MBB Preview: Bills Host Rhode Island, Alumni Reunion on Saturday
Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013 • 7 p.m. • St. Louis, Mo. (Chaifetz Arena)
Radio: 101 ESPN/101.1 FM/101Sports.com (Bob Ramsey, Earl Austin Jr.)
SETTING THE SCENE
Saint Louis (12-4, 1-1 A-10) welcomes Rhode Island (5-10, 0-2 A-10) to Chaifetz Arena on Saturday, Jan. 19. Game time is slated for 7 p.m.
FOLLOWING THE ACTION
Saturday's game will not be televised. The radio broadcast will air on 101 ESPN (101.1 FM and 101sports.com). As always, Billiken Hall of Famer Bob Ramsey will provide the play-by-play, while St. Louis American Sports Editor Earl Austin Jr. handles the analysis.
ON THE WEB
Saturday's game against Rhode Island will be streamed live through Billiken All-Access at SLUBillikens.com. The watch link will appear on the men's basketball schedule page and in the schedule box below the main photo on SLUBillikens.com. Subscriptions are available for $9.95 per month or $79.99 annually. Live stats are available at SLUBillikens.com. A new feature now allows you to follow live stats on your mobile device. Simply visit slustats.com and click the active game you would like to follow.
At halftime of Saturday's game, more than 80 men's basketball alumni will be introduced on the court. SLU hosted an alumni reception Friday night at Lorenzini's, which involved a meet-and-greet with the current Billiken squad.
• SLU recently announced some upcoming promotions. The annual "Billiken Blizzard" is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 31, against Butler. The annual "Billiken Blue Out" will take place Tuesday, Feb. 19, versus VCU.
• Chaifetz Arena offers special "happy hour" deals for fans arriving early to games. From the opening of doors (two hours before tip) until 30 minutes before game time, fans can take advantage of $2 nachos and $2 beers.
LAST TIME OUT
• Saint Louis saw its nine-game winning streak halted at Temple last Saturday, falling 64-54 to the Owls at the Liacouras Center.
• The Billikens were led by Rob Loe, who registered the first double-double of his career with 17 points and 11 rebounds.
• Loe finished 7-of-11 from the field and 3-of-4 from 3-point range. In the first half, he was a perfect 4-of-4 from the field and connected on all three of his chances from beyond the arc.
• Dwayne Evans chipped in nine points and pulled down a team-season-high 13 rebounds.
• SLU was hampered by a season-low shooting percentage from the field, connecting on 34.5 percent (20-58) of its shots. The Bills also shot a season-low 19 percent (4-21) from 3-point range and converted just 58.8 percent of their free throws.
• The Bills lead the A-10 in scoring defense, yielding 56.0 ppg. SLU allowed 46 or fewer points in four straight games recently, the best defensive streak by SLU since 1949-50. In the A-10 opener, the Billikens held UMass to 10 points below its average, and the 62 points tied the Minutemen's lowest scoring output of the year.
• Saint Louis features a balanced scoring attack, with seven players averaging 7.0 points or more per game.
• Junior guard Mike McCall Jr. leads the Billikens in scoring with 11.6 ppg. He tops the team and is second in the A-10 in 3-point field goal percentage (.475, 29-61).
• Junior forward Dwayne Evans is second on the squad in scoring (10.5 ppg) and leads the team in rebounding (6.8 rpg).
• Senior forward Cody Ellis is third on the squad in scoring (10.3 ppg) and hits 91.1 percent from the free-throw line to rank second in the A-10.
• Junior guard Jordair Jett averages 9.0 ppg and leads the team in assists and steals.
• Senior forward Cory Remekun leads the A-10 in shooting percentage (.636) from the floor.
• Junior forward Rob Loe has led the Bills in scoring in each of the last two games to increase his scoring average to 7.5 ppg, which is fifth on the squad.
• SLU shoots 44.8 percent (354-790) from the floor, 35.2 percent (97-275) from 3-point range and 72.2 percent (242-335) from the line.
• Next up, Saint Louis hits the road for two games. The Billikens face Duquesne in Pittsburgh Wednesday, Jan. 23, then faces St. Bonaventure in Olean, N.Y., Saturday, Jan. 26.
ABOUT RHODE ISLAND
• The University of Rhode Island enters Saturday's game 5-10 overall and 0-2 in Atlantic 10 Conference play.
• The Rams dropped one on the road and one at home to start A-10 play. They were edged 64-61 at the Robins Center in Richmond, then fell 58-50 to Charlotte in Rhode Island.
• Junior guard Xavier Munford leads the A-10 with 17.3 ppg. A junior college transfer who earned All-America plaudits a season ago, Munford scored 33 points earlier this season in a victory against Auburn. In A-10 play, he is averaging 16.5 ppg.
• Senior forward Nikola Malesivic averages 10.5 ppg and pulls down 5.0 rpg. Sophomore guard Mike Powell scores 10.2 ppg, has dished out a team-high 50 assists and leads the team with 22 steals. Senior guard Andre Malone records 10.1 ppg and 4.3 rpg, while senior forward Ryan Brooks is second on the squad with 4.7 rpg.
• Rhody is improving on the defensive end. Last year, the Rams ranked 321st out of 339 schools in scoring defense. This year, they are allowing close to 12 fewer points per game.
• Dan Hurley is in his first season at URI after spending the previous two years at Wagner College. Prior to becoming Wagner's coach, he was a highly successful head coach at St. Benedict's Prep in Newark, N.J. Hurley is a 1996 graduate of Seton Hall, where he was a standout guard. Hurley's brother, Bobby, was an All-America guard at Duke and an NBA lottery pick of the Sacramento Kings in 1993 before serving on Dan's coaching staff at both Wagner and Rhode Island.
Rhode Island leads the series 6-5 and has won the last four contests. Last season, Rhode Island upset the Billikens 64-62 at the Ryan Center in Rhode Island.