Dec. 13, 2010
Game #12 - Milwaukee (5-6) @ DePaul (3-6)
Tues. Dec. 14 8 p.m. CST
Allstate Arena Rosemont, Ill.
Printable Game Notes
| Gameday Links
TV: Sports 32 (Daron Sutton and Adrian Tigert)
Radio: WISN (AM1130) - Bill Johnson has the call
Internet: Go to uwmpanthers.com for live stats, video, audio and a blog along with extended postgame coverage.
The Hot List
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men's basketball team wraps up a stretch of three-straight road games with a Tuesday night contest at DePaul.
The Panthers finally found their shooting touch Saturday night in Brookings, making 14 three-pointers and 62.8 percent of their shots overall in claiming an 82-70 win over South Dakota State.
Milwaukee had struggled from the field in its previous two games. The Panthers shot just 29.6 percent from the floor in their loss to Cleveland State Dec. 4 before shooting 30.8 percent in the loss at Wisconsin Dec. 8.
Junior Tony Meier has put together a very solid stretch of games, including a team-high 19-point outing in the win at South Dakota State Saturday. He also tallied a collegiate-best 20 points in the loss to Cleveland State and has been in double figures in points in four of the last five games.
Sophomore Ja'Rob McCallum has also found his touch lately, scoring 16 points Saturday after a 12-point outing Wednesday.
The Panthers have now had seven players collect at least one double figure scoring outing over the first 11 games. Three players have had a 20-point outing.
Milwaukee has reached double figures in offensive rebounds eight times in 11 games.
DePaul is the third BCS team the Panthers have faced this season and the second from the Big East.
UWM was picked to finish fifth in the Horizon League in the official poll of coaches, sports information directors and media members. The Panthers have been picked as high as second in the league among the various preseason publications.
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men's basketball team wraps up a stretch of three-straight non-league road games with a Tuesday night contest at DePaul.
A Quick Look At The Blue Demons
DePaul is in its first season under head coach Oliver Purnell, who left Clemson to take over the Blue Demon program. Freshman Brandon Young made an immediate on the squad, reaching double figures in points in his first seven games. Saturday, DePaul dropped a 79-77 overtime decision to Ball State. The Blue Demons do have recent home wins over Northern Illinois and Central Michigan
This is the first matchup between the two schools since 1972 ... DePaul leads the all-time series, 9-0, including three matchups in the 1950's when UWM was known as the Milwaukee State Teachers College or Wisconsin State-Milwaukee ... every one of the nine matchups has been a road game for UWM ... the Panthers have played at the Allstate Arena, though, falling to Illinois in a Sweet 16 matchup in 2005 ... UWM is facing a Big East team for the second time this season ... the Panthers fell to Marquette, 85-82, Nov. 27 at the U.S. Cellular Arena ... the last Big East opponent besides Marquette UWM has faced was Boston College (now in the ACC) in the 2005 NCAA Tournament ... this is also Milwaukee's third game against a BCS foe, with the Panthers having played at Wisconsin last week.
A Decade Of Horizon Success
The last 10 years has found UWM establishing itself as one of the top men's basketball programs in the Horizon League. In fact, starting with the 2000-01 season, Milwaukee has the second-most league wins among league schools and is one of only two schools (Butler) to average more than 10 league wins per season. UWM has been below .500 in league play just once in 10 years - only Butler and Wright State can also make that claim. And, Milwaukee has won 10 or more league games in seven of 10 years, finishing in the top four seven times while winning three regular season league crowns. The full league standings over the last 10-plus years, noting Youngstown joined the league for the 2001-02 season while Valparaiso came on board for the 2007-08 campaign:
Butler 126 39
Milwaukee 107 59
Wright State 96 69
Green Bay 82 84
UIC 79 86
Detroit 78 87
Cleveland State 68 98
Loyola 67 99
Youngstown State 37 115
Valparaiso 26 30
On The Road Again
Tuesday's contest wraps up a three-game road trip for Milwaukee, though the Panthers are in a stretch that includes six of eight away from home. With Saturday's win at South Dakota State, the Panthers are 2-2 in true road games and 3-3 outside of Milwaukee this season. Both of UWM's true road wins have been by double-figures, making six double-digit roads wins in the last two seasons. Milwaukee went 7-8 in true road games and 3-2 in neutral-site contests a season ago, meaning the Panthers won 10 games outside of Milwaukee. The seven true road wins were the most since the 2005-06 season, when they won eight true road games. That season was also the last time Milwaukee won nine or more games away from home.
Always An Adventure
Winning on the road is never easy, and the travel involved with road games can make things even more difficult. But, at least for the Panthers, the worst of the travel might be behind them. Milwaukee started the season with a 5,070-mile trip that sent the Panthers to Portland, Ore., and Buffalo, NY. Then this past weekend, blizzard conditions in South Dakota and Wisconsin extended what was planned as a 24-hour air trip in and out of Brookings into a full-day bus trip back home Sunday. If you take out the first-week trip of more than 5,000 miles, UWM's other 11 road games (not counting the unknown Bracket Buster trip) will force them to travel just 3,650 miles in all between airplanes and buses. In fact, the 910-mile round trip to Brookings, SD, just completed was the longest remaining trip of the season. All of this does pale in comparison to the summer trip to Italy, when UWM flew a total of 9,964 miles in addition to the more than 700 miles of bus travel.
