Nov. 29, 2010
Colorado State vs. Drake | Game 4
|COLORADO STATE RAMS||DRAKE BULLDOGS|
|CSU STATISTICAL LEADERS||DU STATISTICAL LEADERS|
The Colorado State men’s basketball team hosts the Drake Bulldogs on Wednesday at Moby Arena in the second annual Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge. The series pits an MWC team against an MVC foe, based on the prior season’s final standings. Last year, the Rams fell at Indiana State, 65-60, and the MVC won the challenge 5-4. The game between the Rams and the Bulldogs will be televised live on The Mtn., with tip set for 6 p.m. MT.
Drake University enters Wednesday’s tilt against CSU with a record of 2-3, having beaten Texas Southern and Southern Utah, while also falling to Iowa State and St. John’s in two lopsided games, losing by an average of 45.5 points. However, in its most recent game, a Nov. 27 matchup against Weber State in the final game of the Great Alaska Shootout, Drake lost a tight game in the final seconds, 82-81. Sophomore Seth VanDeest drew a charge with 5.7 seconds remaining and the Bulldogs hanging on to a one-point lead. However, after the play, sophomore Aaron Hawley was called for a technical foul for spiking the ball. Weber State’s Damian Lillard sank both free throws to win, 82-81.
Nearly 75 percent of Drake’s scoring comes from its top four players, who are all averaging double-digit scoring through five games. Those players are freshman Rayvonte Rice (12.0 points), Hawley (11.2), VanDeest (11.2) and senior Ryan Wedel (10.6). Sophomore Jordan Clarke leads the Bulldogs with 7.0 rebounds per game, followed by Rice (5.0), VanDeest (4.8) and Hawley (3.8). As a tandem, both Wedel and Hawley shoot the ball well, 46.2 and 42.9 percent, respectively, and both lead the team in three-point shooting, making a combined 43.6 percent (24-of-55) of their long-range shots.
Head Coach Mark Phelps is in his third season at Drake, where he guiding the Bulldogs to a 14-19 (7-11 MVC) record in 2009-10. Through his first two seasons, Phelps accumulated 31 victories, second most by a Drake coach in his first two seasons, and overall is 33-38 as a head coach entering Wednesday’s game.
Rams vs. the Bulldogs
The Rams will take on the Drake Bulldogs for the 10th time in program history Wednesday evening, having most recently squared off during the 2004-05 season, a 72-62 home win for the Rams. Colorado State is 5-4 all-time against Drake, and has won three consecutive games in the series. They are also 3-0 in games played in Fort Collins. The initial meeting between the two schools came in 1947, a 65-44 CSU loss, but the most notable game of the series was during the 1968-69 season.
That year, the two programs squared off in Manhattan, Kan., in the NCAA Midwest Regional Finals on March 15, 1969. The Bulldogs, led by head coach Maury John, edged Jim Williams and the Rams, 84-77, in that Elite Eight game to earn a spot in the Final Four that featured UCLA’s John Wooden, North Carolina’s Dean Smith and Purdue’s George King.
On Saturday, Fresno State will play at Moby Arena for the first time since 1996-97. It will be the 20th meeting between the former WAC foes, but the first since Fresno State announced that it will join the Mountain West Conference beginning in the 2012-13 season. The Rams won the first four meetings between the two schools, beginning in 1964, but have gone just 4-11 since, winning 8 of the 19 overall meetings. CSU fell at Fresno last season 73-50, and has lost two in a row to the Bulldogs. Saturday will be the first time since 1997 that the two teams have played each other in consecutive seasons. CSU is 8-2 all-time vs. Fresno State when playing in Fort Collins, and has won three straight at Moby Arena against the Bulldogs.
Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge
The 2010-11 season features the return of the Mountain West/Missouri Valley Challenge. The agreement between the MWC and MVC is in its second year of a four-year term. Nine Challenge Series games will be played each year, and each conference will host a total of 18 games in the four-year period. Missouri State will be the Valley institution that does not participate in the 2010 Challenge Series. All nine games of the 2010 Challenge will take place the week of Dec. 1-5. Last year, the MVC won the series, 5-4, but notably all four MWC winning teams reached the NCAA Tournament. The two leagues combined for four NCAA Tournament victories, which included first-round wins by BYU and New Mexico, and a Sweet 16 appearance by Northern Iowa. The leagues combined for a total of 11 postseason berths and 10 postseason wins. The following is a complete schedule for the 2010-11 MWC/MVC Challenge. All games hosted by MWC institutions, including CSU’s Dec. 1 matchup against Drake, will be televised live on The Mtn. - The MountainWest Sports Network.
