Men's Basketball Notes

March 2, 2002

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Alabama Game Notes
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GAMEDAY INFORMATION
Date: Sunday, March 3
Time: 1:06 p.m. (CT) tip
Site: Tad Smith Coliseum * Oxford, Miss.

Rebels on Television and Radio
Television: CBS Sports (Don Criqui, play-by-play, Bob Wenzel, color analyst, Craig Silver, producer, Chris Svendson, 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
Ole Miss Probable Starters
(Based on last game's starters)

No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown Notes
23 Justin Reed (So.) F 6-8 230 14.9/6.8 Jackson, Miss. * Avg. near a dbl-dbl in last 6 gms with 15.5 pts, 9.7 rebs
40 Derek Allen F 6-8 230 9.2/6.2 Gadsden, Ala. * Came off the bench vs. Fla. and MSU, started vs. LSU
5 Aaron Harper (So.) G/F 6-7 215 11.6/4.1 Jackson, Miss. * Has 74 treys, 3rd most for a season (79 is season record)
11 Jason Harrison (Sr.) G 5-5 160 10.0/4.0apg Little Rock, Ark. * Set OM career games played record vs. MSU (128 gms)
15 David Sanders (Jr.) G 6-3 185 11.9/4.6 Jackson, Miss. * Posted 1st career dbl-dbl vs. Fla. (15-11), 11 rebs career high
- Top Reserves -
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown Notes
32 Emmanuel Wade (Jr.) G 6-3 185 7.0/3.3 Marianna, Ark. * Avg. 7.0 pts, 3.7 rebs, 3.0 asts in 3 gms prior to MSU Feb. 23
45 Richard Kirklin (Jr.) F 6-9 215 1.8/1.0 Pine Bluff, Ark. * Made 9th career start vs. MSU, OM is 8-1 when he starts

- Alabama Probable Starters -

No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown Notes
35 Erwin Dudley (Jr.) F 6-8 240 16.0/9.1 Uniontown, Ala. * SEC POY candidate, nearly dbl-dbl in SEC play (18.1 pts/9.8 rebs)
42 Kenny Walker (Jr.) F 6-9 220 8.9/5.6 Jacksonville, Fla. * Leads squad with 36 blocks, shoots 80 pct. from FT line
14 Terrance Meade (Jr.) G 6-2 190 8.7/3.1 Scottsboro, Ala. * Had 15 pts vs. OM last year in game in Oxford
21 Rod Grizzard (Jr.) G 6-8 205 13.8/5.7 Birmingham, Ala. * One of nation's top players, 2002 preseason Wooden candidate
25 Maurice Williams (Fr.) G 6-1 183 9.9/4.6 apg Jackson, Miss. * Leads squad with 54 steals, 93.9 FT in SEC play (31-of-33)
- Top Reserves -
No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown Notes
50 Antoine Pettway (So.) G 6-0 165 6.5/1.8 Alberta, Ala. * One of nation's top "sixth-men", 50.4 FG, 42.4 3-pt. FG, 83 FT
5 Earnest Shelton (Fr.) G 6-3 190 7.0/2.0 Memphis, Tenn. * Had 10 points off the bench in 1st OM-UA game this year

REBEL GAME NOTES
OLE MISS TO HOST ALABAMA IN REGULAR-SEASON FINALE SUNDAY: The Ole Miss Rebels (19-9, 8-7 SEC) will host the Alabama Crimson Tide (24-5, 12-3 SEC) in the regular-season finale for both teams on Sunday, Mar. 3. The game, which will be televised by CBS, is scheduled for 1:06 p.m. (CT) tip. The Rebels enter Sunday's contest having dropped their last two on the road at Mississippi State (61-59) Feb. 23 and at LSU (59-56) Feb. 27. Alabama brings a two-game win streak into Sunday's contest, defeating Florida (65-64) Feb. 23 and Auburn (73-68) Feb. 27. The Crimson Tide won the overall SEC title with their victory over Auburn Wednesday.

