Men's Basketball Game Notes Versus Saint Louis (3/3/01)

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UABSPORTS.COM

Game No. 29: March 3, 2001
Saint Louis (15-13, 7-8) at UAB (16-12, 8-7)
Bartow Arena (8,500), Birmingham, Ala. (7 pm)

RADIO: Blazer Sports Radio Network (WAPI-AM 1070 in Birmingham)
Gary Sanders, Play-By-Play, Matt Coulter, Color, Jon Gentile, Producer, Bill Lewis, Spotter/Statistics

TV: WABM-68
Chris Stewart, Play-By-Play, Jordy Hultberg, Color

PROBABLE STARTERS ...
G, 4, LeAndrew Bass, 6-3, 205, Sr., Birmingham, Ala., 14.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg - Collected 9th 20+ scoring night vs. UL (21 pts.)
G, 24, P.J. Arnold, 6-5, 205, Jr., Memphis, Tenn., 13.7 ppg, 3.0 rpg - Averaging 21 points over last two games
F, 30, Eric Batchelor, 6-7, 210, Jr., Memphis, Tenn., 12.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg- Converted 16 of last 19 free throws for 84.2%
F, 50, Igor Nikolic, 7-1, 240, Sr., Zemun, Serbia, 5.4 ppg, 4.0 rpg - Ranks tied for 7th in career blocks at UAB with 67
C, 54, Will Campbell, 6-8, 245, Jr., Elmira, N.Y., 8.8 ppg, 8.4 rpg - Averaging 11.3 rebounds over last three games

UAB HEAD COACH MURRY BARTOW:Murry Bartow(UAB, 1985) is in his 5th season as head coach of the Blazers. He has a 89-64 (.582) overall mark and is 42-35 (.545) in C-USA games. Bartow has taken the Blazers to postseason action in three of his first four seasons and has compiled a pair of 20-plus win campaigns. UAB captured the 1999 Conference USA National Division title and made the program's 10th appearance in the NCAA Tournament, the first for UAB since 1994.

UNDER MURRY BARTOW: The Blazers have ...
* made 3 postseason visits in 4 years
* posted back-to-back 20-victory seasons during the 1997-98 & 98-99 campaigns (the 1st since 1992-93 & 93-94)
* reached the C-USA Tournament semifinals in 3 of 4 seasons
* has led one of only five C-USA schools to at least 70 victories over the previous 4 seasons
* led UAB to NCAA Tournament appearance in 1999, the first trip for the school since 1994
* averaged 18.3 wins per season over his first four campaigns
* has won at least seven C-USA games in each of his five seasons

WINNING IN THE AMERICAN DIVISION: With their 74-57 win Tuesday at Louisville, the Blazers are now 4-1 against C-USA American Divsion teams this season. UAB had already beaten Marquette and Charlotte at home, while defeating DePaul on the road. The Blazers only inter-division loss came at Cincinnati. UAB completes the regular season with its final American Division foe, Saint Louis, Saturday.

CLINCHED A WINNING SEASON: The Louisville win guaranteed the Blazers a winning season in 2000-01. The program now has achieved winning records in 21 of 23 seasons. UAB has finished once at .500 and has had one losing season in its history.

REGULAR SEASON FINALES: The Blazers are 12-10 overall in regular season finales, but have accumulated a 10-1 mark at home when Senior Night is the last game of the scheduled season. The Blazers will also finish its regular season for the fifth time against Saint Louis and hold a 4-0 mark against the Billikens in those games, including 3-0 at Bartow Arena.

NIKOLIC NAMED DISTRICT IV ACADEMIC TEAM: SeniorIgor Nikolicwas named Feb. 22 to the Verizon/College of Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) District IV Academic team. The Zemun, Serbia, native achieved a 3.97 undergraduate grade point average in electrical engineering and graduated last March. He was voted the UAB School of Engineering's Student of the Year in 2000. In graduate school, Nikolic has achieved a 4.0 gpa. Since his enrollment at UAB, after spending a year at Garden City (Kansas) Community College, Nikolic has not been credited with a grade lower that an A. Here is a list of players who made the District IV squad and who will be placed on the national ballot for All-America consideration: Wes Burtner, Belmont (3.77, finance), Mike Ensminger, Miami University (3.83, political science), Craig Haese, Youngstown State (3.66, elementary education), and Nate Schindewolf, Akron (special education, 3.58). The district includes Division I schools from Alabama, Ohio, Tennessee, Kentucky and Michigan.

UAB HOLDING OPPONENTS UNDER 40% SHOOTING: The Blazers have held its opponents to under 40% shooting from the field 14 times this season, including a seven-game streak last month that was ended in a win over Marquette (2/14). UAB is 12-2 in those contests.