Denver luncheon set for Head Coach Tim Miles
Fans are invited to join Colorado State Head Coach Tim Miles on Thursday at The Lobby, located at 2191 Arapahoe St. in lower downtown Denver, for the inaugural Tim Miles Denver Luncheon. The event, scheduled to run from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m., is just $20 per person and Ram Club members that RSVP will receive two complimentary tickets to the Colorado State vs. Fresno State game on Dec. 4.
Miles, who returns one of the most talented teams in recent history, will discuss the team and the 2010-11 schedule, and what he has planned for Rams basketball.
To RVSP to the event, fans should contact the Ram Club office at 970/491-4666.
Join the Rams on the road
Tickets are available for several Colorado State road trips this season, including an upcoming opportunity to cheer on the Rams against in-state rival Colorado (Dec. 8). Special ticket rates are available for Dec. 8 when the CSU men’s and women’s hoops teams invade the Coors Event Center in Boulder, Colo., to take on the Buffs in a doubleheader. For just $15 fans will receive a general-admission seat at the women’s game (5:30 p.m. tip) and a reserved seat for the men’s contest (8 p.m. tip). Tickets to the Rams vs. Buffs doubleheader are available through the CSU ticket office by calling 800/491-Rams or by visiting the McGraw Athletic Center ticket office Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m.
Defend the Fort
Entering Wednesday’s contest against Drake, Colorado State has now won eight of its last nine home games against non-conference opponents. Prior to Saturday’s setback to Sam Houston State, the Rams hadn’t lost a home non-conference game since hosting Stanford on Dec. 14, 2008, the Rams’ final non-conference home game that season. In 2009-10 the Rams went 7-0 vs. non-conference opponents at Moby Arena and finished the year 11-4 overall at home, their most home wins since recording 14 victories at Moby in 2003.
Senior forwards Travis Franklin (22 points) and Andy Ogide (20 points) each eclipsed the 20-point mark in Saturday’s loss to Sam Houston State. It marked the first time since Dec. 10, 2009, a 77-62 win over rival Colorado, that two Rams scored 20 or more points in the same game. In his last two outings, at Denver and vs. Sam Houston State, Franklin has recorded back-to-back games of 22 points, finishing just two points shy of his career best each time.
Colorado State enters Wednesday’s game against Drake ranked second in the MWC in steals. The Rams recorded nine takeaways against Sam Houston State on Saturday, and are averaging 8.7 per game, the best per game average since Head Coach Tim Miles took over in 2007. The Rams rank 57th nationally in the category.
Colorado State’s front line features three players – seniors Andy Ogide and Travis Franklin, and sophomore Pierce Hornung – who are all shooting better than 70 percent from the field through the Rams’ first three games. Hornung has yet to miss a two-point basket on the season, hitting all five attempts on the season from inside the arc, and connecting on 77.8 percent (7-for-9) from the field overall. Ogide (23-for-32) and Franklin (20-for-28) have also been very efficient, hitting 71.9 percent and 71.4 percent, respectively, from the field this season. Ogide enters Wednesday’s game vs. Drake ranked second in the MWC and third nationally in terms of shooting percentage. Franklin is just behind Ogide, ranking third in the MWC and fourth nationally. In addition, sophomore guard Dorian Green has been very effective from beyond the arc, leading the team with five three pointers on .556 shooting. As a team, the Rams currently rank seventh in the country in shooting percentage, connecting on 52.1 percent from the field.
Miles vs. Centennial state
The steady improvement in the Colorado State men’s basketball team over the last three seasons under Head Coach Tim Miles can be seen in the Rams’ regular-season record vs. the other four NCAA Division I programs in the state of Colorado. In Miles’ first season, the Rams posted a 1-4 record against in-state rivals Colorado, Denver, Northern Colorado and Air Force (two games). During the 2008-09 season, Miles’ second at CSU, the Rams improved to 3-2 in those contests, and last season, the Rams were impressive against their regional rivals, posting a 4-1 mark with the lone setback coming against a UNC team that went on to win 25 games in 2009-10. After a 77-66 win over Denver on Nov. 18, the Rams are 1-0 in 2010-11, and have won five consecutive games against their closest rivals.
