Three things to watch in the Ole Miss vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi matchup
OXFORD, Miss. – Head coach Andy Kennedy’s Rebels lost their third overtime game this season last Saturday against Illinois State, 101-97.
In the loss to the Redbirds, Ole Miss (5-5) was out-rebounded, 49-41, and converted on just 7 of 26 shots from 3-point range. Illinois State, on the other hand, made 13 of 31 shots from beyond the arc and went 26 for 31 from the free throw line.
One bright spot for the Rebels was the emergence of forward Bruce Stevens, who had a game-high 27 points on 7 of 9 shooting, including making 13 of 16 shots from the charity stripe. It was Stevens’ third-consecutive game scoring in double figures; however, Ole Miss will need more than the 6-foot-8 junior to get back on track with SEC play starting on New Year’s Eve.
Ole Miss welcomes Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (3-6) to The Pavilion Tuesday night (6:00 p.m. CT, SECN) for what is just the second meeting between the two programs. The Rebels won the only other meeting between the two, a 73-58 victory on Nov. 29, 2009. Ole Miss has two non-conference games remaining before facing South Carolina to begin league play.
Three things to watch: Ole Miss vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
1. Can Terence Davis get back to knocking down the 3?
In six of the Rebels’ 10 games this season, Terence Davis connected on at least six shots from deep, but the junior forward has only hit one from long range in Ole Miss’ last two games.
For the season, he’s shooting 35.3 percent from 3, and 45.2 percent from the field. Ole Miss could use an offensive spark from Davis Tuesday night, which will show a sign that he has found a rhythm.
2. Winning the rebounding battle
Ole Miss lost the rebounding battle to Illinois State, which didn’t sit well with Kennedy. “Our problem is defensively,” he said. “What is defense? Effort and angles. That’s where it starts. Your effort has to be off the charts.”
The Rebels have struggled at times to out-rebound their opponent, getting beat on the boards in three other games this season (Georgia State, Utah, and Middle Tennessee State) by a combined 106-92.
3. The play of the frontcourt
There’s no doubt Bruce Stevens has what it takes to play at a high level in Division I basketball. He has scored in double-digits in three-consecutive games, while making a combined 18 of 24 shots from the field. Now, the question is will he get help from the rest of the post players—Marcanvis Hymon, Justas Furmanavicius, and Dominik Olejniczak?
Ole Miss and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi begin play at 6:00 p.m. (CT) Tuesday night in The Pavilion. The game will be televised on the SEC Network. Richard Cross will handle play-by-play action, while Daymeon Fishback will handle the analyst duties.
Courtney is from Memphis and received his Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from the University of Memphis in May of 2014. He began his journalism career covering the Memphis Tigers Men’s basketball team, which landed him an intern position on 730 Yahoo Sports Radio and a position with Rivals.com. A freelance writer for the Associated Press, Courtney is also a member of The Rebel Walk team and reports regularly on Ole Miss football and basketball. Courtney, the father of a six-year old girl named Soniyah, prefers to cover NCAA basketball and football, but is happy to report on any other sport that comes his way.