Feb. 15, 2013
About the Game
- Georgia resumes its schedule with a Saturday night contest at Ole Miss. The Bulldogs arrive at this game with a 12-12 overall record, 6-5 in SEC games, after dropping a 52-45 decision three nights ago at home to Alabama. The loss was Georgia's first in three weeks and it ended the Bulldogs' win streak at five games, the longest for the program in SEC play since 2001.
- Georgia leads the series with Ole Miss 66-40, but in last year's only meeting the Rebels won in Athens by a 66-63 tally. The visiting team, in fact, has won each of the past three times in this series, including Georgia's last trip to Oxford in 2011, when the Bulldogs posted a 98-76 victory. It remains the largest victory margin in SEC play by a UGA team under coach Mark Fox.
- Leading the way throughout this season has been sophomore Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. The Greenville, Ga., native enters this game averaging 17.7 points per game, which ranks second in the SEC behind Ole Miss guard Marshall Henderson. In fact, he ranks among the SEC leaders in nine of the 13 categories for which individual stats are compiled. During Georgia's recent 5-game win streak, Caldwell-Pope shot 63 percent from the field, 50 percent from 3-point range and 91 percent from the FT line, averaging 19 points and 6.8 boards per game. All these numbers included a season-low 10-point game in last Saturday's win over Texas A&M, a game in which he did not score a field goal for the first time of his young career.
- Several Bulldogs have taken their turns in a supporting role to Caldwell-Pope. Most recently, it's belonged to fellow sophomore Nemi Djurisic, who has posted two of his six double-figure scoring efforts this season in Georgia's past two games. He led Georgia in scoring against Texas A&M last Saturday with 13 points and followed that with a 12-point game vs. Alabama.
- Saturday's game is the first of a challenging stretch in the Georgia schedule, during which three of the next four games are on the road. The Bulldogs have already won three conference road games, more than the 2010 and 2012 seasons combined
|F||31||Brandon Morris||6-7||205||Fr.||Lithonia, Ga.||4.0||2.0|
|F||15||Donte' Williams||6-8||230||Jr.||Ellenwood, Ga.||5.2||4.7|
|F/C||32||John Florveus||6-11||240||Sr.||Miami, Fla.||2.4||3.4|
|G||11||Vincent Williams||6-0||165||Sr.||Homestead, Fla.||5.0||2.1#|
|G||1||Kentavious Caldwell-Pope||6-5||205||So.||Greenville, Ga.||17.7||6.4|
#Assists Per Game
|OLE MISS REBELS|
|F||31||Murphy Holloway||6-7||240||Sr.||Irmo, S.C.||14.5||9.5|
|F||23||Reginald Buckner||6-9||235||Sr.||Memphis, Tenn.||9.8||7.9|
|G||10||Ladarius White||6-6||210||So.||McComb, Miss.||6.0||2.3|
|G||32||Jarvis Summers||6-3||184||So.||Jackson, Miss.||8.9||1.8|
|G||22||Marshall Henderson||6-2||175||Jr.||Hurst, Texas||19.5||3.3|
Head Coach: Andy Kennedy
Record at Ole Miss / Years: 143-84 / 7th season
Overall Record / Years: 164-97 / 8th season
Assistant Coaches: Sergio Rouco, Al Pinkins, Bill Armstrong
Georgia vs. Ole Miss
- Saturday's game is the 107th all-time meeting between Georgia and Ole Miss in basketball. Georgia leads the series, which began in 1928 and has been renewed annually since 1947, by an 66-40 count. Ole Miss, in fact, is one of just three SEC opponents against which Georgia has at least a .500 record in its all-time series. South Carolina (49-46) and Auburn (88-87) are the others.
- Georgia has won more games in Oxford (24) than at any other SEC road venue. The Bulldogs are 24-24 all-time there, including two wins in the most recent decade (2001, 2003) and one in 2011.
- Geographically speaking, the series can be broken down as such:
In Athens: UGA leads 38-12
In Oxford: Games are tied 24-24
Neutral Court Games: Games are tied 4-4
- A month ago, Georgia began its SEC schedule with an RPI rating of 205. The Bulldogs enter tonight's game with an RPI of 119. Why the significant jump? Mostly because three of Georgia's past five wins were against Top 100 teams, two on the road, to boot.
- Right now, Georgia has just one player (KCP at 17.7 ppg) averaging in double-digit scoring. Not only is it the sole SEC school with such a distinction, but that also makes it the only Bulldog team of the past 50 years with just a single double-figure scorer...
- Four different players have led Georgia in scoring this season: KCP, Vincent Williams, Nemi Djurisic and Charles Mann. Eight different Bulldogs have taken turns being the 2nd-leading scorer. Most frequent among those is the freshman Mann, who has owned that distinction seven times...
- Georgia has used 12 different starting lineups this season. The one constant through all 12 lineups was, of course, has been Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Five other teammates (both Williamses, Morris, Florveus and Djurisic) now have double-digit starts.
- KCP is on pace to reach 1,000 career points by season's end. If he gets there, he'll be the 42nd player in UGA history to reach that milestone, but he'll be the first since Jarvis Hayes (2002-03) to reach it in just two seasons.
- One more interesting tidbit about Caldwell-Pope. He's one of just 11 players in all of NCAA Division I that have scored in double figures in each of their team's games. He's the only SEC player to accomplish this feat and one of just five from the "BCS" leagues to do so. Last Saturday, he needed two free throws with 17 seconds left to keep that streak intact.
