Jan. 8, 2015
If you can't make it to Palumbo Center Saturday afternoon, you can catch the game locally on WPMY-TV
(Verizon channel 10, Directv channel 22, Comcast channel 10, Dish Network channel 22)
The game will be carried live in 34 states on 57 channels (51 local channels and 6 regional sports networks: SNY, MASN, TCN, CSN California, CSN Chicago, Cox Sports Television) in 105 markets, including 17 of the nation's 30 largest: New York (SNY), Chicago (Comcast Sports Net), Philadelphia (TCN), San Francisco (Comcast Sports Net), Washington DC (MASN). Additional large markets within the A-10 footprint include Baltimore, Norfolk, Richmond, Charlotte, Raleigh and Greensboro (MASN), St. Louis (KDNL), Cleveland (Cox Sports), Cincinnati (WSTR), Columbus (WSYX), Buffalo (WYNO), Dayton (WRGT).
For a complete list of clearances, click on the "American Sports Network" link above.
This is the 55th meeting in a series that dates to Jan. 13, 1966 ... Rhode Island, winner of 16 of the past 22, leads the all-time series 29-25 ... in Pittsburgh, the series is tied at 12-12 ... the two have split the last six.
In an oddity of sorts, URI has won the past six meetings at Palumbo Center, while DU has won four of the past eight meetings at Ryan Center, including an 83-71 victory last year ... Duquesne's last home win over Rhode Island was on Jan. 19, 2001 (83-69) ... the last three meetings in Pittsburgh have been decided by two (71-73 in 2009), one (76-77 in 2011) and five points (62-67 in 2013).
Duquesne senior forward Dominique McKoy, played for Jim Baron's Rams in 2012 ... McKoy made his first career start at forward for Rhode Island against Duquesne on Jan. 14 and went scoreless in 4 minutes ... McKoy had 11 points and nine rebounds against his former team last season.
Seven of the past eight meetings between the two (five URI wins) have been determined by eight or fewer points ... the average score of the past eight: Duquesne 74.1, Rhode Island 73.5 (593 for DU & 588 points for URI).
URI is in its third season under head coach Dan Hurley ... Hurley and current DU head coach Jim Ferry met four times when Hurley was at Wagner (2010-11 & 2011-12) and Ferry was at LIU (2002-03 through 2011-12) ... Ferry's Blackbirds won all four meetings ... Ferry is 5-1 all-time vs. Hurley.
MORE ON RHODE ISLAND
Rhode Island, which was picked to finish 6th in the preseason poll of league coaches, is off to a 10-3 start ... the Rams are coming off a 68-65 home win over Fordham that upped their A-10 record to 2-0 ... E.C. Matthew - despite going 0-of-7 from 3-point - scored a game-high 24 for Rhody ... Hassan Martin blocked 7 shots and grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds for Rhode Island ... URI's three losses have come vs. Kansas (60-76) & Georgia Tech (61-64) in Orlando, Fla. and at Providence (60-68) ... this is just the fourth road game for Rhody which is 2-1 in opposing gyms with wins at Southern Mississippi (75-43) and A-10 foe Saint Louis (65-53) ... the Rams are led by 6-5 sophomore guard E.C. Matthews (17.3 ppg.), the 2014 A-10 co-Rookie of the Year ... Matthews scored a career-high 32 against Duquesne last year ... the Rams lead the A-10 in scoring defense at 57.2 ppg. and ranked 31st nationally (per KenPom.com) in defensive efficiency through Wednesday's games ... only one team, nationally-ranked Kansas, has been able to score 70 or more against URI this season (76-60 win on Nov. 27) ... Rhody has held three teams under 50 (Santa Clara, Southern Miss and Delaware State) ... opponents are shooting .396 from the field and .272 from 3-point vs. URI ... the 3-point defense is the best in the A-10.
Duquesne (6-7, 1-1), winner of three of its last five, hosts Rhode Island (10-3, 2-0) on Saturday, Jan. 10 at 1:00 p.m. in a game televised nationally by the American Sports Network. DU, coming off a 71-68 A-10 win over Saint Joe's on Wednesday, welcomes a URI team that has won five straight, including a 68-65 win over Fordham Wednesday night.
Derrick Colter (35-63, .556) & Micah Mason (35-of-82, .427) ranked as the nation's top 3-point shooting backcourt at a combined .483 through Wednesday's games (based on NCAA minimums). Colter, who entered his junior season as a .329 career 3-point shooter, ranked 1st nationally and Mason, who led the nation in 3-point shooting last year, was 40th through Jan. 7 games. Colter and Mason will have their work cut out for them against a Rhody defense that is holding opposing 3-point shooters to an Atlantic 10-low .272.
