Archive | February, 2017

2018 OVC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championship to be Held at Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana

2018 OVC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championship to be Held at Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana

Posted on 16 February 2017 by admin

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – The Ohio Valley Conference Board of Presidents have awarded the 2018 OVC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Championship to the Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana.

The date of the 2018 OVC Basketball Championship is February 28 – March 3, 2018.

“We are excited about the opportunity to take our flagship championship to another region of the OVC footprint,” said OVC Commissioner Beth DeBauche. “We look forward to the opportunity to partner with the City of Evansville and the Evansville Sports Corporation to provide an outstanding experience for our student-athletes and fans.

“I additionally want to thank the OVC Board of Presidents for their time and thoughtful approach in reaching this decision,” DeBauche added.

“I look forward to the OVC Championship being played in Evansville and at the Ford Center,” said Murray State President Dr. Robert O. Davies, who is the chair of the OVC Board of Presidents. “This facility is the ideal place to showcase our Conference and will be a memorable experience for our student-athletes. I also look forward to the emerging partnership with community of Evansville and know this will be an exciting event for the participants and spectators.”

The Ford Center, which opened in 2011, is a 10,000-seat arena located in the core of Evansville’s downtown district. The 290,000-square foot facility serves as home of the University of Evansville’s men’s and women’s basketball teams as well as the Evansville Thunderbolts of the Southern Professional Hockey League. The Ford Center has serves as host to numerous sporting events and concerts on an annual basis.

“Evansville is a basketball town and we could not be more excited to partner with the Ohio Valley Conference to deliver a championship atmosphere for OVC student-athletes and fans alike,” said Jason Sands, Executive Director of the Evansville Sports Corporation.

Evansville is the third-largest city in the state of Indiana with a population of nearly 120,000 in the city limit and 300,000 people in the metropolitan area.

“Our city has demonstrated on multiple occasions the ability to host great sporting events at every level,” said Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke. “We gladly welcome the Ohio Valley Conference and look forward to showing their student-athletes the best experience possible,” he continued.

The OVC Basketball Tournament is the fourth-oldest Division I Championship in the country; it will be held for the 54th time overall on March 1-4, 2017 at Municipal Auditorium in Nashville. That will mark the 23rd time in the past 24 years the event has taken place in Nashville. The last OVC Basketball Tournament held outside of Nashville took place in Louisville, Kentucky in 2002. The OVC will also partner with the Nashville Sports Council to serve as hosts of the 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship First and Second Rounds at Bridgestone Arena in 2018 (March 16-18).

During the 2017-18 academic year, the OVC Board of Presidents will consider future tournament site locations.

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EKU Football Recruiting Class Ranked 14th In Nation

EKU Football Recruiting Class Ranked 14th In Nation

Posted on 09 February 2017 by admin

Colonels one of 4 OVC teams ranked in the top 50 recruiting classes

RICHMOND, Ky. – Eastern Kentucky’s 2017 recruiting class has been ranked 14th in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) by HERO Sports.

The group of new Colonels includes 20 players that received all-state honors in their respective home states. The class includes 11 defensive linemen, seven offensive linemen, five wide receivers, five running backs, four linebackers, three quarterbacks, two tight ends, one kicker and one long snapper.

Recruit  Sean Cleasant, DL from Louisville was listed as the highest ranked recruit coming in as the 17th ranked recruit nationally. Other recruits nationally ranked for the Colonels include Steven Franklin LB from Glasgow, Ky at 242, Rayquan Horton DT from Belfry, Ky. at 173,  Ethan Bradds TE from Jamestown, Ohio at 99 and Alonzo Booth RB from Columbus, Ohio at 39.

The only other Ohio Valley Conference team with a higher ranked recruiting class was Jacksonville State at No. 7. Tennessee-Martin had the 27th rated class, Tennessee State was 35th and Austin Peay came in at 44th.

Eastern’s class was rated higher than such schools as national runner-up Youngstown State (No. 38), Furman (No. 39), Charleston Southern (No. 32), North Dakota (No. 26), Southern Illinois and (No. 22), Illinois State (No. 21).

Since becoming EKU’s head coach, both of Mark Elder’s recruiting classes have been rated among the top-25 by HERO Sports. Last year’s class, despite having less than two months to put it together after being hired in mid-December, was picked as the 23rd best in the country.

Many elements factor into the rankings – with the collective of individual rankings being most important. All individual rankings are based on a mixture of data including the composite, scholarship offers extended to the FCS prospects and also the opinions of HERO Sports’ FCS recruiting analyst Brian McLaughlin.

The ranking reflects high school recruits only, transfers are not considered.

Those new Colonels’ will have a chance to suit up for EKU for the first time on Sept. 2 when the team plays at in-state rival Western Kentucky University.

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Gist Voted OVC Freshman of the Week for Sixth Time

Gist Voted OVC Freshman of the Week for Sixth Time

Posted on 08 February 2017 by admin

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Eastern Kentucky University guard Asante Gist has been voted the Ohio Valley Conference Freshman of the Week for men’s basketball, the league office announced on Monday.

It is the sixth time this season Gist has earned OVC Freshman of the Week honors. No other freshman has won the award more than three times.

Gist averaged 18.5 points and 5.0 assists-per-game last week for the Colonels.

On Wednesday, the native of East Orange, New Jersey connected on a career-best six three-pointers against Austin Peay. He finished with 24 points and five assists against the Governors.

Three nights later, Gist contributed 13 points and five more assists at UT Martin.

Gist leads all freshmen in the league in scoring (15.2 points-per-game) and assists (3.8 assists-per-game). He also ranks 12th in the OVC in three-pointers/game (2.2) and 13th in assists/turnover ratio (1.1).

Gist and the Colonels return to action on Saturday when they host in-state rival Morehead State at McBrayer Arena at 7:00 p.m.

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