Dec. 7, 2000
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The Ole Miss Rebels (6-0) will take to the road for the second time this
season when they renew their Mid-South rivalry with the Memphis Tigers
(2-5) in the 'Bluff City.' The game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. (CT) tip
at The Pyramid, and will be televised live by WLMT-TV. The Rebels enter
Saturday's game on a six-game win streak. Ole Miss defeated Kansas State,
60-46 in its last outing. The Tigers have lost four of their last five
games with all four setbacks to nationally-ranked opponents.
Game #7 -- WLMT-TV
Ole Miss (6-0) vs. Memphis (2-5)
Saturday, December 9 -- 7:00 p.m. (CT)
The Pyramid -- Memphis, Tenn.
Rebels on Television and Radio
WLMT-TV (Greg Gaston, analyst, Jon Albright, color analyst)
Ole Miss Radio Network (David Kellum, play-by-play, Sean Tuohy,
color analyst, Stan Sandroni, pregame/halftime/postgame host)
BARNES IN THIRD SEASON AS REBEL MENTOR
Rod Barnes is in his third season at the helm of the Ole Miss Rebel
basketball program. He has an overall record of 45-27 (.625 winning
percentage). In his first two seasons, Barnes compiled a 39-27 record, and
the 39 victories are the most by a Rebel coach in his first two years in
Ole Miss history. Last year, Barnes guided Ole Miss to a 19-14 overall
record and a berth in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT). The Rebels
advanced to the NIT quarterfinals for the second time in school history.
The winning season and postseason tournament both were the fourth straight
for the Ole Miss program.
In 1998-99, Barnes led Ole Miss to a 20-13 overall record and a
third-straight NCAA Tournament appearance. The Satartia, Miss., native was
the first head coach in the history of Rebel basketball to win 20 games in
his first 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. 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).
OLE MISS-MEMPHIS SERIES
Saturday's game will be the 31st meeting between the two schools, and will
be the third straight year that the two teams have played on the hardwood.
The Tigers lead the overall series, 22-8. Last season, the Rebels defeated
Memphis, 74-64 in Oxford. Prior to the last two encounters, the last time
Ole Miss and Memphis played was in the 1985-86 season. Before the Rebels'
victory last season, the Tigers had won the last eight meetings, including
three overtime games. Memphis won the 1998-99 meeting, a 78-72 overtime
thriller in The Pyramid.
The Tigers, under the direction of first-year coach John Calipari, enter
Saturday's game with a 2-5 overall record. All five of Memphis' losses
have been to nationally-ranked teams. Junior forward Kelly Wise leads the
Tigers in scoring and rebounding with averages of 17.0 points and 11.3
boards. Wise has been the Tigers' top rebounder in all seven games and the
team's leading scorer in six games. Senior Marcus Moody, who has missed
the last two games, is the squad's second-leading scorer with an 8.2
average. Moody (61.5 percent) and Shyrone Chatman (64.3) are the Tigers'
top three-point threats, as both are shooting over 60 percent from the arc.
Memphis is shooting 40.6 percent from the floor, 34.1 percent from the
three-point line and 68.4 percent from the foul line. The Tigers are
out-rebounding their opponents by an average of 3.6 boards per game.
REBELS VERSUS CONFERENCE USA
The Rebels have an all-time record of 68-87 (.438 winning percentage)
versus current members of Conference USA. However, Ole Miss has a 7-1
record versus Conference USA teams since the league was formed in the
spring of 1995. Last year, Ole Miss was 2-0 versus teams from Conference
USA, defeating Memphis (74-64) and Charlotte (62-45, NIT first round).
Since the 1990-91 season, the Rebels are 8-2 versus members of Conference
USA (2-1 versus Southern Mississippi, 2-0 versus Houston, 2-0 versus
Louisville, 1-0 versus Charlotte, 1-1 versus Memphis).
REBELS 6-0 FOR THE SECOND STRAIGHT YEAR...
With their win over Kansas State Dec. 5, the Rebels opened the 2000-01
season with a 6-0 record. It is the second straight season that Ole Miss
has done so. The Rebels began 1999-2000 with a 6-0 record. Last year's
6-0 start was the program's first since the 1973-74 Rebels also began their
season 6-0. The 1970-71, 1966-67, 1959-60 and 1955-56 teams also started
their seasons with 6-0 marks.
...AND LOOKING TO IMPROVE TO 7-0
With a victory over Memphis Saturday, Ole Miss would improve its record to
7-0 to start the season. The last time an Ole Miss team began a season
with a better record than the current mark of 6-0 was in 1936-37 when the
Rebels had an 11-0 start.
