Men's Basketball Game Notes

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GAMEDAY INFORMATION
Date: Saturday, Dec. 22
Time: 8:30 p.m. (CT)
Site: Don Haskins Center * El Paso, Texas

PROBABLE OLE MISS STARTERS

No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
5 Aaron Harper (So.) F/G 6-7 215 10.4/3.4 Jackson, Miss.
23 Justin Reed (So.) F 6-8 230 15.2/7.1 Jackson, Miss.
40 Derrick Allen (Jr.) F 6-8 230 9.0/5.9 Gadsden, Ala.
11 Jason Harrison (Sr.) G 5-5 160 11.1/4.3apg Little Rock, Ark.
15 David Sanders (So.) G 6-3 180 12.7/3.9 Jackson, Miss.

RESERVES

No. Player (Yr.) Pos. Ht. Wt. PPG/RPG Hometown
4 Kendrick Fox (Fr.) F/G 6-7 195 3.0/0.7 Oxford, Miss.
12 Justin Johnson (Fr.) G 6-0 190 3.3/1.2 Fayetteville, N.C.
32 Emmanuel Wade (Jr.) G 6-3 185 7.5/3.1 Marianna, Ark.
33 Chris Rhodes (Fr.) F 6-7 215 0.0/0.0 Houston, Texas
45 Richard Kirklin (Jr.) F 6-9 215 2.0/1.0 Pine Bluff, Ark.

REBEL GAME NOTES

REBELS TO FACE UTEP IN CHAMPIONSHIP GAME OF SUNCLASSIC SATURDAY: Ole Miss (8-2) will meet host UTEP (5-5) in the championship contest of the Sierra Providence SunClassic Saturday, Dec. 22. Game time for the title contest is set for 8:30 p.m. (CT). The Rebels advanced to the championship with a 77-70 victory over IUPUI Friday, while the Miners defeated Mississippi Valley State 89-82 to advance to the title game.

THE OLE MISS-UTEP SERIES: The Rebels and the Miners will meet for the first time on the hardwood Saturday.

ANOTHER SUN TITLE UP FOR GRABS: While Ole Miss and UTEP have never met on the basketball court, the two schools did play for a Sun Bowl championship on the gridiron. The Miners defeated the Rebels 14-7 in the 1967 Sun Bowl, which was held on UTEP's homefield. Saturday's contest will be played on the Miners' homecourt.

OLE MISS VERSUS THE WESTERN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE: The Rebels have a 4-8 record (.333 winning percentage) versus current members of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC). Ole Miss is 2-0 versus Louisiana Tech, 1-2 versus Rice, 1-4 versus Tulsa and 0-1 versus Fresno State and SMU. The last time Ole Miss played a member of the WAC was in the 1997-98 campaign, an 88-56 season-opening victory over Louisiana Tech in Oxford (Nov. 19, 1997).

HEY, WE'VE SEEN YOU BEFORE: Miner head coach Jason Rabedeaux is in his third year at UTEP, but Saturday's Sierra Providence SunClassic championship game won't be the first time an Ole Miss squad has seen him on the opposing sideline. Rabedeaux was an assistant at Oklahoma in the 1998-99 campaign when the Rebels defeated the No. 23-ranked Sooners 75-72 in the semifinals of the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic (Dec. 22, 1998).

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 a 74-37 record (includes 2001-02 games). He has led Ole Miss to an 8-2 mark in 2001-02. 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 the Ole Miss program.

BARNES AND TOURNAMENT TITLE GAMES: Since taking over the Ole Miss program in 1998-99, head coach Rod Barnes has had success in regular-season tournaments. Barnes has a 10-3 record in regular-season tournaments (five tournaments), and has led the Rebels to the championship contest in four of those five tournaments, including Saturday's title tilt. Prior to this weekend's SunClassic, Ole Miss advanced to the championship game at the 1998 Puerto Rico Holiday Classic, the 1999 SoCon Holiday Hoops Tournament and the 2000 Yahoo! Sports Invitational. The Rebels won the SoCon Holiday Hoops title in 1999 with a 57-53 victory over Wisconsin-Green Bay.

