive games this season. Six different times the Rebels have held their opponent below 60 points, including a pair of games under 40. The Rebels rank third in the SEC (and 27th in the NCAA) in field goal percentage defense at 39.4. Ole Miss is 11-2 when its opponent shoots below 40 percent from the field.
Ole Miss is taking advantage of its significant height and length advantage against the majority of its opponents this year. No scholarship player on the roster is listed shorter than 6-4, while six Rebels who see significant minutes are listed at 6-7 or taller. Ole Miss ranks second among SEC teams in rebounding average (40.0) and rebounding margin (+5.1). In SEC play, Ole Miss leads all teams with 43.2 rebounds per game and a +9.8 rebounding margin (the next closest rebounding margin belongs to Vanderbilt at +3.8). Through six league games, Reginald Buckner and Murphy Holloway rank second and fourth in rebounding at 10.3 rpg and 8.6 rpg, respectively. In all games, the Rebels block 5.5 shots per game, ranking third in the league and 15th in the NCAA.
Ole Miss has an 8-1 record when it records the same or fewer turnovers than its opponent, while the Rebels are 5-6 when they lose the turnover battle.
When Ole Miss has needed a player to step up offensively, senior F Terrance Henry has answered the bell in recent games. The 6-foot-9 wing, who was named SEC Player of the Week after leading Ole Miss to wins over No. 15 Mississippi State and Georgia, is averaging 19.0 points and 7.7 rebounds over the last three games, including back-to-back 20-point efforts and double-doubles against Georgia (24 points, 10 boards) and No. 13 Florida (21 points, 10 boards). Henry leads Ole Miss with a 12.0 scoring average for the season.
HOLLOWAY RETURNS WITH BIG NUMBERS
Junior F Murphy Holloway has posted some big numbers in his return to Ole Miss this year (following a one-year stint in South Carolina) and averages 10.2 ppg and 9.3 rpg (3rd in SEC, 28th in NCAA). He is third among SEC players with six double-doubles this year and ranks second among active league players with 20 in his career. He was the SEC Player of the Week after helping Ole Miss to wins over TCU and Miami.
THE HOLLOWAY FACTOR
Ole Miss really missed the presence of junior F Murphy Holloway after he sprained his ankle in the second half against Middle Tennessee (Dec. 21). The Rebels went on to drop that contest and two of the next three without him. He returned against Arkansas to score 19 points, grab 14 rebounds and effectively energize his teammates in leading the Rebels to victory. Ole Miss is 12-4 this year when Holloway plays the whole game.
BUCKNER SETS OLE MISS RECORD, MOVES UP IN SEC CAREER BLOCKS LIST
With four blocks at Southern Miss, junior F Reginald Buckner surpassed Sean Murphy as the Rebels’ all-time career leader in blocked shots. In just 82 games, the Memphis native now has accumulated 204 blocks, making him the 21st player in SEC history with 200 or more. The school record was previously held by Murphy, who had 180 blocks in 117 games from 1988-91. Buckner’s 2.5 blocks average this season ranks fourth among SEC players and 22nd in the most recent NCAA rankings. He now holds the school record for blocks in a career, season and game.
IN THE “NICK” OF TIME
Junior G Nick Williams has stepped up his game in SEC play, averaging a team-best 13.3 ppg in league games (11th in SEC). The Mobile, Ala., native has dropped in 12 or more points in each of the last five contests. He tallied a season-high 18 points and tied a career high with 8 rebounds to help the Rebels to a victory over Arkansas. Coming off the bench for the first time this season, his tenacity was evident in each of his successful drives to the hoop, and the Rebels’ top free-throw shooter knocked down 4 of 5 from the line, as well. At Auburn, he came up big with a game-tying 3-pointer to help erase a 12-point second half deficit and force overtime. He poured in 17 points (7-9 FTs) in the win over 15th-ranked Mississippi State. He had 12 points at Georgia and dropped in 14 points with a career-high four 3-pointers against No. 13 Florida.
SUMMERS NOT AFRAID OF CRUNCH TIME
Freshman PG Jarvis Summers has shown no fear in the face of critical situations this year. It was his 27 points and crunch-time heroics that gave the Rebels an early victory at Penn State and his late free throws to seal an overtime win over Miami. Against Auburn, he directed a comeback from 12 down in the final nine minutes to force overtime, hitting all four of his 3-pointers after the nine-minute mark. He scored 22 against the Tigers to become the first Rebel with multiple 20-point games this year. He ranks eighth among SEC freshmen in scoring with 10.4 ppg, third with 3.2 assists per game and second with 99 free throws attempted. Among SEC freshmen in league play, he ranks seventh in scoring (10.8), third in assists (3.7) and first in free throws made (25) and attempted (37).