Season openers under Miles
Since losing a 75-39 contest at Montana in Head Coach Tim Miles’ regular-season debut with the Rams in 2007, CSU has won three consecutive regular-season openers. In 2008, the Rams avenged the loss at Montana by beating the Grizzlies 85-55 at Moby Arena. Last season, CSU rolled to a 91-73 victory over UC Davis in the first round of the Basketball Travelers Tip-Off in Eugene, Ore. The Rams opened this season with an 82-51 victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff, making it three in a row.
Hot in home openers
The Rams’ season-opening victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Nov. 13 marked the 30th consecutive victory in a home opener for the Rams. Their last home-opening loss came during the 1980-81 season when CSU fell to Oklahoma State, 79-64. Since the construction of Moby Arena in 1966, Colorado State is now 42-4 in home openers. Under Tim Miles, the Rams have outscored their opponents 319-196 in four home-opening games, winning by an average of 30.75 points per game. The following is a list of CSU’s home openers under Miles:
Date, Opponent (Result)
Nov. 28, 2007, vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff (W, 73-48)
Nov. 14, 2008, vs. Montana (W, 85-55)
Nov. 24, 2009, vs. Mayville State (W, 79-42)
Nov. 13, 2010, vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff (W, 82-51)
Over 80, under 60
Last season, the formula for a victory for the CSU men’s basketball team was simple. The Rams posted a 5-0 record when scoring 80 or more points in a contest, and were 8-0 when holding opponents under 60 points. Through two exhibition wins - vs. Regis (88-48) and Western State (89-51) - and a season-opening victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff (82-51), the Rams were able to follow that formula.
The Rams play four of their first five games at home in 2010-11, and won’t leave the state of Colorado until a Dec. 11 showdown against the nationally ranked Kansas Jayhawks (CSU played at Denver on Nov. 18 and will travel to Colorado on Dec. 8). After a season-opening tournament in Eugene, Ore., last season, followed by a game at Indiana State, the Rams didn’t play their first home game until Nov. 24, their fifth game of the season.
The 2010-11 season marks the 107th in the history of the Colorado State men’s basketball program. The Rams are 1,092-1,146 (.488) in 2,238 games all-time.
MWC preseason poll
The Colorado State men’s basketball team was selected to finish fifth in the Mountain West Conference preseason media poll when the standings were released Oct. 12 at MWC men’s basketball media day at the studios of The Mtn. – MountainWest Sports Network. The fifth-place prediction marks the highest preseason ranking for the Rams since CSU came into the 2003-04 season as the predicted third-place finisher. The Rams entered that season coming off of the 2003 MWC tournament championship to earn the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament the previous March. The complete preseason poll and preseason all-MWC selections can be found on Page 6 of this release.
Colorado State’s 2010-11 schedule features 10 contests against teams that received votes in the preseason national rankings. The Rams’ first contest against a team receiving attention comes Dec. 8 at rival Colorado. The Buffaloes received votes in the AP preseason top-25 poll, but have since fallen off the rankings. The Rams head to Kansas City, Mo., for a matchup against current No. 4/4 Kansas at the Sprint Center on Dec.11. The Rams’ MWC schedule features eight tilts against opponents receiving attention in the polls with two each against No. 21/25 BYU, No. 17/19 San Diego State, 24/23 UNLV, and --/RV New Mexico.
Career records update
Several CSU seniors are closing in on the career charts in the Colorado State record book. Forwards Andy Ogide and Andre McFarland have each scored more than 650 career points with the Rams and will look to become the 18th and 19th players in school history to reach the 1,000-point plateau this season. Ogide enters Wednesday’s game vs. Drake with 734 points at CSU, while McFarland has 658 points as a Ram. McFarland currently ranks on the top 10 for career three-pointers, having made 129 in his career at CSU. He needs 17 three-pointers to crack the top five. Forward Travis Franklin ranks just outside the top five for career free throws attempted, and is on pace to close his career in fifth on that list. He currently has 377 career free-throw attempts in a CSU uniform. Guard Adam Nigon will soon rank among the top 10 in program history for steals. He enters Wednesday’s game vs. Drake with 91 career swipes and needs four more to tie Michael Morris (2003-06) for 10th all-time at CSU.