CAMPBELL CONTINUES TO REBOUND: Will Campbelljust missed his chance for his 13th double-digit rebound performance Tuesday when he collected nine rebounds at Louisville. Campell did notch his eighth double-double of the season with 15 points and 11 rebounds against South Florida (2/21) and followed that performance with 14 rebounds against DePaul last Saturday. Currently, over the last 13 games, Campbell is averaging 11.8 points and 10.8 rebounds. Earlier this season, Campbell garnered C-USA Player of the Week honors (Feb. 4) and recorded 20 rebounds against Houston (1/31) marking only the seventh time in league history that a player has notched at least that many in a contest.

BLAZERS SURRENDER SEASON-LOW POINTS: UAB gave up just 53 points against Houston (1/31), marking the fewest points the Blazers have given up this season and the lowest output from an opponent since Louisville collected just 50 last season (1/12/00) in a UAB 56-50 victory over the Cardinals. In fact, the Blazers kept its opponents to under 60 points in back-to-back games when USM managed just 59 on Feb. 3. The Blazers also allowed just 57 points to Louisville on Tuesday to mark the fourth time this season UAB has limited its opponent to under 60.

MARCH GAMES: The Blazers hold a overall 35-37 (.486) record during the month of March. UAB is 454-268 (.629) in its 23rd season.

THE CRYSTAL BALL: With one last day of C-USA regular games remaining, many things are still unsettled in terms of next week's Ohio Casualty Group C-USA Tournament. The Blazers fate, though, is fairly set depending on the outcome of their SLU contest. Here are the scenarios for UAB in its seeding for next week's tournament: If UAB beats SLU: The Blazers will be the No. 6 seed and play the No. 11 seed -- either DePaul or Houston on the tournament's first day. UAB would be tied at 9-7 with the loser of the Marquette/Charlotte game and possibly South Florida. By virtue of beating both Marquette and Charlotte, the Blazers have the tiebreaker on those two schools while USF would have the advantage by beating the Blazers twice this season. If UAB loses to SLU: The Blazers will be the No. 8 seed and play No. 9 seeded Louisville, no matter how the Cardinals do against Memphis on Saturday.

BARTOW ANNOUNCES RANSOM AND FINLEY TO REDSHIRT: UAB coachMurry Bartowannounced bothMyron RansomandMorris Finleywill redshirt this season due to injury. Ransom, a senior from Birmingham, tore his ACL in his right knee in a game over the summer, while the sophomore Finley from LaFayette, Ala., sustained a fractured vertebra in his back earlier this fall.

SPEAKING OF INJURIES: The Blazers have lost a total 20 player games this season due to illness or injury. The biggest loss wasSidney Ballfor 11 games, whileTony Johnsonhas missed five,David Walkertwo,LeAndrew BassandJason Reeseeach have had to sit out one game for various reasons. If you throw in both Ransom and Finley, then that total is 76 games.

REBOUNDING MARGIN: This season the Blazers are outrebounding their opponents by a margin of 4.0 per contest as they have accumulated 41.2 boards per game. Three times this season UAB has had a 20-plus rebounding advantage coming against Texas Tech (+21), Tulane (+22) and a whopping plus-34 against Centenary as UAB tied a school record by grabbing 65 rebounds. UAB is 13-3 this season in games when they outrebound its opponent.

BLAZERS DO WELL WHEN THEY SCORE 70 OR MORE: UAB is 13-4 when they score at least 70 points in a contest this season. The Blazers are 14-3 when they hold their opposition to 70 points or less -- the last being Louisville on Tuesday to 57 points.

AGAINST THE BILLIKENS: UAB plays Saint Louis for the 20th time in its basketball history and hold a 14-5 record overall in the series. The Blazers have won two of the last three meetings between the schools. UAB holds a 9-0 advantage over SLU in the city of Birmingham including a 7-0 mark in Bartow Arena. The longest winning streak in the series is seven games for the Blazers, while SLU has never won two straight against UAB.

Saint Louis series (UAB leads 14-5)
12/23/78 W 73-70 BJCC
1/16/80 L 76-84 A
2/11/82 W 79-63 A
12/20/82 W 66-47 BJCC
1/13/91 W 98-80 ARE
2/8/92 W 78-74 A
3/7/92 W 104-76 ARE
2/20/93 W 84-45 ARE
3/3/93 W 77-57 A
2/19/94 L 72-73/ot A
3/5/94 W 85-70 ARE
1/7/95 L 56-81 A
2/4/95 W 70-54 ARE
1/13/96 W 64-55 ARE
1/29/97 W 62-45 A
1/17/98 L 60-77 A
3/5/98 W 76-74 N
2/27/99 W 62-57 ARE
2/9/00 L 61-78 A

KENNEDY'S RECORD AGAINST SLU STILL HOLDS UP: Former Blazer player and current UAB assistant coachAndy Kennedyscored a school-record 41 points against the Billikens in a 98-80 victory at Bartow Arena on Jan. 13, 1991.

LINEUP CHANGES: Through the first 28 games, the Blazers have started 12 different lineups. SeniorLeAndrew Basswas the only Blazer to start in every game this season, before missing the Marquette game (2/14) due to a sinus infection. Of the 12 eligible players for UAB this season, nine different Blazers have drawn starting assignments this season.

