• Ole Miss has won at least five of its first six games for the fifth time in the last six years. • The Rebels are 70-18 in non-conference games under Andy Kennedy. • Ole Miss has a 7-11 all-time record against current members of the Big East Conference. • Kennedy’s squad ranks fourth in the SEC and 57th nationally in scoring defense (60.3 ppg). • Ole Miss went 2-1 and claimed third place at the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam. Senior F Terrance Henry was named to the All-Tournament team. • Junior F Murphy Holloway is SEC Player of the Week after averaging a double-double in wins over TCU and Miami. • Holloway, who has transferred back to his original school from South Carolina where he sat out last season, ranks second in the SEC and 28th nationally in rebounding (10.2). • Freshman G Jarvis Summers has averaged 13.5 ppg in his first two career starts (TCU, Miami). • Sophomore G Dundrecous Nelson is tied for the SEC lead with 2.5 steals/game. • Kennedy is the first Rebel coach to lead the program to four 20-win seasons and the second to guide Ole Miss to four postseason appearances.
REBELS AT DEPAUL IN BIG EAST/SEC CHALLENGE Ole Miss will travel to Chicago to face the DePaul Blue Demons on Thursday as part of the three-day Big East/SEC Challenge. Other games on Thursday include Providence at South Carolina, St. John’s at Kentucky and Georgetown at Alabama. It will be the Rebels’ first true road game of the season.
HOT START Ole Miss has made a habit of starting fast in recent years. With a 5-1 start this season, the Rebels have won at least five of their first six games in five of Andy Kennedy’s six seasons at the helm.
BIG WIN OVER HURRICANES Ole Miss held off a feisty Miami squad for a 64-61 overtime win at home on Friday. A 17-0 run by the Rebels to open the game was immediately followed by a big Miami run before the game was nip and tuck for the entire second half and OT period. Murphy Holloway scored 13 points and pulled down 17 boards, while Jarvis Summers also tallied 13 points and nailed a pair of critical free throws with 20 seconds left in OT. Dundrecous Nelson led the way with 17 points off the bench and helped Ole Miss claim its first ever win against Miami and first ever home victory over a team from the ACC.
HOLLOWAY SEC PLAYER OF THE WEEK Junior Murphy Holloway was named the SEC Player of the Week on Monday after helping the Rebels to wins over TCU and Miami (Fla.). The 6-foot-7, 240-pound forward Irmo, S.C., averaged 16.5 points and 10.5 rebounds in those two games and is one of only two league players averaging a double-double so far this season. Holloway poured in a season-high 20 points to go with four rebounds and two steals in an 80-69 win over TCU at the Paradise Jam and then scored 13 points and tied a season high with 17 boards in an overtime win over previously unbeaten Miami.
SCOUTING THE BLUE DEMONS DePaul enters Thursday’s game with a 4-1 record and two-game winning streak. After dropping the opening contest of the Old Spice Classic 86-85 to Minnesota, the Blue Demons beat Texas Tech and Arizona State to finish 2-1 at the tourney in Orlando, Fla. In his second year at the helm, Oliver Purnell has DePaul just three victories shy of last year’s win total. DePaul averages 80.0 ppg and allows 72.4 ppg, while it has a +4.0 turnover margin. Cleveland Melvin paces the squad with 19.2 ppg, followed closely by Brandon Young at 18.2 ppg. Krys Faber is the top rebounder at 7.4/game.
OLE MISS-DEPAUL SERIES This will be the third meeting between the Rebels and Blue Demons. The teams have split two prior matchups. DePaul won 75-67 at home in the 1983 NIT quarterfinals, while Ole Miss earned a 69-63 victory in the 2007 San Juan Shootout in Puerto Rico.
OLE MISS VERSUS BIG EAST FOES Ole Miss owns a 7-11 all-time record against current members of the Big East Conference. DePaul is the second Big East opponent for Ole Miss this year. The Rebels lost 96-66 to Marquette in the U.S. Virgin Islands Paradise Jam.
