Colorado State returns to Moby Arena for a pair of home games to tip off play in the Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic.
The Rams resume play, after a week off for finals, against the North Florida Ospreys from the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Tipoff between the Rams and the Ospreys is set for 7 p.m. MT at Moby Arena.
The contest will mark the first in the series.
The 6-2 Rams are coming off of their first losses of the early season, a 70-61 setback at rival Colorado (Dec. 5), and a 64-55 loss at UIC (Dec. 8). The Ospreys (3-6) have also lost two straight, both on the road against No. 21 Minnesota (87-59) and at Pitt (89-47).
Voice of the Rams Brian Roth will have the call on the Colorado State Sports Network, 560 AM KLZ (Denver), 600 AM KCOL (Fort Collins), 1010 AM KSIR (Fort Morgan) and 1100 AM KNZZ (Grand Junction).
Streaming audio (free) video (subscription) is available via Rams All-Access and live statistics can be viewed online via Gametracker at CSURams.com.
Tournament play continues Wednesday, when CSU hosts the CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners at 7 p.m. MT at Moby Arena, before traveling to Las Vegas Nevada for third- and fourth-round matchups against Portland (Dec. 22) and either Virginia Tech or Bradley (Dec. 23).
Rams quick hits
Colorado State enters the 2012-13 men’s basketball season under the direction of new head coach Larry Eustachy, in his 22nd season as a head coach at the NCAA Division I level.
The Colorado State basketball program is looking for its fourth-consecutive postseason appearance, and its second straight NCAA Tournament berth, in 2012-13.
The Rams return an experienced roster with seven letterwinners back form the 2011-12 season.
The Rams welcome a host of talented newcomers to the court this season, including Division I transfers Colton Iverson (Minnesota) and Daniel Bejarano (Arizona) who sat out 2011-12 per NCAA transfer rules.
Colorado State enters Saturday’s game with a 6-2 record. The Rams opened the season 6-0, tying the program mark for best start established in 1970-71 and matched by the 2005-06 squad.
Colorado State ranks as one of the top rebounding teams in the nation, and entered play this week leading the NCAA in rebounding margin with an average differential of 16.1 boards per game. The team has yet to be outrebounded in a game this year.
Colorado State has opened the 2012-13 campaign with a 2-2 record on the road, picking up tough road wins at Denver and at Washington, before falling in their last two outings at Colorado and UIC. The Rams were 3-9 on the road last year.
Colorado State’s two road loss (Colorado and UIC) have come at the hands of programs with a combined 16-3 (.842) record.
The Rams have been even more impressive at home, racking up four wins and extending a record win streak at Moby Arena to 17 games. The streak ranks fifth nationally entering the Rams’ next home game vs. North Florida on Dec. 17.
Senior C Colton Iverson racked up five consecutive double-doubles between Nov. 21 and Dec. 5. Iverson is one of 25 players nationally to average a double-double through games played Dec. 10.
In early August, the CSU basketball program spent five days together at the Atlantis Paradise Island Resort in Nassau, Bahamas. Per NCAA rules, the team was allotted 10 days of practice leading up to the trip, and then played an exhibition contest against the Bahamas All-Stars, winning 95-80 behind a double-double effort (18 points, 14 rebounds) from Colton Iverson.
The 2012-13 season marks the 110th in the history of the Colorado State men’s basketball program. The Rams are 1,135-1,172 (.492) in 2,307 games all-time.
About North Florida
The Ospreys enter Monday’s matchup with a 3-6 record, coming off two consecutive losses at the University of Minnesota (12/1) and at the University of Pittsburgh (12/8).
North Florida has faced two top-25 opponents thus far, Minnesota (then 21st) and Memphis (then 17th).
UNF is 1-6 on the road, with the sole victory coming at Bethune Cookman (11/27) in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Head Coach Matthew Driscoll owns a 47-59 record during his seven seasons at the school.
UNF is in the middle of a grueling 12 game stretch in which they play 11 road games, including neutral sites, before beginning conference play at home Dec. 31 against Lipscomb.
The Ospreys are coming off eight days of rest, last playing on Dec. 8 at Pittsburgh.
Senior guard Parker Smith leads the team in scoring averaging 16.3 points per game, while shooting an impressive 45.5 percent (35-77) from beyond the arc.
Junior forward Travis Wallace is the only other UNF player to average double digits (11.4). Wallace leads the team in rebounds, collecting 4.3 per contest.
The Ospreys have held opponents to just 23 percent from three-point range (26-113).
Series vs. North Florida
Monday night’s meeting at Moby Arena marks the first in the series between the Rams and the Ospreys.
Rams vs. the Atlantic Sun
Colorado State is 3-0 all-time against current members of the Atlantic Sun Conference.
The Rams met Jacksonville during the 1990-91 season and squeaked out a 59-56 win on the road. Twice CSU has defeated Stetson, downing the Hatters at Moby Arena during the 2004-05 season, 93-57, and capturing a 79-70 road win the previous year.
The Rams have never faced off against North Florida or their league mates East Tennessee State, Florida Gulf Coast, Kennesaw State, Lipscomb, Mercer, Northern Kentucky or South Carolina Upstate.
A win over UNF will...
Mark the first win over North Florida for the Rams. The matchup is the first for the two schools.
End Colorado State’s two game losing streak. Both losses came on the road against opponents (Colorado and UIC) with a combined 16-3 (.842) record.
Give the Rams 18 consecutive wins at Moby Arena, a streak that is currently tied for the fifth longest active streak in the NCAA.
Streaking at home
Colorado State’s current 17-game home-court win streak ranks tied for fifth nationally entering Monday’s home contest against North Florida.
The Rams’ Nov. 15 victory over Chadron State (93-50), the team’s 15th straight at home, established a new Moby Arena record for the program, which the Rams have since extended to 17 games.
The Ram’s current home streak is the second-longest all-time in school history behind a 22-game run between 1960-62 when Colorado State played still called South College Gym home.
Colorado State plays its second game in three days as part of the preliminary rounds of the Continental Tire Las Vegas Classic, hosting the CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners on Wednesday night before heading to Las Vegas for the third and fourth rounds of the tourney.
The Rams and Roadrunners are set to tip off at 7 p.m. MT from Moby Arena in second-round action. The tournament then resumes, Saturday and Sunday at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.
The Rams’ third-round matchup is set for Saturday at 8:30 p.m. MT/7:30 p.m. PT against the Portland Pilots of the West Coast Conference.
CSU concludes the tournament the next day against either Virginia Tech or Bradley, with tip time - 7 p.m. MT or 9:30 p.m. MT - dependant on the outcome of the CSU-Portland contest.