Men's Basketball

#11 Seed UMass Heads To Charlotte For A-10s

March 8, 2010

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UMASS (11-19, 5-11) at CHARLOTTE (19-11, 9-7)
Tuesday, March 9, 2010 o 7 p.m. (ET)
Halton Arena (9,105) o Charlotte, N.C.
Straming Video, Audio, Gametracker:
Radio: WRNX (100.9 FM - Flagship), WBIX (1060 AM),
WATD (95.9 FM), WCRN (830 AM),

#11 Seed UMass Heads To Charlotte For A-10s
o After a dramatic last-second 69-67 victory over Rhode Island to clinch a spot in the 2010 Atlantic 10 Tournament, the UMass basketball team is travelling to Charlotte to take on the No. 6-seeded 49ers on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. The Minutemen (11-19 overall) are seeded 11th in the tournament after finishing with a 5-11 conference record. Charlotte is 19-11 overall and went 9-7 in the Atlantic 10 this season, finishing in a tie for fifth place.

o UMass will be seeking its first A-10 Tournament win since 2002 as the Minutemen have lost eight Atlantic 10 Tournament games in a row. Last season, UMass lost to Duquesne 91-81 in the First Round.

o The winner of this game will advance to Atlantic City to play No. 3-seeded Richmond on Friday night at 9 p.m., at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

o This will be UMass' second A-10 Tourney game against Charlotte and the Minutemen will be seeking to exact a measure of revenge from 2007. The No. 6-seeded 49ers upset the No. 3-seeded Minutemen, 69-65, on March 13, 2008 in Atlantic City.

o Earlier this season, Charlotte defeated UMass, 72-58, on Jan. 30, 2010 at the Mullins Center. The 49ers' Derrio Green scored a career-high 34 points, making eight 3-pointers. Ricky Harris led UMass with 25 points.

o The game will be available via live streaming video, audio and live stats on The UMass Sports Network with Josh Maurer, Tim Kenney call the action starting with a 6:30 p.m., pregame show. The game airs statewide on flagship 100.9 FM in Western Mass, 830 AM WCRN in Central Mass., 1060 AM WBIX and 95.9 FM WATD in Eastern Mass.

RH Factor: Red-Hot Ricky Harris
o 2010 Atlantic 10 Third Team guard and current A-10 Player of the Week Ricky Harris has etched his name into the record book at UMass. He has been hot of late and leads the Atlantic 10 in scoring in conference games with a 21.7 average. He has scored in double-figures in 28 of his 29 games this season and in 39 of his last 40 games dating to last season.

o Harris is averaging 23.8 per game over his last five contests and 19.7 in his last 10. That includes his three best scoring games of the season with 32 vs. Rhode Island (2/6), 29 at Duquesne (2/11) and 27 vs. Saint Joseph's (2/14). He averaged 29.3 in that trio.

o He has at least 23 points in nine of his last 11 games. He has raised his scoring average to 19.7, just hundreths of points behind Xavier's Jordan Crawford (19.7).

o Harris moved to third on the UMass career-scoring list with a game-high 28 points in the win over Rhode Island and now has 1,917. He is the A-10 active career scoring leader ahead La Salle's Rodney Green (1,914). Jim McCoy is the all-time leader (2,374) and Monty Mack is No. 2 (2,183).

o Here's a look at his rankings on the career lists.

o THIRD in career scoring (1,917), passing Marcus Camby (1,387) and J. Erving (1,370).

o Third in career 3-pointers(272). Next on list is No. 2 Anthony Anderson (275) o SECOND in 3-pointers attempted (776). No. 1 is Monty Mack (910).

o FOURTH in career steals with 147. No. 4 is Anthony Anderson (150).

o FOURTH in career field goal attempted (1,501). No. 3 is Lorenzo Sutton (1,518).

oFIFTH in games played (127) passing Tony Barbee and Jim McCoy, who were tid at 126/

o SIXTH in career free throws at UMass (383). Harper Williams is fifth with 424.

oSEVENTH in career made field goals (631). No. 6 is Lou Roe (661).

o EIGHTH in career free throws attempted (515).

