Dec. 2, 2008
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NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Bulldogs make a rare early-season appearance in the John J. Lee Amphitheater when they take on Holy Cross on Wednesday night. Yale hosted Stanford in the opener on Nov. 14 but won't play another home game until Jan. 3. Tipoff is slated is slated for 7 p.m. (Watch, Listen, GameTracker).
In their last two games, including the 53-52 win over Oregon State on Nov. 24, the Bulldogs are holding opponents to just 39.8 percent shooting from the field. The victory over OSU was the first against a Pac-10 foe in school history. Yale allowed 14 offensive rebounds in Sunday's hard-fought loss to Sacred Heart and will face another stiff test on the boards. The Crusaders are outrebounding their opponents by more than six a game. Ross Morin is coming off his top performance of the season. He had 20 points and eight rebounds against the Pioneers. Alex Zampier also had a big day, finishing with 17 points. Morin and Zampier share the team-lead in scoring (12.8 ppg.). Morin tops the team in rebounding (6.0 rpg.). The Bulldogs are second in the Ivy League in steals (8.2 per game).
Yale and Holy Cross are playing for the third straight year. The Crusaders topped the Bulldogs 60-39 in Worcester last season. Tim Clifford had 23 points, eight rebounds, six blocks and four assists to lead Holy Cross. Tonight's game is the 64th meeting overall, and the Crusaders hold a 35-28 advantage in the series, which dates back to 1903.
SCOUTING HOLY CROSS
The Crusaders (2-5) are playing their second game in three nights. They dropped a 78-66 home decision to Fairfield on Monday. Holy Cross has featured a balanced scoring attack. R.J. Evans leads the team, averaging 9.6 points, but there are six players averaging at least 7.3 points. Alex Vander Baan leads the team in rebounding (6.2 rpg.).
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. The Bulldogs, who finished 13-15 overall and 7-7 in Ivy play last year, lost four players to graduation, but return a pair of second team All-Ivy selections in seniors Ross Morin and Travis Pinick.
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 PLAYERS PLAYING PROFESSIONALLY
Four Yale players are currently playing professional basketball in Europe. Edwin Draughan '05 is in his first season with FOS Ouest Provence in France after playing in Switzerland. Dominick Martin '06 is a member of Plasencia in Spain after playing for Real Madrid. Matt Kyle '08 signed with Galitos FC in Barreiro, Portugal, after graduating last May, and Caleb Holmes '08 is coaching and playing for UMFH, a team in Iceland's first division.
BUTCH GRAVES '84 NCAA SILVER ANNIVERSARY RECIPIENT
Former Yale men's basketball star Earl "Butch" Graves '84 has been selected as 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 will receive 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.
2008-09 YALE SCHEDULE NOTES
The 2008-09 schedule features 11 home games and 17 road contests. Nine of the first 11 games are away from home.
The Stanford game marked the first time a Pac-10 school played the Bulldogs in New Haven. The last opponent from a major conference to play in Lee Amphitheater was Penn State of the Big Ten in 2000-01. Yale hosted ACC foe Wake Forest at the Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport in 2003-04.
When the Bulldogs faced Oregon State on Nov. 24, former Brown head coach Craig Robinson was guiding the Beavers. Robinson, the brother-in-law of Barack Obama, was 2-2 against Yale in his two seasons at Brown.
Yale plays its first game against Alabama on Dec. 28. The Crimson Tide is coached by Mark Gottfried. Gottfried and James Jones served as assistant coaches to Villanova's Jay Wright for the 2007 USA Basketball Men's Pan American Games Team. Among the players the two coached are Georgetown's Roy Hibbert, Michigan State's Drew Neitzel and Indiana's D.J. White.
A familiar face will be on the sidelines when Yale visits Bryant on Jan. 2. Tim O'Shea, who was named Bryant's head coach on June 23, spent two years as an assistant coach at Yale under Dick Kuchen.
Alabama and Bryant are two of three first-time opponents for the Bulldogs. Yale plays at NJIT on Jan. 7.
The 14-game Ivy League season begins on Jan. 16 at Brown. First-year Brown head coach Jesse Agel and Yale Associate Head Coach Curtis Wilson worked together on Tom Brennan's staff at Vermont.
Five of Yale's first six Ivy League games are on the road.
The Bulldogs play defending Ivy champion Cornell on Jan. 31 in Ithaca and host the Big Red on Feb. 20 at Lee Amphitheater.
FREE VIDEO STREAMS ON YALEBULLDOGS.COM
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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... Yale had private scrimmages against Army and Stony Brook... Senior Brandon Rose has joined the roster after serving as the team manager for the last two years. Rose was a second team All-Dade County selection as a senior at Palmer Trinity School.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity