Ole Miss Takes On Mississippi State Wednesday
Feb. 21, 2000
Ole Miss (15-10, 3-9) at Mississippi St. (12-13, 3-9)
Wednesday, February 23 - 7:00 p.m. (CT)
Rebels on Television and Radio
Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network (David Kellum, play-by-play, Sean Tuohy, color analyst, Stan Sandroni, pregame/halftime/postgame host)
OLE MISS TO CLOSE TWO-GAME SEC ROAD TRIP AT RIVAL MISSISSIPPI STATE ON WEDNESDAY
The Ole Miss Rebels (15-10, 3-9 SEC) will close a two-game Southeastern Conference road trip at Mississippi State (12-13, 3-9 SEC) on Wednesday, Feb. 23. The contest, which is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. (CT), will be played at Humphrey Coliseum in Starkville, Miss. The Rebels enter Wednesday's game on a three-game losing skid after losses to Georgia, No. 16 LSU and No. 12 Auburn. The Bulldogs also enter Wednesday's contest on a losing streak, dropping five straight to Tennessee (88-81), Vanderbilt (65-64), Arkansas (87-81), South Carolina (68-67) and Florida (88-58). Mississippi State's last victory was a 68-66 come-from-behind win over then-No. 22 LSU on Feb. 2.
OLE MISS-MISSISSIPPI STATE SERIES
Wednesday's game will the 220th meeting between the two schools, with the Bulldogs holding an all-time series lead of 120-99. Earlier this season, the Bulldogs pulled out a narrow 61-59 win over Ole Miss in Oxford. Last year, the teams split their two meetings, with the Rebels posting an 81-68 victory in Oxford and the Bulldogs recording a 72-69 win in Starkville. Overall, Ole Miss has won five of the last eight meetings in the series, dating back to the Rebels' upset victory over then-No. 25 Mississippi State, 71-64 in February 1996. The Bulldogs hold a 79-23 series lead in games played in Starkville, and have won the five of the last six meetings in Humphrey Coliseum. The last Ole Miss victory in Starkville was an 82-78 win in the 1997-98 campaign.
Game #16 - January 12, 2000
Mississippi State's T.J. Billups and Antonio Jackson each scored 12 points apiece and Tang Hamilton added 10 points and seven boards to lead the Bulldogs to a 61-59 Southeastern Conference victory over Ole Miss. Michael Gholar led Mississippi State on the boards with nine rebounds.
Senior Lataryl Williams led Ole Miss with 21 points on 8-of-9 shooting from the field, including 4-of-4 from the arc, and 1-of-2 from the charity stripe. Rahim Lockhart added 14 points and five rebounds. Williams also blocked a career-best five shots.
The Rebels held a 52-48 lead at the 6:30 mark of the second half, but the Bulldogs answered back with a Billups three-point play to cut the Ole Miss lead to 52-51. Ole Miss continued to lead until the 4:03 mark when Robert Jackson's layup gave the Bulldogs the lead for good at 56-54. Mississippi State then hung on to the win from the foul line in the closing minutes.
In the first half, the Rebels jumped out to a 10-6 lead, but Mississippi State responded with a 14-5 run to take a 20-15 lead at the 11:24 mark. Ole Miss regained the advantage at 27-25 on a Williams' three-pointer with 5:11 left before the intermission. The Rebels held a 34-29 lead at the half.
Ole Miss shot 46 percent from the field, while Mississippi State hit 35.3 percent from the floor. The Bulldogs out-rebounded the Rebels, 37-35.