UMass' A-10 Tournament History
o UMass has an all-time record of 29-28 in the Atlantic 10 Tournament dating to its inception in 1977. The 29 wins are second to only Temple (49-19) in terms of wins in the tournament. UMass has captured five titles -- consecutively from 1992-96, only Temple only has more with eight. UMass has been to the finals on seven occasions which is third all-time.

o With the new format of keeping the A-10 in one division of 14 teams, UMass is the 11th seed for the first time in history. It is the lowest seed UMass has ever been. Last season, UMass was the 10th seed.

o UMass has played Charlotte in the A-10 Tournament once before in 2008 where the 49ers upset the No. 3-seeded Minutemen, 69-65 in Atlantic City.

o Overall, UMass has not won a tournament game since 2002. The Minutemen have lost seven games in a row, as they have been knocked out in their first game in each of the last seven seasons after last season's 91-81 loss to Duquesne last year. 69-65 loss to Charlotte on March 13, 2008. In 2007, UMass suffered a 74-71 overtime loss to Saint Louis.

o This is the first season for the new format where the first round games are held at campus sites.

o This marks the fourth season the Atlantic 10 Tournament is being held in Atlantic City. It is at a neutral site for the sixth year in a row, as it was at U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati in 2005 and 2006. Temple won the last two crowns as there have been three different champs in the last six years. Xavier has won two recent titles taking them in 2004 and 2006 while George Washington won the crown in 2005 and 2007.

o Lou Roe (1992-95) is the only player in Atlantic 10 history to be named to four All-Championship teams. Harper Williams (1990-93) is the only player in league history to earn two Most Outstanding Player awards (1992, 1993).

o Five former UMass stars earned All-Atlantic 10 Tournament honors more than once in their career. The five players to accomplish the feat are Jim McCoy (1990 and 1992), Harper Williams (1992 and 1993), Lou Roe (1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995), Marcus Camby (1995 and 1996) and Monty Mack (2000 and 2001).

o The longest winning streak in Atlantic 10 Championship play is 16, set by UMass when it was winning five straight titles from 1992-96. The Minutemen won three games a year for five years, as well as their first round match-up with La Salle in 1997 before falling to George Washington in the quarterfinals.

Kellogg's A-10 Tournament Success
o UMass head coach Derek Kellogg never lost a game in the Atlantic 10 Tournament as a player, posting a perfect 12-0 record as a Minuteman from 1992-95. Kellogg and UMass were in the midst of that 16-game tournament win streak in capturing the crowns from 1992-96.

o In his senior year, Kellogg tied for team-high scoring honors in the A-10 title game with 14 points as UMass knocked off Temple for the third year in a row in the final, 63-44 on March 9, 1995. In his last game vs. Duquesne in the A-10 Tournament, Kellogg notched 16 points and handed out five assists in the 1995 A-10 Quarterfinals. His highest scoring game in the A-10 Tournament came in the 1993 Quarterfinals with 19 points in a 75-62 win over St. Bonaventure on March 7, 1993. In that game, Kellogg also set the UMass A-10 Tournament record for assists in a game with 11.

o Kellogg has been a part of eight conference tournament winning teams, the four at UMass, George Mason as an assistant coach in 1999 and Memphis in each of the last three years. The Tigers are a perfect 9-0 in conference tournament play over the last three years taking home the Conference USA crowns.

The Series With Charlotte
o UMass and Charlotte are playing for the ninth time in history and just the third time in Charlotte. The 49ers hold a 5-3 edge, winning the last three games including this season's 72-58 game in Amherst on Jan. 30.

o UMass won its last game at the Mullins Center, 86-79 on Jan. 19, 2008. Charlotte won the first meeting in Amherst, 72-71 in 2006.

o UMass is 1-1 at Halton Arena, winning in 2007 and losing last season. Since the 49ers joined the Atlantic 10 from Conference USA in 2005-06, Charlotte has won four of six games.

