Men's Basketball Game Notes
Feb. 7, 2002
Rebels on Television and Radio
Television: Jefferson-Pilot (Paul Kennedy, play-by-play, Larry Conley, color analyst, Roger Roebuck, producer, Anthony Earley, director)
Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network (David Kellum, play-by-play, Stan Sandroni, pregame/ halftime/postgame host, Don Kessinger, guest color analyst)
PROBABLE STARTING LINE-UPS
- Arkansas Probable Starters -
REBEL GAME NOTES
OLE MISS TO RETURN HOME TO HOST ARKANSAS IN SEC WEST CLASH: The Ole Miss Rebels (17-6, 6-4 SEC) return home to Tad Smith Coliseum Saturday, Feb. 9 to host the Arkansas Razorbacks (12-9, 4-5 SEC) in a Southeastern Conference Western Division showdown. The game, which will be televised by Jefferson-Pilot, is slated for a 12:07 p.m. (CT) tip. The Rebels enter Saturday's encounter having won 13 of their last 17 games., but have dropped their last two contests on the road at No. 16-ranked Georgia (79-72) and at No. 5-ranked Alabama (79-59). Arkansas has been off since Feb. 2. The Razorbacks have won two of their last three contests, with victories over nationally-ranked Florida and Auburn.
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 an 83-41 record. He has led Ole Miss to a 17-6 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-ARKANSAS SERIES: Saturday's game will the 50th meeting between the two schools, with the Razorbacks holding an all-time series lead of 34-15. The series began in 1937. Since it joined the Southeastern Conference in the 1991-92 season, Arkansas holds an 11-10 series lead over the Rebels. Earlier this year, the Rebels posted a 70-64 victory over Arkansas in Fayetteville. Last season, Ole Miss swept the two meetings with the Razorbacks, defeating Arkansas 53-48 in Fayetteville and 84-73 in Oxford. The Rebels have won seven of the last eight meetings versus the Razorbacks, and also hold an 8-3 series advantage in games played in Oxford. The last time Arkansas won at Tad Smith Coliseum was the 1995-96 campaign, a narrow 63-62 victory on Jan. 10, 1996. Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes is 6-1 versus Arkansas and 3-0 against the Razorbacks in Oxford.
SCOUTING ARKANSAS: The Razorbacks enter Saturday's game after a week off from action. Arkansas, which is 12-9 overall and 4-5 in Southeastern Conference action, last played Feb. 2 and defeated Auburn 62-60 in Fayetteville. Jannero Pargo is the SEC's hottest player entering Saturday's game. Pargo, who averages 17.7 ppg, scored over 30 points in two of Arkansas' last three games (35 vs. Florida, 33 vs. Alabama). Brandon Dean (12.6 ppg) and J.J. Sullinger (10.3 ppg) are also scoring in double figures for the Razorbacks. Dionisio Gomez leads Arkansas with a 6.0 rebounding average. Pargo is the squad's top three-point threat at 43.9 percent from the arc and also leads the team with 68 assists. The Razorbacks, as a team, are shooting 44.8 percent from the field, 33.9 percent from the arc and 65.1 percent from the foul line. Opponents are out-rebounding Arkansas by an average of 8.9 boards per game.
IT'S NOT OVER JUST YET: Yes, the Rebels lost to Southeastern Conference Western Division leader Alabama Feb. 6 to fall 2.5 games back in the race for the West crown. Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes has called the race a marathon, and it's not over just yet.
In the 1997-98 season, Ole Miss was a full three games back (5-4 SEC mark) behind Arkansas (8-1) in the race for the Western Division title after an early February setback to the Razorbacks (Feb. 5, 1998). The Rebels, though, bounced back to claim the title outright with an 12-4 league mark. Ole Miss won the crown on the final day of the regular season, defeating Auburn while Arkansas (11-5 final SEC record) fell at Alabama.
JANUARY'S BETTER, BUT FEBRUARY'S NOT THAT BAD: The Rebels have had success against Arkansas when the two teams meet in January in recent seasons, holding an 8-4 series lead in those first-month encounters since 1991-92. Ole Miss, though, has not had much success in February against the Razorbacks until recently. Since Arkansas joined the league in 1991-92, the Razorbacks have a 5-2 record against the Rebels in February contests, but Ole Miss has won the last two meetings (87-82 on Feb. 2, 2000, 81-65 on Feb. 25, 1998).
THE SEC WEST'S BEST CLASH: Saturday's contest between Ole Miss and Arkansas will feature the two most successful programs in the Southeastern Conference's Western Division since the 1996-97 season. Ole Miss is the winningest SEC Western Division program in the last six seasons (1996-97 to present), while Arkansas is the division's second-winningest program. The following is a "tale of the tape" of the two programs since 1996-97:
* Ole Miss and Arkansas have combined to win 7 of the 10 SEC Western Division titles since 1991-92.