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 85-44 record. He has led Ole Miss to a 19-9 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-ALABAMA SERIES: Sunday's game will be the 149th meeting between the two schools. The Crimson Tide hold a commanding 105-43 lead in the series, which began in 1921. Earlier this year, Alabama defeated Ole Miss 79-59 in Tuscaloosa. Last season, the two schools split their meetings, with Alabama winning 82-63 in Tuscaloosa and Ole Miss winning 105-71 in Oxford. The Crimson Tide hold a 35-32 lead in games played in Oxford. Ole Miss, however, has won the last four meetings in Oxford. The last Alabama win in Tad Smith Coliseum came in the 1996-97 season, a 59-46 victory. Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes is 3-4 versus Alabama and 3-0 against the Crimson Tide in Oxford.

SCOUTING ALABAMA: The Crimson Tide, ranked No. 6 in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Top 25 polls, enters Sunday's regular-season finale with a 24-5 overall record and a 12-3 Southeastern Conference mark. With its Feb. 27 victory over Auburn, Alabama clinched the SEC overall title. The Crimson Tide won the SEC Western Division crown with their victory over Florida Feb. 23. Erwin Dudley and Rod Grizzard, both candidates for SEC Player of the Year, lead the Crimson Tide offense. Dudley is the team's leading scorer with a 16.0 average, while Grizzard is second with a 13.8 average. Dudley also leads the squad and the SEC with a 9.1 rebounding average and a 58.1 field goal percentage. The Crimson Tide are shooting 44.3 percent from the floor, 30.6 percent from the three-point line and 72.4 percent from the foul line.

REBELS CELEBRATE "SENIOR DAY": Ole Miss will honor the 2002 senior class prior to Sunday's game. Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) is the team's lone senior. The 2002 class has averaged over 20 victories per season, and is the only the second class in Rebel basketball history to do so. The 2002 senior class will also earn a fourth straight postseason berth this year, becoming the second consecutive senior class to play in four straight postseason tournaments since 1983.

SUCCESS ON "SENIOR DAY": The Rebels have been rather successful in sending their seniors off on a good note in recent years. Since the 1990-91 season, Ole Miss has an 8-3 record in "Senior Day" games. The Rebels have won their last six "Senior Day" games, including a 105-71 win over Alabama last year. The last time Ole Miss dropped a "Senior Day" contest was the 1994-95 campaign.

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 Florida Feb. 16, this year's senior class has 85 victories, which is three 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:

Four-Year Span No. of Wins
1997-98 to 2000-01 88
1998-99 to present 85
1995-96 to 1998-99 74
1979-80 to 1982-83 70
1999-2000 to present 65
1935-36 to 1938-39 63
1994-95 to 1997-98 62
1978-79 to 1981-82 62
1923-24 to 1926-27 62

DID YOU KNOW?: Sunday's match-up between Ole Miss and Alabama will feature head coaches at the helm of basketball programs where they also played. Rod Barnes played at Ole Miss from 1985-88, and is the first Rebel head coach to have played his collegiate basketball at Ole Miss since Cob Jarvis. Alabama head coach Mark Gottfried played at his alma mater from 1985-87 and helped lead the Crimson Tide to three consecutive NCAA Sweet 16 appearances.

During their playing careers, Barnes' and Gottfried's teams met six times from 1984-85 to 1986-87. Gottfried's squads won all six meetings in those match-ups.

TALK ABOUT HOMECOURT ADVANTAGE: Since the 1998-99 season, the Ole Miss-Alabama series has been about homecourt advantage -- in a big way. The following shows just how much each team has defended its home territory the last three-plus seasons:

Ole Miss Series Since 1998-99 Alabama
3-0 Home Record 4-0
18.7 Avg. Margin of Victory 18.0
74-78 L
(1998-99)
Closest Game on
other's homecourt
59-63 L
(99-2000)

BUT IT WASN'T ALWAYS LIKE THAT: While homecourt has been big since 1998-99, the prior two seasons (1996-97 and 1997-98) proved to be different. In the 1996-97 season, the Crimson Tide swept Ole Miss, winning 59-46 in Oxford and 57-54 in Tuscaloosa. The Alabama win in Oxford that year ended the Rebels' 15-game homecourt winning streak. The following campaign (1997-98), Ole Miss swept Alabama, posting a 74-63 win in Tuscaloosa and a 75-74 victory in Oxford.

OH, SO VERY CLOSE!!: Last year, the Ole Miss Rebel basketball squad took many games down to the wire, but proved to be successful in the close calls with a 14-3 record in contests decided by single digits. This season, however, the close calls seem to be going the other way because of the team's overall inexperience. Ole Miss is 6-7 in contests decided by less than 10 points this year. Moreover, of the Rebels' nine setbacks, seven have been by seven points or less, including five of the seven SEC losses.