SCOUTING MISSISSIPPI STATE
Mississippi State enters Wednesday's contest with a 12-13 overall record and a 3-9 Southeastern Conference mark. The Bulldogs bring a five-game losing streak into Wednesday's game, dropping decisions to Tennessee (88-81), Vanderbilt (65-64), Arkansas (87-81), South Carolina (68-67) and Florida (88-58). Mississippi State's last victory was a 68-66 come-from-behind win over then-No. 22 LSU on Feb. 2. The trio of Tang Hamilton, Robert Jackson and Antonio Jackson is pacing the Bulldog offense. Hamilton leads the team with a 14.4 scoring average, while Robert Jackson (12.7 ppg) and Antonio Jackson (11.2 ppg) are also averaging in double figures. Robert Jackson, who missed Saturday's game at Florida with illness, is the squad's top rebounder with a 7.1 average. Todd Myles is the Bulldogs' assists leader with 99, and is also the squad's top three-point threat at 37.5 percent. Mississippi State is shooting 45.4 percent from the field, 32.5 percent from the three-point arc and 66.9 percent from the free throw line. The Bulldogs are averaging 72.6 points and 37.5 rebounds, and are out-rebounding their opponents by an average of 3.6 boards per game (37.5-33.9).
- PROBABLE STARTERS -
- RESERVES -
# - will seek a medical redshirt at the end of the season
- MISSISSIPPI STATE PROBABLE STARTERS -
* Based on last game's starters
- TOP RESERVES -
OLE MISS-MISSISSIPPI ST. TEAM COMPARISONS
BARNES IN SECOND SEASON AS REBEL MENTOR
Rod Barnes is in his second season at the helm of the Ole Miss Rebel basketball program. With the Rebels' loss at Auburn on Feb. 19, Barnes' overall coaching record now stands at 35-23. In his first season in 1998-99, Barnes guided Ole Miss to a 20-13 overall record and a third straight NCAA Tournament appearance. The Satartia, Miss., native became the first head coach in the history of Rebel basketball to win 20 games in his first season. Last season, Barnes also guided the Rebels to a 72-70 win over Villanova in the NCAA Tournament first round, marking the program's first-ever victory in NCAA play. 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 (17th, 1,201 points), assists (2nd, 456) and steals (6th, 154).
REBELS TRY TO PREVENT THE SWEEP
When Ole Miss takes the floor on Wednesday, the Rebels will try to stop the Bulldogs from a season sweep. Earlier this year, Mississippi State defeated Ole Miss, 61-59 in Oxford on Jan. 12. A Bulldog victory on Wednesday would give Mississippi State its first sweep of Ole Miss since the 1994-95 season (94-52 in Starkville, 46-42 in Oxford). The Rebels' last sweep in the series came in the 1997-98 campaign (81-77, 2ot in Oxford, 82-78 in Starkville).
FEBRUARY...YOU'RE FINALLY HERE
February is the month the Rebels have been waiting for, and it's finally here. The past four seasons (1995-96, 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99), Ole Miss has played well in the month of February, posting a 20-9 mark. With their 2-3 record in February this year, the Rebels' mark in the month since 1996 is 22-12 (.647 winning percentage). The following chart shows the Rebels' success in the month of February over the past five seasons:
Cumulative Feb. Record: 22-12 (.647 winning percentage)
* team received NCAA Tournament bid
THE RACE IS ON...
Well, it's not the race for first or second place in the Southeastern Conference Western Division, but four teams-Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Alabama and Arkansas-are jockeying for positions No. 3-No. 6 for the SEC Tournament. The tournament, which is Mar. 9-12, will be held at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Ga. The following chart shows the records and what games are left in the race:
THE MAGIC NUMBER IS...
Well, for the Rebels, it seems as if that number is 70. In the past four seasons (1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-2000), Ole Miss has an incredible 69-9 record (.885 winning percentage) when it scores 70 points or more in a game. On the other hand, the Rebels are 7-30 when they net less than 70 points in a game. This year, the Rebels are 14-3 when scoring 70 points or more. In SEC action the last four seasons (1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-2000), Ole Miss has a 33-6 record (.846 winning percentage) when scoring 70 or more points.
