Men's Hoops Plays Grand Valley State on Monday|
Oct. 28, 2012
CINCINNATI - The University of Cincinnati men’s basketball team plays the first of two preseason exhibition games Monday when it welcomes NCAA Division II member Grand Valley State to Fifth Third Arena for a 7 p.m. ET tip. The game will be available via a free live stream only at GoBEARCATS.com.
Monday’s meeting will be the first in series history between the two schools.
UC was listed at No. 24 in the preseason AP poll released Friday. The Bearcats were picked to finish fourth in the BIG EAST Conference by the league coaches at the league’s media day on Oct. 17. Junior guard Sean Kilpatrick earned preseason first team All-BIG EAST accolades from the coaches.
-The Bearcats return three starters and 10 lettermen from last season’s squad that posted a 26-11 overall record; appeared in their first BIG EAST Championship title game and returned to the NCAA Sweet 16 for the first time since 2001. The squad set school records for best finish in the BIG EAST regular season (tied for fourth) and most league wins (12) while also defeating a school-best eight ranked teams during the year.
-Kilpatrick returners as UC’s leading scorer from last season, averaging 14.3 points. His 92 three-pointers ranked first among all BIG EAST players.
-Kilpatrick was named a preseason first team All-BIG EAST Conference selection by the league’s coach at conference media day on Oct. 17.
-Wright set the single-season steals record (74) at UC a year ago. He ranked among BIG EAST leaders in assists-to-turnover ratio (seventh at 2.04-to-1) and assists (11th at 4.57). He averaged only 2.2 turnovers a contest.
-Parker finished last season strong, averaging 12.4 points and 7.4 rebounds over the last eight games, leading UC in rebounding in both postseason tournaments.
-The Bearcats have increased or matched their win total every year under head coach Mick Cronin (11 in 2006-07; 13 in 2007-08; 18 in 2008-09; 19 in 2009-10; 26 in 2010-11; and 26 in 2011-12).
-Cronin ranks among the top BIG EAST coaches for overall wins (third with 52) and conference wins (tied for third with 23) during the past two years.
SCOUTING GRAND VALLEY STATE
Head coach Ric Wesley returns three starters and six lettermen from last season’s squad that went 14-13 overall and 10-9 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Lakers lost their top two leading scorers off last year’s team in guard James Thomas (14.5 points and 56 three-pointers) and forward Nick Waddell (11.2 points and 5.2 rebounds). GVSU has nine players on this season’s team who have yet to play a game for the Lakers.
Senior point guard Breland Hogan is GVSU’s leading returning player, averaging 9.9 points and 3.3 assists. He handed out a team-best 89 assists with 42 turnovers a year ago. Sophomore guard Ryan Sabin started 18 games in his first season, averaging 7.4 points. His 33 three-pointers are the most among the team’s returning players. Senior forward Tyrone Lee leads all returners, averaging 4.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks.
UC’S EXHIBITION RESULTS LAST SEASON
The Bearcats won both of their exhibition contests last season, posting a 75-41 win over McGill on Nov. 1 and a 66-54 win over Northern Kentucky on Nov. 8.
Nine different players scored in UC’s win over McGill as Dion Dixon paced the Bearcats with 20 points. Yancy Gates added 19 points while Cashmere Wright had 14. UC forced McGill into 24 turnovers while the Bearcats had 10 blocks and held McGill to a 31.4 field-goal percentage.
UC’s size advantage in the frontcourt proved too much for the Norse the majority of the game as the Bearcats outscored NKU 32-10 in the paint.