o Two years ago, they split two meetings with the 49ers dusting UMass in the Atlantic 10 Tournament, 69-65 in Atlantic City on March 13, 2008. UMass on the regular-season meeting at the Mullins Center, 86-79 on Jan. 19, 2008.

o Prior to being conference foes, the teams split games played on neutral courts, both in New England.

o UMass won the meeting on Jan. 15, 1998 as part of the Atlantic 10/Conference USA Challenge held at the Providence Civic Center, winning 68-62 in overtime. In that game, Lari Ketner and Charlton Clarke scored 15 points each, Tyrone Weeks had 15 rebounds and 9 points. Monty Mack had 12 points. Future NBA first-rounder DeMarco Johnson was held to 10 points for the Charlotte.

o The first meeting came in 1974 at the Hall of Fame Tournament at the Springfield Civic Center with the 49ers beating UMass, 85-57. The late John Murphy led UMass with 30 points. Murphy's family was honored as part of the 1970s celebration at UMass last Saturday.

o UMass head coach Derek Kellogg will coach against Charlotte as the head man for the third time, losing twice. He faced the 49ers many times as an assistant at Memphis when the teams were Conference USA foes. In fact, Memphis was just 2-3 including 0-3 at Halton Arena while Kellogg assisted John Calipari in those games vs the 49ers from 2001-05.

o Charlotte's Bobby Lutz will be coaching against UMass for the seventh time, standing at 4-2. Lutz was the coach of the 49ers in all five of those games which Kellogg was on the sidelines for Memphis.

Earlier This season Vs. Charlotte
Jan. 30, 2010 - Charlotte 72, UMass 58
AMHERST, Mass. - A key scoring run in each half by Charlotte and a career-high 34 points by Derrio Green led to a 72-58 loss for UMass against the 49ers at the Mullins Center on ESPNU. Ricky Harris led the home club with 25 points and four assists, while Anthony Gurley added 11. The Minutemen fell to 8-13 overall and 2-5 in the Atlantic 10, while the 49ers improved to 16-5 overall and 6-1 in the A-10.

Green shot 8-for-16 from 3-point range, tying a UMass opponent record for most field goals and attempts from behind the arc in a game. 21 of his 34 points came in the first half.

For the game, UMass shot 34 percent from the field, including 14 percent from 3-point range. Charlotte shot 42 percent from the field and 43 percent from beyond the arc. The Minutemen held the edge on the boards, led by Sean Carter's 10 and Terrell Vinson's eight, 44-39.

UMass trailed by one, 37-36, with 16 minutes left in the game, but the 49ers outscored the Minutemen, 21-5, over the next 10 minutes, including a stretch in which UMass went without a field goal for 8:37, to fall behind by 17, 58-51, with six minutes to go. The Minutemen managed to get the deficit back to single digits, 65-56, on a Harris 3-pointer with 1:33 left, but the visitors were able to make enough free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.

Charlotte Connections
o Against teams from the state of North Carolina, UMass is 14-17 all-time: vs. Charleston (1-1), Charlotte (3-5), Davidson (3-5), Duke (0-1), North Carolina (1-4), NC State (3-0), UNC-Wilmington (2-0), Winston-Salem State (0-1) and Wake Forest (1-1).

o UMass was in Charlotte earlier this season, losing at Davidson, 63-61 on Dec. 30, 2009.

o UMass has one Carolina native in sophomore center Sean Carter,who is from Fayetteville. He played high school basketball at the 71st High School before attended the Laurinburg Institute.

o UMass freshman Freddie Riley and Charlotte freshman Chris Braswell played together last season at Hargrave Military Academy in Virginia. Braswell is from Capitol Heights, Md., and played his AAU basketball with DC Triple Threat where he competed against many UMass foes such as freshmen Javorn Farrell and Raphiael Putney.

UMass Pounds The Boards
Derek Kellogg is trying to instill a toughness to his Minutemen and that has been evident through rebounding. The Minutemen lead the Atlantic 10 in rebounding with 40.2 per game as well as offensive rebounds with 14.9 per contest.

• UMass ranks tied for seventh in the NCAA in offensive rebounds per game (14.9) with North Carolina.