Last Time Out
Four players reached double figures and UWM heated up Frost Arena and the icy conditions outside with 14 three-pointers to claim an 82-70 win over South Dakota State Saturday night. The Jackrabbits had beaten Iowa and Nevada earlier this season but could not withstand the barrage of shots from the Panthers. Milwaukee shot 62.8 percent from the field for the game, leading nearly the entire way. Tony Meier topped the Panthers with 19 points, while Ja'Rob McCallum added 16. Kaylon Williams pitched-in with 14 points and seven assists while Tone Boyle had 12 points.
Yes, the Panthers were due for a great shooting night, and it finally happened Saturday night in frigid South Dakota. The Panthers made 27-of-43 shots overall for a 62.8 percent shooting clip. That was the third-best shooting tally in the school's Division I history and the best since the Panthers shot 60.6 percent in a win over Prairie View A&M in 2004. Meanwhile, the 14-of-23 (60.9 percent) performance from beyond the arc was the fifth-best in school history. This was also the 13th time UWM has made 14 three-pointers in a game.
Shooting The 3
The Panthers certainly found their shooting touch from long range Saturday night, knocking in a season-best 14 three-pointers. Coming into the game, Milwaukee was shooting just 31 percent from three-point range, but a look back beyond this early season shows the Panthers are quite capable of this kind of night. The game marked the fifth time in the brief career of Ja'Rob McCallum where he has made four or more three-pointers in a game, while Tony Meier has now made three or more three-pointers in a game eight times. It was also the fourth time Lonnie Boga has made three or more three-pointers. And, all of that doesn't even include Tone Boyle, who had a pair of threes Saturday but has made four or more in a game seven times.
Quite A Contrast
Saturday's shooting performance was a pleasant turn from a pair of games where the Panthers struggled from the floor. UWM had shot just 29.6 percent from the floor in the loss to Cleveland State Dec. 4 and then 30.8 percent in falling to Wisconsin Dec. 8. Plus, UWM's 12 field goals against the Badgers tied an all-time Division I low.
Ups And Downs Early
A college basketball season spread over four to five months can produce plenty of ups and downs, but the Panthers seem to have packed a lot of those into the first month of the season. The two recent poor shooting performances and a 29-percent shooting effort against Western Michigan last month can easily obscure some of the impressive performances and wins by the Panthers so far this season.
- A win Nov. 20 over Northern Iowa, a team that made the Sweet 16 last season.
- A three-point loss to Marquette, a team UWM has never beaten in 38 tries. Milwaukee missed a half-court shot at the buzzer that would have tied the game.
- A 90-73 road win at Niagara, with the 17-point margin of victory the largest in a non-conference win since 2005.
Top Performances From T Meier
Junior Tony Meier certainly looked like he was settling in for a nice season with his solid play during UWM's trip to Italy. And, indeed, his play through the first 11 games of the season indicates he is primed for a nice junior campaign. He led the way with 19 points Saturday at South Dakota State, knocking in a collegiate-best five 3-pointers. He has now been in double figures in four of his last five games, including a collegiate-best 20 points in the Dec. 4 loss to Cleveland State. He is averaging 16.3 points per game in his last three outings, making 9-of-14 from beyond the arc. For the season, Meier is averaging 10.1 points and 5.1 rebounds per game.
Sophomore Ja'Rob McCallum showed his offensive potential with nine double-figure scoring efforts and Sporting News Horizon League Freshman of the Year honors last season. This season, he has kept up that early pace, collecting five double-figure scoring outings while moving his way into the starting lineup. The performance that finally broke him into the starting five came Nov. 27 against Marquette, when he poured in 19 points. He also added 16 points, including four 3-pointers, in the win at South Dakota State Saturday. McCallum is averaging 8.9 points per game this season, and perhaps most noteworthy is his willingness and ability to score from inside the arc. Last season, 44 of his 76 made field goals came from three-point range. This season, just 15 of his 38 makes have come from distance.
Also From The Notebook
Milwaukee has reached double figures in offensive rebounds in eight of 11 games ... the Panthers have a 116-93 edge over their opponents on second-chance points ... they have outrebounded seven of their 11 opponents ... UWM has had seven players record at least one double-figure scoring outing, with three players posting a game of 20 or more points ... Anthony Hill posted one of the most impressive individual efforts in UWM's Division I history in Milwaukee's win over Youngstown State Dec. 2, scoring a collegiate-best 30 points, making 14-of-20 from the field, while also adding a career-high 12 rebounds ... it was the first time a Panther had at least 30 and 10 since Michael Hughes had 37 points and 12 rebounds against Youngstown State in 1994 ... Ja'Rob McCallum moved into the starting lineup in place of Lonnie Boga against Youngstown State and then has started the next four games ... Boga had started the previous six games after Jerard Ajami started the opener ... Ajami did not dress for the Florida Atlantic game because of illness and has come off the bench ever since ... Anthony Hill, Tony Meier and Lonnie Boga have all had double-figure rebounding efforts, with Hill collecting a pair ... Hill has two double-doubles and Meier one ... Tone Boyle hit the game-winner with 2.4 seconds remaining against UNI Nov. 20 after pouring in a collegiate-best 27 points in the win at Niagara Nov. 17 ... the Panthers have made just 159-of-264 (60.2 percent) from the line this season, but Milwaukee made 14-of-18 from the line in Saturday's victory ... UWM is 4-1 when shooting 45 percent or better but 1-5 when shooting under 45 percent ... the Panthers have led at the half in each of their five victories but trailed in all six losses.
