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EKU Announces Addition Of Five To Men’s Basketball Roster

Posted on 22 July 2014 by admin

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RICHMOND, Ky. – Eastern Kentucky University Head Men’s Basketball Coach Jeff Neubauer announced the addition of five players to the team’s 2014-15 roster today.

Javontae Hawkins, Jonathan Hood, Paul Jackson, Ja’Mill Powell and Denzel Richardson will join the program. Along with Daniel Norl, who signed on to play at EKU last fall, these six make up Neubauer’s 2014 recruiting class at this time.

Hawkins is a 6-foot-5, 205-pound guard from Flint, Michigan. He played two seasons at the University of South Florida and will have to sit out one full year due to NCAA transfer rules. He will have two seasons of eligibility remaining beginning with the 2015-16 campaign.

Hawkins played in 55 games, starting 10 times, at USF. He averaged 4.1 points and 1.4 rebounds per game. He made 6-of-9 attempts from the field and scored a career-best 15 points against Cincinnati on Jan. 18, 2014. He shot 40.1 percent from the field, 28.4 percent from three-point range and 69.1 percent at the free throw line.

Before enrolling at South Florida, Hawkins spent two seasons at Huntington Prep in West Virginia. He averaged 17.5 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. The four-star prospect was rated No. 89 overall and 16th at his position by ESPN in the class of 2012.

Hood is a 6-foot-4, 195-pound guard from Durham, North Carolina. He spent the past two seasons at Santa Fe College in Gainesville, Fla. As a sophomore, Hood earned first team All-Mid Florida Conference honors and finished fourth in voting for the conference player of the year award. He averaged 14.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.2 assists. He made 39.2 percent of his shots from the field, 36.6 percent from three-point range and 76.2 percent from the free throw line.

On Jan.11, Hood scored 30 points on 11-of-15 shooting, including 8-of-11 from behind the arc, against State College of Florida-Manatee. He scored 19 or more points in a game 10 times during the 2013-14 season. Santa Fe finished the season with a 22-9 record. Hood played high school basketball at Body of Christ Christian Academy.

Jackson, a 6-foot guard, will be a freshman in 2014-15. The Lithonia, Georgia native earned 5A first team all-state honors after averaging 21.5 points and 6.9 assists per game for Martin Luther King Jr. High School his senior season. He also garnered first team all-region and second team all-metro honors. Jackson led DeKalb County in scoring and assists. He dished out over 700 career assists and was a team captain as a junior and a senior.

Powell is a 6-foot-7, 195-pound guard from Bridgeport, Conn. He played the past two seasons at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College. Powell averaged 15.2 points and 4.6 rebounds per game in 2013-14 while shooting 40.5 percent from the field, including 31.2 percent from three-point range. As a sophomore he knocked down 78.4 percent of his free throw attempts.

Powell earned second team all-league honors before being named region tournament MVP. In three tourney games, he averaged 24 points. He scored a season-high 29 points twice during the regular season, on Dec. 3 at Carl Albert State College and on Feb. 24 against Northern Oklahoma College-Enid.

Richardson is a 6-foot-5, 200-pound guard from Baltimore, Md. He has spent the past two seasons playing at Pensacola State College in Florida. He averaged 11.1 points and 3.9 rebounds per game as a sophomore. He shot 40.3 percent from the field, 35 percent from behind the three-point line and 75.7 percent at the charity stripe.

Richardson made 8-of-14 attempts from the field, including 6-of-9 from deep, on his way to a season-best 22 points at College of Central Florida on Dec. 2. Pensacola finished the 2013-14 season with a 21-11 record and won the Panhandle Conference Championship for the first time since 1998. Richardson played high school basketball at Calvert Hall High School.

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EKU And Head Coach Jeff Neubauer Agree To Contract Extension

Posted on 05 May 2014 by admin

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RICHMOND, Ky. – Following one of the most successful seasons in program history, Eastern Kentucky University and head men’s basketball coach Jeff Neubauer have agreed in principle to a contract extension through 2018.

Under Neubauer’s guidance in 2013-14, the Colonels won the program’s sixth Ohio Valley Conference Tournament Championship and made their eighth NCAA Tournament appearance. Eastern nearly upset No. 2 seed Kansas in the Big Dance, leading the Jayhawks with 8:55 left in the game and trailing by only five with 2:28 to go.

“I am very proud of coach Neubauer and his staff, and the superb job they have done in recruiting the right kind of student-athlete to EKU,” Eastern Kentucky University President Michael Benson said. “As stellar as Jeff’s win-loss record is, we should all be even more pleased by the fact that the program graduates more than 90 percent of the student-athletes that have exhausted their eligibility during Jeff’s tenure. That is the most important statistic.”

Before giving Kansas all it could handle in the NCAA Tournament, Neubauer led the Colonels on a methodical march through the OVC Tournament. Eastern won three games in three days and trailed for only 41 seconds during the entire tourney.

EKU finished the season with a 24-10 record, the second most wins in program history. Along the way, the Colonels set new program records for the winningest 2-year, 3-year and 4-year periods in program history. Neubauer led the team to a school record 25 victories in 2012-13, giving the team 49 wins the last two years combined.