Duquesne, which won at Rhode Island last year, 83-71, is looking to snap a six-game Rhody series win streak in Pittsburgh. The Dukes haven't defeated the Rams at home since Jan. 10, 2001 when Darelle Porter's Dukes defeated Jerry DeGregorio's Rams 83-69. The two have split the past six meetings overall.
DU hits the road to face Saint Louis on Wednesday, Jan. 14 at 8:00 (ET) before returning home for games against VCU (Jan. 17 at CONSOL Energy Center) and St. Bonaventure (Jan. 22).
LEFTOVERS FROM SAINT JOSEPH'S
Leftovers from Duquesne's Atlantic 10 71-68 win over Saint Joseph's on Wednesday: the game was DU's A-10 home opener ... the win snapped a four-game series losing streak ... the Dukes, who trailed by 12 (34-22) with 6:02 left in the first half, went on a 23-4 run spanning halftime to take a 45-38 lead with 14:14 left ... it was DU's third-largest comeback under Jim Ferry ... DU rallied from 15 back to defeat West Virginia in 2012-13 and erased a 13-point deficit at Saint Francis in 2013-14 ... the Dukes built their advantage to 13 (69-56) with 2:55 to go before SJU put together an 12-2 run to cut it to three with 39 seconds left ... Dominique McKoy got a piece of DeAndre Bembry's 3-point attempt at the final horn to preserve the victory ... DU's Derrick Colter led all scorers with 22 points ... Colter, who was 4-of-6 from 3-point, added six rebounds and four assists with just one turnover in 36 minutes ... McKoy added a season-high 13 points, six rebounds and two blocks in a career-high 37 minutes ... Micah Mason, who went 3-of-7 from 3-point, scored all nine of his points in the first half ... Jeremiah Jones posted five assists for the Dukes ... Duquesne shot 58.3 percent in the second half and 50 percent for the game, including 11-of-20 from 3-point ... Saint Joe's shot 41.2 percent, including 7-of-29 (.241) from the arc ... Duquesne's largest lead was 13 at 69-56 with 2:11 left ... Saint Joseph's largest lead was 12 at 6:02 of the first half ... there were four ties and three lead changes before the Dukes took the lead for good on a Colter 3-pointer with 17:18 left.
Junior guard Derrick Colter, who has shot 50 percent or better from the 3-point arc in nine of DU's 13 games, has four games with four or more "3s" ... 29 of his 35 free throw attempts have come in his past seven games ... he has two four-point plays this season ... senior forward Dominique McKoy is averaging 10.3 points and 6.7 rebounds (13-of-19, .684 from the field) in his past three games ... he is coming off a season-high 13 points vs. Saint Joe's ... six-eleven sophomore center Darius Lewis is averaging 7.0 ppg. on 8-of-13 shooting in three games as a starter ... Lewis had 11 points and five blocks (both career highs) in his first start vs. UTPA on Dec. 30 ... followed that with six in 17 minutes at Dayton ... Lewis is shooting .667 ... Jeremiah Jones, who was shooting .257 through seven games, is 18-of-42 from the field (.429) in his past six ... he is averaging 7.8 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.2 assists over that span ... Micah Mason went scoreless for the third time in his DU career at Dayton (0-of-8) ... he went 0-of-5 from the 3-point arc for just the second time in his career (the other was at Northern Iowa as a freshman at Drake) ... he followed that by hitting three first half 3-pointers vs. Saint Joe's (3-of-7 from the arc with all nine points in the first half) ... guard Jordan Stevens, who has scored in double digits six times off the bench, ranks third on the team with 33 assists ... Stevens has just three points in 22 minutes in DU's past two games ... it is his low back-to-back game total this year ... center Jordan Robinson, who did not play vs. UTPA or Saint Joseph's, hasn't missed a shot since Dec. 10 (7-of-7 from the field in his past five games) ... forward L.G. Gill broke out of an eight game 3-of-23 3-point shooting slump by going 2-of-2 from the arc vs. Saint Joseph's ... Gill was 6-of-12 from 3-point in his first four games ... freshman foward TySean Powell is averaging 9.0 ppg. (10-of-15 from the field, 7-of-10 from the foul line) off the bench in his past three games.
TOP 3-POINT BACKCOURTS
Duquesne's Derrick Colter (.556) and Micah Mason (.427) formed the nation's top 3-point shooting backcourt through Wednesday's games (based on NCAA minimums):
.483 Derrick Colter (35-63) & Micah Mason (35-82), DUQUESNE
.478 Ameen Tanksley (39-83) & Brian Bernardi (47-97), Hofstra
.453 John Simons (30-62) & Josh Kozinski (32-75), Central Michigan
.435 Schadrac Casmir (40-94) & Isaiah Williams (44-99), Iona
.417 Jalen Riley (34-81) & Rashawn Rembert (46-111), East Tennessee State
2014-15 QUICK HITS
Duquesne's roster consists of one senior, six juniors, three sophomores and five freshmen. The Dukes have four first-year scholarship players.