• UMass has outrebounded 18 opponents. Overall, UMass has a positive rebounding margin (+5.0). That includes margins of 25 vs. Grambling (55-30), 20 vs. Memphis (44-24), 17 at Boston College (50-33), 9 at Baylor (42-33) and by 27 at Duquesne (60-33) on Feb. 11.

• The Baylor margin was remarkable as the Bears were leading the NCAA in rebounding margin at the time (+11.0) and had outrebounded all 17 opponents until that game. Baylor starts a front line of players standing 7-0, 6-11 and 6-10.

• The 60 boards at Duquesne were the most by a UMass team since the 1996 Final Four Season, when UMass had 60 against Saint Joseph's on Feb. 28, 1996. Marcus Camby had 15 for UMass in the game.

• Between Dec. 11 and Jan. 6, UMass outrebounded its opponents 48.3 to 31.3 (193-125).

• The Minutemen have used a rebounding by committee strategy. Three players average more than five per game. Sean Carter leads the way with 7.0 per game. Terrell Vinson is up to 5.3 boards per game. Hashim Bailey is second with 4.7 per game in just 12.6 minutes per game. Prorated over 40 minutes, Bailey would grab 15.0 boards.

Shooting Tells The Story
• With UMass' record the difference has been shooting percentage both on offense and defense. Derek Kellogg has been preaching to his Minutemen to use better shot selection. When they have this season, they have won. When the Minutemen have shot poorly and played poor defense they have lost.

• In UMass' wins, the Minutemen are shooting 45.6 from the floor overall and 34.3 from 3-point range. In the losses UMass is 37.4 on all field goals and 28.4 from beyond the arc.

• On defense, in the victories, UMass is holding foes to 40.0 overall and 30.9 from 3-point land. In the defeats, opponents are shooting 46.8 percent overall and a remarkable 40.6 from trifecta land.

• It has translated to a scoring margin of 78.6 to 68.1 in the wins and a mark of 79.7 to 66.4 in the losses.

• UMass is 9-5 when shooting above 40 percent this year and 2-14 when shooting below 40 percent in 2009-10. The win over Fordham (1/6) marked the first time UMass won a game when shooting less than 40 percent this season (38 percent).

• UMass is 9-2 when shooting a better percentage than its opponents and 2-16 when being outshot. Again, the Fordham game was the first time UMass was outshot (44-38 percent) and still won the game.

Harris & Gurley Leading The Way
• UMass has two scorers in the league's Top 16. Senior Ricky Harris stands second with a 19.7 average and junior Anthony Gurley is 16th with a 13.5 mark. Gurley was as high as fourth in December.

• Harris continues to move up the UMass career scoring charts with his 19.7 average this season. He is third all-time with 1,917 points after passing Lou Roe (1,905) with a 28 Rhode Island (3/6). He scored in double-figures in 39 of his last 40 games including 37 games in a row before his streak was stopped at Dayton (2/27) with just nine points. He was 10 or more in 92 of his 127 career games and in 89 of his last 95 games dating to his sophomore season. Harris passed Julius Erving (1,370) and Marcus Camby (1,387) in the game against Cornell.

• Harris has been named A-10 Player of the Week three times this season (March 6, Feb. 14 and Dec. 7). He earned the honor in February after his 29-point, 6-assist effort at Duquesne. On Dec. 7, he wrapped up a week where he led UMass to a 2-0 week. Harris had exactly 19 points, six assists and three rebounds in each UMass win that week (vs. Quinnipiac and at Holy Cross. The Baltimore native shot 68 percent from the floor (13-of-19) and hit 7-of-13 3-point field goals.

• Harris has continued to be prolific scorer in his career at UMass. In 2009, he was named a Third-Team All-Conference selection. In 2008, he was named the A-10 Chris Daniels Most Improved player. Harris is leading returning scorer in the Atlantic 10 with a 18.2 scoring average and led the team in scoring in 18 of 30 games in 2008-09. Harris was fourth in the Atlantic 10 in scoring.