Eastern finished 2013-14, the ninth season for Neubauer on the Eastern Kentucky bench, ranked 19th in the Mid-Major Top 25 and with an RPI of 97.

In recognition of a spectacular season, Neubauer was one of 15 finalists for the 2014 Hugh Durham Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top mid-major coach.

Eastern finished second in the nation in turnover margin, fifth in the nation in three-point field goals per game and sixth in steals. Eastern Kentucky has now led the OVC in three-pointers five of the last six years. The Colonels are one of only two teams to qualify for each of the last 12 OVC Tournaments.

Neubauer is the second winningest coach in program history. He will enter the 2014-15 season 47 wins away from tying legend Paul S. McBrayer. In 2012-13, Neubauer became the first EKU coach to lead the program to three 20-win seasons. He extended that mark to four 20-win campaigns this year. Out of 18 head coaches in program history, Neubauer is one of only three to lead the Colonels to five or more winning seasons.

Individually, Marcus Lewis won the Denny”s Slam Dunk Championship at the 2014 Final Four. Corey Walden was the OVC Tournament MVP, the 2014 OVC Defensive Player of the Year and selected as a Lefty Driesell Defensive All-American. Glenn Cosey was chosen as a Lou Henson All-American and first team all-conference.

In addition, Cosey broke the school record for three-pointers in a game when he knocked down 10 at Eastern Illinois and the mark for three’s in a season with 115. One of those three-pointers came from 35 feet away with 0.4 seconds left to give Eastern a 79-78 victory over Southeast Missouri. The shot earned the No. 1 spot on SportsCenter’s Top-10 Plays.

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Colonels to face six teams that made the Big Dance last season

Posted on 16 September 2013 by admin

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RICHMOND, Ky. – Six games against NCAA Tournament teams highlight the 2013-14 Eastern Kentucky University men’s basketball schedule. The Colonels will play a total of eight games against teams that played in the postseason a year ago.

In conjunction with the release of the 2013-14 schedule, Eastern is asking fans to vote in the “Best EKU Team Ever” poll on this page.

Eastern Kentucky is expected to be among the favorites in the Ohio Valley Conference. Four starters and a total of 13 letter winners return from the 2012-13 squad that won a school record 25 games and posted the second best conference mark at 12-4. The Colonels advanced to the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT) and picked up the program’s first victory in a national postseason tournament game in 68 years.

“This year’s schedule is designed to challenge an experienced team,” head coach Jeff Neubauer said. “We will learn so much from the different styles that we will face throughout November and December. We are really looking forward to this season.”

EKU will open the 2013-14 campaign on Nov. 8 against Florida International at the Kennesaw State Invitational. The Colonels will face the host team a day later and conclude the event against Youngstown State.

Of Eastern’s 30 games, 16 will be against teams that posted a winning record in 2012-13 and seven will be against squads that won 20 or more.

Eastern Kentucky’s first home game comes on Nov. 13 against Warren Wilson College. The Owls won the U.S. Collegiate Athletic Association national championship last season. Both teams played Western Carolina last year. EKU beat the Catamounts 72-70 at home. WWC trailed by three with 15 minutes left in the game before ultimately losing by 25 points on the road.

The next three games will be played at home as well – High Point on Nov. 16, Alabama A&M on Nov. 19 and Brescia University on Nov. 22. Eastern beat High Point 73-70 on the road last season. The Panthers also earned a bid to the 2013 CIT.

The Colonels are 61-14 (.813) at home over the last five years and have won 16 straight home non-conference games.

EKU’s first two games against teams that played in last season’s NCAA Tournament will be on Nov. 30 and Dec. 5. The first is at North Carolina State against a Wolfpack team that went 24-11. The second will be at Virginia Commonwealth, which finished 27-9 in 2012-13.

After a road game at Longwood, Eastern will face two more NCAA Tournament teams. EKU plays at Wisconsin (23-12) on Dec. 14 and will then host North Carolina A&T (20-17) on Dec. 18 at McBrayer Arena. The Colonels close out the 2013 calendar year at IPFW on Dec. 29.

The team’s quest for the program’s seventh OVC regular season championship begins with road games at Eastern Illinois and Southern Illinois Edwardsville the first week of January.

The second week of January could be called “Rivalry Week” for the Colonels. On Jan. 8, Murray State (21-10) makes its first appearance at McBrayer Arena since Dec. 2, 2010. Three days later EKU will play at Morehead State.

“It’s exciting that we’ll have the chance to host Belmont and Morehead State after EKU students return from winter break,” Neubauer said. “Our fans can make McBrayer Arena a tough place to play. Our guys feed off that energy.”

The first meeting with Belmont (26-7), the 2013 OVC Champions, will be in Richmond on Thursday night, Jan. 16. A week and a half later, Eastern will play at Belmont.

The Colonels’ final non-conference game of the regular season is Feb. 4 at home against Chattanooga. EKU beat the Mocs 63-52 on the road last season.

Morehead State comes to Richmond on Saturday, Feb. 8. After three road games, Eastern will close out the regular season at home on Feb. 27 and March 1 against Tennessee Tech and Tennessee State, respectively.

The 2014 OVC Tournament begins with first round action on March 5. The finals are scheduled for March 8. The NCAA Tournament First Four is set for March 18-19. The second round will be played March 20-21.

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