NEXT WIN SECURES WINNING SEASON
With one more victory, Ole Miss would guarantee its fourth consecutive winning season. The last time the Rebel basketball program put together four straight winning seasons was 1979-80 through 1982-83 (17-13, 1979-80, 16-14, 1980-81, 18-12, 1981-82, 19-12, 1982-83). The last time the Rebels had more than four consecutive winning campaigns was nine straight from 1919-20 through 1927-28.
LOCKHART DOUBLES HIS PLEASURE-A 12TH TIME
Junior Rahim Lockhart (Mendenhall, Miss.) has certainly doubled his pleasure for the Rebels in 1999-2000, as he has recorded 12 double-doubles. His last double-double performance came versus Auburn on Feb. 19 with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Lockhart is currently averaging 12.4 points (19th in SEC) and 8.6 rebounds (4th in SEC). The following charts Lockhart's double-doubles this season:
The junior forward now has 13 career double-doubles, as his first came last season against Tennessee (Feb. 17, 16 pts-12 rebs).
AN ALL-STAR REUNION
Wednesday's contest will be an all-star reunion-of sorts. Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes, Rebel senior forward Marcus Hicks (Jackson, Tenn.) and Mississippi State junior forward Tang Hamilton were all members of the Southeastern Conference All-Stars that traveled to Japan last August. Barnes, who served as the team's co-head coach with LSU's John Brady, guided the SEC All-Stars to a 4-1 record versus the Japan National Team. Hicks averaged 10 points and 6.2 boards, and led the team in rebounding, blocked shots and field goal percentage. Hamilton led the SEC All-Stars with a 15.6 scoring average.
FLANIGAN BREAKS 200 ASSISTS, TIES CAREER HIGH
Junior guard Jason Flanigan (Little Rock, Ark.) reached a milestone in the Rebels' 83-75 victory over South Carolina on Feb. 9, surpassing the 200-assist plateau for his career. He dished out a career-high tying nine assists versus the Gamecocks, and after his two-assist performance versus LSU on Feb. 16, Flanigan now has 210 for his career. He also dished out nine assists versus Northwestern State during his freshman campaign in 1997-98. This season, the 6-foot-1 guard has 81 assists, which is second on team.
HARRISON CLOSING IN ON 200 ASSISTS
Sophomore Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) is also closing in on the 200-assist plateau. With his four assists versus Auburn on Feb. 19, Harrison now has 180 for his career. He recorded the 150th assist of his career in the Rebels' game versus Mississippi State on Jan. 12. The 5-foot-5 guard leads the team with 94 assists this season, and is ranked 10th in the SEC in assists. Harrison is also on pace to become the first Rebel since Cedric Brim in 1994-95 to have 100 assists or more in a season.
"GET THAT SHOT OUTTA HERE!!!"
With his three blocked shots versus Arkansas on Feb. 2, junior Rahim Lockhart moved into the top five on the Ole Miss career blocked shot chart. The 6-foot-8 forward currently has 76 career blocks and is No. 5 on the chart. In the Arkansas contest, he passed former Rebel Ronnie Sims, who recorded 71 blocked shots in his career from 1985-86. Lockhart leads the Rebels in blocked shots this season with 39, and is fifth in the SEC in blocks.
MAKING THE MOST OF IT
With freshman John Gunn not able to play as a result of mononucleosis, sophomore John Engstrom (Paragould, Ark.) has received some additional playing time, and has made the most of his opportunity. In the Rebels' three games prior to the Feb. 19 contest at Auburn, the 7-foot center averaged 2.7 points and 1.0 rebounds while shooting 80 percent (4-of-5) from the field in 32 minutes of action (10.7 minutes per game). He tied a career high with four points versus LSU on Feb. 16, and set a career best with two field goals against the Tigers.