- Some revealing observations from Georgia's recent 5- game win streak:
Its starters were outscored 204-170 (avg. 41-34). The Georgia bench, however, was outscored the opposing reserves 133-61 (avg. 27-12).
> In those five wins, Georgia shot 46 percent from the field, 42 percent from 3-point range. Caldwell-Pope led this surge, with shooting percentages of 63 and 50 percent, respectively.
>In the last 5 minutes of these five games, Georgia shot 70 percent from the field, 75 percent from the line, 75 percent from 3-point and outrebounded the opposition 23-16.
>In the loss to Alabama, Georgia made just four of 10 shots in the final five minutes, but the Bulldogs watched as Bama made four of its five shot attempts, including a pair of decisive 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions.
- Georgia's recent 5-game win streak was the longest in SEC play under coach Mark Fox. The longest win streak, period, of the Fox era is a 9-game run in the 2010-11 season. The school record for consecutive SEC wins is six, established three times: in 2001, 1992-93 teams (spanning both seasons) and also the SEC championship team of 1990. The last time for a 7-game league win streak occurred in the 1930-31 season, when the Bulldogs belonged to the Southern Conference.
About the Schedule
As part of the new 18-game Southeastern Conference schedule, the Bulldogs will face former Eastern Division foes Kentucky and Vanderbilt just once. It will be the first time since 1964 that Georgia has not played home-and-home series with these two longstanding foes and, for 20 years, Eastern Division rivals. In exchange for those two contests, the Bulldogs will now pick up a series with new member Texas A&M and renew a 2-game annual series with Alabama for the first time since 1992.
The addition of Texas A&M and Missouri has also added another day of competition to the post-season SEC Tournament, slated for March 13-17 in Nashville, Tenn. The Nos. 11-14 seeds in the final regular-season standings will play a doubleheader on Wednesday, with the tournament resuming its traditional schedule Thursday. It's conceivable that a team could capture the SEC Tournament championship by winning games on five consecutive days.
KCP One of UGA's Best Ever
Sophomore guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope returns as one of the SEC's top players. Among his freshman-year highlights included:
- He earned Freshman All-SEC honors in his first season of 2012.
- KCP ranked second among all Bulldogs in scoring and led them in rebounding, minutes and steals.
- His 422 points were the fifth-highest total by a UGA freshman in school history. Just as important, his 166 rebounds (5.2/game) were the tenth-best total by a UGA rookie and the most ever by a guard.
- Caldwell-Pope last year was also Georgia's leader in 3-point shots made (65) and taken (214).
- KCP is the fourth-leading returning scorer in the SEC, behind Boynton (Fla.), Young (Ark.) and Golden (Tenn.).
- He is also the league's fifth-leading returning rebounder and its only guard among the group.
- He ranks second among all returning SEC players in minutes per game (32.1), behind only LSU guard Andre Stringer (32.2 mpg).
- True to form, Caldwell-Pope is the Bulldogs' only player thus far to average over 30 minutes per contest this season. He currently ranks 3rd in the SEC in minutes at 33.6 per game. Georgia's next most active player is Donte' Williams at 23.3 minutes per game.
Fox Best at Molding Talent
Blogger and hoops junkie Dan Hanner of RealGM.com penned an article in February of 2012 that anointed Georgia head coach Mark Fox as the top coach in college basketball at player development. In a blog entry, Hanner used a complex formula to rate college coaches. Among Hanner's many observations he writes, "Mark Fox has truly been fantastic at getting the most out of his players."
The top five in the Player Development category include Fox; Bo Ryan (Wisconsin); Craig Robinson (Oregon State); Lorenzo Romar (Washington); and Mike Montgomery (Cal).
Fox Also Tops at Producing Grads
Head Coach Mark Fox must also receive some degree of credit for developing high-performing students in the classroom. Since his arrival in April of 2009, no fewer than 12 Georgia basketball players have earned their undergraduate degrees, including all four seniors from 2012. Every player that has exhausted his eligibility at UGA under Fox has completed his degree.
Prominent among this group of 12 includes Damien Wilkins - nephew of UGA great Dominique Wilkins - whose last year of eligibility came in 2004 and who has played professionally in the NBA ever since.
2012-13 Bulldogs a Year Older
Year Four of the Mark Fox era at Georgia features his first roster comprised solely of players chosen by Fox and his staff. The Bulldogs of 2013 have a lone 3-year letterman in guard Vincent Williams, as well as two other seniors who took the junior-college route before arriving in Athens.
Last season the Bulldogs began the year with just two players that had experience as a starter on a Division I basketball team. This year, however, that number is now up to six, including four players that were regular starters at season's end. That quartet is comprised of two sophomores and two freshmen. In all, Georgia returns players who logged over 68 percent of its total minutes played in 2012.
Thornton Out Indefinitely
Junior forward Marcus Thornton will be out indefinitely after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery on Dec. 26. The native Atlantan has been plagued by injuries to both knees throughout his career in Athens. He missed five games last season because of knee surgery in December, and he underwent another surgery on his right knee immediately after the 2012 season ended, a process that kept him out of most off-season workouts.
When healthy, Thornton significantly enhances Georgia's frontcourt presence with his physical play. Before his latest setback, he had already set career highs in scoring and rebounding.