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New York, New York: Bears Invade Broadway for NIT Semifinal




March 28, 2009

Photo Gallery

GAME CENTER: GAME 38 (NIT SEMIFINALS)
BAYLOR BEARS (23-14) VS. SAN DIEGO STATE AZTECS (26-9)
Date:
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Tip-Off: 6 p.m. CT
Location: New York, N.Y.
Arena: Madison Square Garden (19,786)
Television: ESPN2
Talent: Ron Franklin (pxp), Fran Fraschilla (color), Bill Raftery (color)
Radio: Baylor ISP Sports Network | ESPN/KRZI 1660 AM (Waco)/Sirius Satellite (Ch. 161) | BaylorBears.com
Talent: John Morris (pxp), Pat Nunley (color)
Live Stats: BaylorBears.com
Web Stream: ESPN360.com and BaylorBears.com (live audio)
Series: San Diego State leads 3-0
Postseason Tournament History: 6-10
Postseason NIT History: 3-3 (4 appearances)

NIT FINAL FOUR STORY LINES

• Baylor's magical postseason run continues on to the NIT Final Four as the Bears face the San Diego State Aztecs in the first of two semifinal games Tuesday, March 31, at Madison Square Garden. The winner will advance to the NIT championship game Thursday, April 2, against the winner of Notre Dame and Penn State.
• Baylor has never played a game in the month of April in school history.
• Tuesday's game will be Baylor's first in New York City since the 1950 NCAA Final Four (lost to N.C. State in third place game).
• Tuesday's game vs. San Diego State will be only Baylor's 14th game to be played on or after March 18th in school history (Baylor is 7-6 in those contests thus far).
• Baylor's senior trio of Curtis Jerrells, Henry Dugat and Kevin Rogers became the winningest class in school history with their 63rd career win, following a victory at Auburn on March 24.
• Sophomore LaceDarius Dunn has 994 career points in 68 games (14.6 points per game) and is six points shy of becoming the 23rd member of Baylor's 1,000-point club.
• Dating back to the start of the Big 12 Championship, Baylor has won six of its last seven games, surpassing its wins output in Big 12 play (Baylor was 5-11 in 16 Big 12 contests). He would become the second sophomore in school history to accomplish the feat (Terry Teagle).
• With his next game vs. SDSU, Curtis Jerrells will tie Matt Sayman (118) for the most games played in Baylor history.
• Baylor is one of only three Division I schools to have three different players record 30-point games this season against Division I opponents (Virginia Tech and VMI).
• In three NIT wins, Tweety Carter has dished out 20 assists -- an average of 6.7 per game. He recorded a career-high nine in Baylor's first-round win over Georgetown March 18.

SERIES HISTORY
• San Diego State leads the brief series 3-0. Tuesday will be the first meeting between the schools since Dec. 27, 1990, when the Aztecs defeated Baylor 84-70 in San Diego.
• Baylor head coach Scott Drew is 10-1 vs. first-time opponents this season.

SAN DIEGO STATE SCOUTING REPORT
• After falling in the Mountain West Conference Championship final and narrowly missing the NCAA Tournament, San Diego State has won seven of its last eight games, including wins vs. Weber State, Kansas State and Saint Mary's in the NIT.
• SDSU (26-9) is led by All-Mountain West second-team selections Kyle Spain and Lorenzo Wade, who are the lone Aztecs averaging more than 10.0 points per game. Spain leads all Aztec scorers in total points (489), but Wade holds a team-best 14.3 points per game average.
• While the Aztecs posted a 16-2 home record, San Diego State is 10-7 away from Cox Arena.
• San Diego State is averaging 67.3 points through 35 games, compared to Baylor's 76.4 points per game average (in 37 games). However, SDSU's opponents are averaging less than 60.0 points per game, while Baylor is allowing 70.3 points.

THE ARIZONA STATE TEST
• With one common opponent between the teams, Baylor defeated No. 14 Arizona State 87-78 at the 76 Classic in November. LaceDarius Dunn scored 27 points off the bench, while Curtis Jerrells poured in 22 to lead the Bears to the impressive nine-point win. Arizona State's James Harden did manage to score 32 on 9-of-17 shooting.
• Earlier in November, Arizona State -- then No. 15 in the nation -- made a late second-half run to upend the Aztecs 59-52 in San Diego. Kyle Spain had a team-high 17 for the Aztecs, while Harden scored a game-high 18.

TRAILING THE FIELD
• Baylor is a combined 2-4 all-time against the NIT Final Four field. In Tuesday's semifinal, the Bears will seek their first series win against the San Diego State -- the Aztecs own a 3-0 hold in the short series.
• Baylor is 1-1 against Notre Dame -- the Bears defeated the Fighting Irish at the Paradise Jam last season.
• The Bears are 1-0 all-time vs. Penn State, defeating the Nittany Lions in the 1990 Dr Pepper Invitational in Waco.

A BAYLOR WIN...
• would be the Bears' 24th victory this season -- the second-most wins in school history, tying the 1947-48 Baylor squad that lost in the NCAA championship game (24-8).
• would advance the Bears to the NIT championship game -- a program first.
• would be Baylor's 10th win away from Waco -- the most of the Scott Drew era and the most since 1987-88 (11 wins).

