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MBB Game Day Central: Furman

December 7, 2015  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Anthony Fields

Anthony Fields

Game Day Central
Liberty Game Notes

The Game
Liberty hits the road on Tuesday looking to shake off a five-game losing skid when the Flames square off with Furman inside Timmons Arena. The Paladins hold a 3-1 record in the all-time series, with Liberty taking the previous meeting, 66-52, last season (Dec. 1, 2014). Game time for Tuesday's contest is slated for 7 p.m., with the game broadcasting live on ESPN3.

Matchup Notes
- Evan Maxwell is currently fourth in the nation in field goal percentage (.714) according to the NCAA national statistical rankings. Maxwell went 7-of-9 from the field on Saturday, finishing with 14 points. The sophomore center also finsihed with a career high 24 points at Radford, last Thursday.

- Furman already holds a victory over a Big South opponent this season, opening the year with a 63-53 win over Presbyterian (Nov. 13).

- Liberty and Furman share a common opponent in Appalachian State. The Paladins bested the Mountaineers on the road, 79-70 (Nov. 17). The Flames played Appalachian State on Thanksgiving Day as part of the Challenge in Music City, falling 73-62.

- Stephen Croone is very familiar with Liberty, finishing with a career-high 40 points the last time the Paladins hosted the Flames inside Timmons Arena (Dec. 20, 2013). In the most recent meeting between the two squads (Dec. 1, 2014), Liberty held Croone to 13 points inside the Vines Center.

Youth Movement
The Flames will rely heavily on fresh faces this season, as Liberty returns just 16.5 percent of its scoring, 13 percent of its rebounding and 13 percent of its total assists from last year.

In addition, Liberty sports one of the youngest rosters in NCAA Division I, this season, with 11 out of 12 players being underclassmen (approximately 92 percent). The Flames are comprised of six freshmen and five sophomores.

Youngest Programs in NCAA Division I - Based on Percentage of Underclassmen
Liberty - 92%

Ohio State - 85%
Fairleigh Dickinson - 85%
Wyoming - 80%

Notes and Anecdotes
- Prior to his days at South Carolina, current Liberty Director of Athletics Barber served five years at Furman, starting as Executive Director of the Paladin Club in 1991, before being promoted to Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Affairs in 1994. While at Furman, Barber was responsible for the collection of $14 million in revenue from annual giving, capital gifts and endowed gifts, while guiding the Paladin Club to gifts totaling $3.75 million and set records for five-consecutive years. He was also the chairman of the Furman Pro-Am Golf Endowment Tournament, which totaled receipts of $6.5 million.

- Before being named Furman's head coach, Niko Medved spent six seasons as an assistant at Colorado State. Medved joined the Rams' coaching staff in the 2007-08 campaign, serving five seasons under Tim Miles and one under Larry Eustachy. Ritchie McKay also has ties to Colorado State, as he was the head coach there for two seasons (1998-2000), leading the Rams to an NIT appearance in his first season.

- Two of Furman's assistant coaches have Big South ties. Now in his fifth year at Furman, Bob Richey spent the previous five seasons at Charleston Southern. Coincidentally, Liberty played the Bucs on Saturday, suffering a 68-61 defeat inside the Vines Center

- Furman assistant Jay McCauley was also in the Big South previously, spending three seasons as an assistant at Gardner-Webb. In his final season (2012-13), McCauley helped guide the Runnin' Bulldogs to a 21-13 overall record, 11-5 Big South Conference mark and a berth in the College Insider Tournament. The Runnin' Bulldogs were eliminated in the semifinals of the 2013 Big South Championship by the Flames, 65-62 (March 9, 2013).