Dec. 19, 2000
Game #10 - Yahoo! Sports Invitational
So. Illinois (4-3) vs. #24/#25 Ole Miss (9-0)
Thursday, December 21 - 7:00 p.m. (CT)
Cannon Activities Center - Laie, Hawaii
Rebels on Television and Radio
Television: Sports West TV
Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network (David Kellum, play-by-play, Sean Tuohy,
color analyst, Stan Sandroni, pregame/halftime/postgame host)
OLE MISS TO MEET SOUTHERN ILLINOIS THURSDAY IN HAWAII
The Ole Miss Rebels (9-0) will travel to Hawaii to compete in the Yahoo!
Sports Invitational (formerly Pearl Harbor Invitational) Dec. 21-23. Ole
Miss will meet Southern Illinois (4-3) in the tournament?s first round at
7:00 p.m. (CT). The Rebels, ranked No. 24 in the Associated Press Top 25
Poll and No. 25 in the ESPN/USA Today Top 25 Poll, enter the tournament on
a nine-game win streak. The Salukis posted a win in their last outing, a
94-79 victory over Murray State.
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 48-27 (.640 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-SOUTHERN ILLINOIS SERIES
The Dec. 21 meeting will be the third between the two schools on the
hardwood, but the first since the 1993-94 season. The Salukis lead the
all-time series, 2-0. Southern Illinois won the last encounter, an 81-60
win in Carbondale, Ill., on Dec. 8, 1993. The Salukis also won the first
meeting in the 1992-93 campaign, an 85-78 win in Oxford on Dec. 28, 1992.
SCOUTING SOUTHERN ILLINOIS
The Salukis, a member of the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC), enters the
Yahoo! Sports Invitational with a 4-3 overall record. Southern Illinois
posted a victory in its last outing, a 94-79 win over Murray State Dec. 17.
Sophomore Kent Williams leads three Salukis in double figures with an 18.0
scoring average. Jermaine Dearman (15.0 ppg) and Joshua Cross (13.7 ppg)
are also averaging in double figures. Dearman leads Southern Illinois on
the boards with a 7.0 rebounding average. The Salukis are shooting 46.4
percent from the field, 40.6 percent from the three-point line and 64.1
percent from the charity stripe. Bruce Weber is in his third season at
Southern Illinois and has a record of 39-28 at the school.
AND THEN THERE WERE FOUR...
Ole Miss is one of four NCAA Division I schools to have both its men?s and
women?s basketball teams undefeated as of Dec. 19. The Rebels and Lady
Rebels both have perfect 9-0 records. The other three schools that have
accomplished the feat are Alabama, Tennessee and Baylor.
REBELS VERSUS THE MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE
The Rebels have an all-time record of 5-7 (.417 winning percentage) versus
current members of the Missouri Valley Conference. Ole Miss is 1-0 versus
Indiana State and Southwest Missouri State, 2-2 versus Wichita State, 1-2
versus Bradley, 0-1 versus Illinois State and 0-2 versus Southern Illinois.
The Rebels have never played Creighton, Evansville, Northern Iowa and
Drake. The last time Ole Miss played a member of the Missouri Valley
Conference was last season when the Rebels defeated Southwest Missouri
State, 70-48 in the NIT second round in Oxford.
REBELS OFF TO BEST START SINCE 1936-37
With their victory over Troy State Dec. 18, the Rebels remained undefeated
at 9-0, marking the program?s best start since the 1936-37 team began that
year with an 11-0 record. That 11-0 start by the 1936-37 squad is the best
in the program?s history. Last year (1999-2000), Ole Miss started the
campaign with a 6-0 record before losing its first game at Oklahoma, 81-73.
Ole Miss is currently on a nine-game win streak entering the Yahoo! Sports
Invitational Dec. 21-23. The nine-game win streak is the second longest in
the program?s history. The 1936-37 and 1937-38 teams both posted 11-game
PILING UP THE FREQUENT FLYER MILES
After staying on the mainland the first 86 years of the program?s
existence, Ole Miss basketball has been frequent travelers the past five
seasons. The team?s current trip to Hawaii to play in the Yahoo! Sports
Invitational is its third trip off the mainland the past five years. In
the 1998-99 campaign, the Rebels traveled to Puerto Rico to play in the
Holiday Classic and finished second to eventual Final Four participant Ohio
State. Following the 1996-97 season, Ole Miss played a five-game
exhibition tour in Australia and won all five games.
OLE MISS IN REGULAR SEASON TOURNAMENTS
The Rebels have an all-time record of 51-51 (.500 winning percentage) in
regular season tournaments in their history. Last season, Ole Miss won the
inaugural SoCon Holiday Hoops Tournament in Greenville, S.C., defeating
Wisconsin-Green Bay, 57-53 in the title game. The Rebels also beat Furman
(75-61) and Oregon State (77-58) en route to the championship game. Prior
to last year?s title, the Rebels? previous regular-season tournament title
came in the 1993-94 season, a 78-74 victory over Southern Mississippi in
the Cellular South/Mississippi Beach Shootout (one-game tournament). The
previous time Ole Miss won a two-day tournament title was in the 1988-89
campaign when the Rebels claimed the Bayou Classic championship with wins
over Southern (90-88) and Nicholls State (74-53).
