Men's Basketball Travels to Seton Hall for BIG EAST Match-up
gobearcats.COM
Steve Toyloy

gobearcats.COM
Steve Toyloy
gobearcats.COM

Jan. 8, 2010

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Game 16: Cincinnati at Seton hall

Saturday, Jan. 9 | 6 p.m. | Prudential Center (18,500) | Newark, N.J. | TV: FOX Sports Ohio/BE Network | Radio: 700 WLW

 

GAME INFORMATION

 

Series: Series tied 5-5

Current Streak: Seton Hall — 2

Last Meeting: Seton Hall 67, UC 63 OT

Cincinnati, Ohio • Fifth Third Arena

 

Television: FOX Sports Ohio/BE Network

Eamon  McAnaney (PXP)

Jim Spanarkel (ANA)

 

Radio: KISS 107-FM

Dan Hoard (PXP)

Chuck Machock (ANA)

Mo Egger (Host)

 

Satellite Radio: Sirius 122

 

Pay-Per-View: ESPN Fullcourt

 

Streaming Video: ESPN360.com

 

Streaming Audio: GoBEARCATS.com

 

 

THE MATCH-UP

The Cincinnati Bearcats (11-4, 2-1 BIG EAST) return to BIG EAST Conference play on Saturday, Jan. 9, at Seton Hall University (9-5, 0-3 BIG EAST). Tip-off for the game is slated for 6 p.m. ET at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. UC, who knocked Rutgers in Piscataway last Saturday, 65-58, is looking to post back-to-back league road wins for the first time since posting victories at West Virginia and Rutgers in 2007-08. The game will be telecast on FOX Sports Ohio locally and is part of the BIG EAST Network (check local listings). Eamon  McAnaney  (pxp) and Jim Spanarkel (analyst) will handle the call on television. Dan Hoard (pxp) and Chuck Machock (analyst) will call the game on 700 WLW.

 

THE SERIES

Saturday’s game at Seton Hall will be the 11th meeting between the two schools with the series tied at 5-5. The first six meetings in the series between 1955-79 were all played on neutral sites with UC owning a 4-2 advantage. The Pirates have won three of the last four contests and two in a row, including a 67-63 overtime win last season at UC.

 

SCOUTING THE PIRATES

·         Seton Hall is 9-5 overall and 0-3 in the BIG EAST heading into the game vs. Cincinnati.

·         The Pirates have lost four in a row and five of their last six games, including a 71-63 decision at No. 13/13 Connecticut on Wednesday.

·         The Pirates have one of the nation’s most explosive offenses averaging 85.6 points per game, which ranked third in the NCAA heading into the week.

·         Junior guard Jeremy Hazell is the second-leading scorer in the BIG EAST behind Notre Dame’s Luke Harangody, putting up 22.6 points per night. Coming into the week, he was seventh in the NCAA scoring.

·         Sophomore forward Herb Pope and junior forward Robert Mitchell also average in double figures with 12.8 and 10.0 ppg, respectively.

·         Pope is also the Pirates leading rebounder with 11.9 boards per game. His average leads the BIG EAST and he was fifth in the NCAA when the stats came out on Monday.

·         Senior guard Eugene Harvey (25), sophomore guard Jordan Theodore (20), and Hazell (28) each have over 20 steals this season. The Pirates were 32nd in the nation heading into the week in steals per game.

·         For the third time in the last five games, UC will face one of the nation’s Top 20 shot blocking squads. Seton Hall is 18th in the country knocking away 6.1 shots per game led by Pope (2.1 bpg).

 

JAN. 6 -CAL STATE BAKERSFIELD GAME NOTES

·         Cincinnati defeated the Roadrunners, 87-58.

·         UC outscored CSUB in points in the paint (34-20), second-chance points (24-14), and points off turnovers (21-14).

·         Cincinnati improved to 10-1 on the season when outrebounding its opponent. UC grabbed 44 rebounds compared to just 30 for CSUB.

