NIT CHALK TALK
LSU at Oregon, 8:30 p.m. Tuesday
Radio: 100.7 FM. TV: ESPN
G Anthony Hickey 5-11, 182, Fr. (9.1 ppg, 3.8 apg, 67 steals)
G Ralston Turner 6-6, 205, So. (9 ppg, 3 rpg, 47-130 3pt. FG)
G Andre Stringer 5-9, 175, So. (10.1 ppg, 60-73 FT, 70 assists)
F Storm Warren 6-7, 230, Sr. (8.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 30 steals)
C Justin Hamilton 7-0, 260, Jr. (12.7 ppg, 7.2 rpg, 98-128 FT)
F Johnny O’Bryant 6-8, 250, Fr. (8.4 ppg, 6.9 rpg)
F Malcolm White 6-8, 220, Sr. (3.3 ppg, 2 rpg)
G John Isaac 6-3, 208, Fr. (2.7 ppg, 16-21 FT)
G-F Eddie Ludwig 6-9, 210, Jr. (2 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 14-16 FT)
Coach: Trent Johnson (67-63, 4th season; 226-184, 13th season)
G Devoe Joseph 6-4, 180, Sr. (16.6 ppg, 73 assists, 42.2% 3-pt. FG)
G Garrett Sim 6-2, 185, Sr. (12.2 ppg, 78 assists, 46.2% 3-pt. FG)
C Tony Woods 6-11, 250, Jr. (6.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 47 blocks)
F E.J. Singler 6-6, 215, Jr. (13.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 67 assists. 90.7% FT)
F Jeremy Jacob 6-8, 230, Sr. (4.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg)
F Olu Ashaolu 6-7, 220, Sr. (8.5 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 54.9% FG)
F Carlos Emory 6-6, 225, Jr. (6.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 72.7% FT)
G Johnathan Loyd 5-8, 165, So. (3.4 ppg, 1.5 rpg)
Coach: Dana Altman (43-27, 2nd season; 453-270, 23rd season)
The winner advances to take on the winner of the Dayton-Iowa game in the Washington bracket. LSU will play on the road regardless of how the seeding works out because of schedule conflicts.
This is the first meeting between the Tigers and Ducks in basketball, but Johnson is no stranger to Oregon. In four seasons as Stanford’s head coach, he was 6-2 vs. UO, the two losses coming in Eugene in his last two seasons. He was also an assistant on Stanford teams that went unbeaten vs. the Ducks from 1997-99 (6-0) and coached against them six times from 1990-92 as an assistant at Washington, going 3-3.
The Tigers are 18-27 all-time against Pac-12 teams. Oregon is the 11th of the 12 LSU has met. Colorado is the one team the Tigers have never faced. The Ducks are 4-13 against SEC foes, including a 78-64 loss at Vanderbilt in this year’s season opener. LSU lost to the Commodores 76-61 on Feb. 8.
The Ducks and Tigers also both played home games against Virginia – Oregon losing 67-54 and LSU falling 57-52 in the last contest before the SEC season began.
Johnson is the fourth LSU coach to lead a team to the NIT, joining Press Maravich, Dale Brown and John Brady. He is 6-7 in postseason games – five NCAA berths and three NITs.
LSU enters the Oregon game -51 in free throws made and -73 in free-throw attempts to opponents this season.
In all four of the Tigers’ road wins this season, they have limited their opponents under 60 points. That makes sense, because 15 of LSU’s 18 wins have involved them holding foes under 60 points. Oregon is 3-3 this season when it scores 60 points or fewer, but the Ducks have topped 61 points in their last 13 games and are 9-4 in that stretch.
The Tigers have gotten 601 points from their three freshmen and 601 from three sophomores this season.
Strange stat: LSU has lost five of the last seven games when Anthony Hickey has scored in double figures.
Andre Stringer has scored in double digits in six of the last nine games, with three sets of back-to-back games, including both at the SEC Tournament when he scored 11 in both games. That’s Stringer’s best scoring stretch since he came back from a five-game absence after fainant at practice.
Ralston TurnerRalston Turner has showed some offensive spark, scoring in double digits in three straight games for the first time of his sophomore campaign. In that trio of games, Turner is shooting 46.2% from the field (12-of-26) and 40% from 3-point range (6-of-15). He also grabbed 14 rebounds, buoyed by a career-best 8 against Arkansas in the SEC Tournament, and has dished out 9 assists.
Storm Warren’s back-to-back 14-point performances at the SEC Tournament were his best scoring days since he hung up 15 in the league opener against Ole Miss.
Justin Hamilton’s shooting slump reached a new low against Kentucky when he missed 11 of 12 floor shots and finished with only 4 points. In the last two weeks of the regular season and SEC Tournament, Hamilton shot just 29.8% (14 of 47) from the floor and made only one field goal in four of those six games. He’s shooting 49% for the season (152 of 310).
Oregon is in the NIT for the 10th time, the first since punching a ticket to the semifinals in New York City in 2004. Altman is taking a team to the NIT for the eighth time after guiding Kansas State to two trips and Creighton to five.
The Ducks have won 20 or more games in back-to-back seasons for only the third time in their history and first time since 2002 and 2003. This is the 13th season with 20-plus wins in Oregon’s history.
Strange stat II: The Ducks average 74.9 points in their 22 wins and allow 74.9 points a game in their nine losses.
Oregon shot only 28.7% (54 of 188) from 3-point territory in their losses this season.
Playing close sits well with the Ducks. They are 6-3 in games settled by five points or less and 14 of their wins have come in games decided by 10 points or fewer. In those 14 games, Oregon has shot 89.3% (93 of 107) from the foul stripe in the final 5 minutes. LSU 5-5 in contests settled by six points of fewer.
E.J. SinglerThe Ducks’ roster features three players who have scored 1,000 points or more and another who is knocking on the door. Olu Ashaolu – a former LSU commitment who played three seasons at Louisiana Tech – has scored 1,269 points, E.J. Singler has scored 1,059 and Garrett Sim has 1,041 points to his credit. UO leading scorer Devoe Joseph has scored 999 points in three seasons.
UO tied for second place in the Pac-12 with a 13-5 record, its best since going 14-4 on the way to the 2002 league crown.