Men’s Basketball Dips Out of Conference to Host McGill

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
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Series Record
Last Meeting
Game Notes

Harvard vs. McGill  
Tuesday, Jan. 10
7 p.m.
Lavietes Pavilion  
Ivy League Digital Network
Live Stats
Harvard (7-5, 1-0 Ivy League)
McGill (12-7, 4-2 RSEQ)
First Meeting as non-exhibition
W, 66-63 (Nov. 7, 2015)
Harvard vs. McGill (PDF)

The Storyline
Stepping out of conference play for two games, Harvard men's basketball hosts McGill University Tuesday, Jan. 10 at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on the Ivy League Digital Network.

What to Watch For
• After losing four of its first five contests, Harvard posted a perfect record in December and has rattled off six wins over the last seven games. The Crimson last tallied an unblemished record in the month of December in 2013, winning four games.

• Harvard contains a mix of youth and experience for the 2016-17 season. Thirteen (13) of the 20-man roster are freshmen or sophomores. Three of the top four leading scorers are rookies, as Bryce Aiken and Seth Towns rank 1-2 with 13.6 and 11.3 points per game, respectively. According to KenPom rankings, the Crimson is the 10th youngest team in the NCAA.

• The all-time winningest head coach in Harvard men's basketball history, Tommy Amaker returns to the Harvard sidelines for the 10th season. The Thomas G. Stemberg '71 Family Endowed Coach for Harvard Men's Basketball 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 358-239 career record: 182-100 at Harvard, 108-84 at Michigan and 68-55 at Seton Hall.

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

• Rookies pace the squad in scoring (Bryce Aiken, 13.6 ppg), field goal percentage (Chris Lewis, 67.7) and free throw percentage (Aiken, 91.1).

• Harvard holds a 6-0 record when holding an advantage going into the locker room. 

Last Time Out
A career night by freshman Justin Bassey and a strong inside game led Harvard past Dartmouth, 74-58, Saturday night at Leede Arena. The Crimson also saw double-digit contributions from senior Siyani Chambers (12 points, seven assists) and freshman Chris Lewis (14 points, five rebounds).

Bassey paced the Crimson in points with 14 on 6-of-9 shooting and rebounds with six. For the game, Harvard shot 53.4 percent from the field and scored 40 points in the paint, while holding the Big Green to 38.0 percent from the floor. Dartmouth was led by Evan Boudreaux with 15 points on 4-of-13 shooting and 12 points from Miles Wright.

Scouting McGill
The Redmen have won three of their last four contests, holding a 12-7 record overall. The Montreal-based school is led by a trio of double-figure scorers: Jenning Leung (12.9 ppg), Dele Ogundokun (11.1 ppg) and Francois Bourque (10.1 ppg). Bourque paces the squad in rebounds with 8.1 per game.

David DeAveiro is in his sixth year at McGill and his 15th season as a CIS head coach, owning a career coaching record of 328-210 (.610). During his coaching reign, he has guided Ottawa and McGill to a combined six appearances at the CIS Final Eight championship tournament, including McGill's first three showings on a national stage since 1978.

The Redmen and Crimson faced off last year in an exhibition. Zena Edosomwan went off for 21 points and 11 rebounds as the Harvard defeated McGill, 66-63, at Lavietes. Corey Johnson was also in double figures for Harvard with 15 points and three assists, while Tommy McCarthy chipped in nine points and five assists.

Creating a Winning Culture
Harvard has posted a 160-64 (.715) 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 Jan. 8).

Harvard has posted an 84-14 (.856) record at Lavietes Pavilion since the start of the 2009-10 season, representing the 18th highest home-court win percentage in the country over the last six-plus seasons (as of games played Jan. 8).

Getting Defensive
The Crimson ranks first in field goal percentage defense (40.2), scoring defense (65.1) and blocked shots (5.1) in the Ivy League. Harvard has held five opponents to under 40.0 percent shooting and five to under 60 points (5-0).

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 averages 15.6 assists per game in 2016-17, third in the Ivy League. Under Amaker, the Crimson posted its best assist average in 2009-10, with 15.4 helpers per game.

Senior captain Siyani Chambers leads the Ivy League with 6.8 helpers per game in 2016-17. Chambers ranks seventh in the country in helpers per game and No. 18 in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.4).

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. For more information, visit 

From Way Down Town
This season, Harvard has connected on five-plus 3-pointers 11 times and made at least 10 treys twice. The Crimson averages 8.1 triples per game. Sophomore Corey Johnson ranks fifth in the league with 2.3 triples per game.

Harvard set a new program record with 220 3-pointers in 2015-16. Johnson led the team with 74 3-pointers, the third-most in program history and a new freshman record. He owns 27 triples through 12 games this year.

On the Glass
Through 12 games, the Crimson ranks second in the Ivy League in rebounding margin (+1.1).

Protecting The Rim
Harvard has registered 5.1 blocked shots per game this year, best in the Ancient Eight. Zena Edosomwan and Chris Lewis rank 1-2 in the conference with 1.6 and 1.4 blocks per game, respectively.  

Nonconference Watch
Harvard has gone 97-58 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 is 6-5 to start 2016-17.

Harvard owns a 15-23 record against power conference opponents under Tommy Amaker. The Crimson defeated Boston College in six straight seasons from 2009-2014, again this season, and has also topped Auburn, California, Cincinnati, Colorado, Florida State, Michigan, TCU and Utah.

Kings of Massachusetts Courts
Harvard is 32-14 overall against its in-state rivals under head coach Tommy Amaker, and owns a 25-7 record against Boston area schools with Amaker at the helm. Harvard will play four Division I schools from Massachusetts, and six overall, this year.

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 182 wins are the most at Harvard and the sixth-most in the Ivy League since the conference began competition in 1956. His 85 Ivy League victories, meanwhile, sit eighth 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. Tommy Amaker, 2007-present..................... 181

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

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. Tommy Amaker, 2007-present..................... 181

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

Ivy Coach                                                   Ivy Wins

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

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

8. Tommy Amaker, Harvard 2007-present........ 85

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 47 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
This year, Harvard is 1-1 in games decided by three points or less and is 21-22 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 spanned nearly 50 years, and he served as an honorary co-chair for the Friends of Harvard 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.