Reginald Buckner (photo by Joshua McCoy)
Feb. 15, 2012
Ole Miss Game Notes | Vanderbilt Game Notes
VIDEO: Coach Kennedy Press Conference
GAME 25: Ole Miss (15-9, 5-5 SEC) vs. Vanderbilt (17-8, 6-4 SEC)
Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012 | 8:00 p.m. CT
Oxford, Miss. | Tad Smith Coliseum (9,061)
Television: ESPN2 (Rece Davis, play-by-play; Hubert Davis, 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
Live Audio: RebelVision
• An Ole Miss win over Vanderbilt would move the Rebels into a tie for third place in the SEC standings.
• The Rebels need five wins to reach 20 for the fifth time in the last six seasons.
• Andy Kennedy is tied for the 8th-most wins in SEC history (120) by a coach in his first six years in the league.
• The Rebels are 82-16 in games played at Tad Smith Coliseum during Kennedy’s tenure, including 10-1 this year.
• The home team has prevailed in 21 of the last 25 meetings between Ole Miss and Vanderbilt.
• In league play, the Rebels lead all SEC teams in rebounding (40.3) and rebounding margin (+6.2).
• Ole Miss ranks third among SEC teams and 38th nationally in field-goal percentage defense (.398).
• Ole Miss is 11-3 when its opponent shoots below 40 percent from the field.
• Ole Miss has a 9-2 record when it records the same or fewer turnovers than its opponent.
• The Rebels rank 20th in the most recent NCAA rankings with 5.3 blocks/game.
• Senior F Terrance Henry has 949 career points entering the Vanderbilt game.
• Junior F Murphy Holloway ranks third in the league and 44th nationally in rebounding (9.2 rpg).
• Junior F Reginald Buckner leads all active SEC players with 215 career blocks (UM record, 19th in SEC history).
BIG OPPORTUNITY FOR REBELS ON THURSDAY
Ole Miss can move into a tie for third place in the SEC standings with a win over Vanderbilt in Oxford Thursday. It is the second straight home game for the Rebels, who will be back on the road for two straight following this one. Ole Miss is 10-1 at home this season, including 4-1 in SEC play.
IN THE RPI
Ole Miss is No. 50 in the nation in the latest RPI rankings released by the NCAA (Feb. 13). Ole Miss has played the nation’s No. 48th ranked schedule, and the Rebels are 4-8 against top-100 RPI teams and 2-6 against top-50 RPI teams. Vanderbilt is 29th in the RPI this week.
SCOUTING THE COMMODORES
Vanderbilt is 17-8 overall and 6-4 in SEC games entering Thursday’s matchup in Oxford. The Commodores won 10 of 11 games from Dec. 19 to Jan. 28, but since then they have lost three of four. Kevin Stallings’ team features the No. 3 offense in the SEC (73.8 ppg) that also ranks second in 3-pointers per game (8.8). VU boasts the SEC’s top two scorers in John Jenkins (19.5 ppg) and Jeffery Taylor (17.6 ppg), while Festus Ezeli adds 10.2 ppg. Lance Goulbourne is the team’s top rebounder at 7.1 rpg. Brad Tinsley ranks fifth in the SEC in assists with 4.5/game.
OLE MISS-VANDERBILT SERIES
Thursday’s game will be the 112th meeting between Ole Miss and Vanderbilt on the hardwood. The Commodores hold a 72-39 lead in the series, which began in 1925. Ole Miss has a 30-22 edge in games played in Oxford. The Rebels beat the Commodores in Oxford in 2008, but Vanderbilt has prevailed in nine of the last 10 meetings between the two teams. Rebel head coach Andy Kennedy is 2-4 against Vandy in his career. In addition to a 1-4 mark with Ole Miss, he picked up a 92-83 victory at Vanderbilt during the 2005-06 campaign, his lone season as Cincinnati mentor.
The Ole Miss-Vanderbilt series has been all about location over the years. In fact, the home team has prevailed in 21 of the last 25 meetings. From 1989 through 2000, the home team held court in 14 straight games.
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 82-16 (.837 win pct.) in games played at Tad Smith Coliseum during Kennedy’s tenure, including a 10-1 record this season. Ole Miss has won 213 of its last 261 games (.816 win pct.) in Oxford dating back to the 1995-96 campaign. The Rebels have an all-time record of 446-195 (.696 win pct.) at Tad Smith Coliseum, which opened in 1965-66.
KENNEDY HAS MOST OVERALL WINS AND SEC WINS IN A SIX-YEAR PERIOD
With 16 wins this year, Andy Kennedy has the most overall wins by an Ole Miss head coach in a six-year span (120). With five league victories this season, his total of 44 is tied for the most SEC wins over a six-year span (Bob Weltlich, 1977-82). Kennedy already ranks third in school history in career victories behind B.L. “Country” Graham (144 wins in 13 seasons) and Barnes (141 wins in 8 seasons).
KENNEDY’S FIRST SIX YEARS RANKS AMONG ALL-TIME SEC GREATS
With his 120th win at Ole Miss (vs. Auburn), Andy Kennedy is now tied (with Cliff Ellis) for the eighth-most wins by an SEC head coach in his first six years in the league.