LACE'S TWO-YEAR PLAN
• Sophomore LaceDarius Dunn has 994 career points in 68 games (14.6 points per game) and is six points shy of becoming the 23rd member of Baylor's 1,000-point club.
• Dunn would become the second sophomore to accomplish the feat at Baylor -- Baylor's all-time leading scorer Terry Teagle (2,189) scored 1,028 points in his first two seasons. Dunn would also be the fourth player in program history to score 1,000 points in two seasons, joining Teagle, Vinnie Johnson (1,231) and William Chatmon (1,104). Johnson and Chatmon were junior college transfers, playing their junior and senior seasons at Baylor.

JERRELLS WILL ADD ANOTHER CAREER MILESTONE
• With his next game vs. San Diego State, Curtis Jerrells will tie Matt Sayman (118) for the all-time Baylor lead with his 118th career game played. Jerrells also owns the school record for career games started with 117.

DREW'S SQUAD STILL CHASING HISTORY
• Baylor has posted three consecutive wins in the NIT, but the Bears are still chasing postseason history. Baylor's three postseason wins mark only the second time in school history it has notched more than one postseason victory.
• In 1947-48, Baylor won four NCAA games, finishing as the national runner-up (Baylor lost 58-42 to Kentucky in championship game). That season, the Bears defeated Arizona twice in the NCAA Division Six Playoffs in Dallas before defeating Washington and Kansas State in the NCAA Western Regional at Kansas City, Mo.

BEARS MARCHING ON
• Tuesday's NIT semifinals matchup vs. San Diego State will be only Baylor's 14th game to be played on or after March 18th in school history (Baylor is 7-6 in those contests thus far).
• Baylor played a school-record six games after March 18th during its NCAA runner-up finish in 1948.
• Tuesday's game will also match the latest game played in the month of March in school history. In 1948, the Bears played the Denver Nuggets in the Olympic Basketball Trials at Madison Square Garden on March 31.
• Baylor has never played a game in the month of April in school history.

IT'S BEEN AWHILE...
• Baylor's NIT semifinal game against San Diego State will be the Bears' first NIT Final Four appearance in program history. It will also be Baylor's first game at Madison Square Garden since the 1950 NCAA Final Four.

GETTING HOT AT THE RIGHT TIME
• Dating back to the start of the Big 12 Championship, Baylor has won six of its last seven games, surpassing its wins output in Big 12 play (Baylor was 5-11 in 16 Big 12 contests).
• It is Baylor's second three-game winning streak in the last two weeks. The three-game winning streak is Baylor's longest in the 2009 calendar year (BU posted two six-game win streaks in 2008 calendar year).

ROAD, SWEET ROAD
• After finishing 4-8 in 12 road/neutral-site games during the regular season, Baylor is 5-1 in its last six games away from Waco.
• Baylor went 3-1 at the Big 12 Championship in Oklahoma City, followed by wins at Virginia Tech on March 21 and Auburn on March 24.
• Baylor has won nine games away from the Ferrell Center -- tied for the most under head coach Scott Drew. Last season, Baylor won a combined nine contests at road and neutral sites.

30 TIMES THREE AND ONE OF ONLY THREE
• Baylor is one of only three Division I schools to have three different players record 30-point games this season against Division I opponents. Only Virginia Tech (Malcolm Delaney, A.D. Vassallo, Jeff Allen) and VMI (Keith Gabriel, Chavis Holmes, Travis Holmes, Austin Kenon) have equaled that feat this season. VMI is the only school to have four players score 30 or more.
• Baylor is the only Big 12 school to have three different players score 30 or more points in a game this season -- Curtis Jerrells (31 vs. Oklahoma State, Jan. 17), LaceDarius Dunn (33 at Kansas State, Jan. 21) at Tweety Carter (30 at Oklahoma State, Feb. 21).

BEARS BASKETBALL ON THE AIR
• Bear basketball is aired live via the Baylor-ISP SportsNetwork on flagship station 1660AM ESPN Radio (KRZI) in Waco and worldwide on Sirius Satellite Radio channel 161. All games are broadcast by the "Voice of the Bears" John Morris and former BU basketball standout Pat Nunley, in his 27th season as analyst.

INSIDE BAYLOR SPORTS TV SHOW
• Inside Baylor Sports, the award winning weekly TV show that covers all aspects of Baylor athletics, returns for its 10th season.
• Senior Producer Robert Shiekh and Producer Lawrence Gilligan provide viewers an inside look at Baylor athletics with thorough highlights, in-depth interviews and imaginative features on all 18 sports presented in a fast-paced, entertaining style. Co-hosts John Morris and Lori Fogleman guide viewers through the best coverage of Baylor athletics on television.
• Inside Baylor Sports airs Sundays, Aug. 24, 2008 through June 7, 2009, at 10:30 p.m. CT on KCEN-TV in Central Texas. The program also airs weekly throughout the region on FS Southwest at 1 p.m. each Wednesday and is archived on the web at BaylorTV.com.


 

 

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