A GOOD SIGN?: It's never a good sign to have a two-game losing streak, but in the Rebels' case, it may be. Ole Miss enters Saturday's game versus Arkansas having lost to nationally-ranked Georgia (79-72) and Alabama (79-59). Last season, the Rebels dropped back-to-back decisions to Georgia (70-66) and Alabama (82-63) and bounced back with seven victories in their next eight games.
IN GOOD COMPANY...PART I: One saying is people judge you by the company you keep. If that is the case, Ole Miss must be considered among the Southeastern Conference's elite - especially since 1996-97. The Rebels are one of three SEC teams to advance to the postseason each of the previous five years (4 NCAA, 1 NIT). Arkansas (4 NCAA, 1 NIT) and Kentucky (5 NCAA) are the only two other SEC schools to see action in the last five postseason tournaments.
IN GOOD COMPANY...PART II: Coming into the 2001-02 season, Ole Miss had put together a string of five consecutive winning seasons. The Rebels are one of four schools in the SEC to post winning records in each of the previous five years. Kentucky, Arkansas and Auburn are the other three league schools to do so.
LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION!: Saturday's game against Arkansas will be the Rebels' seventh overall television appearance in 2001-02 and their fifth in Southeastern Conference play. Saturday's game also comes in a stretch where Ole Miss will also play three of four contests on television (at Alabama, Feb. 6, Arkansas, Feb. 9, Florida, Feb. 16). Ole Miss is 4-2 in television games this year, defeating Kansas State 67-65 Nov. 24, No. 22-ranked Memphis 71-67 Dec. 7, Arkansas 70-64 Jan. 19 and South Carolina 71-53 Jan. 26 and falling at No. 12-ranked Kentucky 87-64 Jan. 15 and at No. 5-ranked Alabama 79-59.
COMMON OPPONENTS: The Rebels and the Razorbacks have played three common opponents this season. Ole Miss is 3-2 against those common opponents, while Arkansas is 4-2. The following shows the results of those common opponents:
SANDERS LOVES PLAYING ARKANSAS: There always seems to be one player who loves to play against one opponent. For junior David Sanders (Jackson, Miss.), that opponent is Arkansas. In his first three games against the Razorbacks (all Ole Miss wins), Sanders averaged 16 points and 4.3 boards, while shooting 63 percent (17-of-27) from the field.
Earlier this year (Jan. 19), the 6-foot-3 guard had 17 points, seven boards and three assists. He also came up with a couple of big plays for the Rebels in the second half. With Ole Miss clinging to a 47-45 lead, he converted a three-point play to stop an 8-0 Arkansas run and begin a 7-0 Rebel spurt. Then, with under two minutes to play, Sanders intercepted (like a football defensive back "over-the-head" pick-off) a full court pass to prevent an easy Arkansas layup.
In the Jan. 10, 2001, game, he scored 12 points and hit the game-clinching free throws with :08 on the clock. Sanders netted a career-high tying 19 points and also had three boards and three steals in the second encounter between the teams last season.
WADE A SECOND-HALF WARRIOR AGAINST ARKANSAS: Junior Emmanuel Wade (Marianna, Ark.) has made it a habit to take his game up to another level in the second half of contests - especially against the Razorbacks. The following shows how Manny came alive in the second half of two games versus Arkansas:
"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 88 of its last 97 games (.907 winning percentage) at home, including homecourt winning streaks of 15 and 29 games. Ole Miss is 10-1 at the "Tad Pad" in 2001-02. In the past 10 seasons (1992-93 through 2001-02), Ole Miss has an overall home record of 116-30 (.795 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 321-156 (.673 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.
HE'S DONE IT!, HARRISON REACHES 1,000: Senior Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) is now No. 26. No, he hasn't changed his jersey number, as he still wears No. 11. With his nine points versus Alabama Feb. 6, the 5-foot-5 guard became the 26th Rebel in the program's history to reach the 1,000-point milestone for a career. He now has 1,002 career points.
In the Rebels' contest at Tennessee Jan. 6, he 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 JOINS ELITE REBEL CLUB: With his nine points and four assists against Alabama Feb. 6, Jason Harrison reached both the 1,000-point and 400-assists milestones. In doing so, the Little Rock, Ark., native is only the second player in Rebel basketball history to reach the two plateaus and also record over 150 steals in a career. Rod Barnes, Ole Miss' current head coach, is the other. The following compares the two:
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 23 games in 2001-02, Harrison has 95 dishes for a 4.1 average. At his current pace, Harrison would hand out 123 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 400 assists. He is in the No. 3 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 already has joined 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
FINDING THE (SHOOTING) FEELING AGAIN: Ole Miss started off the 2001-02 campaign with a hot-shooting hand from the field, hitting nearly 50 percent (49.4 percent, to be exact) from the floor heading into Southeastern Conference play. The Rebels, though, loss their touch and hit a slump.
