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Cajuns play Kansas Friday at historic Allen Fieldhouse

Posted at 11:26 PM, Nov 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-16 00:26:29-05

LAFAYETTE (PRESS RELEASE) – After opening its road schedule last week at nationally-ranked Tennessee, the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns men’s basketball team returns to action on Friday as it will face No. 2 Kansas at historic Allen Fieldhouse.

Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

The game will be available on Jayhawk TV/ESPN+ with Dave Armstrong (PxP) and Chris Piper (color) providing commentary. Fans in the Lafayette area can listen to the game on KHXT-FM 107.9 with Jay Walker (PxP) and Ross Cook (color) on the call.

Louisiana (1-1) plays its ninth game against a top-5 opponent in school history, with the game against Kansas (2-0) the second straight against a top-10 foe. The Ragin’ Cajuns dropped an 87-65 decision at No. 6 Tennessee last Friday as JaKeenan Gant scored a team-high 18 points.

Gant leads Louisiana in scoring (18.5 ppg.) with Malik Marquetti (13.5), Justin Miller (10.5) and Jeremy Hayes (10.5) following. Marquetti leads the Ragin’ Cajuns in rebounds, pulling down seven boards per game while Marcus Stroman averages 9.5 points per game and is tied for fourth nationally with 9.5 assists.

Kansas, which finished 31-8 last season and reached the Final Four, opened its home schedule on Monday with an 84-68 victory over NIT participant Vermont. Lagerald Vick scored a career-high 32 points for the Jayhawks, going 8-for-8 from behind the 3-point line, with Udoka Azubuike (23 points, 11 rebounds) and freshman Quentin Grimes (10 points, 10 assists) each posting double-doubles.
GAME INFORMATION
LOUISIANA (1-1) at #2/1 KANSAS (2-0)
Date / Time: November 16, 2018 / 7 p.m.
Site: Lawrence, Kan.
Arena: Allen Fieldhouse (16,300)

Radio: KHXT 107.9 FM
Talent: Jay Walker (PxP); Ross Cook (color)
TV: ESPN +
Talent: Dave Armstrong (PxP), Chris Piper (color)

Live Stats: CajunStats.com
Social Updates: @RaginCajunsMBB | #GeauxCajuns

SERIES INFORMATION
Overall: Series tied, 1-1
In Lafayette: Never met
In Lawrence: Kansas leads, 1-0
Neutral: Louisiana leads, 1-0
Streak: Kansas +1

THE COACHES
LOUISIANA
Head Coach: Bob Marlin (Mississippi State, 1981)
Record at Louisiana: 156-112 (ninth season), Career Record: 504-278 (26th season)

KANSAS
Head Coach: Bill Self (Oklahoma State, 1985)
Record at KU: 449-96 (16th season), Career Record: 656-201 (26th season)

STORY LINES
• Louisiana plays its second consecutive game against a top-10 opponent after playing at then sixth-ranked Tennessee on Nov. 9.
• Tonight’s game is the second consecutive time Louisiana faces a No. 2-ranked KU squad (last in 2004).
• Louisiana returns three starters – JaKeenan Gant, Malik Marquetti, and Marcus Stroman – along with eight letterwinners from last season’s team.
• 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.

QUICK HITS
• Louisiana’s 121 points scored against the University of the Virgin Islands were the most scored in a season-opener by the Cajuns since a 124-114 win over Oral Roberts in the 1970-71 season.
• 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.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns 297 3-pointers made in 2017-18 shattered the previous school record (251) set in 1989-90.
• Louisiana 14 3-pointers and 29 assists in its season-opener against UVI are the most among Sun Belt Conference teams in the first week of the 2018-19 season.
• Marcus Stroman became the 28th player in school history to reach the 200-assist mark. His 213 career assists in 2017-18 were the fourth most in a single-season in school history.
• Since the 2013-14 season, Louisiana (93 games) and Kansas (91) are ranked fifth and sixth respectively in most games scoring 80 or more points.