OLE MISS GOING FOR WIN NO. 20: The Rebels enter Sunday's game with a 19-9 overall record and need only one more victory to reach the magical number 20. If Ole Miss is successful in reaching the 20-win plateau in 2001-02, it will be the second straight year the Rebels have done so. Last season, Ole Miss won a school-record 27 games. A 20-win campaign in 2001-02 will also mark the fourth time in the last five years that Ole Miss has accomplished the feat. The Rebels were 20-9 in 1996-97, 22-7 in 1997-98, 20-13 in 1998-99 and 27-8 in 2000-01.

REBELS VERSUS RANKED OPPONENTS AT HOME: Ole Miss has a 16-5 record (.762 winning percentage) versus ranked opponents at Tad Smith Coliseum since the beginning of the 1994-95 season, including a current streak of seven straight wins over ranked teams at home. Alabama (#6 AP, #6 ESPN/USA Today) will be the fourth ranked opponent that Ole Miss will face at home this year, as the Rebels defeated No. 22 Memphis 71-67 on Dec. 7, No. 22 Mississippi State 66-59 on Jan. 12 and No. 6 Florida 68-51 on Feb. 16. Last year, the Rebels were 3-0 versus ranked opponents at home, defeating No. 14 Oklahoma 60-55 (Dec. 2, 2000), No. 10 Tennessee 87-71 (Feb. 10, 2001) and No. 20 Alabama 105-71 (Mar. 3, 2001).

Prior to the 1999 Auburn loss (1998-99 season), Ole Miss had won six straight versus ranked opponents at the "Tad Pad." During that streak, the Rebels defeated Temple (#18), South Carolina (#11) and Arkansas (#12) in 1997-98, Kentucky (#3) in 1996-97, and Auburn (#21) and Mississippi State (#25) in 1995-96. Ole Miss' first win over a ranked opponent since the 1994-95 season was a 76-71 win over No. 3 Arkansas on Jan. 4, 1995. (NOTE: Ole Miss lost to No. 5 Kentucky in the 1994-95 season, but that home game was played at The Pyramid in Memphis.)

REBELS VERSUS RANKED TEAMS: Ole Miss will face its seventh nationally-ranked opponent of 2001-02 Sunday when it meets Alabama in Tad Smith Coliseum. The Crimson Tide are ranked No. 6 in the Associated Press poll and No. 6 in the ESPN/USA Today poll. The Rebels are 3-3 against ranked opponents in 2001-02, defeating No. 22 Memphis 71-67 Dec. 7, No. 22 Mississippi State 66-59 Jan. 12 and No. 6 Florida 68-51 and falling at No. 12 Kentucky 87-64 Jan. 15, at No. 16 Georgia 79-72 Feb. 2 and at No. 5 Alabama 79-59 Feb. 6. Last year, the Rebels were 7-4 against ranked opponents. Under head coach Rod Barnes (since the 1998-99 season), Ole Miss has a 15-19 record versus ranked opponents.

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION!: Sunday's game against Florida will be the Rebels' ninth overall television appearance in 2001-02 and their seventh in Southeastern Conference play. Sunday's game will end a stretch in which Ole Miss will have played five of its last seven contests on television (at Alabama, Feb. 6, Arkansas, Feb. 9, Florida, Feb. 16, at Mississippi State, Feb. 23, Alabama, Mar. 3). Ole Miss is 5-3 in television games this year, defeating Kansas State 67-65 Nov. 24, No. 22 Memphis 71-67 Dec. 7, Arkansas 70-64 Jan. 19, South Carolina 71-53 Jan. 26 and Arkansas 79-67 Feb. 9 and falling at No. 12 Kentucky 87-64 Jan. 15, at No. 5 Alabama 79-59 Feb. 6 and at Mississippi State 61-59 Feb. 23.

"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.

"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 90 of its last 99 games (.909 winning percentage) at home, including homecourt winning streaks of 15 and 29 games. Ole Miss is 12-1 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 118-30 (.797 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 323-156 (.674 winning percentage) at the "Tad Pad." Tad Smith Coliseum opened in the 1965-66 season.