HARRISON ON THE CHARTS: In the Rebels' game vs. IUPUI, senior Jason Harrison (Little Rock, Ark.) continued his climb up the Ole Miss career charts. The following shows where the 5-foot-5 guard stands:

Games Played No. Points No.
1. Jason Flanigan (98-01) 127 1. John Stroud (77-80) 2,328
Jason Harrison (99-pres) 111 25. Denver Brackeen (54-55) 1,040
Jason Harrison (99-pres) 877

Three-Pointers Made No. Assists No.
1. Keith Carter (96-99) 249 1. Sean Tuohy (79-82) 830
3. Joezon Darby (96-98) 131 5. Bob Mahoney (73-75) 362
4. Jason Harrison (99-pres) 128 6. Jason Harrison (99-pres) 348

Steals No.
1. Jason Smith (96-99) 211
7. Rahim Lockhart (98-01) 148
8. Jason Harrison (99-pres) 140

SANDERS HAS CAREER-HIGH (TYING) NIGHT: Sophomore guard David Sanders (Jackson, Miss.) tied his career bests for scoring (19 points) and field goals made (8) in the Rebels' victory over IUPUI Friday. Sanders also had 19 points versus Arkansas last year (Jan. 31, 2001), and hit eight field goals earlier this season versus George Mason (Dec. 1, 2001). Sanders' six rebounds and five assists versus IUPUI both were one shy of tying his career marks in those statistical categories.

FIVE EQUALS 3-0: The math may not add up, but it makes sense for the Rebels. In the last three contests against Memphis, Tennessee-Martin and IUPUI, Ole Miss has had five players score in double figures, and all three were Rebel victories. Friday's game against IUPUI was also the eighth contest in which at least four Rebels netted double digits this season. Ole Miss has a 7-1 record in those contests.

WADE TAKING OVER SIXTH-MAN ROLE: The last three years, Jason Harrison was the Rebels' "super-sub," thriving in the role of Ole Miss' sixth man. With Harrison moving into the starting lineup at the point in 2001-02, head coach Rod Barnes has been looking for someone to become the Rebels' sixth-man, and junior guard Emmanuel Wade (Marianna, Ark.) may be taking over that role. In Friday's win over IUPUI, Wade had 13 points, five rebounds, two assists, two steals and no turnovers in 26 minutes of action off the bench. He provided a spark late in the first half for Ole Miss, turning a 29-24 deficit into a 30-29 Rebel lead with consecutive treys. The lead ? which came with under two minutes to play in the first hal was Ole Miss' first of the game.

Wade did not just burst on the scene in the IUPUI win, as he has played well for the Rebels in the last three contests. In wins over Memphis, Tennessee-Martin and IUPUI, Wade averaged 11 points and four rebounds, while shooting 44 percent from the field (11-of-25), 50 percent from the three-point arc (5-of-10) and 100 percent from the charity stripe (6-of-6). He also hit the game-clinching free throws with :02 on the clock versus Memphis to seal that 71-67 victory.

TIP-INS... With his three treys versus IUPUI, sophomore Aaron Harper (Jackson, Miss.) moved into a tie for the No. 6 spot on the Ole Miss career three-pointers chart with 87. Harper is tied with Gerald Glass (1989-90) ... Junior Derrick Allen (Gadsden, Ala.) tied a career high with three blocks versus IUPUI. He also had three locks versus Morris Brown Nov. 28 ... Allen's nine-rebound performance versus IUPUI was the second best of his career to date. He grabbed a career-best 11 boards in the Rebels' victory at Kansas State ... Ole Miss continued to hit from the free throw line, shooting over 70 percent from the charity stripe versus IUPUI (76.9 percent, 10-of-13). The Rebels have shot 70 percent or better from the foul line in all 10 games.

 

 

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