IGOR ITED FOR SEVENTH ON UAB BLOCK CHART: SeniorIgor Nikolicfinds himself in a three-way tie for seventh place on the UAB charts for career assists. Nikolic has 67 blocks during his tenure for the Blazers. The following is a list of UAB's Top 10 in that category:

UAB CAREER BLOCKS
1. Alan Ogg ('86-90), 266
2. Jerome Mincy ('82-86), 131
3. Norman Anchrum ('80-82), 125
4. Anthony Gordon ('82-86), 93
5. Frank Haywood ('90-94), 82
6. Oliver Robinson ('78-82), 67
Donnie Speer ('78-82), 67
Igor Nikolic('97-), 67
9. Anthony Thomas ('94-96), 63
Carlos Williams ('94-97), 63

ALL-TIME HOME RECORD: UAB has collected a 152-33 record (.822) at Bartow Arena in its 13th season in the facility. UAB was 11-2 in the building last season and have now won at least 10 games there in all but one campaign. In all-time home games, the Blazers are 285-69 (.805).

BASS NOW FIFTH IN CAREER ASSISTS: LeAndrew Bassmoved into fifth place on the UAB career chart for assists Jan. 27 against Louisville by dishing six in the contest. Bass now has 408 for his career. With seven assists against Memphis (1/27), Bass went over the century mark for assists this season (currently with 133) to become the first Blazer to record 100 in a campaign since Eric Holmes had 102 during the 1998-99 campaign. The following is UAB's top 10 career assist leaders:

UAB CAREER ASSISTS
1. Steve Mitchell ('82-86), 597
2. Jack Kramer ('88-91), 586
3. Barry Bearden ('86-90), 530
4. Corey Jackson ('91-94), 423
5.LeAndrew Bass('97-), 408
6. Michael Charles ('84-88), 403
7. Cedric Dixon ('94-98), 329
8. George Wilkerson ('89-94), 307
9. Stanley Jackson ('89-93), 302
10. Oliver Robinson ('78-82), 290

P.J. POURS IN THIRTY: JuniorP.J. Arnoldrecorded the first 30-point performance for the Blazers in 2000-01 last Saturday at DePaul. The last time a UAB player collected at least 30 points, Eric Holmes poured in 34 in the 1st round of the C-USA Tourney with Charlotte (3/8) last season.

DOUBLE-DOUBLES FOR THE BLAZERS: Four times this season, UAB has had a pair of players collect double-doubles in the same game.David Walker(10 pts, 13 rebs.) andSidney Ball(10 pts., 10 rebs.) accomplished that feat most recently at Memphis (2/19).Will Campbell(14 pts., 12 rebs.) andEric Batchelor(17 pts., 12 rebs.) collected a duo double-double against Centenary, while Walker (19 pts., 13, reb.) and Campbell (19 pts., 12 reb.) achieved that feat against Tulane (1/7). Campbell notched 11 points and 12 rebounds, whileLeAndrew Bassrecorded the first double-double of his career with 14 points and a career-best 11 rebounds against Virginia Commonwealth (12/30).

MORE ON THE DOUBLE-DOUBLES: The Blazers collected their 17th double-double of the season last Saturday by their sixth different player asIgor Nikolicnotched a 12-point, 10-rebound day against DePaul.Will Campbellleads the Blazers with eight double-doubles this season, while David Walker, who has 11 for his career, has five.

2000-2001 UAB Double-Doubles:Sidney Ball-
10 p, 10 r at Memphis (2/19)
Eric Batchelor-
17 p, 12 r vs Centenary (2/12)
LeAndrew Bass-
14 p, 11 r vs. VCU (12/30)
Will Campbell-
10 p, 15 r vs. LaSalle (11/25)
11 p, 12 r vs. VCU (12/3)
19 p, 12 r vs. Tulane (1/7)
10 p, 10 r at Cincinnati (1/17)
18 p, 20 r vs. Houston (1/31)
12 p, 11 r at South Fla. (2/10)
14 p, 12 r vs. Centenary (2/12)
15 p, 11 r vs. South Fla. (2/21)
Igor Nikolic-
12 p, 10 r vs. DePaul (2/24)
David Walker-
11 p, 11, r at Bradley (12/3)
12 p, 11 r vs. CSUN (12/21)
20 p, 13 r at Hawai'i (12/23)
16 p, 13 r vs. Tulane (1/7)
10 p, 13 r at Memphis (2/19)

COACHES SHOW TIME CHANGE: TheMurry BartowShow will air on Friday evenings at 8:30 p.m. on Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast. It will also be replayed on the following Tuesday at 5 p.m. The show had originally been slated for 5:30 p.m.on Fridays.

NEXT OPPONENT: The Blazers play in the opening round of the Ohio Casualty Group Conference USA Tournament at Freedom Hall in Louisville. UAB will play the first day as games are slated for 1, 3:30, 7 and 9:30 p.m. EST. All UAB games will be televised live on WABM-68 in the Birmingham area.

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