GAME FACTS – After splitting a pair of games at LaGrange College's Lee Richter Classic this past weekend, the Emory men's basketball team returns to action on Wednesday (Nov. 29) when it hosts Birmingham Southern. Following the contest against the Panthers, the Eagles head to Hampden-Sydney College for a Saturday contest.
The Woodruff PE Center will serve as the site of the ninth meeting between Emory and BSC and that game will start at 7:00 pm. On Saturday, the scene will shift to the Kirby Fieldhouse on the H-SC campus for the third-ever clash between the Eagles and Tigers with that affair beginning at 2:00 pm.
THE COACHES – Jason Zimmerman (Davidson, 1994) is in his 11th year of patrolling the Emory sideline. Named head coach in April of 2007, Zimmerman came to Emory after serving as an assistant coach at the University of Evansville (2003-04 through 2006-07). Prior to his stint with the Aces, Zimmerman was an assistant at Davidson College for seven years (1996-97 through 2002-03).
During his tenure with the Eagles, he ranks as the program's winningest coach, compiling a school and career record of 174-93. In games played at the Woodruff PE Center, Zimmerman posts a 99-26 ledger and a 75-67 mark in road/neutral settings.
He has guided Emory to eight straight winning seasons and five consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017). The Eagles are the lone D-III school to have won at least one NCAA contest in each of the past five years.
After going 17-33 his first two years at Emory, Zimmerman has compiled a won-lost slate of 157-60 (.725) since the 2009-10 season.
Chris Graves (Brown, '99) is in his seventh season in calling the shots for the Birmingham Southern program. During his stint at BSC, he has guided the program to three seasons of 20 or more wins and a pair of berths to the NCAA D-III Tournament. Heading into Wednesday evening, he posts a school record of 111-57.
Now in his 10th season as head coach at Hampden-Sydney College is Dee Vick (Hampden-Sydney, '94). Vick owns a school and career effort of 147-105 and has directed the Tigers to six winning campaigns.
2017-18 RECORDS – Emory heads into Wednesday's game against BSC with a 3-1 record. The Eagles split a pair of games this past weekend on the campus of LaGrange College, dropping an 84-78 decision to the host Panthers on Saturday before bouncing back for a 102-92 triumph over Maryville College the following day.
Senior Christopher Avant paced the Emory offensive attack in the LaGrange game scoring 21 points (third-highest career total) while also pulling down a club-best seven rebounds. Freshman Romin Williams came through with a big effort in the Maryville win, leading all players with 23 points, eight assists a game-high tying nine rebounds. Williams closed out the contest sinking eight-of-14 field goals, including five three-point field goals in 10 opportunities. Junior Gebereal Baitey chipped in 16 points, five boards and a game-high four steals.
Birmingham Southern is in the midst of a four-game losing skid that has left its record at 1-4. In their most recent performance, the Panthers dropped an 84-82 decision at Huntingdon on Monday. Wednesday's visit to Atlanta will mark BSC's sixth straight game on the road or at a neutral site.
Hampden-Sydney heads into the week with a 1-4 ledger after sustaining a 92-67 setback at Washington and Lee on Sunday. Prior to hosting Emory, the Tigers will play at Eastern Mennonite on Wednesday.
SERIES RECORDS – The series between Emory and Birmingham Southern has its origins in January of 2008, with the Eagles holding a 5-3 edge. Emory has won the last four meetings including a 75-70 outcome at BSC last season. The Eagles have captured four of the five contests played at the Woodruff PE Center.
Emory and Hampden-Sydney have met twice with each team earning a win. The schools met last year (Dec. 31) for the first time since 1998 with the Eagles notching an 87-64 win at the Woodruff PE Center.
THE LAST TIME – Romin Williams' team-leading marks of 23 points, nine rebounds and eight assists marked the first time since Nov. 30, 2016, that one player led the Eagles in all three categories. Whit Rapp paced the club with 17 points, eight rebounds and three assists in a 75-70 victory at Birmingham Southern.
DID YOU KNOW? – That since the 2010-11 season, Emory has the No. 1 record among UAA teams in overall (142-50) play and the second-best mark in league action (68-30) .… Washington University has the conference's second-best overall ledger (138-51) and the top slate in conference play (70-28) … That entering the Birmingham Southern contest, Emory has at least one three-point field goal in its last 521 games -- The last time the Eagles failed to convert from beyond the arc came on Feb. 14, 1997, vs. Washington University (0-of-6) … Emory was won 37 of its last 38 games when allowing 69 or fewer points (1-0 in '17-18, 7-1 in '16-17, 13-0 in '15-16, 16-0 in '14-15) … That Whit Rapp holds down the No. 3 spot on Emory's all-time chart with 471 assists and is No. 2 in assists average (5.6 apg) … Standing in the No. 2 spot on the Eagles' career ladder in assists in Michael Florin (2011-15) with 509 … That Adam Gigax stands eighth all-time at Emory with 147 three-point field goals and is now eyeing Spiros Ferderigos' (2004-2008) No. 7 mark of 157 … Gigax's 31-point weekend at LaGrange upped his career total to 910 points, good for the No. 20 position on the school's all-time ladder.
NOTES – Emory's 102-points against Maryville marked the first time since the 1988-89 campaign that the program had scored 100 or more points on two occasions through the first four games of a season ... The Eagles are averaging 45.5 points during the first half of play and 47.5 points over the final 20 minutes … The Eagles have connected on 70 percent or better from the charity stripe in three of four games and their 74.4 conversion rate (58-78) ranks second among UAA teams … The Eagles are 40-6 in the last 46 games when making 10 or more three-point field goals in a game … The Emory reserves have outscored the opposing subs by a 133-79 margin through four games … Whit Rapp has 15 career games with 10 or more assists to his credit … Christopher Avant has one double-double this year (vs. Piedmont, 10 points, 11 rebounds) and five in his career … Avant has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in each of the Eagles' first four games and his 61.8 percent (21-34) effort is sixth on the conference ladder … Gebereal Baitey's four steals against Maryville marked his 16th career outing of two or more thefts … Through games played Nov. 27, Baitey tops the UAA in steals average (3.0 spg) … Adam Gigax leads the team and stands seventh in the league in scoring average (15.3 ppg) while Romin Williams holds down the No. 9 slot (14.8 ppg) … Gigax has been successful on 45.5 percent (10-22) of his three-point attempts, good for the No. 9 position on the UAA ladder … Since the 2012-13 season, the Eagles are 85-5 when outshooting the opposition from the floor (2-0 in '17-18, 17-1 in '16-17, 12-3 in '15-16, 18-0 in '14-15) … During Jason Zimmerman's tenure as head coach, Emory stands 140-18 when leading at halftime (3-0, in '17-18, 13-0 in '16-17; 18-3 in 2015-16) … Emory is 81-10 (.889) over its last 91 home contests … The Eagles have recorded 100 or more points 48 times in program history and own a 43-5 won-lost record in those affairs … During Jason Zimmerman's tenure as head coach, Emory has 17 contests of 100 or more points and stands 16-1 in such games.