Home Opener on Tap for Men’s Basketball vs. Fisher College

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
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Series Record
Last Meeting
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Harvard vs. Fisher College
Thursday, Nov. 17
Lavietes Pavilion
Bill Spaulding, Alex Vispoli
Live Stats
Harvard (0-1, 0-0 Ivy)
Fisher (1-1, 0-0 NIAC)
First Meeting
Harvard vs. Fisher (PDF)

The Storyline
Returning from Shanghai, China, the Harvard men's basketball team welcomes NAIA opponent Fisher College to Lavietes Pavilion Thursday, Nov. 17. The game will be broadcast on the Ivy League Digital Network at 7 p.m. and features Bill Spaulding and Alex Vispoli on the call.   

What to Watch For
• Harvard contains a mix of youth and experience for the 2016-17 season. The Crimson returns 13 letterwinners, including All-Ivy League second team honoree Zena Edosomwan and three-time All-Ancient Eight selection Siyani Chambers, and welcomes seven freshmen to the 2016-17 squad. Harvard's Class of 2020 ranked as the 10th-best recruiting class in the nation by ESPN. Thirteen (13) of the 20-man roster are freshmen or sophomores.

• The Crimson looks to return to the top of the Ivy League standings after five conference titles over the last six years.

Zena Edosomwan led Harvard a year ago in both scoring (13.1) and rebounding (9.9), and was named All-Ivy League second team. Edosomwan turned in 12 double-doubles during the 2015-16 season, matching Keith Wright's '12 total from 2010-11 for the most double-doubles in a season under head coach Tommy Amaker. Chambers also returns after a year's leave of absence, as the senior co-captain averages 11.1 points and 4.8 assists for his career.

• Tommy Amaker, The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball, returns to the Harvard sidelines for the 10th season and is three wins from tying Frank Sullivan as the all-time winningest head coach at Harvard. Amaker has directed the Crimson to a period of unprecedented prosperity in the form of four NCAA tournament appearances (2012-15), five Ivy League championships (2011-15) and six 20-win seasons (2010-15). Amaker owns a 351-235 career record: 175-96 at Harvard, 108-84 at Michigan and 68-55 at Seton Hall.

Last Time Out
The Crimson dropped an 80-70 decision to Stanford at Mercedes-Benz arena in Shanghai, China last Friday. The Crimson rookies accounted for 51 points, led by 21 from freshman Bryce Aiken.

Senior captain Siyani Chambers added 12 points and four assists. Rookies Henry Welsh and Chris Lewis poured in 11 and 12, respectively, while Welsh paced Harvard in rebounding with six. Senior Zena Edosomwan also pulled down six boards.

Scouting Fisher
The Falcons sit at 1-1 after a 66-54 loss to Mount Saint Vincent Tuesday evening. A year ago, Fisher finished 16-11 behind 22.9 points and 7.0 rebounds from Tyler Shular. Kyle Holmes returns for the Falcons after averaging 13.1 points and 3.7 boards per game a year ago.

Head coach David Lindberg begins his 12th season at Fisher College, guiding the Falcons to four Sunrise Conference Championships, as well as back-to-back trips to the NAIA National Tournament. Lindberg began his college coaching career as an assistant at Fisher, taking over the program midway through the 2005-06 campaign.

Creating a Winning Culture
Harvard has posted a 153-60 (.722) overall record since the start of the 2009-10 season, ranking as the 19th-highest win percentage in the country over the last six-plus seasons (as of games played Nov. 15).

Harvard has posted an 80-12 (.870) record at Lavietes Pavilion since the start of the 2009-10 season, representing the 17th highest home-court win percentage in the country over the last six-plus seasons (as of games played Nov. 15). 

Double-Double Trouble
Zena Edosomwan turned in 12 double-doubles last year, matching Keith Wright's '12 total from 2010-11 for the most double-doubles in a season under head coach Tommy Amaker.

Edosomwan finished four rebounds shy of averaging a double-double. The last Harvard student-athlete to average a double-double was Kyle Snowden '97, the program's all-time leader in rebounds, who did so in 1995-96 with 15.1 points per game and 11.1 rebounds per game. Yale graduate Greg Mangano (16.3 ppg, 10.0 rpg in 2010-11) is the only Ivy Leaguer to average a double-double since Snowden.