STREAKING AT THE "TAD PAD": Ole Miss enters Sunday's contest versus No. 6 Alabama with a winning streak of 14 consecutive Southeastern Conference victories at Tad Smith Coliseum. The current 14-game homecourt win streak in SEC play only is the longest in the league.

The Rebels dropped their 2000-01 SEC opener to Georgia (70-66) on Jan. 13, 2001, but bounced back with seven straight conference wins to close their league home slate. The streak has continued this year with seven consecutive SEC wins at home. Ole Miss also has an overall win homecourt streak of 11 games.

THE BATTLE FOR THE (FIRST-ROUND) BYE: With Alabama securing the Southeastern Conference Western Division title Feb. 23, the race is on between Ole Miss and Mississippi State to see which team will not only finish second, but also get a first-round bye in the league's tournament, which will be held in Atlanta Mar. 7-10. Entering this weekend's action, the Bulldogs hold a game lead for second place. If Ole Miss wins and Mississippi State loses, the teams would tie for second, but the Rebels would win the tiebreaker by sweeping the season series over Arkansas. The following shows the race for second place in the West and what's on tap:

Western Division

SEC Record What's Left
Miss. State 9-6 at So. Carolina
Ole Miss 8-7 Alabama

HARRISON IS THE NEW IRONMAN, SETS OLE MISS GAMES PLAYED RECORD: Jason Harrison's father told him as he was growing up, "Don't let anyone tell you, `You can't' when you can." Ever since, the 5-foot-5 senior has been proving people wrong. Many told him he couldn't play basketball at the NCAA Division I level, but that must have been 129 games and an Ole Miss school record ago.

In the Rebels' contest at Mississippi State Feb. 23, Harrison set an Ole Miss record for career games played. Against the Bulldogs, he played his 128th career game in a Rebel uniform. He now has played in 129 career games. Harrison moved past his former teammate Jason Flanigan (1998-2001), who set the standard last year with 127 games played. The following chart lists the top five on the career games played chart:

Rebel Career Games Played

Player/Years No.
1. Jason Harrison/1999-present 129
2. Jason Flanigan/1998-2001 127
3. Rahim Lockhart/1998-2001 123
4. Roger Stieg/1980-83 121
5. Carlos Clark/1980-83 118
5. Jason Smith/1996-99 118

FOUR PLUS DOUBLE FIGURES EQUALS WINS: It's a rather odd equation, but it is adding up for Ole Miss in 2001-02. The Rebels have had 18 games this year where four players have scored in double figures. Ole Miss has a 15-3 record in those games.

HE'S DONE IT!...PART I: With his six assists versus Auburn Feb. 13, senior Jason Harrison went over the 100-assists plateau for a third straight year. After 28 games in 2001-02, Harrison has 111 dishes for a 4.0 average. At his current pace, Harrison would hand out 120 assists this season.

By reaching the 100-assists plateau this year, he became only the third player in Rebel history to accomplish the feat three straight years. Rod Barnes and Sean Tuohy also did so.

On Feb. 6, Harrison joined Barnes and Tuohy as the only Rebels to pass out over 400 assists in a career. 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 416 assists. He is in the No. 3 spot on the career assists chart. The following lists the Rebels' career assists leaders:

Rebel Career Assists Leaders

Player/Years No.
1. Sean Tuohy/1979-82 830
2. Rod Barnes/1985-88 456
3. Jason Harrison/1999-present 416
3. Henry Jackson/1976-79 378
4. Michael White/1996-99 370
6. Bob Mahoney/1973-75 362

HE'S DONE IT!...PART II, HARRISON GOES OVER 1,000 POINTS: Senior Jason Harrison 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 1,045 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 became 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:

Pts Asts Stls
Barnes/1985-88 1,201 456 154
Harrison/1999-pres. 1,045 416 167

REED DOUBLES HIS PLEASURE...PART I: Whatever Justin Reed (Jackson, Miss.) has been doing in the month of February, please let him carry it over to March. In the Rebels' last six games (Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Mississippi State, LSU), the 6-foot-8 forward is averaging nearly a double-double of 15.5 points and 9.7 boards. He is also shooting 50 percent from the field and 75.9 percent from the foul line in the six-game stretch.

