Nov. 4, 2015
Ole Miss Game Notes - Clayton State
Ole Miss (21-13, 11-7 SEC) vs. Clayton State (15-12, 8-11 Peach Belt)
Date: Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Oxford, Miss.
Arena: C.M. “Tad” Smith Coliseum (8,867)
Television: SEC Network Plus
Richard Cross, play-by-play
Keith Kessinger analyst
Live Video: WatchESPN
Series: First Meeting
• Ole Miss opens the 2015-16 season Thursday with an exhibition game against Clayton State and will tip off its 106th season of basketball Nov. 13 versus Northwestern State.
• Head coach Andy Kennedy passed Alabama’s Wimp Sanderson last season for the third-most wins in SEC history with by a coach in his first nine years in the league at one school with 192. He trails only Kentucky’s Joe B. Hall (205) and Florida’s Billy Donovan (193).
• Senior G Stefan Moody earned preseason All-SEC first team honors from the league media after leading the SEC in scoring at conference games at 18.6 ppg last year. Moody also led the league in steals averaging 2.0/game.
• Ole Miss returns three starters from last year’s squad (Stefan Moody – 33, Sebastian Saiz – 32, and Martavious Newby – 27) that started a combined 92 games last season and led Ole Miss to its second NCAA Tournament berth in three seasons.
• Ole Miss returns last year’s top two leading rebounders on the team in Sebastian Saiz (5.5/game) and Martavious Newby (5.4/game).
• The Rebels lost the trio of Jarvis Summers, LaDarius White and Aaron Jones that had all contributed since their freshman year. Over the past four seasons, those three players accounted for 195 starts for Ole Miss.
• Ole Miss added six newcomers to this year’s team, including a three of former D1 players in Deandre Burnett (Miami), Tomasz Gielo (Liberty) and Sam Finley (UC-Riverside).
OLE MISS BEGINS 106TH YEAR OF HOOPS
Ole Miss opens the 2015-16 season Thursday with an exhibition game against Clayton State and will tip off its 106th season of basketball Nov. 13 versus Northwestern State. The Rebels have an all-time record of 1239-1256 in 105 years of basketball.
KENNEDY ADMINISTRATION BEGINS 10TH YEAR
In nine seasons under Mississippi native Andy Kennedy, Ole Miss has a 192-114 record, one SEC Tournament championship, two SEC West championships, seven 20-win campaigns and seven postseason berths, which includes two NCAA Tournament appearances and pair of trips to the NIT Final Four. The all-time winningest coach in school history, Kennedy has averaged more than 21 wins per season in his nine years in Oxford.
Andy Kennedy is one of 11 active head coaches with 10 or more seasons without a losing a losing record. The list includes: Roy Williams (27), Tom Izzo (20), Thad Matta (16), Mark Few (16), Bo Ryan (16), John Thompson III (15), Mark Anderson (13), Jamie Dixon (12) and Sean Miller (11).
MOODY EARNS PRESEASON HONORS
Senior G Stefan Moody earned preseason All-SEC first team honors from the league media after leading the SEC in scoring at conference games at 18.6 ppg. Moody also led the league in steals averaging 2.0/game.
OLE MISS IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT
The Rebels made their eighth appearance in the Big Dance in 2014-15 and sport a 5-8 mark in the NCAA Tournament. Ole Miss knocked off BYU 94-90 in the First Four game in Dayton before falling to Xavier 76-57 in the second round. Ole Miss’ six other appearances came in 1981, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2002. Head coach Andy Kennedy is 2-2 all-time in the Big Dance and has 40 percent of Ole Miss’ all-time NCAA Tournament wins.
REBELS HITTING FREEBIES
Last year, Ole Miss ranked third in the nation hitting 77.3 percent of its free throw attempts. The Rebels hit 26-of-30 attempts (.867) against Arkansas and ended the season hitting 405 of their last 521 from the line (.781). Seven Ole Miss players shot at least 75.0 percent from the line, including senior G Stefan Moody, who led the SEC and ranked seventh in the nation shooting 90.7 percent (149-of-165). Moody snapped his streak of 32-straight FTs made in the Texas A&M game, which ended just five shy of the SEC record in conference games held by former Rebel David Rhodes.
SCOUTING CLAYTON STATE
The Lakers posted a 15-12 overall record last year and an 8-11 mark in Peach Belt play to finish sixth in the Western Division. Clayton State returns two starters off last year’s squad - F Jamil McKee and G Dantez Bennamon - under the direction of first-year head coach Jimmy Link. The Lakers must replace Kelsey Terry, the top scorer off last year’s team at 17.6 ppg, but return the top rebounder in McKee at 6.4 rpg. Clayton State was picked ninth overall in the preseason Peach Belt poll.
REBS PICKED SIXTH IN PRESEASON POLL
Ole Miss was projected to finish ninth in the SEC preseason media poll, despite returning three starters off last year’s NCAA tournament team. The Rebels have not finished worse than sixth in the league under Andy Kennedy since the conference went away from the divisional format.