Colorado State entered the 2010-11 season coming off of a postseason appearance in the 2010 College Basketball Invitational (CBI). The Rams’ appearance in the CBI marked the first postseason berth for the program since the 2003 NCAA tournament. Overall, it marked CSU’s 15th postseason appearance.
CSU was one of five teams from the Mountain West Conference to make postseason play in 2010. New Mexico, BYU, UNLV and San Diego State all made the field of 65 for the NCAA tournament, marking the first time in MWC history that four teams competed for the national title. Colorado State was the only other team to continue its season.
CBI the first step
When Colorado State Head Coach Tim Miles came to CSU three seasons ago, he clearly stated his goals for the program were to compete in postseason competition and win when they got there. With last season’s announcement that the team had accepted a bid to the CBI, the Rams took the first step toward becoming a perennial postseason contender.
Of the 16 teams to compete in the CBI in 2009, nine of those programs went on to compete in either the NCAA or National Invitation tournaments in 2010.
UTEP (C-USA/at-large), Richmond (A-10/at-large), Vermont (America East/automatic) and Houston (C-USA/automatic) each earned berths in the NCAA field of 65 in 2010-11.
Northeastern, Wichita State, Troy, St. John’s and Nevada all competed in the NIT.
In addition, three teams that played in the inaugural CBI in 2008 went on to earn NCAA or NIT postseason berths in 2009. Utah (MWC/automatic) and Washington (Pac-10/at-large) played in the NCAA tourney, while Tulsa participated in the NIT.
Colorado State closed the 2009-10 season with an NCAA RPI of 132, which ranked fifth in the MWC behind New Mexico (14), BYU (24), San Diego State (25) and UNLV (50), and ahead of Utah (165), TCU (191), Wyoming (230), and Air Force (247).
Under Head Coach Tim Miles’ watch, the Rams’ RPI has steadily improved. In Miles’ first season, CSU closed the year at No. 273, and improved to 217th following the 2008-09 campaign. Factoring in last season’s 132 final RPI, the Rams have improved by an average of nearly 71 spots in each of the last two seasons.
The Colorado State men’s basketball team enters the 2010-11 season returning nearly all of its production from the previous season. The Rams return their top five leading scorers - Dorian Green (11.8 ppg.), Andy Ogide (11.7 ppg.), Travis Franklin (10.5 ppg.), Adam Nigon (8.7 ppg.), and Greg Smith (7.1 ppg.) - and their top six rebounders - Ogide (6.5 rpg.), Franklin (5.0 rpg.), Pierce Hornung (4.2 rpg.), Smith (3.8 rpg.), Nigon (2.9 rpg.), and Green (2.4 rpg).
Miles garners postseason honor
Head Coach Tim Miles garnered postseason honors to close the 2009-10 season when he was honored March 9 as the Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year by CollegeInsider.com.
Miles, who took over the program in 2007, took the Rams from seven wins in his first season and nine wins in Year 2, to 16 victories in 2009-10.
Miles also guided the Rams to their best record (7-9) and finish (fifth) in the Mountain West Conference since the league’s inaugural campaign, 1999-2000, and led the team to its first postseason appearance in seven seasons.
Ogide returns after pair of postseason honors
Colorado State’s Andy Ogide returns in 2010-11 after being selected as a member of the Mountain West all-conference second team and earning NABC second-team all-district honors to close out the 2009-10 season.
A native of Marietta, Ga., Ogide paced Colorado State in scoring and rebounding, averaging 12.3 points and 7.2 boards per game in Mountain West Conference action. He finished the season as one of just three players in the conference, along with league Player of the Year Darrington Hobson (New Mexico) and Freshman of the Year Kawhi Leonard (San Diego State) to average more than 12 points and seven rebounds per game in league games. Both Hobson and Leonard were selected to the first team. Hobson went on to be selected with the 37th overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks.
