LAFAYETTE – The Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns men’s basketball team officially opens its 105th season on intercollegiate basketball on Tuesday when it plays host to the University of the Virgin Islands at the Cajundome.
Tipoff is scheduled for 7:15 p.m., and will follow the women’s 5 p.m., game between Louisiana and Lamar.
The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ with Dan McDonald (play-by-play) and former Ragin’ Cajuns standout Eric Mouton (color) providing the commentary. Fans can listen to the game on the Ragin’ Cajuns Radio Network – KHXT 107.9 FM/ESPN 1420 AM/ESPN 1420 app – with Jay Walker (play-by-play) and former Ragin’ Cajuns women’s coach Ross Cook on the call.
Louisiana, which finished 27-7 last season, returns eight letterwinners, led by starters JaKeenan Gant, Malik Marquetti and Marcus Stroman.
GAME 1: Louisiana (0-0) vs. University of the Virgin Islands (0-4)
Date / Time: November 6, 2018 / 7:15 p.m.
Site: Lafayette, La.
Arena: Cajundome (12,362)
Radio: KHXT 107.9 FM / ESPN1420 AM
Talent: Jay Walker (pxp); Ross Cook (color)
Talent: Dan McDonald (pxp), Eric Mouton(color)
Live Stats: CajunStats.com
Social Updates: @RaginCajunsMBB | #GeauxCajuns
Series: First meeting
Head Coach: Bob Marlin (Mississippi State, 1981)
Record at Louisiana: 155-111 (ninth season), Career Record: 503-277 (26th season)
Head Coach: Jeffrey Jones (Pittsburg State, 1991)
Record at UVI: 5-17 (second season), Career Record: n/a
• Louisiana opens its 105th season of intercollegiate basketball tonight when it faces NAIA opponent University of the Virgin Islands at the Cajundome.
• Louisiana returns three starters – JaKeenan Gant, Malik Marquetti, and Marcus Stroman – along with eight letterwinners from last season’s team.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns have dropped their last two season-openers (at Minnesota, at Ole Miss) after winning five straight openers from 2011-15.
• Louisiana comes off a record-setting year where it won 27 games and captured its first regular-season Sun Belt Conference title since 2000.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns return 54.2 percent of its scoring from 2017-18, along with 48.1 percent of its rebounds and 55.4 percent of their made field goals.
• UVI was led in the late 1990s by then-Buccaneer Athletic Director and former Ragin’ Cajuns head coach Jim Hatfield.
• Louisiana led the Sun Belt Conference in scoring offense (83.2) for the sixth consecutive season while leading the league in scoring margin (+12.4), free throw percentage (.761), field goal percentage (464), rebound margin (+6.6), assists (17.4), steals (7.5) and assist-turnover ratio (1.3).
• Louisiana’s 83.2 scoring average in 2017-18 was its best since the 1990-91 season (91.1) and was the highest by a Sun Belt Conference school since South Alabama (84.6) in 1994-95.
• JaKeenan Gant (second-team) and Marcus Stroman (third-team) were each named to the 2018-19 Sun Belt Preseason All-Conference team.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns 297 3-pointers made in 2017-18 shattered the previous school record (251) set in 1989-90.
• Marcus Stroman became the 28th player in school history to reach the 200-assist mark. His 213 career assists.
RAGIN’ CAJUNS NOTES
• Newcomers Jeremy Hayes, Trajan Wesley and Kristian Lafayette will be the primary newcomers to see action for the Ragin’ Cajuns early on.
• Louisiana has won its last seven home openers dating back to 2011.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns have won 13 straight non-conference home games dating back to March 23, 2016 (UC Irvine) in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
• During the regular-season, Louisiana has won 29 straight non-conference games at home dating back to Dec. 18, 2012 (vs. Robert Morris).
• UVI opened its season on Oct. 27 against Keiser University before playing three New Orleans metro teams – Xavier, Loyola and Dillard.
• The Buccaneers have dropped three of its four games by a combined 16 points, including an overtime setback (109-100) at Loyola on Friday.
• Junior guard Keith Gilmore, who played last season at Little Rock, is one of 10 transfers on the 2018-19 roster.
• Elijah Bush (15.5), Harold Cardwell (14.3), Keith Gilmore (12.8) and Joshuah Goss (11.8) are the top scorers for UVI.
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