In four of the six games, he recorded double-doubles against Alabama (19-12), Auburn (17-10), Florida (15-10) and Mississippi State (12-11). Prior to the Feb. 27 game at LSU, he was tied for third in the country for current consecutive games with a double-double with three, and the following chart shows that:

Current Consecutive Games With A Dbl-Dbl
(as of Feb. 25, research by Stats Inc.)

Player/School # Consec. Dbl-Dbl
1. Ryan Humphrey/Notre Dame 5
2. Greg Lewis/Winthrop 4
3. Justin Reed/Ole Miss 3
3. Tyrone Levett/Alabama St. 3
3. Dexter Hall/S.C. State 3
3. Rickey White/Maine 3
3. Reggie Evans/Iowa 3

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 19-9 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 DOUBLES HIS PLEASURE...PART II: Justin Reed doubled his pleasure for the seventh time this year when he posted 12 points and 11 boards in Ole Miss' contest at Mississippi State Feb. 23. The 6-foot-8 forward also recorded double-doubles versus Florida (15-10), Auburn (17-10), Alabama (19-12), Lipscomb (12-10), Arkansas-Pine Bluff (16-10) and Kansas State (15-11) this season. Reed now has 10 double-doubles for his career, including six versus SEC opponents. The following lists Reed's double-double performances:

2001-02 Season Pts Rebs
Mississippi State 12 11
Florida 15 10
Auburn 17 10
Alabama 19 12
Lipscomb 12 10
Arkansas-Pine Bluff 16 10
Kansas State 15 11

2001-02 Season Pts Rebs
South Carolina 18 11
Georgia 21 12
VCU 16 13

BOMBS AWAY, HARPER CLIMBING CAREER 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 74 treys this year and is moving up the Ole Miss career three-pointers chart. The following shows the career leaders:

Rebel Career Three-Pointers

Player/Years No.
1. Keith Carter/1996-99 249
2. Joe Harvell/1990-93 214
3. Jason Harrison/1999-present 158
4. Aaron Harper/2001-present 137
4. Joezon Darby/1996-98 131
6. Jason Flanigan/1998-2001 89
7. Gerald Glass/1989-90 87
8. Tim Jumper/1988-91 82

HARPER ALSO MOVING UP SEASON TREY LIST: Aaron Harper's assault beyond the arc is not just limited to Ole Miss career chart. He is also moving up quickly on the Rebel single-season three-pointers list. The following show the top five leaders for three-pointers made in a single season in Rebel history:

Rebel Single-Season Three-Pointers

Player/Year No.
1. Joe Harvell/1992 79
2. Keith Carter/1999 77
3. Aaron Harper/2002 74
4. Aaron Harper/2001 63
4. Keith Carter/1996 63

THERE'S A FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING: The old saying goes, "All good things must come to an end." For Ole Miss and junior Richard Kirklin (Pine Bluff, Ark.), it came to an end Feb. 23. In the Rebels' game at Mississippi State, Kirklin got the ninth starting nod of his career. The 6-foot-9 forward entered the game with a perfect 8-0 record when he started, but a narrow 61-59 setback to Mississippi State ended his streak of victories. He is now 8-1 when he starts, including 6-1 in SEC games.

Against the Bulldogs Feb. 23, Kirklin had five points, three rebounds and one assist.

BARNES GETS WIN NO. 80, MOVING UP CAREER WINS CHART: 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 85-44 (.659 winning percentage), and reached the 80-win plateau the fastest of any coach in Rebel basketball history. His 85 victories are the fourth most by a head coach in Ole Miss basketball history. The following lists the winningest coaches in Rebel history:

Coach Years Wins
Bonne Graham 1950-62 144
Cob Jarvis 1969-76 87
Rob Evans 1992-98 86
Rod Barnes 1999-present 85
Bob Weltlich 1977-81 83
Ed Murphy 1986-92 76

REED NAMED TO NABC ALL-DISTRICT SIX SQUAD: Sophomore Justin Reed was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-District 6 second team, the organization announced Feb. 12. Reed, who leads the Rebels in scoring with a 14.9 average, was joined on the second team by Alabama's Erwin Dudley, South Florida's Altron Jackson, Mississippi State's Mario Austin and Miami's Johnny Salmons. This is the second straight year that an Ole Miss player has been named to the NABC district squad, as Rahim Lockhart earned first team accolades last season.