1. Rick Pitino (Kentucky) - 150
2. Bruce Pearl (Tennessee) - 145
3. Joe B. Hall (Kentucky) - 135
4. Wimp Sanderson (Alabama) - 127
5. Rick Stansbury (Mississippi State) - 126
6. Billy Donovan (Florida) - 124
7. Don DeVoe (Tennessee) - 121
8. Cliff Ellis (Auburn) - 120
8. Andy Kennedy (Ole Miss) - 120
LOCKING DOWN ON “D”
Ole Miss has established itself as one of the better defensive teams in the SEC this year. The Rebels rank third in the SEC (and 38th in the latest NCAA rankings) in field goal percentage defense at 39.8. Ole Miss is 11-3 when its opponent shoots below 40 percent from the field. Seven different times the Rebels have held their opponent below 60 points, including a pair of games under 40. In league play, only one team (LSU) has scored more than 70 points against the Rebel “D.”
Ole Miss, which rates as the ninth-tallest team in the country (according to KenPom.com), is taking advantage of its significant height and length advantage against most of its opponents this year. No scholarship player on the roster is listed shorter than 6-4, while seven Rebels are listed at 6-7 or taller. Ole Miss ranks second among SEC teams with a rebounding average of 39.3 and second with a rebounding margin of +4.4 (50th in NCAA). In SEC play, Ole Miss leads all teams with 40.3 rebounds per game and a +6.2 rebounding margin. Individually, Murphy Holloway ranks third among SEC players and 44th in the nation in rebounding (9.2), while Reginald Buckner is fourth in the SEC and 67th in the country (8.4). The Rebels also block 5.3 shots per game, ranking third in the league and 20th in the NCAA. They are led by Buckner’s 2.5 swats per game, which ranks him second in the SEC and 22nd nationally.
HOME VERSUS ROAD
Like most college teams, Ole Miss fares better at home (10-1) than on the road (3-6). Here are some other facts and figures about the Rebels in home and road games:
• Ole Miss has averaged the exact same number of points at home (65.6) as on the road (65.6).
• The Rebels allow just 55.2 ppg to opponents in Oxford as opposed to 70.9 ppg on the road.
• Ole Miss actually makes a higher percentage of its 3-point attempts on the road (33.6) than at home (29.2).
• Jarvis Summers is the Rebels’ top scorer in road games at 13.2 ppg. Terrance Henry is next at 11.8 ppg.
• Murphy Holloway and Terrance Henry are the Rebels’ top scorers in home games at 11.5 ppg, followed by Nick Williams at 11.4 ppg.
Ole Miss has a 9-2 record when it records the same or fewer turnovers than its opponent, while the Rebels are 6-7 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 SEC play. 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, had a five-game stretch from Jan. 18 to Feb. 4 when he averaged 17.2 points and 6.4 rebounds, 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 an 11.6 scoring average for the season.
HENRY APPROACHES 1,000 POINTS
Entering the Vanderbilt game, senior F Terrance Henry has 949 career points. He needs 51 points to become the 33rd member of the 1,000-point club at Ole Miss. He already ranks seventh in school history in blocked shots (98) and needs one more to tie former All-American Ansu Sesay for sixth place (99).
IN THE “NICK” OF TIME
Junior G Nick Williams has stepped up his game in SEC play and leads the team with 12.4 ppg in league games (16th in SEC). The Mobile, Ala., native has tallied 12 or more points in eight of the last nine games. He had a season-high 19 points to lead the Rebels in the double-overtime effort at Alabama. He’s also had big games in wins over Arkansas (18 points and career high-tying 8 rebounds) and 15th-ranked Mississippi State (17 points).
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 10.7 ppg and 9.2 rpg (3rd in SEC, 44th in NCAA). He is third among SEC players with eight double-doubles this year and ranks second among active league players with 22 in his career. He was the SEC Player of the Week after helping Ole Miss to wins over TCU and Miami. Most recently, he led the Rebels to a win over Auburn with 20 points and 11 rebounds, including 12 straight points for Ole Miss during a second-half comeback.
ALREADY WITH SCHOOL RECORD, BUCKNER MOVES UP IN SEC CAREER BLOCKS LIST
With four blocks at Southern Miss, junior F Reginald Buckner became the Rebels’ all-time career leader in blocked shots. In just 86 games, the Memphis native has now accumulated 215 blocks, which ranks 19th in SEC history. He needs three more blocks to tie Sam Bowie (Kentucky) for 18th place. The school record was previously held by Sean Murphy, who had 180 blocks in 117 games from 1988-91. Buckner’s 2.5 average this season ranks second 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. He has blocked at least one shot in 21 of 22 games this year and 74 of 86 games over his three-year career. His total of 56 blocks this season ties him with David Dean (1993) for the Ole Miss record by a junior and is the third-most in a season in school history (behind Buckner’s previous two season totals).
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 leads all SEC freshmen in 3-point percentage (41.7), ranks seventh with 10.0 ppg and third with 3.4 assists per game.