Getting Defensive
Harvard led the Ivy League a season ago in opponent field goal percentage (40.6) and opponent 3-point percentage (30.6), and ranked second in scoring defense (66.2 ppg). The Crimson held 13 opponents to under 40.0 percent shooting and 10 to under 60 points.

Under Tommy Amaker, Harvard has held six opponents to fewer than 40 points and seven opponents to less than 30.0 percent shooting.

Dropping Dimes
Harvard averaged 15.1 assists per game in 2015-16, with its 452 total assists matching the 2013-14 squad for the second-most in program history. Under Amaker, the Crimson has never averaged more than 15.4 assists per game (2009-10).

The inaugural Ivy League men's and women's basketball tournaments will take place Saturday and Sunday, March 11-12, 2017, at the Palestra in Philadelphia. The top four teams will earn berths in the tournament, with the semifinals on Saturday and the championships on Sunday. All six games will be broadcast live on ESPN's networks.

From Way Down Town
Harvard set a new program record with 220 3-pointers in 2015-16. The team made at least five 3-pointers in 27 of 30 games, and made at least 10 3-pointers on five occasions. The Crimson shot 38.7 percent from distance, the fourth-best percentage in program history.

Corey Johnson led the team with 74 3-pointers, the third-most in program history and a new freshman record.

On the Glass
Harvard averaged 37.3 rebounds per game with its 1,118 total rebounds ranking fifth in program history in 2015-16.

Zena Edosomwan led the Ivy League with 9.9 rebounds per game, the ninth-highest average in program history. His 276 total rebounds, meanwhile, were the seventh-most in program history.

Protecting The Rim
Harvard registered 151 blocked shots, the second-highest total in program history.

Nonconference Watch
Harvard has gone 91-54 in non-conference play under head coach Tommy Amaker, including eight-straight seasons with a .500 record or better in out-of-conference action. 

Harvard owns a 14-23 record against power conference opponents under Tommy Amaker. The Crimson defeated Boston College in six straight seasons from 2009-2014, and has also topped Auburn, California, Cincinnati, Colorado, Florida State, Michigan, TCU and Utah. 

Kings of Massachusetts Courts
Harvard is 29-12 overall against its in-state rivals under head coach Tommy Amaker, and owns a 22-7 record against Boston area schools with Amaker at the helm. Harvard will play four Division I schools from Massachusetts, and six overall, this year.

In the preseason, Matt Norlander of CBS Sports put the Crimson as No. 1 in Massachusetts.

Detur Book Prize
Chris Egi was announced as a recipient of the Detur Book Prize, the oldest prize awarded by Harvard College, a year ago. The Detur Book Prize recognizes sophomores who attained very high academic standing in their first year at the College.

In The Spotlight
The Crimson has played on TV 84 times since 2010-11. Harvard is slated to 11 games on national or regional television in 2016-17. 

Sold Out
Harvard played in front of a sold-out Lavietes Pavilion crowd seven times last season and a total of 36 times since 2010-11.

On The Sidelines
Head coach Tommy Amaker's 175 wins at Harvard rank second in school history and are the seventh-most in the Ivy League since the conference began competition in 1956. His 84 Ivy League victories, meanwhile, are tied for eighth place in conference history.

Amaker has led Harvard to five Ivy League championships, tying him with former Penn coach Bob Weinhauer (1977-82) for the third most titles in Ancient Eight history.

Harvard Coach                                  Harvard Wins

1. Frank Sullivan, 1991-2007........................ 178

2. Tommy Amaker, 2007-present..................... 175

3. Floyd S. Wilson, 1954-68.......................... 143

4. Edward A. Wachter, 1920-33................... 120

5. Frank McLaughlin, 1977-85......................... 99

Ivy Coach                                            Overall Wins

1. Pete Carril, Princeton 1967-96................ 514

4. Joe Vancisin, Yale 1956-75...................... 206

5. Jack Rohan, Columbia 1961-74, 1990-95 198

6. Frank Sullivan, 1991-2007........................ 178

7. Tommy Amaker, 2007-present..................... 175

Ivy Coach                                                   Ivy Wins

1. Pete Carril, Princeton 1967-96................ 310

7. Jack McCloskey, Penn 1956-66.................. 87

8. Tommy Amaker, Harvard 2007-present........ 84

Going Pro
Harvard has been well represented in the professional ranks this season as six former Crimson continue their playing careers.