Ogide became the Rams’ first second-team all-MWC selection since guard Marcus Walker in 2008, and the first all-MWC post player for the Rams since Jason Smith was named to the first team as a junior, just three months before being drafted 20th overall by the Miami Heat in the first round of the 2007 NBA Draft.
Katz tabs Rams as “team on the rise”
The Colorado State men’s basketball team garnered national attention this preseason from ESPN’s Andy Katz. Katz, senior college basketball writer for ESPN.com, used his blog on the national Web site to tab the Rams as a team “on the rise” under Head Coach Tim Miles, who enters his fourth year at the helm of the CSU program. Katz says the Rams will have an opportunity in 2010-11 to crack the upper echelon of the Mountain West Conference and could be in the mix come tourney time, vying for an NCAA berth in a strong league that received four bids the year before.
Terel Hughes and Kaipo Sabas, both juniors, joined the CSU men’s basketball team as walk-ons in late October. Both are already household names among Rams fans. Both players’ fathers, Eddie Hughes and Barry Sabas, donned the green and gold during their playing days.
Hughes’ father, Eddie, was a four-time letterwinner at CSU from 1979-82, and went on the play professional basketball for the Utah Jazz and Denver Nuggets. During his illustrious career at CSU, he became the first Ram to ever be selected first-team all-Western Athletic Conference as a freshman. He was a three-time all-conference selection and was named to several All-America teams before being inducted to the CSU Hall of Fame. He still holds several spots in CSU’s record book, including scoring (1,360 career points, seventh all-time), assists (366, sixth), field goals made (566, fifth), steals (112, fourth), steals in a game (eight, tied for first) and freshman scoring average (15.4 points, first).
Sabas’ father, Barry, spent two seasons in a Rams uniform, earning second-team all-WAC honors and the 1975 WAC Newcomer of the Year award. During his junior campaign, his first at CSU, he led the Rams in scoring with 14.2 points per game. In his two-year career, the guard averaged 13.9 points and was considered “one of the best back-court men” Jim Williams, CSU basketball’s all-time winningest coach, had ever coached.
Family affair, Part 2
Colorado State’s roster also includes a pair of brothers from Omaha, Neb., natives Greg and Dwight Smith. Greg Smith, a sophomore forward, was a key contributor for the Rams as a true freshman in 2009-10, averaging 7.1 points and 3.8 rebounds per game in 28 contests. Dwight Smith, is a true freshman for the Rams this season, and comes to the Rams as a highly touted guard. The duo, born just 15 months apart, played together at Ralston High School, where they combined to lead the Rams to a Nebraska Class B state championship in 2009.
Miles, Slocum participating in “Shots from the Heart”
Colorado State Head Coach Tim Miles and assistant coach DeMarlo Slocum each competed in a bracket-style free-throw tournament, against 63 other head and assistant coaches, respectively, as part of CollegeInsider.com’s inaugural “Shots from the Heart” campaign to raise awareness for the growing problem of heart disease and raise money to benefit the American Heart Association. The competition was organized in memory of the late Skip Prosser, the former Wake Forest head coach who passed away suddenly in 2007 from a heart attack.
Miles competed in the East Region of the bracket, with his opening-round matchup coming against former University of Colorado head coach Jeff Bzdelik, who is in his first season at Prosser’s former school, Wake Forest. Miles was impressive, connecting on 23-of-25 attempts, but fell just short of Bzdelik, who claimed to hit all 25 shots. Bzdelik now advances to shoot 25 more free throws against Chris Mack (Xavier), who defeated Oakland’s Greg Kampe in a tiebreaker. Each coach hit 20-of-25 attempts in his opening round matchup but Mack had the longest consecutive streak (10). Round 2 will take place in December. The Round of 16 and Round of 8 are slated for January and February, respectively, while the semifinals will be contested at the NCAA men’s Final Four in Houston, Texas, in March. Slocum matched Miles, connecting on 23-of-25 attempts, but fell to George Mason’s Eric Konkol, who also said he was perfect in Round 1.
Miles was one of three Mountain West Conference coaches to participate in the event. He was joined by UNLV’s Lon Kruger and New Mexico’s Steve Alford, each of whom have yet to complete their first-round matchups.
Additional information can be found at www.CollegeInsider.com/Shots.
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