Blazers Host ULM Thursday

Fahro Alihodzic is averaging a team-best 14.6 points per game at home this season

Dec. 19, 2012

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. ---- The UAB men's basketball team will host ULM on Thursday at 7 p.m. CT.  The Blazers will look to stay perfect at Bartow Arena, sporting a 4-0 record in front of the home crowd this season.

UAB (5-6) vs. ULM (1-6)
Date:  Thurs., Dec. 20, 2012
Time:  7 p.m. CT
Location:  Birmingham, Ala.
Venue:  Bartow Arena (8,500)

Video:  All-Access (
Radio:  WUHT-FM 107.7
Talent:  David Crane (pxp), Steve Mitchell (analyst)
Live Stats:  GameTracker (
Twitter Updates:  @UABathletics

Inside The Series
UAB leads, 1-0
Last Meeting:  UAB 85, ULM 67 (11/27/94)

UAB and ULM have met on the hardwood only one time prior to Thursday's contest, facing off on Nov. 27, 1994 in Bayamon, Puerto Rico in part of the Puerto Rico Shootout.  The victory was the first of the 1994-95 season for the Blazers, as UAB went 1-2 in Puerto Rico to open the year.

The Coaches
UAB: Jerod Haase (Kansas, '97)
Record at UAB:  5-6 (1st season)
Career Record:  5-6 (1st season)

ULM:  Keith Richard (ULM, '82)
Record at ULM:  11-56 (3rd season)
Career Record:  161-173 (12th season)

On The Blazers
>> UAB enters Thursday's game with a 5-6 record after falling at Rutgers this past Saturday. 

>> In the loss at Rutgers, Jordan Swing  (23 pts) and Preston Purifoy (20 pts) each netted career-high point totals.  The duo combined to score 34 points after intermission.

>> The Blazers are 4-0 at home this season and have won eight consecutive contests inside Bartow Arena dating back to last season.  The last loss for UAB at home came on Jan. 28, 2012 against the East Carolina Pirates, 73-66.

>> The six teams that UAB has been defeated by this season have a combined winning percentage of .750 (45-15).

>> Jordan Swing has scored in double figures in all 11 games this season and in 13 straight contests dating back to last season.

>> Fahro Alihodzic is shooting 90.6% from the foul line (29-for-32). His percentage ranks first amongst all Division I centers, second in C-USA and tied for 33rd-best in the nation.

>> Preston Purifoy is averaging 14.7 ppg over the last three games, bumping up his season average to 7.8 ppg.

On The Warhawks
>> ULM enters Thursday's tilt with 1-6 record after falling at Florida State, 63-48, on Monday.

>> Trent Mackey is averaging 11 ppg after pouring in a team-best 22 vs. Florida State.  Mackey hit 6-of-12 3-pointers vs. FSU.

>> The Warhawks have held their opponents to under 70 points in five of seven games this season.

>> Jayon James has been an all-around strong player, averaging 9.3 ppg and tops ULM in rebounds (55) and assists (30).


Better At Bartow
UAB is a perfect 4-0 at home this season, compared to 1-6 away from the friendly confines of Bartow Arena.  Below are some comparisons between home and away/neutral site games for the Blazers this season.

>> UAB has won eight consecutive home contests dating back to last season.  The last time UAB lost in Bartow Arena was on Jan. 28, 2012 vs. East Carolina, 73-66.

>> At home, UAB is averaging 88.8 ppg, shooting 48.5 percent from the floor, 36.7 percent from 3-point range and 79.5 percent from the foul line.

>> On the road, the Blazers are averaging 71.4 ppg, shooting 42 percent from the floor, 35.8 from 3-point range and 69 percent from the foul line.

>> In addition, the UAB defense is allowing 79.9 ppg on the road, compared to 67.5 at home.

>> Offensively, UAB has four players averaging double figures at home -- Alihodzic (14.8), Rucker (14.3), Swing (14.3) and Purifoy (10.3).

>>  In road games, only Swing (16.7) and Rucker (11.9) are scoring in double figures.

Starting Lineup Consistency
Through the first 11 games of the 2012-13 season, UAB has started the same five players in each game:  G Terence Jones, G Robert Williams, F Jordan Swing, F Rod Rucker, C Fahro Alihodzic.

Fresh Out
UAB is one of six schools from across the country that does not have a freshman on its roster.  Joining the Blazers in this unique category are:  Ohio, Portland State, Savannah State, SIUE and Valparaiso.

Tough Competition
UAB has played some tough competition early on in the 2012-13 season.  The six teams, two of which are nationally ranked (Creighton, North Carolina), that the Blazers have lost to have a combined winning percentage of .750, going 45-15. 

Second Half Shootout
At Rutgers, UAB trailed by 17 pts (50-33) at halftime.  The duo of Jordan Swing and Preston Purifoy propelled the Blazers back into the game, combining for 34 of UAB's 46 points after intermission.

UAB was able to cut the deficit to seven points late in the second half, but the Scarlet Knights were able to close out the game with a victory.

Swing (23 points) and Purifoy (20 points) finished with career-high point totals.
Purifoy Produces Off Pine
Preston Purifoy has been the sixth man for the Blazers this season and has stepped up his offensive production recently.  Over the last three games, Purifoy is averaging 14.7 ppg, including a career-high 20-point effort at Rutgers (12/18).

Taking On The Sun Belt
During a six-game span, UAB will have played four teams from the Sun Belt Conference.  UAB is currently 2-1 vs. the SBC defeating Troy and South Alabama, falling to Middle Tennessee before hosting ULM.