Student-Athlete                           Professional Team

Kyle Casey '13-14...................................................

... Helios Suns Domzale (Slovenia) - 2015-present

Brandyn Curry '13-14.............................................

................. Helios Suns (Slovenia) – 2016-present

Evan Harris '09........................................................

............. Saitama Broncos (Japan) - 2015-present

Jeremy Lin '10........................................................

.................... Brooklyn Nets (NBA) - 2016-present

Wesley Saunders '15

. Windy City Bulls (NBA DLeague) - 2016-present

Keith Wright '12.....................................................

........................ Weschester Knicks (NBA DLeague) - 2016-present

FIBA U19 World Championships
Chris Egi, Corey Johnson and Weisner Perez represented their respective countries at the 2015 FIBA U19 World Championships in Greece.

Egi, who was appointed as a captain by his coaching staff, paired with Johnson to lift Team Canada to a fifth-place finish, the country's highest finish at the competition. Perez, meanwhile, helped the Dominican Republic finish 13th in its first appearance since 1983.

Beating The Odds
The Crimson is 4-11 against ranked opponents since 2008-09, marking the only four wins over ranked opponents in program history.

Date            Opponent                                 Score

1/7/09..... at No. 17 Boston College W, 82-70

11/25/11 vs. No. 20 Florida State W, 46-41

3/23/13.. vs. No. 10 New Mexico. W, 68-62

3/20/14.. vs. No. 15 Cincinnati.... W, 61-57

Margin of Victory
Under head coach Tommy Amaker, the Crimson has won 45 games by 20 or more points, 12 games by 30 or more points, and three games by 40 or more.

Comeback Kids
Harvard overcame a 21-point deficit with 9:02 remaining at Cornell on Feb. 20, 2016, marking the second-largest comeback by the Crimson under head coach Tommy Amaker and the 18th time that the team has overcome a double-digit hole.

Nail Biters
Harvard went 3-3 in games decided by three points or less last season and is 20-21 all-time in games decided by three points or less under head coach Tommy Amaker.

Extra Sessions
Under head coach Tommy Amaker, Harvard is 13-4 when going to overtime. This includes a 4-1 mark in double-overtime contests and a 1-0 record when needing three overtimes. 

Chasing History
• Harvard won at least 20 games in six straight seasons from 2009-15, matching Penn (1969-75) for the longest streak of 20-win seasons in Ivy League history.

• The Crimson won five straight Ivy League championships from 2010-15, becoming just the second program in Ancient Eight history to win at least five successive titles (Penn 1970-75, 1978-82).

• The Crimson made four-straight NCAA tournament appearances from 2011-15, joining Princeton (1989-92) and Penn (1970-75) as just the third program in Ivy League history to represent the conference in the Big Dance in four successive years.

The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball
At halftime of the team's game versus Princeton on Feb. 21, 2015, Harvard Athletics announced the endowment of the department's   coaching position: The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball. 

Made possible through the generosity of Thomas G. Stemberg '71, MBA'73, a long-standing Friend of Harvard Basketball and supporter of Harvard Athletics, this endowment serves as a commitment to the continued success of the men's basketball program. Stemberg's affiliation with Harvard has spanned nearly 50 years, and he currently serves as an honorary co-chair for the Friends of Harvard Basketball.

"Tom has been an incredible friend to Harvard Athletics for many years. This gift is a testament to his commitment to the continued success of our basketball program and the young men in it," commented head coach Tommy Amaker. "Tom's leadership throughout the years has been vital to the program that we have built, and I could not be more thrilled and proud to be the Stemberg Family Head Coach for Men's Basketball."

Linsanity: Harvard In The NBA
Jeremy Lin burst onto the national scene in February of 2012 after scoring 136 points in his first five NBA starts for the New York Knicks, the most for an NBA player since the merger with the ABA in 1976-77, and lifting the club into playoff position. Lin was rewarded for his spectacular play by appearing on the cover of Sports Illustrated in back-to-back weeks, winning the ESPY for "Best Breakthrough Athlete," and being named one of Time Magazine's "Top 100 Most Influential People in the World" for 2012.


Lin is entering his seventh NBA season, first with the Brooklyn Nets, after averaging 11.8 ppg, 4.4 apg and 2.8 rpg through his first six years.