OLE MISS IN THE PYRAMID
The Rebels have a 1-5 record in games played in The Pyramid since the
facility opened in the 1991-92 season. Ole Miss' last trip to the Pyramid
came in the 1998-99 season, a 78-72 overtime setback to the Tigers. Ole
Miss also hosted Arkansas (1993-94) and Kentucky (1994-95) in a
regular-season games at The Pyramid in consecutive campaigns in the
mid-1990s. The Rebels' other appearances came in the 1994 and 1997
Southeastern Conference tournaments.
OLE MISS TO JOIN THE BIG 12?
After wins this week over two Big 12 Conference opponents, the Rebels may
want to think about changing leagues, but Ole Miss is not planning a move
to the Big 12 Conference. The Rebel schedule has a strong Big 12
Conference flavor in the month of December. Ole Miss defeated No.
14-ranked Oklahoma (60-55) and Kansas State (60-46) this week, and could
meet Iowa State in the Pearl Harbor Invitational Dec. 21-23.
HOW 'BOUT MEMPHIS TO THE SEC?
The Tigers could make a case for that this week with three consecutive
games versus Southeastern Conference foes. Memphis lost at Arkansas
(74-68) and at Tennessee (86-76) this week, and hosts Ole Miss Saturday.
REBELS TOUGH ON NON-CONFERENCE FOES IN RECENT YEARS
In last nine years (including 2000-01 season), the Rebels have posted a
71-28 record (.717 winning percentage) versus non-conference opponents.
Non-conference foes have found Ole Miss especially tough the last six
seasons (1995-96, 1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 1999-2000, 2000-01), as the
Rebels have an impressive 55-15 mark (.786 winning percentage) against
HOLMES NETS CAREER HIGH VS. KANSAS STATE
Senior Jason Holmes (Tylertown, Miss.) scored a career-high 17 points in
the Rebels' victory over Kansas State Dec. 5, breaking his previous high of
15 points versus Furman in the 1999-2000 campaign. The 6-foot-5 guard also
recorded career bests with six field goals and tied a career high with
Aside from his offensive outburst in the Kansas State game, Holmes has had
solid performances in Ole Miss' first six games?especially on the defensive
end. For the season, Holmes has 12 assists, two blocked shots and six
steals. He is also averaging 3.0 rebounds from his guard spot.
The old saying is that defense wins championships. If that is the case,
Ole Miss may be in contention for a title in 2000-01, especially if the
Rebels can continue to hassle the opposition with their defensive pressure.
Ole Miss is holding its opponents to an average of 59.8 points per game,
which is second best in the Southeastern Conference. In the Rebels' last
three games, they have been stingy on defense, allowing only 54.3 points
FLANIGAN UP TO HIS OLD TRICKS
Senior Jason Flanigan (Little Rock, Ark.) has gained a reputation as one
of the top defenders in the Southeastern Conference. That reputation may
now extend nationwide after his two brilliant defensive showings in the
Rebel victories over No. 14-ranked Oklahoma and Kansas State.
In the win over the Sooners, Flanigan held Hollis Price, Oklahoma's
leading scorer, to five points on 2-of-8 shooting from the field. Price
came into the contest averaging 17.0 points and hitting 62 percent from the
floor. Then, in the Rebels' next contest versus Kansas State, Flanigan
picked up where he left off in the Oklahoma game. The 6-foot-1 guard held
Phineas Atchison, the Wildcats' top scorer, to seven points on 3-of-10
shooting from the floor. Atchison entered the game averaging 14.5 points
and shooting 40.8 percent from the field.
LOCKHART RECORDS CAREER HIGH IN STEALS
Senior Rahim Lockhart (Mendenhall, Miss.) had a career-high six steals in
the Rebels' victory over Kansas State Dec. 5. Lockhart's previous career
best was five steals on two occasions, with the last time coming in the
Rebels' victory over Southwest Missouri State game in the NIT second round
Mar. 21. For his career, the 6-foot-8 forward has 116 steals. On his
current pace of 2.7 steals per game (16 steals in six games), Lockhart
would have 78 swipes for the season and would finish his career in third
place on the Ole Miss career steals chart.
HARPER ON FIRE
Freshman Aaron Harper (Jackson, Miss.) was en fuego?on fire?in the Rebels'
victory over No. 14-ranked Oklahoma Dec. 2. The 6-foot-7 forward/guard
missed only one shot in his career-high, 18-point performance versus the
Sooners. Harper was 4-of-5 from the field, with all his field goal
attempts from beyond the three-point arc. He was also 6-of-6 from the
charity stripe. For the season, Harper is shooting 42.9 percent from the
three-point line and 90.9 percent (20-of-22) from the foul line.
