Southern Miss on Deck for Herd

Special to HNN Provided by Herd Zone

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Looking to build on its first league win last week against UTEP, Marshall men’s basketball (5-15, 1-6) will face Southern Miss (6-12, 1-6) at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday at Reed Green Coliseum in Hattiesburg, Miss.

In addition to live tweets from @HerdMBB, live stats and live video streaming will be available through SouthernMiss.com. The official live radio broadcast can be found on theThundering Herd IMG Sports Network and College Sports Live.

HAVE YOU HERD?
Marshall received balanced production with four scorers in double figures Saturday, and the Thundering Herd ended its losing streak with a 78-71 Conference USA men’s basketball victory over UTEP before a crowd of 5,302 at the Henderson Center. The Herd snapped a 15-game skid against Division I teams and a nine-game losing streak overall, as junior guard Justin Edmonds scored a career- and game-high 20 points, hitting 5-of-9 from 3-point range – including 4-of-6 in the first half.

SIGH OF RELIEF
The Herd narrowly avoided one of its longest loss streaks in program history when it defeated UTEP on Saturday. The win stopped a nine-game slump, extending from Dec. 20 to Jan. 22. Marshall’s longest loss streak lasted 12 games in 1991-92, when the Herd finished 7-22 under coach Dwight Freeman. The second longest streak was 10 games in 1964-65, in a 4-20 season under Ellis Johnson.

SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE
As Marshall (1-6) and Southern Miss (1-6) are each coming off their first league win of the year, the loser of Thursday’s game will fall into last place in the conference. On Saturday, the Herd defeated UTEP at home (78-71), while Southern Miss topped North Texas on the road in overtime (75-71). Each game ended a nine-game losing streak.

STIFF COMPETITION
Marshall has played three Associated Press-ranked teams in the 2014-15 season – No. 7 Louisville, No. 22 West Virginia and No. 25 Old Dominion. Coach Dan D’Antoni is the first coach in his first season with the Herd to face that many poll-sitting teams since 1990-91, when Coach Dwight Freeman’s first team played five ranked opponents in Nos. 12 and 13 East Tennessee State (twice), No. 11 Pitt, No. 19 Virginia and No. 5 Indiana. Those five are the most ranked opponents any Marshall team has played in one season.

GOLDEN OLDIES
Marshall Coach Dan D’Antoni is among a distinguished group of Division I men’s basketball coaches who have stood the test of time. Here’s a look at the coaches who are age 67 or older and still working the sidelines in 2014-15, with years as a collegiate head coach:

Coach                                    Age        Birthdate                             School                                  Yrs.
1. Larry Brown                   74           Sept. 14, 1940                    SMU                                      10
2. Jim Boeheim                 70           Nov. 17, 1944                     Syracuse                              39
3. Steve Fisher                  69           March 24, 1945                  San Diego St.                      25
4. Cliff Ellis                           69           Dec. 5, 1945                        Coastal Carolina                37
5. Howie Dickenman       68           Nov. 10, 1946                     Central Conn.                    19
6. Mike Krzyzewski          67           Feb. 13, 1947                      Duke                                     40
7. Dave Loos                       67           March 5, 1947                    Austin Peay                        29
8. Ken Burmeister            67           June 3, 1947                       Incarnate Word                13
9. Dan D’Antoni                67           July 9, 1947                         Marshall                             1
10. Bo Ryan                         67           Dec. 20, 1947                      Wisconsin                            31       

SON OF MARSHALL
Of 351 Division I men’s basketball programs, Marshall coach Dan D’Antoni is one of 29 head coaches employed by his alma mater. Other prominent names include Kevin Ollie of defending NCAA champion Connecticut, Roy Williams, Jim Boeheim, Bob Huggins, Matt Painter, Mick Cronin, Lorenzo Romar, Dave Rice and Keith Dambrot. Williams and Boeheim are inducted in the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.

D’Antoni is only C-USA coach working at his alma mater. The Herd has faced two teams coached by alumni this season: Bob Huggins of West Virginia and Keith Dambrot at Akron.

Another note – D’Antoni (1970 MU alum) is one of three Marshall alumni who are active Division I coaches, joined by Kevin Keatts (2011 MU alum) of UNC Wilmington and Brian Fish (1989 MU alum) at Montana State.

LET’S GET SOCIAL
Keep up with the latest news about Herd basketball by liking the team’s official Facebook page: Marshall University Basketball. For live in-game updates and news, follow@HerdMBB on Twitter. Want to see photos and behind-the-scenes action? Give @HerdMBB a follow on Instagram.

SCOUTING THE GOLDEN EAGLES
Southern Miss (6-12, 1-6) captured its first league victory on Saturday in a 75-71 overtime win at North Texas. The win ended a nine game losing streak for the Eagles. USM lists three double-figure scorers in Matt Bingaya (14.1), Chip Armelin (14.0) and Norville Carey (10.4). As a team, Southern Miss posts a 44.5 shooting percentage from the field while allowing opponents a league-high 46.9 percent.

The Herd holds a 9-8 advantage in the all-time series, and is 1-6 when playing on the road. Marshall’s lone win in Hattiesburg came Dec. 28, 1988 (103-97). Last season, the Herd dropped a 60-57 contest on Feb. 7, 2014, at Reed Green Coliseum.

UP NEXT
The Herd will take on the Bulldogs of Louisiana Tech on Saturday, Jan. 31, at 5:30 p.m. ET in Ruston, La. For all the latest information about Marshall men’s basketball, follow@HerdWBB on Twitter.

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