·         Cincinnati finished 32-of-62 from the floor (51.6 percent), including 9-of-22 (40.9 percent) from behind-the arc.

·         UC’s bench outscored CSUB’s bench 56-11. The 56 bench points are the most bench points scored in the Cronin era.

·         Twelve of the 13 UC players that played scored in the contest.

·         A 16-6 spurt out of halftime by the Roadrunners cut the UC lead to 24 points, 56-32, with 15:31 to play.

·         The Bearcats used a 17-3 run over the final 6:10 of the first half to take a 50-16 lead into halftime.

·         Cincinnati’s 50 first-half points are its most first-half points since scoring 51 points on Nov. 18, 2008 against Texas Southern. It is also the third most points scored in a half under head coach Mick Cronin.

·         The Roadrunners 16 first-half points are the third fewest points scored in a half against the Bearcats in the Cronin era.

·         UC shot 51.4 percent from the field (18-of-35) in the first half, while holding CSUB to 23.1 percent (6-of-26) shooting.

·         Trailing 4-3 with 17:47 to play in the first half, Cincinnati went on a 20-2 run over the next 5:56 to take an 23-6 lead with 11:51 to play. Sophomore Dion Dixon and junior Anthony McClain scored six points apiece during the spurt.

·         Sophomore Dion Dixon scored a team-high 13 points, his fifth double-figure scoring game of the season.

·         Junior Ibrahima Thomas was the other UC player to score in double-digits with a season-high tying 11 points, his third double-figure scoring game of the season.

·         After scoring just two points and grabbing nine in eight games, McClain scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds in 10 minutes of action in the first half. McClain finished with eight points and eight rebounds.

·         Vaughn moved up three career charts in the contest. Vaughn’s nine points tied him with Louis Banks for seventh on UC’s career points list with 1,644 career points. Vaughn also tied Steve Collier for fourth in program history in career starts with 104 and moved past Damon Flint into fourth in career minutes played.

·         Freshman Jaquon Parker scored nine points on a career-high three 3-pointers.

 

OFF TO A GOOD START

·         Under head coach Mick Cronin, the Cincinnati Bearcats have shown improvement each season during the rebuilding process going from 11 wins in 2006-07 to 13 wins in 2007-08 to 18 wins in 2008-09.

·         Now in his fourth season behind the bench, UC is off to its best start under Cronin with an 11-4 mark.

·         Following is Cronin’s record through UC’s first 15 games:

 

Mick Cronin vs. Non-Conference Opponents

Year     First 15     Final        Dif.

2006-07        9-6    11-19         

2007-08        7-8    13-19         +2

2008-09      10-5    18-14         +5

2009-10      11-4        ???        ???

 

TOUGH STRETCH

·         Starting with the Connecticut game on Dec. 30, the Bearcats are in the midst of an 11-day stretch where they play five games, including four BIG EAST Conference games.

·         The Bearcats are 3-1 so far during the stretch, including a home win over No. 10/10 Connecticut, its first road win of the season at Rutgers, and a non-conference victory over Cal State Bakersfield. The Bearcats loss came on Jan. 4 vs. No. 23/rv Pittsburgh, 74-71.

·         UC’s BIG EAST opponents during the stretch (Connecticut, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, and Seton Hall) are a combined 42-15 (.737).

 

UC VS. RANKED OPPONENTS

·         UC is 3-1 vs. teams ranked in the AP Poll this season after knocking off No. 24/24 Vanderbilt and No. 21/22 Maryland in the first and second rounds of the 2009 EA Sports Maui Invitational, respectively, and No. 10/10 Connecticut at home on Dec. 30. The loss was to No. 23 Pittsburgh, 74-71, on Jan. 4, and Cincinnati’s first at home this season.

·         Cincinnati is 114-169 (.403) all-time vs. opponents ranked in the Associated Press Top 25, including a 23-21 (.523) record in Fifth Third Arena.