The Yahoo! Sports Invitational will be only the sixth three-day tournament
for the Rebels in their history. The last three-day tournament came last
season at the SoCon Holiday Hoops Tournament. The Rebels? other three-day
tournaments were the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic (San Juan, Puerto Rico) in
1998-99, All-College Tournament (Oklahoma City, Okla.) in 1972-73, Gulf
South Tournament (Shreveport, La.) in 1960-61 and All-American City
Tournament (Owensboro, Ky.) in 1954-55.
OLE MISS VERSUS THE TOURNAMENT FIELD
The Rebels have a record of 4-2 versus teams in the Yahoo! Sports
Invitational field. Ole Miss is 4-0 versus Troy State and 0-2 versus
Southern Illinois. The Rebels have never met BYU, BYU-Hawaii, Boise State,
Iowa State and Southern Cal on the hardwood.
OLE MISS VERSUS FIRST TIME FOES
No matter what the Rebels do in the tournament?s first round, they will
face a first-time opponent?BYU-Hawaii or Southern Cal?on the tourney?s
second day. BYU-Hawaii or Southern Cal will be the Rebels? second
first-time opponent of the 2000-01 season. Ole Miss defeated Kansas State,
60-46 Dec. 5, and will meet Morris Brown for the first time Dec. 30. Last
year, Ole Miss posted a 3-0 record versus first-time foes with wins over
Oregon State (77-58), Virginia Commonwealth (75-62) and Southwest Missouri
State (70-48). Since the 1998-99 campaign, Ole Miss has an 8-2 record
(.800 winning percentage) versus first-time foes.
REBELS TOUGH ON NON-CONFERENCE FOES IN RECENT YEARS
In last nine years (including 2000-01 season), the Rebels have posted a
74-28 record (.725 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 57-15 mark (.792 winning percentage) against
YAHOO! SPORTS INVITATIONAL HAS POSTSEASON FLAVOR
The Yahoo! Sports Invitational field has a postseason feel to
it?especially from last year?s postseason. Four of the teams in this
year?s field?Ole Miss, BYU, Iowa State and Southern Illinois?played in the
2000 postseason. Iowa State participated in the 2000 NCAA Tournament and
advanced to the Midwest Regional final, while Ole Miss, BYU and Southern
Illinois all played in the NIT. The Rebels and Cougars advanced to the NIT
quarterfinals, and the Salukis made it to the second round.
DARE WE SAY IT...
Yes, we must. The Rebels were en fuego?on fire?from the three-point arc
in their victory over Troy State Dec. 18. Ole Miss hit a school-record 14
treys, breaking the previous mark of 13 three-pointers versus Arkansas in
the 1991-92 season (Jan. 18, 1992, 114-93 Arkansas win). The Rebels shot
41.2 percent from the arc in the win over the Trojans, led by redshirt
freshman Josh Hayes? (Little Rock, Ark.) 6-of-7 shooting performance from
the arc. For the season, Ole Miss is hitting 34.5 percent from the
HAYES HAS CAREER GAME
Redshirt freshman Josh Hayes had the game of his young career Dec. 18 in
the Rebels? victory over Troy State. Hayes scored a career-high 20 points
and also posted career bests of seven field goals and six three-pointers.
For the season, Hayes is shooting 71.4 percent from the field (10-of-14)
and 70 percent from the three-point line (7-of-10).
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 58.4 points per game,
which is tops in the Southeastern Conference. In the Rebels? last five
games, they have been really stingy on defense, allowing only 53.6 points
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 76-9 record
(.894 winning percentage) when it scores 70 points or more. On the other
hand, the Rebels are 13-34 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 5-0 record when
scoring 70 points or more.
...BUT SCORING 70 ISN?T NECESSARY IN 2000-01
As discussed in the previous note, the Rebels have been nearly unbeatable
when they score 70 points or more. However, the 2000-01 Rebels are proving
they can win games when they don?t reach that magical number of 70. Ole
Miss is 4-0 this year when scoring less than 70 points.
LOCKHART NEARLY PERFECT
In the Rebels? victory over Southeastern Louisiana Dec. 13, senior Rahim
Lockhart (Mendenhall, Miss.) was nearly perfect from the floor. The
6-foot-8 forward finished the game 10-of-11 from the field, but was
10-of-10 with five minutes left in the contest. His 90.9 field goal
shooting performance is tied for the second-best, single-game showing in
Rebel basketball history.
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 three brilliant defensive showings in the
Rebel victories over No. 14-ranked Oklahoma, Kansas State and Memphis.
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
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.