HITTING 'EM WHEN THEY COUNT
The Rebels haven't had a reputation for hitting a high percentage >from the
charity stripe the last couple of seasons, especially down the stretch in
games. However, that may be changing in 2000-01. Ole Miss is hitting
nearly 70 percent from the foul line for the season (69.6 percent, to be
exact), but more importantly, the Rebels are hitting their foul shots down
the stretch. In their three narrow wins over Sam Houston State, VCU and
Oklahoma, the Rebels shot 76.5 percent from the line (26-of-34) in the
final four minutes (and overtime) of those games.
PROVINE POSSE STEPS UP AGAIN
The trio of Aaron Harper, Justin Reed (Jackson, Miss.) and David Sanders
(Jackson, Miss.)?the 'Provine Posse'?came up big again in the Rebels'
victory over No. 14-ranked Oklahoma Dec. 2. The trio combined for 38 of
Ole Miss' 60 points in the game, with Harper scoring a career-best 18
points. The trio shot 61.1 percent from the field (11-of-18), 57.1 percent
from the three-point line (4of-7) and 70.5 percent from the charity stripe
(12-of-17). Harper, Reed and Sanders also combined for nine boards in the
MOVING ON UP THE CHARTS
With his 12-rebound performance versus Arkansas-Pine Bluff Nov. 18, senior
Rahim Lockhart became the 15th player in Rebel basketball history to grab
500 boards in a career. He now has 554 career rebounds, after grabbing
eight boards in the Rebels' victory over Kansas State Dec. 5. Lockhart is
now in the No. 14 spot on the Ole Miss career rebounding list, and needs
only two more rebounds to take over the No. 13 spot currently held by Roger
Stieg (1980-83, 555 career rebounds). Lockhart entered the 1999-2000
season with 278 boards, and with his 220 rebounds in 1999-2000, he had 498
rebounds coming into the 2000-01 campaign.
NOVEMBER, PLEASE DON'T GO...
The Rebels love to play games in November and it shows in their record in
contests played during that month. Since the 1990-91 campaign, Ole Miss
has a 25-3 record (.893 winning percentage) in the month of November. The
Rebels have won 11 straight in the month of November, with their last loss
coming at then-No. 7 nationally-ranked Temple (68-52, Nov. 18, 1998).
...BUT DECEMBER'S NOT SO BAD
While the Rebels are nearly unbeatable in the month of November, their
record in the month of December since the 1990-91 season isn't so bad
either. Ole Miss has a 46-25 record (.648 winning percentage) in December
games since the 1990-91 campaign. Ole Miss was 6-1 in the month of
December last season, with the lone setback being an 81-73 loss at Oklahoma.
CLOSING IN ON THE HEAD OF THE CLASS(ES)
This year's senior class of Jason Flanigan and Rahim Lockhart and junior
redshirt John Engstrom (Paragould, Ark.) are closing in on the record of
most victories by a class in a four-year span. The record is 74 wins by
the 1998-99 class of Hunter Carpenter, Keith Carter, Jason Smith and
Michael White. After Ole Miss' victory over Kansas State Dec. 5, this
class has now won 67 games, just seven behind the record. This senior
class has also been a part of the 1998 SEC Western Division championship
squad and has been to three straight postseasons (2 NCAA, 1 NIT).
THE MAGIC NUMBER IS...
Well, for the Rebels, it seems as if that number is 70. Since the 1996-97
season and including this campaign, Ole Miss has an incredible 75-9 record
(.893 winning percentage) when it scores 70 points or more. On the other
hand, the Rebels are 11-34 when they net less than 70 points during that
five-year period (including 2000-01). Last year, the Rebels were 16-3 when
scoring 70 points or more. This season, Ole Miss has a 4-0 record when
scoring 70 points or more.
LOCKHART DOUBLES HIS PLEASURE
Senior Rahim Lockhart is picking up where he left off last year?doubling
his pleasure. Lockhart came into the 2000-01 season with 14 career
double-doubles, and he recorded his 16th double-double performance in Ole
Miss' win over Louisiana-Monroe (16 points-10 rebounds) Nov. 28. He also
had a double-double (17-12) versus Arkansas-Pine Bluff Nov. 18. Last year,
Lockhart had 13 double-doubles, which ranked him in the top 10 in the
nation in that statistical category. His first career double-double came
versus Tennessee (16-12) as a sophomore in the 1998-99 season.