Three of DU's top five scorers are first year players: JC transfer Jordan Stevens (10.3 ppg.), freshman TySean Powell (9.3 ppg.) and freshman Eric James (6.0 ppg.). DU's three double digit scorers are all guards (Derrick Colter, 12.5 ppg.; Stevens and Micah Mason, 10.0 ppg.).
The 6-6 Powell, who is shooting .648, ranks tied for second on the team in double-digit scoring games (6) and first in dunks (16) and conventional three-point plays (7 in 7 attempts). James has four double-digit games under his belt. Powell (29-42) & James (16-30) rank first and third on the team in free throw attempts.
Micah Mason, who led the nation in 3-point shooting percentage in 2014 (65-116, .560), hit a career-high six 3-pointers in seven attempts vs. NJIT on Nov. 29. He broke out of a four-game, 6-of-26 3-point slump by hitting all five of his 3-point attempts (17 pts.) in the Dec. 20 win over UMass Lowell. He has hit five or more "3s" in a game seven times (five at Duquesne and two as a freshman at Drake). For the season, Mason is shooting .427 from the arc (35-of-82).
Derrick Colter became the eighth player in school history to hit seven or more 3-pointers in a game when he went 7-of-8 from the arc in scoring a career-high 26 points in the opener vs. Bluefield State. Colter's seven makes were one shy of the school record shared by three players (last by Aaron Jackson who went 8-of-13 in scoring 46 points in a double-overtime NIT 116-108 loss at Virginia Tech on Mar. 18, 2009).
Duquesne was picked to finish 11th in the 14-team Atlantic 10 in the annual poll of league coaches and media. National media outlets pegged the Dukes to finish anywhere from 7th (Basketball Times & College Basketball Madness) to 12th (Athlon).
The Dukes return four starters - junior guards Derrick Colter & Micah Mason, junior forward Jeremiah Jones and senior forward Dominique McKoy - from last year's 13-17 team (5-11 in the Atlantic 10, tied for 10th place).
DU's lone senior, forward Dominique McKoy, saw a streak of 31 consecutive games played snapped at Abilene Christian. McKoy underwent a medical procedure that prevented him from making the trip to Texas. He made his first start of 2015 vs. UMass Lowell and had 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and a block in 23 minutes. He is averaging 10.3 ppg. and 6.7 rpg. in his past three games.
First-year JC transfer Jordan Stevens went 6-of-9 from 3-point in scoring 27 points in 28 minutes off the bench in his debut at Abilene Christian. The Columbia, Mo. native, who was held out of the season opener (team suspension), added 16 off the bench vs. NJIT. He had nine points and five assists in 22 minutes off the bench vs. Howard and added 15 points, three assists and two steals vs. Pitt. He scored a team-high 18 off the bench at Penn State. Stevens, who handed out a game-high seven assists with one turnover vs. UMass Lowell, is third on the team lead with 33 assists (1.7 assist-to-turnover ratio).
Building quality depth has been a priority of head coach Jim Ferry since his arrival at Duquesne. Through 13 games, DU's bench has outscored the opponent bench 393-211 (an average of 14 ppg.). The DU bench, which posted a high of 67 points at Abilene Christian, has outscored its opponent in nine of 13 games. DU is 5-4 in those games.
DU's 11.0 turnovers/g. last season was the lowest mark in school history (previous was 11.5 in 1995). The Dukes, with four first-year players playing prominent roles, are averaging 13.1 turnovers per game this season.
DU will face an 18-game conference schedule, including nine home games, marking just the second time since 1972 that the Dukes will have 16 regular-season home games. Duquesne will host five of the six A-10 schools that made an NCAA tournament appearance last season, in addition to first-year Atlantic 10 member Davidson, which earned an NIT bid as the regular season champion of the Southern Conference in 2014.
DU will play Davidson (2014 Southern Conference regular-season champion/NIT), Dayton (2014 NCAA Elite 8), George Washington (2014 NCAA Second Round), St. Bonaventure and Saint Louis (2014 NCAA Third Round) twice in Atlantic 10 play. Davidson, Dayton, George Washington and Saint Louis all won at least 20 games last year. Duquesne and George Mason are the only schools facing four teams that made post-season appearances in 2014 in their five-team home-and-home pod.