SCOUTING KANSAS
• Kansas opened its season last Tuesday with a 92-87 win over No. 10 Michigan State in the State Farm Champions Classic in Indianapolis.
• KU opened its home schedule on Monday with an 84-68 victory over Vermont.
• Lagerald Vick scored a career-high 32 points, including an 8-for-8 performance from behind the 3-point line, against the Catamounts. Udoka Azubuike posted a double-double with 23 points and 11 rebounds with freshman Quentin Grimes posting a double-double with 10 points and 10 assists.
• The Jayhawks have recorded 276 consecutive sellouts at Allen Fieldhouse dating back to the 2001-02 season.
• KU’s win over Vermont marked its 46th consecutive victory in a home opener, a streak which started in the 1973-74 season.
• The Jayhawks finished 31-8 last season, securing their third straight 30-win season and reaching the Final Four for the first time since finishing as the national runner-up to Kentucky in 2012.
• Freshman guard Quentin Grimes is the son of Marshall Grimes, a two-year letterwinner for the Ragin’ Cajuns from 1980-82.

CAJUNS TO GET BATTLE-TESTED EARLY
• For only the second time in school history, Louisiana will face two teams ranked in the top 10 when it is scheduled to face No. 6 Tennessee (Nov. 9) and No. 2 Kansas (Nov. 16).
• The only other time Louisiana faced two top-10 teams in the same season was in 2004-05 when the Ragin’ Cajuns played, ironically, then No. 2-ranked Kansas (L, 96-51) and No. 4 Louisville (L, 68-62).
• Louisiana’s lone win against a top-5 team in eight games came in a 70-61 win over then-No. 5 Georgetown (with freshman Patrick Ewing) in the opening game of the 1981 Great Alaska Shootout.

THE RAGIN’ CAJUNS LEGACY LIVES ON
• Two members of the 2018-19 Ragin’ Cajuns squad are following in the footsteps of their fathers, who each played for then-USL.
• Freshman forward Kobe Julien (Baton Rouge) is the son of former Ragin’ Cajuns forward Wayne Julien (1977-81) with freshman guard Eli Mouton (Lafayette) the son of former Ragin’ Cajuns player and current ESPN+ analyst Eric Mouton.

TEAMS PLAY FAST UNDER MARLIN
• During Bob Marlin’s 25-year tenure as a head coach, that includes three trips to the NCAA Tournament and a NJCAA national championship, his teams have employed a fast-paced style of basketball that has averaged 78.5 points per game during that span.
• His teams have averaged over 70 points per game 24 of the 25 years.
• The last six Ragin’ Cajuns teams under Marlin have led the Sun Belt Conference in scoring.
• His last five teams have averaged a rank of 19th among 351 Division I teams in scoring.
• The 2017-18 edition averaged 83.4 points per game and posting the highest season average since the 1990-91 season.

BORN ON THE BAYOU
• Eight of the 15 players on the 2018-19 Ragin’ Cajuns basketball team hail from the state of Louisiana.
• Baton Rouge – Kobe Julien (Madison Prep) and Jalen Johnson (University Lab); Lafayette – Eli Mouton (Ascension Episcopal School); Lake Charles – P.J. Hardy (St. Louis Catholic); Alexandria – Cedric Russell (Peabody) Luling – Mason Aucoin (Hahnville); DeRidder – R.J. Gladney (DeRidder); Roseland – Jeremy Hayes.

CAJUNS IN THE PROS
• Louisiana currently has one player – Elfrid Payton (New Orleans Pelicans) – competing in the National Basketball Association while 2016 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year Shawn Long played late in the 2016-17 season with the Philadelphia 76er’s (now playing in Australia/New Zealand).
• The Ragin’ Cajuns have had three players – Andrew Toney (8th pick, 1980, Philadelphia), Kevin Brooks (18th pick, 1991, Milwaukee) and Payton (10th pick, 2014, Philadephia/Orlando) taken in the first round of the NBA Draft.

SEASON TICKETS AVAILABLE
• Season tickets, beginning at $100, are available online at RaginCajuns.com using Account Manager, or by calling the Louisiana Athletics Ticket Office at (337) 265-2357.
• All current UL faculty and staff, along with recent graduates (within the last five years), can purchase season tickets at a 50-percent discount to cheer on the Ragin’ Cajuns during the 2018-19 season at the Cajundome.
• The special package will allow recent graduates of Louisiana to purchase tickets in sections 101-103. Discounts will be applied upon confirmation of graduate status by the Louisiana Athletics Ticket Office.

FOLLOW THE CAJUNS
Follow the Ragin’ Cajuns on Twitter (@RaginCajunsMBB), Facebook (RaginCajunsMBB) or Instagram (@RaginCajunsMBB) to stay up-to-date on all that is happening with Louisiana Men’s Basketball.