BARNES THIRD FASTEST TO 35 WINS
With the Rebels' win over South Carolina on Feb. 9, Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes posted his 35th victory in only the 55th game in his career as the Rebel mentor. Barnes reached the 35-win plateau the third fastest of any head coach in Ole Miss basketball history. See the following chart:
WADE PLAYING WELL FOR THE REBELS
Freshman Emmanuel Wade (Marianna, Ark.) has come on strong of late for the Rebels-especially in the last eight games . The 6-foot-3 guard is averaging 9.3 points and 2.5 boards in the eight-game stretch, which includes five starts. He is also shooting 48.2 percent (27-of-56) from the field and 45.8 percent (11-of-24) from the three-point arc in the last eight games. He had a career game versus Alabama on Jan. 29, recording career bests of 19 points, seven field goals and four treys. His previous career bests were points (14), field goals (6) and treys (2) came versus Birmingham-Southern on Jan. 2. In the Rebels' victory over South Carolina on Feb. 9, Wade grabbed a career-best five rebounds.
HICKS REACHES 700-POINT MILESTONE
Senior Marcus Hicks reached another milestone in his Rebel career, surpassing the 700-point plateau in Ole Miss' victory over Arkansas on Feb. 2. The 6-foot-6 forward entered the Arkansas game with 684 points, and after his 31-point performance versus the Razorbacks, he had 715 points. With his 13 points versus Auburn on Feb. 19, Hicks now has 755 career points in 58 games. He scored point No. 700 on a layup with 2:12 left in the first half versus Arkansas. On Jan. 8, Hicks passed the 600-point plateau, scoring point No. 600 on a free throw at the 16:53 mark of the first half versus the Gators. Earlier this season, Hicks reached the 500-point plateau in the Rebels' game at Oklahoma on Dec. 4. Hicks entered the game with 492 points, and scored his 500th point on a free throw at the 3:10 mark of the first half versus the Sooners.
REBELS VERSUS THE SEC WESTERN DIVISION
The Rebels have a 40-47 regular-season record versus teams from the SEC Western Division. Ole Miss is 40-48 versus the SEC Western Division teams, including tournament play. The Rebels, however, have been successful versus their SEC Western Division foes the last three years (1996-97, 1997-98 and 1998-99), posting a 21-9 record. The following charts show the Rebels' year-by-year record versus the SEC Western Division and their mark against each school from the Western Division (includes tournament games):
HICKS ALSO PASSES 300-REBOUND MARK
Senior Marcus Hicks really doubled his pleasure in the Rebels' win over Arkansas on Feb. 2. Hicks' double-double of 31 points and 10 rebounds not only allowed him to reach the 700-point milestone but also surpass the 300-rebound mark. The 6-foot-6 forward entered the Arkansas game with 292 career boards, and his 10 rebounds versus the Razorbacks gave him 302. He now has 322 after grabbing six boards versus Auburn on Feb. 19. This season, Hicks is the Rebels' second-leading rebounder with a 5.7 average. He was also the team's second-leading rebounder in 1998-99 with a 5.4 average. Hicks came to Ole Miss from Northwest Mississippi C.C., where he compiled 624 rebounds in two seasons from 1996-98.
LOCKHART REACHES 400-REBOUND MILESTONE
Junior Rahim Lockhart has been a rebounding machine for the Rebels this season, and as a result of his board prowess, he has reached the 400-rebound plateau for his career. With his five boards versus Arkansas on Feb. 2, the 6-foot-8 forward reached the 400-board plateau. After recording 11 boards versus Auburn on Feb. 19, he now has 435 career rebounds. Lockhart entered the 1999-2000 season with 220 career rebounds, and has grabbed 215 so far this year. Lockhart leads the Rebels with an 8.6 rebounding average.
Freshman forward John Gunn (Oxford, Miss.) has missed the last four games
as a result of mononucleosis...A Bulldog win would give Mississippi State
its first-ever sweep of football and men's and women's basketball in the
same academic year. Ole Miss last accomplished the feat in the 1992-93
academic year. The Rebels also did it in the 1981-82 year.
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