OLE MISS PICKED SIXTH IN WEST BY MEDIA
The Ole Miss Rebels were picked to finish in sixth place in the SEC
Western Division in a vote by media members at the annual conference media
days Nov. 1-2 in Birmingham, Ala. Arkansas was picked to win the SEC
Western Division championship, while Tennessee was selected to win both the
SEC overall title and the Eastern Division crown.
REED POSTS FIRST DOUBLE-DOUBLE
Freshman Justin Reed recorded the first double-double of his collegiate
career in the Rebels' victory over Virginia Commonwealth Nov. 25. Reed had
16 points and 13 boards, which are career highs. The 6-foot-8 forward also
had one blocked shot and two steals in the win. After five games, Reed is
averaging 12.4 points and 6.8 rebounds.
'GET THAT SHOT OUTTA HERE!!!'
Senior Rahim Lockhart tied a career high with four blocked shots in the
Rebels' win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff Nov. 18. The 6-foot-8 forward entered
the 2000-01 season with 83 career blocks, which is the fifth most in Rebel
basketball history. With his three blocks in the Rebels' win over Kansas
State, Lockhart now has 95 for his career. Lockhart led the Rebels in
blocked shots the previous two seasons with 44 and 46 blocks, respectively.
THE LAST TIME THAT...
The Rebels were hot from the free throw line in their Nov. 25 win over
VCU. Ole Miss shot 78.4 percent from the foul line, hitting 29-of-37. The
last time Ole Miss shot better from the foul line with over 30 attempts was
back in the 1997-98 campaign. The Rebels hit 81.8 percent (27-of-33) from
the charity stripe in an 82-78 victory over Mississippi State in Starkville
(Feb. 21, 1998). The last time that the Rebels shot better (no limit on
attempts) was 80 percent from the line (16-of-20) in last year's NIT
second-round victory over Southwest Missouri State.
'PROVINE POSSE' COMES UP BIG FOR REBELS...PART I
The Provine High School trio of Aaron Harper, Justin Reed and David
Sanders, nicknamed the 'Provine Posse,' took a couple of games to adjust to
the collegiate level, but they have and came up big in the Rebels' win at
VCU. All three netted double figures in the win, as Reed had 16, Sanders
13 and Harper 10. But, it wasn't as much their scoring as when they
stepped up, and the following charts their big plays in the VCU win:
- Lockhart picked up his second foul at the 11:36 mark of the first half
and went to the bench. From that point, Reed scored eight points and
grabbed seven boards the rest of the half.
- With time running down in the first half, Sanders capped a 10-0 run with
a layup at the buzzer to pull the Rebels to within six at 40-34 at the break.
- Two Harper free throws cut the VCU lead to 71-70 with 1:14 left in
regulation, setting up Jason Harrison's three-point basket to put Ole Miss
ahead 73-72 with under a minute to play.
- Harper nailed a three-pointer to give Ole Miss the lead for good in
overtime at 76-73.
- Sanders hit two free throws with :36 left in overtime to give Ole Miss an
- Harper clinched the victory with two free throws with :06 on the clock.
FIVE IN A ROW
For the 2000-01 Rebels, the season theme could be 'The Drive for Five'?as
in five straight winning seasons and five consecutive postseason tournament
berths. Ole Miss enters 2000-01 on the momentum of four straight winning
campaigns (20-9, 1996-97, 22-7, 1997-98, 20-13, 1998-99, 19-14, 1999-2000)
and four consecutive postseason tournament bids (NCAA?1997, 1998, 1999,
NIT?2000). 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 five or more consecutive winning campaigns was nine straight from
1919-20 through 1927-28. The Rebel program has never played in five
straight postseason tournaments.
OLE MISS' RECRUITING CLASS RANKED AMONG NATION'S ELITE
After its 1999 recruiting class was ranked No. 26 in the nation, Ole Miss
took another step up the ladder to national prominence when its 2000 class
was ranked as high as No. 10 in the country. The 2000 class of Derrick
Allen (Gadsden, Ala.), Aaron Harper, Justin Reed and David Sanders was
ranked No. 10 by HOOP SCOOP and No. 23 by The Recruiting Beat. According
to the HOOP SCOOP rankings, Ole Miss had the top recruiting class in the SEC.
Ole Miss is really doing the job on the defensive end of the floor, nearly
doubling the steals output of its opponents (60-31)...With their win over
the No. 14-ranked Sooners, the Rebels have defeated at least one ranked
team every season since 1994-95...Rahim Lockhart needs five points to reach
the 800-point plateau for his career...Memphis head coach John Calipari has
a 5-4 record versus teams from the SEC, with all the encounters coming when
he coached at UMass...Saturday's game is the third of the current six-game
series between the two schools. The series returns to Oxford next year.