In the last five games, Ole Miss found its shooting stroke from the field. The following shows the ups and downs of field goal shooting for the Rebels this year:
WE NEED YOU, COACH!: In all games, teams shoot at the opposite end of the floor (away from their bench) in the first half, and then shoot in front of their bench in the second half. For the Rebels, they must really love being close to their own bench and head coach Rod Barnes. In Southeastern Conference play (10 games), Ole Miss is shooting a considerably higher percentage in the second half than first in all of its SEC games - especially home contests - and the following chart shows that:
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 125 games (overall games) since 1996-97, the most by any SEC Western Division team. The 125 victories are also second among all league teams, only trailing Kentucky's 160 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)
REBELS SECOND ON WEST TITLES LIST: The Rebels clinched the Southeastern Conference Western Division title outright in 2000-01, and it was the program's third SEC Western Division championship in the last five years. Since the league went to the two-division format in 1991-92, the Rebels have won the second-most SEC West titles. The following chart shows the SEC Western Division champions (outright and shared titles):
SEC Western Division Team Titles Years Arkansas 4 1992-93-94-95 Ole Miss 3 1997-98-2001 Mississippi State 2 1995-96 Auburn 1 1999 LSU 1 2000
REBELS GUARANTEE WINNING SEASON: With their victory over South Carolina Jan. 26, the Rebels guaranteed themselves a sixth straight winning campaign. Ole Miss currently has a 17-6 record. The six consecutive winning seasons are the most in the program's 92-year history since the Rebels had nine straight winning ledgers from 1919-20 through 1927-28.
REED OVER 700 POINTS: Justin Reed (Jackson, Miss.) is moving on up the chart - the scoring chart, that is. After his 17-point performance versus Georgia Feb. 2, he went over 700 points for his career. Reed now has 728 career points. Earlier this season, Reed eclipsed the 500-point plateau with his 17 points against Memphis. Last year, the 2001 Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year netted 385 points, and has 343 in 2001-02. He is leading the team in scoring (14.9 ppg) and is second on the squad in rebounding (6.2 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.
REED AMONG FIRST TWO-YEAR SCORING LEADERS: With Justin Reed going over the 700-point plateau this year, the 6-foot-8 forward is also moving up the chart for points scored in the first two years in a Rebel uniform. The following chart shows the top first two-year scorers in Ole Miss history:
& played only 2 years
* did not play as freshmen because freshmen were not eligible to play varsity ball
# played only 1 year
$ played only 3 years
REED SECOND IN NATION IN FREE THROW SHOOTING IMPROVEMENT: It's the goal of every player to improve his game throughout his career. In the case of sophomore Justin Reed, he had to work on his free throw shooting after the 2000-01 season. And worked on it, he did.
As of Feb. 3, the Rebels' 6-foot-8 forward had made the nation's second biggest improvement at the free throw line. Last season, Reed shot 54.9 percent from the charity stripe, but this year, he is hitting 78.7 percent (as of Feb. 3) which is a difference of 23.8 percent. He is now shooting 78.2 percent. The following lists the top five players with biggest improvements from the foul line in the nation:
Best Improvement in FT Pct.
BARNES GETS WIN NO. 80: Rod Barnes posted his 80th victory as head coach at Ole Miss with the Rebels' 70-64 victory at Arkansas Jan. 19. He has a current record of 83-41, and reached the 80-win plateau the fastest of any coach in Rebel basketball history. His 83 victories are tied for the fourth most by a head coach in Ole Miss basketball history. The following lists the winningest coaches in Rebel history:
BOMBS AWAY!, HARPER CLIMBING CHART: Sophomore Aaron Harper (Jackson, Miss.) 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 57 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
REBELS IN CLOSE CALLS: While the Ole Miss fans may not enjoy the nailbiters this season, the Rebels are proving they can be successful in games decided by single digits. Ole Miss is 6-4 in contests decided by less than 10 points this year, including victories over versus Auburn (69-65), No. 22-ranked Mississippi State (66-59) and Arkansas (70-64). Last year, the Rebels had a 14-3 mark in games decided by single digits.
Arkansas is 4-6 in games decided by less than 10 points this season.
REED DOUBLES HIS PLEASURE...AGAIN: Justin Reed doubled his pleasure for the fourth time this year when he posted 19 points and 12 boards against Alabama Feb. 6. The 6-foot-8 forward also recorded double-doubles versus Lipscomb (12-10), Arkansas-Pine Bluff (16-10) and Kansas State (15-11) this season. Reed now has seven double-doubles for his career. The following lists Reed's double-double performances:
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. After the Rebels' victory over Vanderbilt Jan. 30, this year's senior class has 83 victories, which is five 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: P>
REBELS HAVE BALANCED ATTACK: In 2001-02, the Rebels are showing their opponents they have a multi-offensive attack. Ole Miss has five players averaging double figures with Justin Reed at 14.9 ppg, David Sanders at 11.2 ppg, Aaron Harper at 11.1 ppg, Jason Harrison at 10.3 ppg and Derrick Allen (Gadsden, Ala.) at 10.1 ppg.
In 16 of their 23 games this year, the Rebels have had at least four players score in double figures. Ole Miss has a 13-3 record in those games.
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