LAFAYETTE – The Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns men’s basketball team closes out its 2018-19 home schedule on Sunday when it plays host to Appalachian State in a Sun Belt Conference matinee at the Cajundome.
Tipoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. The game will be streamed live on ESPN+ with Dan McDonald (pxp) and Eric Mouton (color) on the call. Fans can listen to the game in the Lafayette area on KHXT-FM (107.9), ESPN 1420 AM and worldwide on RaginCajuns.com with Jay Walker (PxP) and Ross Cook (color) providing the commentary.
Prior to the game, Louisiana (18-11, 8-7 SBC) will honor its senior class of Malik Marquetti, JaKeenan Gant and Marcus Stroman.
Louisiana, which enters Sunday’s game in sole possession of fifth-place in the SBC standings, improved to 10-3 overall at home this season with an 83-70 win over Coastal Carolina on Thursday. Gant scored a game-high 29 points in the game for the Ragin’ Cajuns, who never trailed and avenged a 96-79 loss to the Chanticleers on Feb. 2.
Gant, who needs five points to become the 48th player in school history to score 1,000 points in his Ragin’ Cajuns career, leads Louisiana in scoring (20.7), rebounds (8.5) and blocked shots (2.8). Stroman, who is eight assists shy of becoming the ninth player in school history to reach the 400-assist mark in his UL career, is next in scoring at 11.8 points while leading the Sun Belt Conference in assists (6.4) and ranking second in steals (2.2).
App State (9-19, 4-11 SBC), which lost at ULM on Thursday, earned its first-ever win over the Ragin’ Cajuns in nine tries last month with a 104-77 victory in Boone, N.C. Ronshad Shabazz, who scored a career-high 47 points on Thursday at ULM, leads the Mountaineers in scoring at 18.8 points per game with Isaac Johnson leading the SBC with 8.9 rebounds.
LOUISIANA (17-11, 8-7 SBC) vs. APPALACHIAN STATE (9-19, 4-11 SBC)
Date / Time: March 3, 2019 / 1:30 p.m.
Site: Lafayette, La.
Arena: Cajundome (12,362)
Radio: KHXT 107.9 FM / ESPN 1420 AM
Talent: Jay Walker (PxP); Ross Cook (color)
Talent: Dan McDonald (PxP); Eric Mouton (color)
LIVE STATS/SOCIAL MEDIA
Live Stats: CajunStats.com
Social Updates: @RaginCajunsMBB | #GeauxCajuns
Overall: Louisiana leads, 8-1
In Lafayette: Louisiana leads, 4-0
In Boone: Louisiana leads, 4-1
Streak: Appalachian State +1
Head Coach: Bob Marlin (Mississippi State, 1981)
Record at Louisiana: 172-122 (ninth season), Career Record: 520-288 (26th season)
Head Coach: Jim Fox (SUNY Geneseo, 1995)
Record at App State: 54-97 (fifth season), Career Record: Same
• Sunday’s game marks the final regular-season home appearance for seniors JaKeenan Gant, Malik Marquetti and Marcus Stroman. The trio has been responsible for 44 wins and a Sun Belt Conference championship since arriving at Louisiana after the 2015-16 season.
• JaKeenan Gant enters Sunday’s game five points shy of becoming the 48th player in school history to record 1,000 points in his Louisiana career.
• Gant would become the 10th player in school history to reach the 1,000-point mark in two years, joining a group that includes Dwight “Bo” Lamar, Andrew Toney, Shawn Long, Kevin Brooks, Frank Bartley and Sydney Grider.
• Bob Marlin’s 99 wins in Sun Belt Conference games are the most by an active coach in the league. The next victory would make Marlin the fifth coach in SBC history to earn 100 wins in league play.
• Marcus Stroman’s 392 assists in his two-year Ragin’ Cajuns career leaves him eight shy of becoming the ninth player in school history with 400. Stroman needs two assists to tie Chris Snowden (1995-98) for 10th place and seven to tie Johnny Collins (1981-83) for ninth.
• Louisiana is 20-15 overall in games played during the month of March under head coach Bob Marlin and a combined 63-36 in both February/March.
• Louisiana is 11-3 overall when scoring 80 or more points during the 2018-19 season.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns are 11-2 overall when holding an opponent to under 80 points
• Louisiana is 6-2 this season in games decided by six points or less.
• Gant is the only Division I player averaging 20 points, eight rebounds and 2.8 blocks during the 2018-19 season.
• Louisiana has used 10 different starting lineups during the 2018-19 season, including six since losing senior Malik Marquetti to a knee injury on Dec. 29.
• Louisiana’s 73-72 victory at Southeastern Louisiana on Dec. 29 was its first one-point win since defeating ULM, 85-84, on Feb. 18, 2017. The Ragin’ Cajuns are 11-4 overall in one-point games under head coach Bob Marlin and 55-49 overall in school history.
SCOUTING APP STATE
• Since a season-high three-game win streak, that included a 104-77 win over Louisiana on Jan. 31, App State has dropped five of its last six games with three coming by six points or less.
• The Mountaineers dropped an 81-75 decision at ULM on Thursday, despite a career-high 47 points from Ronshad Shabazz.
• Shabazz averages 18.8 points per game to lead App State with Justin Forrest (15.6) and Isaac Johnson (10.3) each averaging in double figures. Johnson paces the league with 8.9 rebounds.
