Miami hosts Toledo
Wednesday, January 29 - 7 p.m.
Millett Hall - Oxford, Ohio
Live Video Stream: Miami All-Access (subscription) on www.MURedHawks.com
Radio: Miami IMG Sports Network (WMOH 1450 Hamilton; WFMG 101.3 Richmond; WONE 980 Dayton; WDBZ 1230 Cincinnati)
REDHAWKS RETURN HOME TO HOST MAC CO-LEADER TOLEDO: Riding a three-game win streak, Miami returns home for to host Toledo on Wednesday, Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. Miami is one game out of first place in the MAC standings, but faces a feisty Toledo team that currently ties for first in the overall conference standings and enters Wednesday’s game on a five-game win streak.
PREGAME AND HALFTIME HIGHLIGHTS: Prior to the game as part of the Armstrong Student Center Grand Opening Celebration, Miami Athletics and the Red & White Club are hosting a pre-game reception at the Armstrong Student Center from 5-6:30 p.m. Attendees will have an opportunity to tour the Armstrong Student Center, hear from Miami football student-athlete Heath Harding and enjoy some light appetizers. The event is free and open to the public. Because parking is limited around the Armstrong Center, a shuttle service will run from the Millett Hall West Lot from 4:45 p.m. to 6:45 p.m. The fan-favorite Kings Firecrackers will perform at halftime of the game.
ABOUT THE ROCKETS: Toledo enters Wednesday’s game with a 17-2 overall record and is the MAC co-leader with a 5-1 league mark. The Rockets won their first 12 games of the season and are currently riding a five-game win streak, including an 81-78 come-from-behind win against Kent State on Sunday. Their lone losses are at Kansas (93-83) and at Western Michigan (87-76). Five Rockets average double figures in scoring, led by Rian Pearson, Justin Drummond and Julius Brown at 14.5, 14.4 and 14.2 ppg, respectively. J.D. Weatherspoon follows at 11.8 ppg and a team-leading 6.3 rpg, while Nathan Boothe averages 10.2 ppg. As a team, the Rockets rank among the top 25 nationally in nine statistical categories. Toledo ranks 13th in scoring offense at 83.2 ppg, while its assist/turnover ratio (1.59) ranks ninth to highlight the list. Individually, Brown ranks eighth nationally in assists per game (6.5) and 19th in free-throw percentage (.886).
THE SERIES WITH TOLEDO: Wednesday marks the 121st meeting between Miami and Toledo with the RedHawks holding a 68-52 advantage in the series. When playing in Oxford, Miami is 42-15 all-time against the Rockets. Toledo has captured the last three meetings in the series. Last season, the Rockets pulled out a 65-64 win at Savage Arena. The last time the teams met in Oxford was on Jan. 25, 2012 with Toledo inching out a 63-61 win. Miami’s last win in the series was at Toledo on Feb. 12, 2011, 68-66. The RedHawks’ last win at Millett Hall against the Rockets was on Feb. 10, 2010, 55-47. Three of the last four meetings have been decided by two points or fewer.
UP NEXT: Miami continues a two-game home stretch when the RedHawks host Eastern Michigan at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1. Miami will host an Alumni Weekend, honoring its 1958-59, 1968-69, 1983-84 and 1998-99 MAC Championships teams. Miami then goes back on the road for two games, traveling to Northern Illinois for a 7 p.m. game on Tuesday, Feb. 4 before playing at Ohio at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 8. The RedHawks return home for a game on Wednesday, Feb. 12 when Miami hosts Buffalo at 7 p.m.
MIAMI SPORTS NETWORK FROM IMG COLLEGE: In its seventh year of its partnership with IMG College, the Miami Sports Network from IMG College continues its coverage of Miami men’s basketball with a group of affiliates blanketing most of Southwest Ohio and Southeast Indiana. "The Voice of the RedHawks" Steve Baker delivers the play-by-play coverage, while Terry Bridge provides commentary. Tune in to one of Miami’s game-day affiliates: WMOH-AM 1450 (Hamilton, OH), WFMG-FM 101.3 (Richmond, IN), WDBZ-AM 1230 (Cincinnati, OH), WONE 980 (Dayton, OH), MURedHawks.com (All-Access Subscription).
FELDER TABBED MAC EAST DIVISION CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Senior forward Will Felder was named the Mid-American Conference East Division Co-Player of the Week after averaging 17.0 ppg, 7.5 rpg and shooting 70.0 percent from the field in RedHawk wins against Central Michigan and at Bowling Green last week. Junior guard Will Sullivan captured CollegeSportsMaddness.com MAC Player of the Week honors after averaging 18.0 ppg and shooting 61.1 percent from the field and 50.0 percent from 3-point range, while the two Wills—Felder and Sullivan—shared MAC East Division Player of the Week honors from Hustle Belt.
PLAYING THE PERCENTAGES: As a team in conference play, Miami leads the MAC in free-throw percentage (.802), field goal percentage (.474) and 3-point field goal percentage (.365). Junior guard Will Sullivan leads the MAC in conference games in field goal percentage (.632) and 3-point field goal percentage (.550) and ties for fourth in free-throw percentage (.875). Senior forward Will Felder ties for second in the MAC in free-throw percentage (.889) and ranks third in field goal percentage (.609), while senior forward Bill Edwards ranks 12th in field goal percentage (.477) and 15th in 3-point field goal percentage and freshman guard Jaryd Eustace tied for 10th in 3-point field goal percentage (.400). On the season, Miami’s 74.6 free-throw percentage leads the MAC and ranks 28th nationally.