REBELS FACE PURNELL AGAIN Ole Miss will face Oliver Purnell for the third time when the Rebels and Blue Demons meet on the hardwood. Ole Miss split a pair of meetings with Clemson when Purnell coached there. Clemson beat Ole Miss in the 2007 NIT second round at Clemson. The very next season, Ole Miss upended the No. 15-ranked Tigers 85-82 to claim the 2007 San Juan Shootout title in Puerto Rico.
NON-CONFERENCE SUCCESS The Rebels boast a 70-18 record (.795 win pct.) against teams outside the SEC since Andy Kennedy took over in 2006-07, including a 48-2 mark at home. The Rebels are 5-1 against non-league teams this year and went 12-4 a year ago, including a 12-3 mark during the regular season.
PARADISE JAM Ole Miss claimed third place at the Paradise Jam by going 2-1 with wins over Drake (63-59) in the first round and TCU (80-69) on the final day and a loss to tournament champion No. 19 Marquette (96-66) in the semifinals. Ole Miss competed in the U.S. Virgin Islands for the first time in its history.
HENRY MAKES ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM Senior forward Terrance Henry was named to the Paradise Jam All-Tournament Team after helping Ole Miss place third at the tournament with a 2-1 record. The 6-foot-9 wing from Monroe, La., averaged a team-best 12.7 points per game and 7. 3 rebounds per game while in St. Thomas. He finished one shy of his career high with 19 points against Marquette.
LOCK-DOWN DEFENSE Ole Miss ranks fourth among SEC teams and 57th in the NCAA allowing 60.3 points per game to opponents. The team ranks fifth in the league and 61st in the NCAA in field-goal percentage defense at 38.4. The Rebels have held five of six opponents under 70 points. They held each of their first two foes under 40 points (defeated Louisiana-Monroe 60-38 and Grambling State 69-39), which marked the two lowest scores by a Rebel opponent in the Andy Kennedy era. The Warhawks’ 38 points are the fewest by a Rebel opponent since giving up 38 to Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Dec. 28, 2002.
HOLLOWAY RETURNS WITH BIG NUMBERS Junior forward Murphy Holloway has posted some big numbers in his first games back as a Rebel. At 10.8 ppg and 10.2 rpg, he is one of two SEC players averaging a double-double (MSU’s Arnett Moultrie is the other). He ranks second in the SEC and 28th nationally in rebounding. He’s the only league player to have at least two 17-rebound games (Louisiana-Monroe and Miami) and is the only Rebel to score 20 points in a game this year (TCU). He ranks second among active SEC players with 16 career double-doubles (two this year). In what is believed to be the first situation of its kind, Holloway transferred away from Ole Miss, attended South Carolina last year, and then returned to his original school this summer. After Ole Miss submitted waiver appeals of the year-in residency requirement for transfers, both the NCAA and SEC accepted Holloway’s request to compete in the 2011-12 season.
SUMMERS BREAKS INTO STARTING LINEUP Freshman point guard Jarvis Summers made his first two career starts against TCU and Miami, helping Ole Miss to a victory in each. He scored 14 points on 4 of 5 from the field and 5 of 6 from the charity stripe against the Horned Frogs, then dropped 13 points with 3 assists versus the Hurricanes. He leads the team in assists with 2.8 per game, which ranks 15th in the SEC and third among league freshmen.
BUCKNER NEARS ALL-TIME SCHOOL BLOCKS RECORD Junior forward Reginald Buckner needs 15 blocks to set the all-time school career record. In just 68 games, the Memphis native has accumulated 166 blocks. The school record is held by Sean Murphy, who had 180 blocks in 117 games from 1988-91. Last year, Buckner tied Ansu Sesay’s school record for blocks in a game with eight at Arkansas. He also surpassed his own single-season record from his freshman year (64) with 95 as a sophomore (ranks 16th in SEC history).
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