This year, Reed has earned BP Top of the World Classic All-Tournament Team, SEC Player of the Week and Sierra Providence SunClassic MVP accolades. He was also a 2001-02 preseason Wooden Award candidate.

DE-FENSE! DE-FENSE!...PART II: The Ole Miss defense was clicking Feb. 16 in the win over Florida. The Rebels held the Gators to 51 points, the lowest offensive output in the Billy Donovan era. But, playing tough defense is nothing new for Ole Miss. Last year, the Rebels held three SEC opponents to under 50 points (33 by LSU, 48 by Arkansas and Mississippi State).

Since the inception of the shot clock in the 1985-86 season, the Rebels have had eight games in which they held their opponent to under 50 points. Seven of those eight contests have been since the 1994-95 campaign -- or since Rod Barnes has been a member of the Rebel coaching staff (1993-98, assistant, 1998-present, head).

REED LEADS 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. 25, the Rebels' 6-foot-8 forward had made the nation's biggest improvement at the free throw line. Last season, Reed shot 54.9 percent from the charity stripe, but this year, he is hitting 78.1 percent from the foul line, a difference of 23.3 percentage points. The following lists the nation's top five players with biggest improvements:

Best Improvement in FT Pct.
(as of Feb. 25, research by Stats Inc.)

Player/School 00-01 Pct 01-02 Pct
1. Justin Reed/Ole Miss 54.9 78.1
2. Earl Barron/Memphis 58.3 79.2
3. James Thomas/Texas 45.7 64.0
4. Mike Sweetney/G'town 61.9 80.0
5. Dan Lytle/Evansville 55.9 73.2

MORE ON REBEL FREE THROWS: Justin Reed and David Sanders (Jackson, Miss.) aren't the only Rebels who have improved their percentages from the charity stripe. Several Ole Miss players have made the free throw line a priority this season, and it is paying dividends for the entire team. As of Feb. 25, Ole Miss was ranked 10th in the nation in team free throw shooting improvement. The Rebels are currently shooting 73.6 percent from the charity stripe. The following chart shows the free throw shooting improvement:

Best Team Improvement in FT Pct.
(as of Feb. 25, research by Stats Inc.)

Player/School 00-01 Pct 01-02 Pct
1. American 57.2 72.4
2. Pennsylvania 62.0 73.2
3. Washington 57.5 67.6
4. Ball State 65.2 75.1
5. Denver 59.8 69.7
.
.
.
10. Ole Miss 65.4 73.8

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 (Marianna, Ark.) 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:

2000-01 Avg. 2001-02 Avg. Diff.
Sanders 2.7 4.6 +1.9
Wade 1.8 3.3 +1.5
Harper 2.9 4.1 +1.2

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 127 games (overall games) since 1996-97, the most by any SEC Western Division team. The 127 victories are also second among all league teams, only trailing Kentucky's 164 wins. The following charts show the Rebels' success (including the 2001-02 season):

Most Overall/SEC Wins By SEC West Teams
(1996-97 to present, through Feb. 28)

Team All Wins SEC Wins
Ole Miss 127 55
Arkansas 117 50
Auburn 115 47
Alabama 108 44
Mississippi State 100 39
LSU 87 28

Most Overall/SEC Wins By SEC Teams (Top 6)
(1996-97 to present, through Feb. 28)

Team All Wins SEC Wins
Kentucky 164 71
Ole Miss 127 55
Florida 123 55
Arkansas 117 50
Auburn 115 47
Tennessee 112 50

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 (15 games), Ole Miss is shooting a considerably higher percentage in the second half than first -- especially home contests -- and the following chart shows that:

1st Half 2nd Half
Home 38.1 pct. (51-134) 50.6 pct. (80-158)
Away 39.5 pct. (104-263) 46.5 pct. (101-217)
Total 39.0 pct. (155-397) 48.3 pct. (181-375)

REED AMONG FIRST TWO-YEAR SCORING LEADERS: With Justin Reed going over the 800-point plateau against LSU Feb. 27, the 6-foot-8 forward is 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:

Player 1st 2 Years Pts
Gerald Glass% 1989-90 1,564
Denver Brackeen& 1954-55 1,040
Don Kessinger* 1962-63 1,037
Cob Jarvis* 1952-53 960
Johnny Neumann# 1971 923
Jack Waters* 1959-60 915
Joe Harvell 1990-91 883
John Stroud 1977-78 864
Justin Reed 2001-02 802
Coolidge Ball* 1972-73 778
Fred Cox* 1972-73 771
Keith Carter 1996-97 712
Elston Turner 1978-79 699
Ken Turner* 1967-68 691
B.L. Graham$ 1936-37 684
% played only 2 years after transferring to OM
& 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
 

