March 4, 2009
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Bulldogs (12-14, 7-5 Ivy) close out the the regular season this weekend, hosting Dartmouth on Friday at 7 p.m. (All*Access Video | WYBC Audio | GameTracker) and Harvard on Saturday at 7 p.m. (All*Access Video | WYBC Audio | GameTracker). Seniors Chris Andrews, Ari Greenberg, Ross Morin, Travis Pinick and Brandon Rose will be honored before Saturday's game. Yale, still alive in the Ivy title race, is tied with Dartmouth for third place. Both teams are a half-game behind second-place Princeton and trail Cornell by two games. The Big Red can wrap up their second straight Ivy crown by beating either Penn or Princeton this weekend.
The Bulldogs have already assured themselves of a .500 or better record in Ivy play for the ninth straight year. Yale is coming off a split of the Penn-Princeton road trip. Ross Morin scored 20 points, one of five players in double figures, as the Bulldogs topped the Quakers 87-79. It was Yale's first win over Penn at the Palestra since 1997. Morin enters the weekend needing only 15 points to become the 22nd player in school history to score 1,000 career points. Alex Zampier, who leads the team in scoring (13.6 ppg.), scored 19 points in both games last weekend and was named to the Ivy League Honor Roll on Monday. In his last six games, Travis Pinick is shooting 76.3 percent (29 of 38) from the field. During the stretch, he is averaging 11.8 points and 5.8 rebounds. The Bulldogs are 7-2 at Lee Amphitheater this season and have a chance to finish with nine home wins, their most since the 2001-02 season.
Yale has swept the Dartmouth-Harvard home weekend in each of the last nine years. The Big Green, though, has a chance to win the season series for the first time since 1999. Dartmouth edged the Bulldogs 57-54 in Hanover last month. Yale leads the all-time series with Dartmouth 98-94, and James Jones is 15-4 as the head coach of the Bulldogs against the Big Green. Yale has won seven straight games overall against Harvard, including an 87-66 decision in Cambridge on Feb. 6. The Bulldogs have 113 victories all-time against the Crimson, their most against any opponent. Jones is 16-3 against Harvard.
The Big Green (9-17, 7-5 Ivy) has won three of its last four games, including a 67-53 victory over Columbia last Saturday. Dartmouth features Ivy Player of the Year candidate Alex Barnett, who leads the league in scoring (19.7 ppg.). He has scored at least 20 points in nine of 12 Ivy games, but was held to 13 points in the first meeting with Yale. The Big Green has two freshmen who have earned Rookie of the Week honors this season - Jabari Trotter and David Ruffal (twice). Ruffal, who averages 6.5 points, led Dartmouth with 14 points in the win over Yale earlier this season.
The Crimson (13-13, 5-7 Ivy) has won three straight games, including a 71-70 upset of first-place Cornell last Saturday. Drew Housman, who was named the Ivy Player of the Week on Monday, scored 20 points in the victory over the Big Red. Jeremy Lin also had 20 points. He leads Harvard in scoring (18.0 ppg.), assists (113) and steals (64). In the first meeting with Yale, Lin had 23 points, four rebounds and five assists. Keith Wright is Harvard's leading rebounder (5.5 rpg.). The Crimson is second in the league in scoring offense (67.8 ppg.) and field goal percentage (.465).
YALE PICKED THIRD IN PRESEASON POLL
Yale was picked to finish third in the Ivy League preseason media poll, released during a media teleconference on Oct. 21. Defending champion Cornell was the unanimous first-place selection. The Big Red return four starters and four All-Ivy picks from a team that went undefeated in league play last year. Penn was picked second. Harvard was fourth followed by Brown, Columbia, Dartmouth and Princeton.
2008-09 Ivy League Men's Basketball Preseason Media Poll
1. Cornell - 128 points (16 first-place votes)
2. Penn - 110
3. Yale - 80
4. Harvard - 77
5. Brown - 75
6. Columbia - 45
7. Dartmouth - 33
8. Princeton - 28
YALE ON YES
Two Yale men's basketball games were televised live on the YES Network as part of the Yale on YES package. The first was the Feb. 13 against Princeton and the second was the Feb. 21 Columbia game. In addition, YES showed the Yale women's game against Harvard on Feb. 6.
NON-CONFERENCE SCHEDULE NOTES
The Bulldogs travelled nearly 10,000 miles (9,962) for their 10 non-conference road games.
Yale went 3-1 at home in non-conference play. The only loss came to Stanford, 75-67, in the season opener before a sellout crowd of 2,532 at the John J. Lee Amphitheater. The game featured seven ties and 13 lead changes.
The Bulldogs picked up their first win ever over a Pac-10 school when they edged Oregon State 53-52 on Nov. 24. Yale had dropped its previous 15 games against the conference. In James Jones' tenure as head coach, Yale has now knocked off schools from the Big East (Rutgers), Big Ten (Penn State), ACC (Clemson) and Pac-10 (Oregon State).
Yale nearly pulled off another upset before falling 66-63 at Alabama on Dec. 28. The Bulldogs were within one point twice in the final minute, but the Crimson Tide made seven of eight free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.
Alex Zampier scored 28 points, the most by a Bulldog this season, in a 76-66 win over Holy Cross. It was the first time a Yale player scored at least 25 points in a game since Eric Flato had 26 against Columbia in 2007.
BUTCH GRAVES '84 RECEIVES NCAA HONOR
Former Yale men's basketball star Earl "Butch" Graves '84 was one of six recipients of the 2009 NCAA Silver Anniversary Award, presented annually since 1973 to former student-athletes whose collegiate careers ended 25 years ago and who have gone on to excel in their chosen professions. Graves received his award at the NCAA Honors and Delegates Celebration on January 15, 2009, during the NCAA Convention in Washington, D.C. Graves, the captain of the 1983-84 Bulldogs, is Yale's all-time leading scorer with 2,090 career points and is one of only four players in Ivy League history to score at least 2,000 points. He was named first team All-Ivy in both 1983 and 1984 and led the league in scoring in Ivy games three times (1982-84). Graves, who received a bachelor's degree in economics from Yale, is the president & CEO of Earl G. Graves Publishing Co., publisher of Black Enterprise magazine. He is responsible for the strategic positioning and overall profitability of the corporation.
FREE VIDEO STREAMS ON YALEBULLDOGS.COM
Free live video is available for all Yale home games that aren't televised. Fans can access the games at yalebulldogs.com by clicking on the Yale All*Access logo in the top right corner. An e-mail address and password are required to subscribe to the service. WYBC (1340 AM) provides audio.
Former NBA star Chris Dudley, a 1987 Yale graduate, hosted the team for dinner during the trip to Oregon. Dudley, who lives just outside of Portland, played 16 seasons in the NBA and scored 3,473 points and collected 5,457 rebounds. He was a three-time first team All-Ivy selection at Yale. He spoke to the team in the locker room following the victory over Oregon State... James Jones, who is in his 10th year at Yale, is the longest tenured coach in the Ivy League. His younger brother Joe is the head coach at Columbia. The Jones brothers are one of only two active brother duos coaching at the Division I level. Seth and Brad Greenberg are the head coaches at Virginia Tech and Radford.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity