Family Weekend Game Up Next
The annual Family Weekend men's basketball game starts with the pregame tailgate at 2 pm, followed by LMU-Pacific at 4 pm.
Feb. 7, 2014
LOS ANGELES -- LMU men's basketball will host the 2014 Family Weekend game when they host Pacific on Saturday, Feb. 8 at 4 pm. The day begins with the annual pregame tailgate party at 2 pm. The Tigers (12-10, 3-8) return to the bluff for conference play for the first time since 1971 when they were an original member of the WCC. The game can be seen on TheW.tv and heard on KXLU 88.9 FM.
THE MATCH-UP FAMILY WEEKEND
INSIDE THE LIONS
Senior Anthony Ireland continues to pace the Lions in all areas of the floor, putting the final marks on his record-setting career, putting himself in even more elite company in the LMU record book. He has not missed a game in his career, playing in his school record 124th against Saint Mary's while earning his 117th start, also a record. With his running lay-in with about five minutes to play against the Gaels, Ireland passed Bo Kimble for fourth all-time in LMU history in all-time scoring. He finished with 13 points and now has 2,022 points heading into the game against Pacific. As of Feb. 6 he is second in the league at 18.6 ppg (64th nationally), second in assists at 5.5 (35th nationally) and second in steals at 1.8. With 446 points (ranked 35th in the NCAA as of Feb. 6), 128 assists (ranked 24th) and 42 steals (ranked 63rd) in 2013-14, Ireland also Jim Williamson for third with 516 career assists and is tied for second all-time with 189 career steals with Mike Yoest. He joins Terrell Lowery as the only player in LMU history with at least 1,500 points, 500 assists and 150 steals in his career. There are only three active players in the NCAA that have those numbers (Kendall Williams - New Mexico; Chaz Williams - UMass; Shabazz Napier - UConn). None of them, including Lowery, have 500 career rebounds. Ireland is at 494 heading into Saturday's game against Saint Mary's.
The Lions enter the week second behind Pacific in the WCC and 8th in the NCAA (as of Feb. 6) hitting 75.8 percent on the season from the free throw line. They raised their season number by nearly a percent after the season-high 31-for-37 effort against Pacific (the most since going 32-for-40 against CS Fullerton in the CIT on Mar. 14, 2012). They went 18-for-23 (78.3%) against Pepperdine last Saturday.
Freshman Evan Payne led the Lions with 25 points against Pacific, second only to his 27 points against BYU in the first meeting. The 27 points is tied for the fourth best by a freshman in LMU History and his 25 is tied for eighth. The BYU game was the first of conference, making the point total the most ever by an LMU freshman in his first WCC game and the third-most by an LMU player in his conference debut. After 17 against Saint Mary's, Payne now has 351 points on the season and is ranked sixth all-time for freshman scoring in a season. His 14.6 ppg is ranked 11th in the WCC.
Freshman Gabe Levin went for his freshman record fifth double-double against Pacific on Jan. 23 with 12 points and 10 rebounds, his first since his 14 points and 14 rebounds at Pittsburgh. He is one of just five freshman to have multiple double-doubles in their debut season at LMU. He has grabbed 14 rebounds in a single game three times already this season. Heading into the game against Pacific, Levin has 166 rebounds and is ranked third all-time for a freshman. In addition, he has added 12 blocks in four games, giving him 28 on the year. He is ranked 5th in rebounding at 7.6 rpg and 5th in blocks at 1.3 bpg.
While Ireland has been a mainstay in the Lions' line-up the last four seasons, playing short-handed is nothing new for the Lions in the six seasons under Head Coach Max Good. Junior Chase Flint, who had played in 42 games as a Lion with 24 starts, suffered a broken elbow against Portland on Jan. 16 and will be out the rest of the season. He is the third former starter and fourth major contributor to be lost for the season in 2013-14. In addition, sophomore transfer Ben Dickinson missed the game on Jan. 18 against Gonzaga and remains out indefinitely due to personal reasons. Combined with freshman Patson Siame's year of residency, the Lions will play this weekend with just seven scholarship players. Entering the Pacific game, key players have missed 67 games this season due to injury, including Flint's five games, Godwin Okonji (leg suffered in car accident prior to practice on Oct. 20, see LMULions.com for more) for the entire season (24 games), senior Ayodeji Egbeyemi (hip) the last 16 games, and freshman Nino Jackson (ankle) the last 20 games, all of whom the Lions will look at applying for a medical redshirt following the season. Freshman Gabe Levin also missed two games with a shoulder injury. The Lions have had eight starting line-ups this year, second only to Good's first season in 2008-09 for fewest line-ups. A year ago the Lions had 10 different starting line-ups as key players missed 30 games. In 2011-12 when they won 21 games, the Lions featured 11 starting line-ups but had key players miss just 25 games, the fewest in Good's tenure. In 2010-11 they had 15 line-ups with players missing 63 games. In 2009-10 in which the Lions had 18 wins, they had 10 line-ups with the second fewest missed games, 26. And in his first season, the Lions were down to six scholarship players at one point and key players missed 68 games.
A Grand Finale: Senior Anthony Ireland enters his final season all over the record books at LMU with the projection to do even more. He enters the season as a Preseason All-WCC selection and is:
The Next Step - LA Times
2014 Senior CLASS Award Candidate
Watch-list for the Bob Cousy Award
Preseason Lou Henson Award All-American
WCC Best Player Selection (sbnation and College Hoops Journal)
One of nation's most unknow top players (CBS)
LMU Magazine: "Ice Man"
College Hoops Daily