MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The Middle Tennessee men’s basketball team (7-2) hits the road for just the third time this season, traveling to SEC opponent Ole Miss (6-2) Saturday for a 4 p.m. tip-off on CSS.
Date: Saturday, Dec. 14
Tip-Off: 4 p.m. CT
Teams: Middle Tennessee at Ole Miss
Location: Oxford, Miss
Arena: C.M. “Tad” Smith Coliseum (8,867)
Play-by-Play: Matt Stewart
Color Analyst: Daymeon Fishback
Radio: WGNS (FM 100.5, FM 101.9, AM 1450) / WMOT (89.5 FM) / The Game (102.5 FM, 97.5 FM)
Play-by-Play: Chip Walters
Color Analyst: Kyle Turnham
Live Audio | Live Stats
BLUE RAIDER BULLETS
• Middle Tennessee is poised to take on its fifth 2013 NCAA Tournament team this season, Saturday as the Blue Raiders travel to reigning SEC Tournament Champion Ole Miss. MT has won four-straight meetings against the Rebels and hold the 4-3 advantage in the all-time series.
• MT is 2-0 against Ole Miss during the Kermit Davis era. Davis is 4-19 all-time in his career against SEC opponents. Ole Miss is the only SEC team Davis is undefeated against.
• The Blue Raiders picked up a 115-65 victory over Fisk Dec. 9, marking MT’s largest margin of victory this season. The contest was also the first time this season seven Blue Raiders have scored double-figures. MT took a 56-34 lead into the locker room at the half. The last time the Blue Raiders scored 50 points in the first half was Jan. 8, 2011 against UL-Lafayette.
• The high-scoring affair was also the first time Middle Tennessee scored 100 points in a game since defeating Houston Baptist 109-79 Feb. 13, 2010. This was the first time MT scored 100 points under head coach Kermit Davis.
• MT hosted Belmont for a Blackout Dec. 3 as the Raiders’ were handed their first home loss in 21-straight contests. The game was MT’s fourth this season against a 2013 NCAA Tournament team. Shawn Jones led MT, recording his third double-double of the season with 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Neiko Hunter posted his fourth-straight double-figure scoring contest with 16 points.
• The Blue Raiders improved to 6-1 on the year with a 65-55 come-from-behind victory over South Alabama Nov. 30. Hunter tallied a team-high 14 points, whileKerry Hammonds II also added 14 points. Tweety Knight had 12 points, whileJacquez Rozier had 10, marking the first time in Rozier’s career he turned in back-to-back double-digit scoring performances.
• After falling on the road at No. 16/14 Florida, MT returned to its winning ways, earning an 80-62 win on the road at Murray State Nov. 26. Five Blue Raiders scored double-figures as Rozier posted a career-best performance. Rozier recorded his first career double-double with career-bests of 12 points and 10 rebounds.
• The Blue Raiders were handed their first loss of the season Nov. 21, dropping a 79-59 decision at No. 16/14 Florida and snapping MT’s nation-leading road winning streak at eight games.
• Middle Tennessee collected a 76-59 win against UALR Nov. 18 as Jones recorded his second-straight double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds, while Hammonds recorded 20 points, Reggie Upshaw Jr., had 13 and Knight added 11.
• MT’s contest against Akron Nov. 16 was the second for the team this season against a 2013 NCAA Tournament team. Jones recorded his first double-dip of the season against the Zips, tallying a career-high 24 points and grabbing 12 rebounds. Hammonds and Raymond put up 17 points each, while Knight added 11.
• MT claimed a 77-70 win over North Florida Nov. 13 inside the Murphy Center as four Raiders scored in double-figures. Upshaw notched the first double-double of the season for MT with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
• The Blue Raiders tipped-off regular season play, Nov. 10, picking up a 78-75 victory over 2013 NCAA Tournament participant Southern University. Hunter led MT with a career-best 20 points and six rebounds, going 6-for-11 from the floor and 3-for-4 from behind the arc. For his efforts, the senior was named Player of the Week by the Tennessee Sportswriters Association Nov. 12.
• The Blue Raiders opened the 2013-14 campaign with a four-game homestand, welcoming Southern, North Florida, Akron and UALR to the Murphy Center. MT hit the road for the first time Nov. 21, traveling to the Sunshine State to take on No. 16/14 Florida. The first five games proved to be challenging for the Blue Raiders as they faced three NCAA Tournament teams in their first five games of the 2013-14 season in Southern, Akron and Florida.
MT VS. OLE MISS
This will be the eighth meeting between Middle Tennessee and Ole Miss. MT holds a 4-3 advantage in the all-time series, including a 1-1 mark in Oxford, Miss. The two teams haven’t faced each other at Ole Miss since Dec. 12, 1977, when MT claimed a 61-53 decision.
The Rebels and Blue Raiders will square off for the third-straight year Saturday. MT picked up a 65-62 victory against Ole Miss Dec. 8, 2012 inside the Murphy Center as currently Blue Raiders Shawn Jones and Kerry Hammonds II tallied seven points each. In the clubs’ first meeting since the 1970s, Middle Tennessee claimed a 68-56 decision Dec. 11, 2012 at the DeSoto Civic Center in Southaven, Miss.
SCOUTING THE REBELS
Ole Miss is 6-2 on year, dropping its last two contests to Kansas State and Oregon. The Rebels’ first loss of the season came via a 61-58 decision at Kansas State Dec. 5. Ole Miss opened the 2013-14 campaign with a six-game winning streak with victories over Troy, Coastal Carolina, Mississippi Valley, North Carolina A&T, Georgia Tech and Penn State.
The Rebels are led by Marshall Henderson, averaging 18.3 points per game, while Jarvis Summers trails close behind with 15.5 points a contest. Derrick Millinghaus rounds out the double-figure averages for Ole Miss, putting up 14.1 points an outing, while Demarco Cox leads the team on the boards, pulling down 7.4 rebounds a game to go along with 8.8 points per contest.
In the team’s last outing, Ole Miss dropped a 115-105 overtime decision to Oregon Dec. 8. Five Rebels scored double-figures in the high-scoring affair as Henderson led the way with a school-record 10 three-pointers en route to a career-high 39 points. He was 11-for-27 from the floor and 7-for-10 at the line to lead the squad. Millinghaus and LaDarius White added 15 points apiece, while Summers tallied 12 points and Cox had 10. Aaron Jones helped the Rebels edge the Ducks on the boards 36-34, grabbing a team-high nine rebounds.