KENNEDY’S FIRST NINE YEARS RANK AMONG ALL-TIME SEC GREATS ...
Last season, head coach Andy Kennedy moved past Alabama’s Wimp Sanderson for the third-most wins by a head coach in their first nine years in the league at one school.
See the list below:
1. Joe B. Hall (Kentucky) - 205
2. Bill Donovan (Florida) - 193
3. Andy Kennedy (Ole Miss) - 192
4. Wimp Sanderson (Alabama) - 190
5. Rick Stansbury (MSU) - 185
6. Mark Gottfried (Alabama) - 181
7. Cliff Ellis (Auburn) - 172
8. Kevin Stallings (Vanderbilt) - 170
9. Don Devoe (Tennessee) - 169
10. John Brady (LSU) - 167
11. Hugh Durham (Georgia) - 164
12. Dale Brown (LSU) - 161
Roy Skinner (Vanderbilt) - 161
14. Babe McCarthy (MSU) - 159
REBELS WIN 20 ... AGAIN
Ole Miss won 20 wins for the seventh time in nine seasons under Andy Kennedy. Ole Miss had seven 20-win campaigns in the 96 seasons prior to Kennedy’s arrival in Oxford. Kennedy is just the fifth coach in SEC history to guide his teams to 20+ wins in at least seven of his first nine seasons in the league. The others: Billy Donovan (Florida), Joe. B. Hall (Kentucky), Rick Pitino (Kentucky), Tubby Smith (Georgia/Kentucky). Kennedy is also the first coach in Ole Miss history to win 20 games in four-straight season. Only Florida (8) and Kentucky (8) have more 20-win seasons over the last nine years in the SEC than the Rebels.
The Rebels added a mixture of talented college transfers and high school signings. Sam Finley was a former Big West Conference Sxth Man of the Year as a freshman before earning all-conference and region honors last season at Howard College. Rasheed Brooks helped Southwest Tennessee to a regular-season championship while being named the TCCAA Player of the Year. Polish national team member Tomasz Gielo joins the Rebels after finishing his degree at Liberty. Deandre Burnett transfers in after two seasons with Miami. While he was in high school, Burnett was named a Parade All-American and finished third in the nation in scoring. J.T. Escobar earned Parade All-American and first-team All-State honors as a senior at Florida A&M University High School. Terence Davis was a four-year starter at Southaven (Miss.) and the No. 132 recruit in the nation.
MOODY WINS HOWELL TROPHY
Senior G Stefan Moody was named the 2015 C Spire Howell Trophy winner, presented by the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame. The Howell Trophy, named for Bailey Howell, goes to the most outstanding men’s collegiate basketball player in Mississippi. Ole Miss has won the award each of the last three years as Jarvis Summers took home the award in 2014 and Marshall Henderson won the honor in 2013.
MOODY NAMED ALL-SEC FIRST TEAM
Last season, senior G Stefan Moody was selected All-SEC first team by the Associated Press and the league’s coaches. Moody marks the first first-team selection for the Rebels since Chris Warren in 2011 and the 15th All-SEC selection under head coach Andy Kennedy, which is the third-most in the league over that time behind Florida and Kentucky.
REBELS LIMITED TURNOVERS
Ole Miss turned the ball over only 152 times over its last 16 games for an average of just 9.5/game. The Rebels ranked second in the league averaging just 10.1 turnovers a game in conference play and were third in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.3.
OLE MISS THIRD IN SEC STANDINGS
Ole Miss finished tied for third in the league standings last year after being projected sixth in the preseason media poll. It was the second top-three SEC finish for the Rebels in the last three years.
Ole Miss went 12-5 away from Tad Smith Coliseum last season, with wins over No. 19 Arkansas, No. 23 Creighton, BYU, Cincinnati, Florida and Oregon. Ole Miss’ eight true road wins were the most for the Rebels since 1937-38, when UM played 21 road games. The 12 wins away from Tad Smith were the most since 2012-13, when Ole Miss picked up 12 wins away from the Tad Pad en route to the SEC Championship and the NCAA Tournament Third Round.
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 121-31 (.796 win pct.) in games played at Tad Smith Coliseum during Kennedy’s tenure. The Rebels had their 23 game non-conference home winning streak dating back to 2010 snapped two seasons ago with the loss to No. 13 Oregon. Ole Miss has won 246 of its last 313 games (.786 win pct.) in Oxford dating back to the 1996-97 campaign. The Rebels have an all-time record of 485-210 (.698 win pct.) at Tad Smith Coliseum, which opened in 1965-66.
PAVILION TO OPEN IN JANUARY
The centerpiece of the Forward Together campaign, the state-of-the-art $90 million Pavilion at Ole Miss, will open January 7, 2016. The Pavilion will have a capacity of 9,500 fans and will include a number of first class amenities, including a private student concourse, courtside and baseline seating for students, three premium club areas for fans, and over 1,700 premium seats all within an intimate seating bowl. The Pavilion will also include a five story parking garage with 800 spaces that will service the entire campus community.