Menís Hoops Closes Home Stand with Bowling Green
The Ball State men’s basketball team will host Bowling Green at 4 p.m. Saturday as the back half of the Ball State Basketball Bonanza at Worthen Arena. The women’s team tips off the event with a game against Akron at noon.
The Cardinals (4-18, 1-10 MAC) will be playing their third game in a row at home, while Bowling Green (10-14, 4-7 MAC) is on the road for its second in a row.
Ball State vs. Bowling Green
Saturday, Feb. 15 at 4 p.m. ET -- Worthen Arena (Muncie, Ind.)
• Radio (Flagship): Ball State Radio Network (104.1 FM WLBC); Joel Godett (play-by-play); David Eha (analyst)
• Radio (Student): Sports Link Radio (91.3 FM WCRD); Luke Martin (play-by-play); Sean Stewart (analyst) & Petar Hood (sidelines)
• Internet: Live video and audio available through the Ball State All Access package at ballstatesports.com; Live stats also available.
What You Need to Know
• Ball State wraps up a three-game home stand Saturday against Bowling Green. The Cardinals are coming off a 73-62 loss Wednesday to Eastern Michigan.
• Senior guard Jesse Berry, who scored 17 points and drilled five 3-pointers in the Eastern Michigan game, enters the Bowling Green contest two treys shy of tying Jauwan Scaife’s Ball State career record of 203.
• Ball State has been balanced offensively with four players averaging double figures: freshman Zavier Turner (12.5 ppg) and seniors Chris Bond (11.9), Majok Majok (10.8) and Jesse Berry (10.1).
• Majok is nearly averaging a double-double at 10.8 points and 9.9 rebounds per game. His rebounding average ranks 18th in the country.
• Turner is tied for ninth place on Ball State’s all-time freshman scoring list with 275 points this year.
• Freshmen have accounted for better than 40 percent of Ball State’s minutes and scoring, and the Cardinals have started three rookies for much of the year.
• Ken Pomeroy rates Ball State’s non-conference schedule No. 38 in the country and its overall schedule No. 76. The Cardinals have played only four teams all season outside the Pomeroy top 200.
• Ball State is playing its 93rd season of basketball and its first under head coach James Whitford.
Scouting Bowling Green
• Bowling Green (10-14, 4-7 MAC) has lost five of its past six games, but four of those losses have come by five points or fewer.
• The Falcons own league wins over some of the top teams in the MAC, including Buffalo (74-68) at home and Ohio (58-56) and Western Michigan (69-64) on the road.
• Bowling Green most recently suffered a 62-61 loss Wednesday at Kent State when the Golden Flashes drained a 3-pointer in the final second.
• Richaun Holmes leads Bowling Green with averages of 13.5 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.9 blocked shots per game.
• Three other Bowling Green players are also averaging double-figure scoring: Jehvon Clarke (13.0 ppg), Spencer Parker (12.7) and Anthony Henderson (11.3).
• Bowling Green features the second-best scoring defense in the MAC, allowing 64.1 points per game.
The Series with Bowling Green
• Ball State and Bowling Green will be meeting for the 77th time with the Cardinals trailing 42-34 in the all-time series.
• Bowling Green won 19 of the first 23 meetings between the teams, but Ball State is 30-23 against the Falcons since the start of the 1984-85 season.
• Ball State owns a 24-13 advantage over Bowling Green in Muncie and has won 14 of the previous 18 matchups inside Worthen Arena.
• Bowling Green has won the past three meetings between the teams, including a 70-59 win last year in Bowling Green (Feb. 2, 2013).
• The Falcons also won the last meeting in Muncie, 61-54, on Feb. 8, 2012.
• Ball State’s non-conference strength of schedule is ranked No. 38 in the country by Ken Pomeroy, while its overall SOS is No. 76.
• The Cardinals have played only four teams all year rated outside Pomeroy’s top 200.
Home and Away
• Ball State has posted a 4-7 record at home this year but is still in search of its first road victory.
• The Cardinals’ shooting numbers have been virtually the same no matter where they play -- 40.0 percent at home and 39.7 percent on the road.
• The biggest difference has come on the defensive end of the floor, where Ball State is allowing opponents to shoot 50.2 percent overall and 39.8 percent from 3-point range on the road.
• At home, the Cardinals are holding opponents to 42.4 percent shooting and 25.5 percent from beyond the arc.
Cardinals Excel on the Boards
• One of Ball State’s biggest strengths this season has been rebounding.
• The Cardinals own a +3.5 average rebounding margin for the season, which ranks third in the MAC behind only Toledo (+5.0) and Northern Illinois (+4.3).
• In league play, Ball State has a +2.8 average rebounding margin, which ranks fourth in the conference.
• The Cardinals have outrebounded all but three of their MAC opponents: Western Michigan (36-34) on Jan. 26, Akron (34-28) on Jan. 29 and Buffalo (37-33) on Feb. 5.
• Last Saturday Ball State held a 39-33 advantage against Toledo, which leads the league in rebounding margin.
Turnovers Telling the Story
• Ball State has been prone to high turnover numbers this season.
• The Cardinals are turning the ball over more than any team in the MAC at 17.2 per game.
• Ball State has held its turnovers to 13.5 per game in its wins compared to 18.0 in its losses.
• The Cardinals turned it over a season-low 10 times in the Jan. 3 victory over Oakland City and a season-worst 23 times in the Dec. 17 loss at Marquette.
