Cincinnati Opens Season with Alabama State on Sunday
gobearcats.COM UC head coach Mick Cronin
UC head coach Mick Cronin

Nov. 12, 2011

UC Game Notes

Watch game on ESPN3

CINCINNATI -- The University of Cincinnati opens its 2011-12 regular season Sunday when it plays host to Alabama State (0-1) at Fifth Third Arena. The game starts at 7 p.m. and will be televised by Fox Sports Ohio.

The Bearcats return seven letterwinners and their top four scorers from last season’s 26-9 squad that advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament. UC won both of its preseason exhibition games, topping McGill University (75-41) and Northern Kentucky (66-54), in preparation for the new season.

Alabama State posted a 17-18 record last season, winning the Southwestern Athletic Conference Tournament title to advance to the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Hornets opened their 2011-12 season Friday with a 67-49 loss at Marshall. Sunday’s contest marks the first in Cincinnati-Alabama State series history.

The Alabama State game is the first of four contests the Bearcats will participate in as part of the Global Sports Challenge this season. The NCAA-exempt event includes UC home contests with Jacksonville State (Nov. 15), Northwestern State (Nov. 21) and Marshall (Nov. 25).

Series Info: First meeting
Last Meeting: n/a
Coaches: Mick Cronin is in his sixth season at Cincinnati (87-77); ninth season overall (156-101). Cronin is 0-0 vs. Alabama State. Lewis Jackson is in his seventh season with Alabama State (97-93); seventh season overall (97-93). Jackson is 0-0 vs. UC.
Rankings: Cincinnati is ranked No. 21 in the preseason AP poll and No. 22 in the preseason USA Today/ESPN Coaches poll. Alabama State is not ranked in either poll.
Radio: 700 WLW; Dan Hoard provides play-by-play alongside color analyst Chuck Machock. Mo Egger serves as host/engineer.
TV: Fox Sports Ohio; Tom Gelehrter provides play-by-play alongside color analyst Terry Nelson. Brian Hunterman serves as producer. (Time Warner Cable in Cincinnati: channels 43, 309 and 1309; also available on ESPN3, SNY and MASN)
UC Twitter Page: @GoBEARCATS

-Cincinnati opens its 111th season of varsity men’s basketball Sunday against Alabama State.
-UC owns a record of 89-21 (.810) in season openers, including a 78-10 (.886) mark at home.
-The Bearcats posted a 9-0 record against non-conference opponents last season at Fifth Third Arena.
-After allowing a BIG EAST-leading 59.6 points per game in 2010-11, UC held its two exhibition opponents to an average of 49.5 points in victories over McGill (75-41) and Northern Kentucky (66-54).
-UC earned preseason rankings in both the Associated Press Poll (No. 21) and the USA Today/ESPN -Coaches Poll (No. 22) for the first time since the 2003-04 campaign.
-The Bearcats were picked to finish fifth in the BIG EAST according to the league’s coaches.
-The Bearcats return seven letterwinners and their top four scorers from last season in forward Yancy -Gates (11.9), guard Dion Dixon (11.6), swingman Sean Kilpatrick (9.7) and guard Cashmere Wright (8.9).
-UC is the only team in the nation to increase its win total in each of the last five seasons (11 in 2006-07, 13 in 2007-08, 18 in 2008-09, 19 in 2009-10 and 26 in 2010-11).