A TALE OF TWO HALVES: Miami has seen a significant improvement over the last half of its season thus far. In its first eight games, the RedHawks went 2-6 and averaged 62.9 ppg, shooting 40.8 percent from the field, while giving up 74.5 ppg. Its assist/turnover ratio was 0.8 and Miami was allowing opponents to shoot 44.9 percent from 3-point range and 49.0 percent from the field. Over the last nine games, the RedHawks have gone 6-3 and averaged 70.8 ppg, shooting a much improved 48.5 percent from the field, while giving up 67.3 ppg. Its assist/turnover ratio also has seen an upswing at 1.2. In addition to its scoring output, the RedHawks’ defense has seen significant improvement, allowing 33.8 percent from 3-point range and 43.9 percent from the field.
UPPING THE OFFENSIVE OUTPUT: In MAC play, Miami has upped its scoring production, recording 70 or more points in four of its six games. The RedHawks rank third in MAC games in scoring offense, averaging 71.0 ppg. On the season, Miami ranks ninth among MAC leaders in scoring offense at 67.1 ppg.
ODDS ‘N ENDS: Senior guard Quinten Rollins cracked Miami’s top-10 career starts list with his start at Bowling Green on Jan. 25 ... he has made 92 career starts ... in six games, Miami has eclipsed its number of MAC wins from a season ago when the RedHawks posted a 3-13 record ... in all eight of Miami’s wins, it has shot better than its opponents from the field and is 8-0 when shooting better than the opponent.
WILL POWER: Miami has been fueled by a good bit of "Will" power, especially in its Jan. 22 game against Central Michigan. Senior forward Will Felder poured in 22 points off 10-of-13 shooting from the field to lead all players. Junior guard Will Sullivan amassed 20 points off 6-of-10 shooting and a 7-for-7 performance from the free-throw line. It was the second time this season the two Wills teamed up for 20-point scoring efforts in the same game with Felder collecting a career-high 26 points and Sullivan tallying a career-best 23 points in a 94-87 win over IPFW on Dec. 3. Sophomore guard Willie Moore chipped in nine points for the RedHawks, while senior forward Bill Edwards tallied 13 points to round out the top four scoring efforts for the Red and White. All four share the given name William.
STEALING THE SHOW: As a team, Miami is averaging 8.4 steals per game to rank third in the MAC and rank 24th nationally. The RedHawks are averaging 9.5 steals per game in MAC play, which ranks first. Senior guard Quinten Rollins leads the MAC in all games (2.6) and MAC-only games (3.5) in steals, while sophomore guard Geovonie McKnight ranks sixth in all games (1.7) and sophomore guard Willie Moore ranks third in MAC-only games at 2.3 steals per game.
FELDER PICKING UP THE PACE: Senior forward Will Felder, who ranks among MAC leaders in seven categories this season, averages 15.1 ppg and 7.2 rpg while shooting 55.2 percent from the field. He has seven games with more than 19 points this season and has scored 15 points or more in six of Miami’s last seven games. Over the RedHawks’ last nine games, Felder averaged 17.0 ppg, 7.3 rpg and shot 63.4 percent from the field.
20/20 VISION: Twice this season, senior forward Will Felder and junior guard Will Sullivan have teamed up to score 20 or more points in the same game. Against Central Michigan on Jan. 22, Felder recorded 22 points, while Sullivan notched 20 points. On Dec. 3 against IPFW, both scored career highs as Felder amassed 26 points and Sullivan chipped in 23. Both have scored 20 or more points three times this season, while Felder has five 20-point scoring efforts in his time as a RedHawk. Senior forward Bill Edwards also has surpassed the 20-point scoring plateau this season with a career-high 24 points in his season debut on Jan. 11 against Western Michigan. Edwards has two 20-point scoring efforts in his 16 games as a RedHawk.
FELDER DOUBLING UP: For the second time this season and the fourth time in his Miami career, senior forward Will Felder recorded a double-double. Felder scored 22 points and hauled in a career-high-tying 13 rebounds in an 86-80 win over Central Michigan on Jan. 22. His other double-double this season came in Miami’s home opener against Wilmington with 19 points and 11 boards.
A LITTLE GIVE AND TAKE: With his two steals at Akron on Jan. 15, senior guard Quinten Rollins moved into second on Miami’s career steals chart and currently boasts 185. Ron Harper owns the career record with 287 steals. Rollins leads the MAC and ranks 9th nationally in steals, averaging 2.6 per game. Rollins also tied for ninth on Miami’s career assists list with 338 career assists and is eight away from the No. 8 total.
ROLLINS TIES MIAMI SINGLE-GAME RECORD FOR SECOND TIME: Senior guard Quinten Rollins tied a Miami single-game record for steals, amassing seven at Central Michigan on Jan. 8. He matched a mark set by Ron Harper, Damon Frierson and Chuck Goodyear and equaled his own career-high set on Nov. 13, 2012 against Grambling State. With his seven steals against the Chippewas, Rollins became the only player in Miami history to twice record seven steals in a game.
STINGY ON TURNOVERS: While the RedHawks lead the MAC in turnover margin (+5.33) in conference play, senior guard Quinten Rollins has produced an impressive assist/turnover ratio in MAC play. Rollins leads the conference with an 3.0 assist/turnover ratio, handing out 21 assists while committing seven turnovers in MAC play. He had two each in games against Central Michigan, and he went three straight games without a turnover.
A MIAMI WIN WOULD ...
• Give Miami four straight wins for the first time since 2010-11.
• Keep Miami within a game of first place and possibly move it into a tie for first place in the overall MAC standings.
• Snap a three-game skid in the series with Toledo.
A MIAMI LOSS WOULD ...
• Be Toledo’s sixth straight win.
• Be the Rockets’ 16th win in Oxford.
• Drop Miami to 4-3 in home games.