·         The wins vs. Vanderbilt and Maryland marked the first time since the 1999-00 season that Cincinnati defeated ranked opponents in consecutive games. That year, UC defeated No. 25 Gonzaga 75-68 on Dec. 4, 1999, before defeating No. 7 North Carolina 77-68 on Dec. 8, 1999.

·         UC is 6-17 vs. ranked opponents under Cronin.

 

TALE OF THE TAPE — LAST THREE GAMES

·         Cincinnati has a record of 2-1 with wins at Rutgers (65-58) and vs. Cal State Bakkersfield (87-58). The loss was against No. 23/rv Pittsburgh (74-71).

·         Senior guard Deonta Vaughn leads the team in scoring, averaging 14.3 points per game. He scored in double figures vs. Rutgers and Pittsburgh and just missed doing it again in the CSUB game, posting nine points in 10 minutes of work.

·         Freshman Lance Stephenson (9.7 ppg) and Yancy Gates (9.3 ppg) are averaging just under 10 points a game over the three games.

·         The UC defense is limiting opponents to 63.3 points per game on 40.0 percent shooting (64-of-160) from the field.

·         Cincinnati is shooting 47.8 percent (86-of-180) from the field during the stretch.

·         The Bearcats, who are one of the nation’s top teams in terms of rebounding margin (+8.1 rpg - t-16th in NCAA), are pulling down 38.0 boards a contest during the last three games. They are allowing opponents 29.7 rebounds per game during this latest stretch for a +8.3 margin.

·         Senior guard Deonta Vaughn, who was struggling with his 3-point shot (.314, 22-of-70) before the current stretch is 6-for-13 (.462) in the last three games.

 

TOUGH TIMES ON THE ROAD

·         The Bearcats are 1-2 in away games this season and have a record of 8-29 (.216) in road games under Mick Cronin.

·         UC’s game vs. Xavier at the Cintas Center was its first “official” road game of the season.

·         The Bearcats’ three games in Maui were considered neutral site contests, while the Miami (OH) game at U.S. Bank Arena is considered a “home” game since Cincinnati moved a home contest to an arena within the city limits.

·         Cincinnati picked up its first road win of the season at Rutgers, knocking off the Scarlet Knights, 65-58. It was UC’s first road win since Feb. 7 of last year when the Bearcats beat Georgetown, 64-62, in overtime at the Verizon Center.

·         A win at Seton Hall on Saturday would give the Bearcats back-to-back league road wins for the first time since posting victories at West Virginia and Rutgers in 2007-08.

·         UC has shot 37.1 percent and averaged 63.7 points per game on the road this season compared to 48.8 percent and 77.9 points in Fifth Third Arena.

 

FINDING THEIR STROKE

·         Before the start of BIG EAST Conference play, Cincinnati found times tough at the free throw line, converting on 61.1 (124-of-203) percent of its attempts from the charity stripe.

·         In its three BIG EAST games vs. Connecticut, Rutgers, and Pittsburgh and the game vs. Cal State Bakersfield, the Bearcats are a combined 50-of-68 (.735) — 12.4 percent higher.

·         Deonta Vaughn (9-for-9), Lance Stephenson (10-for-11) and Dion Dixon (8-for-9) are a combined 27-for-29 (.931) in the last four games.

·         Stephenson was perfect (7-for-7) for Cincinnati in the win over then-No. 10/10 Connecticut on Dec. 30, including the game winning free throws with 0.7 seconds remaining.

 

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

·         After getting off to a tough start to the season averaging 9.7 points per game, two-time all-BIG EAST performer Deonta Vaughn has begun to find his shooting stroke over the last five games and has played an important role.

·         Vaughn struggled with his 3-point shot (.258, 16-of-62) through UC’s first 10 games but is 12 for his last 21 (.571) from 3-point range in his last five games.

·         The Bearcats are 8-1 this season and 41-38 (.519) during Vaughn’s career when he scores in double figures.

·         In the Bearcats last game, an 87-58 victory over Cal State Bakersfield, Vaughn scored nine points in 10 minutes of action. He did not play in the second half.