The Italian Job
UWM got a head start on its preparations for the 2010-11 season thanks to a 10-day trip to Italy in mid-August. The team won four games on the trip will visiting Rome, Florence, Venice and Lake Como. On the court, the Panthers won all four games, averaging nearly 90 points per contest. UWM also took advantage of 10 practice days prior to the trip, using three in July and the remaining seven immediately prior to the journey. Plus, thanks to a new NCAA rule change, newcomers were allowed to participate in the trip, meaning seven players saw their first "unofficial" game action in a Panther uniform.
Don't Forget About These Guys
The Panthers have a pair of players sitting out this season that are expected to be contributors in the 2011-12 campaign. Transfer James Haarsma is eligible to practice with the Panthers, but is sitting out due to NCAA transfer regulations. He will then have two years of college eligibility remaining. Haarsma averaged 10.8 points and 7.1 rebounds per game at Evansville in 2009-10. Meanwhile, true freshman Evan Richard is planning to redshirt this season, leaving him four years of eligibility beginning next season. Richard, who is also practicing with team, is an all-state performer from Cuba City High School who shared the team-lead in scoring during the August trip to Italy.
Picked For Fifth
UWM was picked to finish fifth in the Horizon League, according to a poll of league coaches, sports information directors and media. The four teams picked ahead of the Panthers all return a majority of their rosters from a season ago. Defending national runner-up Butler was the unanimous choice to win the league, with Detroit and high school All-American Ray McCallum picked second. Cleveland State, which has all five of its starters back, was picked third, with Valparaiso fourth.
Various preseason publications have the Panthers picked anywhere from second to sixth. USA Today's College Basketball Special Edition has the Panthers picked for second behind Butler. Tone Boyle is placed on the all-league first team, while Anthony Hill has a spot on the all-league second team. Lindy's College Basketball picks the Panthers for third, with Boyle on the all-league second team.
Sorting Through The Schedule
A first-ever modern-era home game with Marquette, a home matchup against Northern Iowa and road contests with Wisconsin and DePaul highlight this season's schedule. The Panthers also play a full round-robin schedule against league competition. The non-league schedule includes four games against teams that played in the postseason a year ago, with the 11 non-conference opponents having averaged 18 wins a year ago.
Shaquille Boga of St. Louis, Mo., and J.J. Panoske of Brodhead, Wis., have signed National Letters of Intent to play at UWM. The two highly-rated players are currently seniors in high school and will join the Panthers starting with the 2011-12 season. Boga, the brother of current Panther Lonnie Boga, is a 5-foot-11 left-handed point guard who is entering his fourth year as a starter at McCluer High School. He starts his senior season with 1,390 points, putting him on pace to set the school's all-time scoring record, which Lonnie Boga currently holds. Panoske, a 6-foot-10 forward, averaged 21.8 points per game as a junior and is ranked third among seniors in the state of Wisconsin. Last season, he was a first-team Division 2 all-state honoree by the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches' Association while also earning honorable mention all-divisions all-state honors from the Associated Press.
On The Tube
UWM and Time Warner Cable Sports32 announced a multi-year extension that keeps Sports32 as the television home for Panther Athletics. The deal includes live coverage of men's and women's basketball games and coaches shows. This season, Sports32 will carry 10 locally-produced UWM men's games, including games with Marquette and DePaul. In all, the Panthers will have more than 15 games televised by Sports 32 or the ESPN family of networks. Daron Sutton and Adrian Tigert return as the television broadcast team.
UWM games return to WISN (AM 1130) for a fourth-straight year as Bill Johnson returns for his 12th season as the play-by-play voice of the Panthers. Home games include the return of "Panthers Extra," a live postgame show from Major Goolsby's. Bob Brainerd and Adrian Tigert will again team up as hosts of the show, which includes interviews and complete postgame analysis. "Rob Jeter on Basketball," the weekly radio show with the head coach of the Panthers, debuts Jan. 10.
Fans can follow the Panthers online. Along with getting information from the department's website - uwmpanthers.com - fans and media can check the Verizon Wireless BlogZone for features, insights and live blogs. The blog also features extra postgame coverage of all games. The official Panther You Tube page includes game highlights, player features, pregame and postgame interviews and more. Fans can also become a friend of the Panthers on Facebook or get extensive updates all season long by following @kjocmke on Twitter.