• Gurley scored in double-figures in 22 of 30 games this season. He is second on UMass in scoring with a 13.5 points per game average. He had at least 13 points in 20 of 30 games this season. He had his first career double-double at Boston College (12/23) with 23 points and a career-high 10 rebounds. Against No. 2 Michigan State (11/28), he tied his career-high with 24 points. That came on the heels of 19 vs. Rutgers (11/27). He had 21 points vs. Arkansas-Fort Smith (11/21). At No. 19 Temple (1/16), he had 20 points as well as at Duquesne (2/11).

Freshmen Showing Strong In Debuts
• Right behind the two veterans on the scoring list are freshmen Terrell Vinson (9.7) and Freddie Riley (9.5).

• Vinson has 14 games overall in double-figures with the last coming at Dayton with 16 points. That followed his 19-point effort vs. Saint Louis (2/21) -- his best-scoring game since Memphis. At Baylor (1/23) he had his second-career double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds. He scored 20-plus with 21 vs. Memphis (12/19) and 20 points vs. Grambling State (12/11). He also had double-figures in three in a row from Nov. 18-24. Vinson became the first UMass freshman to post a double-double and a 20-point, 10-rebound game since Rashaun Freeman in 2003-04, when he had 20 points and 11 boards vs. Grambling.

• Vinson earned national attention with his game-winning basket with 0:00.7 to upset Memphis (12/19), 73-72. He scored a career-high 21 points along with nine rebounds in the stunning win over the Tigers. He was named the Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week and UMass Athlete of the Week. His game-winner was the ESPN SportsCenter No. 1 Play of the Day on Dec. 19 and No. 6 Play of the Week for that week as well.

• Riley returned from minor knee surgery for the game vs. Fordham (1/6) and had a career-game against La Salle (1/10). Riley canned six 3-pointers and netted a career-high 22 points in Springfield. Those six treys, were two shy of the UMass single-game record. Over four games (from Jan. 10-20), Riley averaged 15.5 ppg making 15-of-36 3-point field goals (42 percent).

• Riley ranks third in the Atlantic 10 in 3-pointers made per game with 2.3.

• Riley has 12 games in double-figures including 20-plus twice, with 22 vs. La Salle (1/10) and 20 at Richmond (1/13).

Sampson Carter is averaging 4.7 points and 3.4 rebounds with double-figures in three games. Javorn Farrell is averaging 4.3 points and 3.6 rebounds including a career-best 10 rebounds vs. Grambling State (12/11) in just 11 minutes of action. He scored a career-high 12 points vs. Xavier (2/3).

Harris Rises on Career Lists
Ricky Harris is rising on the career lists for field goals and attempts, 3-pointers and attempts as well as free throws and attempts and steals.

• He stands third in career made 3-pointers (272) and second in attempts (776).

• Among the players he passed last season was his current head coach Derek Kellogg (138 makes and 362 attempts). Next on te makes list is Anthony Anderson (275 of 705). No. 1 on both is Monty Mack (331-of-910).

• Harris is sixth in made free throws with 383. Next at No. 5 is Harper Williams (424). Harris moved past Julius Erving (322) and Marcus Camby (308) this year.

• Harris has also risen to No. 4 on the career field goals attempted list with 1,501. Next on the list is No. 3 Lorenzo Sutton (1,518).

• He is also seventh in career made field goals (631). Next is Lou Roe (661).

• This season, Harris 64 -of-206 from 3-point range this season and 98-of-137 from the foul line.

• Harris is fourth in career steals with 147. No. 3 is Anthony Anderson (150).

• Harris is also in the Top 10 for career games played with 127, standing fifth in games played.

UMass Quick Hits
Ricky Harris leads UMass into action as the lone scholarship senior on the team in 2000-10. The Baltimore native is the Atlantic 10's leading returning scorer in 2009-10 with an 18.2 average. He was named to the Preseason All-Atlantic 10 team by the coach and media. He has been named to the same team by most publications and has been dubbed the A-10's "Most Entertaining Player" by one annual.

