UNI Men’s BBall Travel to Virginia
Site: Charlottesville, Va.
Venue: John Paul Jones Arena
Date: Sat., Dec. 21
Time: 3 pm (CT)
UNI and Virginia have shared one common opponent in the non-conference portion of the schedule – the VCU Rams.
UNI posted a 77-68 win over VCU on Saturday in front of a national TV (ESPNU) audience.
Earlier this season, VCU scored a 59-56 win at Virginia (11/12) – also in front of a national TV audience (ESPN2). JESPERSON KNOWS A THING OR TWO ABOUT VIRGINIA
Transfer guard Paul Jesperson knows a thing or two about Virginia basketball after playing for the Cavaliers the previous two seasons.
Jesperson played in 56 games and drew 33 starts for the Cavaliers during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons. Jesperson averaged 1.5 ppg as a freshman and 4.7 ppg as a sophomore. Jesperson was the Wisconsin Associated Press and Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior at Merrill (Wis.) High School.
Jesperson is currently sitting out as a transfer-redshirt this season for the UNI Panthers.
ACC AGAIN FOR THE PANTHERS
Saturday’s matchup will be the second this season for the Panthers against an opponent from the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC).
UNI dropped an 80-66 decision to Maryland in the semifinals of the Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands.
BENNETT HAS A HISTORY WITH UNI
Virginia head coach Tony Bennett played his collegiate basketball at Green Bay and went 6-1 against the UNI Panthers in Mid-Continent play from the 1988-89 season through the 1990-91 season.
Bennett’s only loss to UNI came when the Panthers scored a 53-45 win over Green Bay in the 1990 Mid-Continent Tournament Championship game in the UNI-Dome on March 7, 1990.
TOP 100 MATCHUP
According to ESPN’s RPI, Saturday’s matchup will feature No. 83 UNI at No. 45 Virginia.
The Panthers non-conference strength of schedule is ranked No. 35, while Virginia’s non-conference strength of schedule is ranked No. 37.
Two of UNI’s scheduled opponents this season are ranked in the top 25 polls.
Wichita State is ranked No. 8 (Coaches) and No. 12 (AP), while Iowa State is ranked No. 16 (Coaches) and No. 17 (AP).
Two other Panther opponents are receiving votes in the polls – VCU and Virginia.
FOUR TRUE NON-CONF ROAD GAMES
UNI will play four true road non-conference games prior to Jan. 1 for only the third time in head coach Ben Jacobson’s tenure with the Panthers.
The Panthers will travel to Ohio (Nov. 9), George Mason (Nov. 16), Milwaukee (Dec. 3) and Virginia (Dec. 21) prior to Jan. 1.
The two previous times the Panthers have played four true non-conference road games before Jan. 1 in the Jacobson era occurred in the 2006-07 season (Washington, Bucknell, Iowa, Loyola) and in the 2010-11 season (Syracuse, Milwaukee, TCU, Iowa).
MAGIC NUMBER IS LESS THAN 70
UNI is 4-0 this season when holding the opposition to less than 70 points. However, when the opposition scores more than 70, the Panthers are 1-5.
In UNI’s five wins, the Panthers are scoring 74.6 ppg and giving up 60.2 ppg.
In UNI’s five losses, the Panthers are scoring 70.8 ppg and giving up 81.0 ppg.