Dec. 12, 2013
GAME NOTES | LIVE VIDEO-AUDIO | LIVE STATS | TICKETS
ATHENS, Ohio - The Ohio University men's basketball team (6-2) looks to move to 6-0 at home this season when the Bobcats host Alabama A&M (3-4) on Saturday at 2 p.m. inside the Convocation Center. The game will mark the first ever meeting between the schools.
Tip-off between the Bobcats and Bulldogs is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday's game will be broadcast live on the Ohio IMG Sports Network. "Voice of the Bobcats" Russ Eisenstein and Rob Cornelius will call the game, with live audio/video available on OhioBobcats.com. Pre-game coverage begins 30 minutes prior to tip (1:30 p.m.). The Ohio IMG Sports Network includes 16 radio affiliates throughout southern Ohio and West Virginia.
Saturday's contest is the first of two-straight home games for Ohio. The `Cats also will host No. 22/20 Massachusetts on Wednesday (Dec. 18) at 7 p.m. All tickets for that game are $5.
Last time out, the Green & White dropped a 73-56 contest at Oakland on Dec. 7 at the Athletics Center O'Rena. Ohio led by six (35-29) early in the second half, but Oakland used a lengthy 28-7 run midway through the half to build a 15-point lead that the Golden Grizzlies would not relinquish.
Ohio committed an uncharacteristic 18 turnovers in the contest and shot just 12.5 percent (3-24) from 3-point range against the Golden Grizzlies. It marked the first time this season the Bobcats yielded more than 15 turnovers in a game.
Senior guard Nick Kellogg (Westerville, Ohio) led all scorers with a game-high 18 points at Oakland and is now just three points away from 1,000. The senior has posted at least 10 points in 7-of-8 contests this season and is averaging career bests in points (15.1 ppg), rebounds (4.0 rpg), field goal percentage (.519) and 3-point percentage (.476).
Junior guard Stevie Taylor (Gahanna, Ohio) tallied 14 points and two assists at Oakland. The Gahanna, Ohio, native is running the point well for Ohio, as his 2.2 assist/turnover ratio is third-best in the MAC.
After being out-rebounded by an average of 5.7 boards per contest over the season's first four games, Ohio has held a +11.8 average margin over the past four games. The Green & White rank fourth in the conference in rebounding margin (+3.0) and lead the MAC in defensive rebounds/game (26.8).
A LOOK AT ALABAMA A&M (3-4)
Alabama A&M is off to a 3-4 start on the 2013-14 campaign, but is coming off back-to-back wins leading into its matchup with Ohio. Their losses include a four-point defeat at the hands of MAC opponent Western Michigan in Kalamazoo, Mich.
The Bulldogs were picked to finish in the middle of the SWAC after finishing eighth in a 10-team league last season. However, this is a veteran team that returns all five starters . Seven of the eight players that average 10 or more minutes are upperclassmen. Senior guard/forward Dermarquelle Tabb was selected to the preseason All-SWAC team and is averaging 11.3 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game. Senior guard Jeremy Crutcher is pacing the team with 12.4 points per game and hitting 48.4 percent of his attempts from 3-point range.
HISTORY vs. ALABAMA A&M
Saturday's meeting will be the first between Ohio and Alabama A&M on the basketball court.
HISTORY vs. SWAC OPPONENTS
Saturday's game will be just Ohio's second contest all-time against a SWAC opponent. In the only other meeting with a SWAC school, Ohio defeated Grambling, 60-53, on Dec. 16, 1977, at the Cajun Classic in Lafayette, La.
Ohio welcomes No. 22/20 Massachusetts to the Convocation Center on Wednesday (Dec. 18) at 7 p.m. The Minutemen will be the highest ranked team to invade Athens since No. 7 Kentucky came to the Convo on Dec. 30, 1997.