• UMass has one of the youngest teams in the country as UMass features the top recruiting class in the Atlantic 10 with five freshmen. The Minutemen also welcomed two transfers who will be eligible this season in Sean Carter from Oregon State and Hashim "Big City" Bailey from Memphis. Sophomore Trey Lang also returned to the team after not playing in 2008-09, giving UMass eight newcomers for this season's roster

• UMass returned just 36.1 average points. In looking at it by percentages, UMass returned 49.1 percent of its scoring with Harris leading the way. UMass lost nearly all of its rebounding with the graduation of 2009 Atlantic 10 Defensive Player of the Year Tony Gaffney, the final cut of the NBA Champion Los Angeles Lakers. UMass has just 24.3 percent of its rebounding returning as Gaffney grabbed 10.2 per game.

Maxie Esho Signs NLI With UMass
UMass head coach Derek Kellogg announced the signing of his first National Letter of Intent for the fall signing period on Nov. 16, 2009 as the Minutemen welcome athletic forward Maxie Esho.

The 6-8, 200-pound native of Upper Marlboro, Maryland is currently playing at Lee Academy in Maine. He played his AAU basketball with DC Assault, the same team UMass' Javorn Farrell played for.

"We are thrilled to have Maxie joining the UMass basketball family. Maxie is a player we have known for a long time," said Kellogg, who brought in what is widely-regarded as the top freshman class in the Atlantic 10 this season.

"He is another very long and athletic player with great upside. He have watched him grow as a person and a player for the last couple of year and I know the UMass fans will be excited to get to know him on and off the court. We are looking forward to him having a great senior year at Lee Academy and then coming to UMass. He has the length and athleticism that is necessary for the type of players I want to coach here at UMass."

Harris, Riley, Vinson Earn Preseason Honors
• The Atlantic 10 Conference released its preseason All-Conference teams on Oct. 22, with UMass senior Ricky Harris highlighting the Alll-Conference First Team. Two of head coach Derek Kellogg's freshman class of five, Freddie Riley and Terrell Vinson, were both named to the preseason All-Rookie Team. The A-10's preseason poll was also released with the Minutemen coming in ninth.

• In the first preseason men's basketball magazine, Lindy's, UMass men's basketball is being praised for the A-10's top recruiting class. Senior guard Ricky Harris is also gaining honors as he was named to the A-10's First Team and the league's "Most Entertaining" player.

• Lindy's picks UMass to finish fifth in the A-10 behind Dayton, Xavier, Richmond and La Salle. The magazine mentions: "Ricky Harris is an absolute scoring machine and coach Derek Kellogg has a killer group of newcomers." It finishes with UMass "Will get better as the season progresses and will be a team nobody wants to draw in the A-10 Tourney."

• Lindy's calls UMass' incoming class the "Best group of recruits" in the league. "Massachusetts coach Derek Kellogg made a name for himself as a recruiter under John Calipari at Memphis, and he proved that he could do it on his own at his alma mater in Amherst. He scored a key early pledge from Freddie Riley, and in the late signing period nabbed a big-time combo forward in Terrell Vinson. Aside from those two, Kellogg got pledges from a pair of small forwards in Sampson Carter and Javorn Farrell, as well as a super athletic power forward Raphiael Putney."

• In the UMass team profile, Lindy's cites Anthony Gurley under "Keep An Eye On." The mag says: "Gurley will display his all-around talents in the backcourt, largely because he has to as the Minutemen do not have a true point guard with experience."

UMass Alum Leading UMass
Derek Kellogg, in his second season, is the first UMass alum to serve as the head coach of his alma mater since Tom McLaughlin, who coached the Minutemen from 1981-83. Kellogg graduated from UMass in 1995 where he was an All-Atlantic 10 selection in 1995. McLaughlin graduated from UMass in 1973 where he was one of three future head coaches on the team. He was joined by current Boston College head coach Al Skinner and Louisville coach Rick Pitino. Kellogg is not the only current head coach from the UMass rosters in the mid-90s as Tony Barbee is in his fourth year as the head coach at Texas-El Paso.

• Prior to McLaughlin, the last UMass alum to lead his alma mater was Lorin Ball (Class of 1921), who coached the team from 1945-52.




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