Persistent Crowder Gets His Chance
• Walk-on guard Kindon Crowder scored a career-high 10 points in a career-best 16 minutes Wednesday against Eastern Michigan, nearly doubling his previous season total of 11 points.
• Crowder, a former team manager who first earned a roster spot as a practice player a year ago, has seen action in 11 games, including 10 of the past 15.
• He played high school basketball his freshman year at St. Francis de Sales in Chicago but did not play his final three seasons at Munster High School in Indiana.
Berry Has 3-Point Record in Sights
• Jesse Berry is two 3-pointers away from tying the Ball State career record held by former teammate Jauwan Scaife (2009-13).
• Scaife hit 203 treys in his career, while Patrick Jackson (1998-2002) is second on the list with 202.
• Berry now owns 201 3-pointers after nailing five of them Wednesday against Eastern Michigan. He matched his career-high earlier this season with six treys Dec. 30 at James Madison.
• He already owns the school record for career 3’s attempted (598).
Bond Having His Best Season Yet
• Senior forward Chris Bond is averaging a career-high 11.9 points per game in his final season for the Cardinals.
• Bond has reached double figures in 12 of the past 14 games and is leading the Cardinals in conference play at 13.3 points per game.
• He scored a career-high 20 points earlier this year against Southeast Missouri and has reached 16 points in six games.
Ball State’s Iron Man
• Senior forward Chris Bond has made 53 consecutive starts dating back to the last game of the 2011-12 season.
• Bond is the only Ball State player to start every game this season and was one of only two (Jauwan Scaife) to start all 30 a year ago.
• He has started 91 games in his career, including all 80 in which he has played over the past three seasons.
Bond Keeping Good Company
• Chris Bond now owns career totals of 947 points, 556 rebounds and 142 steals.
• In surpassing 500 career rebounds Jan. 15 at Ohio, Bond became only the second player in Ball State history with at least 800 points, 500 rebounds and 125 steals in a career.
• Bonzi Wells (1994-98) is the other. He ended his career with 2,485 points, 843 rebounds and 347 steals.
• Jesse Berry surpassed 1,000 points for his career Nov. 30 at Cleveland State. He now owns 1,142 career points, the most of any current Ball State player.
• Berry became the 27th member of Ball State’s 1,000-point club, while fellow senior Chris Bond is also nearing the milestone.
• Bond needs 53 more points to reach 1,000 for his career.
Majok One of the Nation’s Best on the Boards
• Senior center Majok Majok ranks 18th nationally in rebounding at 9.9 boards per game. Only Buffalo’s Javon McCrea (10.2) averages more among MAC players.
• Majok owns 14 double-digit rebounding games this season, including a career-best 18-rebound effort Jan. 3 against Oakland City.
• Majok led the MAC last year and ranked 18th nationally at 9.8 rebounds per game.
Majok Majok’s Double-Doubles
• Majok Majok is nearly averaging a double-double at 10.8 points and 9.9 rebounds per game. Only 13 players in the country are averaging a double-double.
• The last Cardinal to average a double-double in a season was Theron Smith, who tallied 19.6 points and 10.9 rebounds per game in 2001-02.
• Majok owns eight double-doubles on the year and 17 for his two-year Ball State career.
• With 25 points and 18 rebounds in the non-conference finale versus Oakland City, Majok became the first Ball State player with at least 20 points and 15 rebounds in a game since Terrance Chapman did it in a January 2005 game at Eastern Michigan.
• For his two-year Ball State career, Majok is averaging 10.8 points and 9.9 rebounds per game.
Turner from Beyond the Arc
• Zavier Turner ranks second in the MAC in 3-point percentage (.425) and third in the league in 3-pointers per game (2.2).
• Turner has hit at least three 3-pointers in 10 of the Cardinals’ 22 games, including a career-high four against Marquette and Miami.
More Turner Rankings
• Zavier Turner also ranks in the top 20 in the MAC in free throw percentage (.885, 3rd), assists per game (3.4, 7th), minutes per game (32.1, 8th) and points per game (12.5, 17th).
• He leads MAC freshmen in each of those categories (including the ones in the previous note).
Historical View of Turner’s Numbers
• Zavier Turner is climbing Ball State’s all-time chart for scoring by a freshman. His 275 points are tied for ninth on the list with Duane Clemens (1996-97), nine shy of Jesse Berry (2010-11) for eighth.
• Turner, who leads Ball State with 12.5 points per game, has reached double figures a team-high 16 times this season.
• Earlier this season, Turner became the first Cardinal with at least 17 points and at least four assists in the first three games of a season since Larry Bullington in 1973-74 and just the second to accomplish the feat since Ball State began tracking assists in 1973.
• He became the first Ball State freshman with at least 17 points in the first three games of a season since Jim Fields in 1975-76 and just the second since freshmen became eligible for varsity competition in 1972.
Alstork’s Big Night at Kent State
• Jan. 11 at Kent State, freshman guard Mark Alstork became the first player since 2008 to lead Ball State in points, rebounds and assists in a game. Alstork finished with career highs of 15 points and 10 rebounds and matched his career best with five assists.
• The last Ball State player to accomplish the feat was Peyton Stovall on Jan. 16, 2008 against Western Michigan. Stovall led the team with 18 points and tied for team-high honors with seven boards and one assist.
Youth and Experience
• Ball State’s lineup this season is heavy on both experience and youth.
• There are only two scholarship players on the Cardinals’ roster outside the freshman and senior classes, so those two classes account for the majority of the minutes on the floor.
• Ball State’s freshmen have stepped in to make an immediate impact, accounting for more than 40 percent of the team’s minutes and scoring.