Men's Basketball Welcomes Southern Illinois Saturday At The Super Pit

Dec. 4, 2015

Junior Deckie Johnson is third on the team in scoring (photo by Rick Yeatts) 

North Texas men's basketball vs. Southern Illinois
Date | Time  Saturday, December 5 | 5:00 p.m. CT
Location   Denton, TX | The Super Pit (10,500)
Live Stats
Stream MeanGreen All-Access ($)
Radio  MGRN - 88.1 KNTU-FM, 95.3 KHYI-FM -  Dave Barnett (PxP), Hank Dickenson (Color), 
Twitter   @MeanGreenMBB
Game Notes   North Texas | SIU 

DENTON -- The North Texas men's basketball team returns home for the first time in nine days to start a home and home series with Southern Illinois starting Saturday, Dec. 5 at 5 p.m. inside the Super Pit.

The Mean Green will be the final game of a double-header with the women's team who will face IUPUI Saturday at 2:30 p.m.

North Texas sits at 2-5 on the season having dropped five straight games. NT is coming off a tough road loss at UT Arlington, 90-67, on Dec. 3. The Mean Green couldn't overcome missed opportunities after getting to the free throw line 27 times but only made nine. The team dished out 15 assists but committed 17 turnovers. The Mavs took advantage on the boards holding a 47-to-29 edge.

Sophomore Jeremy Combs leads the team in scoring at 14.6 points per game and has scored in double figures in five of the seven games. Combs has pulled down a team leading 63 rebounds (9.0 per game) and sits 27th in the nation in field goal percentage at 63.3 percent. Junior J-Mychal Reese is continuing to play at a high level scoring 14.0 points per game and has made 11 three pointers. Reese added 16 points at UTA.

Junior Deckie Johnson is third on the team in scoring at 12.3 points per game and has scored in double figures in six of the seven games this season. Classmate Carrington Ward has quietly been a spark off the bench recently tying his career high twice in the last three games with 10 points at UT Arlington and against Troy. Freshman Ja'Michael Brown made his first start of the season at UTA and scored eight points and dished out five assists in 26 minutes.

As a team, North Texas is averaging 81.1 points per game and is 68th nationally in scoring offense. The Mean Green are also 31st in the nation in field goal percentage at 49.3 percent. NT has attempted 204 free throws in seven games which is 19th among division one college basketball teams.

The Mean Green will have seven days off before heading to Carbondale, Illinois to face Southern Illinois in back-to-back games. The last time North Texas played a non-conference opponent twice in the same season was Sam Houston State in 2008.

About the Opponent: Southern Illinois
This will be the second meeting all-time between North Texas and Southern Illinois. 

The teams haven't met since Dec. 13, 1975 at the Creighton Classic where the Mean Green came away with an 86-80 overtime win. It was the first year of the Bill Blakeley Era who holds 134 career coaching victories in eight seasons. 

SIU enters with a 7-1 record having won two straight against Portland (W, 80-79) and SEMO (W, 74-50). The Salukis only loss came against C-USA member UTEP on Nov. 27, 71-66, at the Corpus Christi Coastal Challenge. 

SIU is led by Anthony Beane Jr. who is averaging 19.9 points per game (39th nationally) and has scored 1,459 career points placing him 12 all-time at Southern Illinois. Sean O'Brien has posted three-straight double-doubles. Junior college transfer Mike Rodriguez is leading the team with 35 assists and third in scoring at 10.8 points per game. 

The two teams will meet again next Saturday, Dec. 12 in Carbondale, Illinois. It is the first time since 2008 North Texas has played a non-conference opponent twice in the same season (Sam Houston State).



North Texas Mean Green