In the Rebels? win over Memphis, Flanigan led the defensive charge against
the Memphis guard trio of Scooter McFadgon, Shyrone Chatman and Marcus
Moody. The trio shot 12 percent (3-of-25) from the field.
BARNES CLOSING IN ON 50
Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes is nearing 50?and it?s a good thing. With
two more victories, Barnes will hit the 50-win plateau for his career. He
has a current record of 48-27.
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 67.6
percent from the foul line for the season, but more importantly, the Rebels
are hitting their foul shots down the stretch. In their four narrow wins
over Sam Houston State, VCU, Oklahoma and Memphis, the Rebels shot 81.8
percent from the line (36-of-44) in the final four minutes (and overtime)
of those games.
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 18th double-double performance in Ole
Miss? win over Southeastern Louisiana (21 points-14 rebounds) Dec. 13. He
also had double-doubles versus Arkansas-Pine Bluff (17-12) Nov. 18,
Louisiana-Monroe (16-10) Nov. 28 and Memphis (15-14) Dec. 9. 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.
HARRISON DISHING IT OUT
Junior Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) has sure been in the spirit of
the season in terms of giving?as in giving the ball to his teammates. In
Ole Miss? last six games, Harrison is averaging 4.3 assists per contest.
The 5-foot-5 guard leads the squad with 36 assists this season, and is also
ranked among the Southeastern Conference leaders in that statistical category.
LOCKHART RECORDS CAREER HIGH IN STEALS
Senior Rahim Lockhart 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 117 steals.
LOCKHART SETS CAREER HIGH IN BLOCKS
After setting a career high in steals in the Rebels? victory over Kansas
State Dec. 5, Rahim Lockhart followed up with a career high in blocked
shots in Ole Miss? win at Memphis Dec. 9. The 6-foot-8 forward blocked a
career-best five shots versus the Tigers, breaking his previous high of
four. This season, Lockhart leads the Rebels with 21 blocked shots.
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 588 career rebounds, after grabbing six
boards in the Rebels? victory over Troy State Dec. 18. Lockhart is in the
No. 13 spot on the Ole Miss career rebounding list, and needs nine more
rebounds to take over the No. 12 spot currently held by Keith Carter
(1996-99, 596 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.
FLANIGAN IN THE CLUTCH
Throughout his career, Jason Flanigan has not had the reputation of being
a scorer. However, the last two seasons when the Rebels have needed him to
step forward on the offensive end, the 6-foot-1 guard has responded. In
the Rebels? victory over Memphis Dec. 9, Flanigan netted a season-high 14
points on 4-of-6 shooting from the field, including a career-high three
treys. Flanigan nailed a key three-pointer in the first half to extend the
Rebel margin, and later in the second half, he hit his third trey of the
game to halt a Tiger rally.
Earlier this season, Flanigan came up big for the Rebels in their victory
over VCU. With the Rebels fighting to stay in the game, Flanigan answered
consecutive VCU hoops with two baskets of his own. His second bucket?a
three-pointer?started a 10-0 Rebel run which cut the Ram advantage to six
at 40-34 at the break. His second three-pointer of the game came during
the Ole Miss comeback in the second half, slicing the VCU lead to 70-68
with 3:13 left in regulation.
GET THAT SHOT OUTTA HERE!!!
Senior Rahim Lockhart recorded a career-best five blocked shots versus
Memphis Dec. 9, and in doing so, moved into fourth place on the Rebel
career blocked shot chart. After his two blocks versus Troy State Dec. 18,
he now has 104 for his career. Up next for Lockhart is David Dean
(1992-94), who is third with 108 career blocked shots. The 6-foot-8
forward entered the 2000-01 season with 83 career blocks. Lockhart led the
Rebels in blocked shots the previous two seasons with 44 and 46 blocks,
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 49-25 record (.662 winning percentage) in December
games since the 1990-91 campaign. The Rebels are 5-0 in December this
year. 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 Troy State Dec. 18, this
class has now won 70 games, just four 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).
REED CLUTCH IN THE STRETCH
It's hard to believe that a freshman could be this wise this early, but
Justin Reed (Jackson, Miss.) showed his basketball smarts in the Rebels'
victory over Memphis. After playing only three minutes in the first half
with three fouls, he picked up his fourth early in the second half. But,
Reed returned for the final 10 minutes and made the most of it. He netted
eight of his 10 points in the final 10 minutes, including two huge baskets
(one on a putback as the shot clock expired) and two free throws with under
three minutes to play.
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
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
PROVINE POSSE STEPS UP...PART II
The trio of Aaron Harper, Justin Reed 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 (4-of-7) and 70.5 percent from the charity stripe
(12-of-17). Harper, Reed and Sanders also combined for nine boards in the
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.
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.
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.
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.
Aaron Harper (7) and Jason Holmes (5) recorded career high in assists
versus Troy State Dec. 18...With their win over the No. 14-ranked Sooners,
the Rebels have defeated at least one ranked team every season since
1994-95...Ole Miss has held six of its nine opponents to under 40 percent
shooting from the field.