 

    • Game 3: Ole Miss 8, UNCW 6

      Sunday, February 26, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333; background-color: #ffffff} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height:... read more

    • Game 2: Ole Miss 8, UNCW 4

      Saturday, February 25, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333; background-color: #ffffff; min-height: 17.0px} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px... read more

    • Game 1: Ole Miss 7, UNCW 2

      Friday, February 24, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333; background-color: #ffffff; min-height: 17.0px} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px... read more

    • Game 3: Ole Miss 8, ECU 6

      Sunday, February 19, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; line-height: 16.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #333333; -webkit-text-stroke: #333333} span.s1 {font-kerning: none; background-color: #ffffff} span.s2 {font-kerning: none} For the second-consecutive game, ECU held a lead in the late stages of the game. ECU... read more

    • Game 2: Ole Miss 3, ECU 2

      Saturday, February 18, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Ole Miss rallied from a two-run deficit in the late innings to knock off ECU 3-2 and clinch the... read more

    • Ole Miss 5, ECU 4

      Friday, February 17, 2017 - Baseball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px Helvetica; min-height: 14.0px} In a game that had the feel of an SEC Friday night showdown, baserunners were difficult to come by... read more

    • 2017 Ole Miss Baseball Walk Out Music

      Thursday, February 16, 2017 -

      With the 2017 Ole Miss Baseball season beginning tomorrow at Swayze Field (4 p.m. CT vs. No. 6 East Carolina), check out the always much-anticipated walk out music list. Which song is your favorite? Let us know on Twitter by... read more

    • Four Rebels Invited to the NFL Combine

      Monday, February 13, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Four Rebels will head to Indianapolis to take part in the NFL Combine in hopes of bolstering their draft... read more

    • What They're Saying: Men's Golf Sophomore Braden Thornberry

      Monday, February 13, 2017 - Men's Golf

      The breakout college golfer of the fall is trying to prove it wasn't a fluke. (@OleMissMGolf) https://t.co/S1IgwNJxmJ pic.twitter.com/p0IezRH1ul-- Ryan Herrington (@GWcampusinsider) February 6, 2017 .@tberrygolf enters the mix for this September at LACC.#WalkerCup Watch List: https://t.co/UPkkcOD3lX pic.twitter.com/0Sprbl7Qv4-- Golfweek (@golfweek) February... read more

    • Rebels Focus on Defense on Signing Day

      Wednesday, February 1, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Ole Miss' defense needed a shot in the arm after a 2016 season to forget. It began by retooling... read more

    • Engram Named a Top Performer by NFL Network's Mike Mayock

      Monday, January 30, 2017 - Football

      The Senior Bowl always offers players a chance to improve their draft stock by performing well against some of the best players in the nation. Evan Engram took advantage of that opportunity. NFL Network's draft expert Mike Mayock named Engram... read more

    • Know the Opponent: Texas A&M

      Wednesday, January 25, 2017 - Men's Basketball

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Know the Opponent: Texas A&M (10-8, 2-5) KenPom ranking: 64 Best win: vs. No. 50 Virginia Tech Worst loss:... read more

    • Rebels Impressing at East-West Shrine Game

      Thursday, January 19, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} p.p3 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Arial; color: #222221; -webkit-text-stroke: #222221} span.s1 {font: 14.0px Helvetica; color: #000000;... read more

    • Former Rebel Coach Ron Aldy Honored at Kirk Academy

      Tuesday, January 17, 2017 - Women's Basketball

      Former Women's Basketball Head Coach Ron Aldy and his family at gym floor dedication at Kirk Academy today. pic.twitter.com/Ruyc9TFui5-- Holmes Athletics (@holmesathletics) January 14, 2017 p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px... read more

    • Tunsil Named AFC East Rookie of the Year by ESPN

      Monday, January 16, 2017 - Football

      p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Helvetica; min-height: 17.0px} Miami Dolphins offensive lineman and Ole Miss' former blind side protector Laremy Tunsil was named AFC East rookie of... read more

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