• App State is 1-15 away from Boone this season, including 1-12 in true road games. Seven of App’s losses away from home have been by six points or less.
LAST MEETING – APPALACHIAN STATE 104, LOUISIANA 77
• Tyrell Johnson came off the bench to score 20 points to lead five players in double figures and Appalachian State scored the game’s first 17 points to defeat the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns, 104-77, in a Sun Belt Conference game at the Holmes Center.
• Justin Forrest scored 17 points to App State, which won its second straight game and earned its first-ever victory over Louisiana in nine contests. Hunter Seacat added 14 points, Ronshad Shabazz 12 and Isaac Johnson 10 as the Mountaineers led 51-31 at halftime and 72-39 with 14:17 remaining.
• Louisiana, which was led by JaKeenan Gant with 15 points and 10 rebounds, missed its first eight shots of the game before a bucket by Cedric Russell with 14:51 left in the first half ended the opening run by App State.
• Jerekius Davis scored 12 of his 13 points in the second half for the Ragin’ Cajuns while Jeremy Hayes came off the bench to add 12. Justin Miller added nine points for the Ragin’ Cajuns, who finished 28-for-62 (45 percent) from the floor and 5-for-27 (19 percent) from behind the 3-point line.
AT HOME IN THE DOME
• In eight of the past nine seasons, Louisiana has won 10 or more games in the Cajundome, highlighted by a single-season record tying 14 victories in 2017-18.
• Louisiana is 10-3 overall at the Cajundome in 2018-19.
• Since opening in 1985-86, Louisiana has posted a 339-128 record in the Cajundome and is 101-30 under head coach Bob Marlin.
MARLIN SET TO JOIN SELECT COMPANY
• With 99 career victories in Sun Belt Conference play for Louisiana head coach Bob Marlin, the next victory by the Ragin’ Cajuns would make him the fifth coach in SBC history to reach the 100-win mark.
• Marlin, who is 99-62 in SBC games, would join a list that includes Kermit Davis, Jr. (Middle Tennessee, 117), Ronnie Arrow (South Alabama, 112), Gene Bartow (UAB, 111) and Dickey Nutt (Arkansas State, 103) as coaches with 100 victories in Sun Belt Conference play during their careers.
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.
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.
STROMAN DISHING IT OUT
• With 179 assists during the 2018-19 season at Louisiana, senior Marcus Stroman looks to become the first-ever Ragin’ Cajuns floor general to reach the 200-assist mark twice in a career.
• With 392 career assists in his two-year career, Stroman can become the ninth player in school history – and first since former Ragin’ Cajun and current New Orleans Pelicans guard Elfrid Payton (2011-14) – to reach the 400-mark.
• Head coach Bob Marlin is in his ninth season at the helm of the Ragin’ Cajuns with his teams from 2013-15 equaling the most wins (45) since a period from 1982-84 which saw then-USL post records of 22-10 (1982-83) and 23-10 (1983-84).
• During the past two seasons, Louisiana’s 48 wins equaled the 1970-72 teams for the best two-year mark in school history.
• Under Marlin’s guidance, the Ragin’ Cajuns have made five postseason appearances, including a berth in the 2014 NCAA Championships.
• He is 172-121 in his career at Louisiana and has taken two teams – Louisiana (2014) and Sam Houston State (2003, 2010) to the NCAA Championships.
• Louisiana reached the 100-point mark for the 140th time in school history after its 122-90 win over Prairie View on Dec. 11.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns recorded five 100-point games last season – a 113-58 win over Louisiana College (Nov. 14), a 115-82 victory over Savannah State (Nov. 17), a 105-80 win at Nicholls State (Dec. 1), a 102-91 victory at Georgia Southern (Feb. 10) and a 100-79 win over UT Arlington (Feb. 17).
• In all, UL is 137-3 in games in which it has scored 100 points.
• Under head coach Bob Marlin, Louisiana is 19-0 in games when scoring 100 points or greater.
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 19th among 351 Division I teams in scoring.
• The 2017-18 edition averaged 83.2 points per game and posting the highest season average since the 1990-91 season.
• Since the 2013-14 season, Louisiana has scored 80 or more points 106 times to rank fifth among Division I schools with North Carolina (125), Gonzaga (121), BYU (117) and Duke (117) ahead.
WINNING THE CLOSE ONES
• During the Bob Marlin era, Louisiana is 50-46 in games decided by six points or less with at least nine wins recorded in both 2010-11 and 2013-14.
• The Cajuns were 3-1 in games decided by six points or less in 2017-18 and are 6-1 this season.
• In one-point contests, Louisiana’s 73-72 victory at Southeastern Louisiana on Dec. 29 was its first since defeating ULM, 85-84, on Feb. 18, 2017.
• The Ragin’ Cajuns are 11-4 overall in one-point games under head coach Bob Marlin and 55-49 overall in school history.
• Tickets are available online at RaginCajuns.com using Account Manager, or by calling the Louisiana Athletics Ticket Office at (337) 265-2357.
CAJUNS CARE TICKET INITIATIVE
• Help Louisiana Athletics continue to give back! After a successful start during the 2018 football season, the Cajuns Care program will allow Ragin’ Cajuns fans the opportunity to purchase Louisiana men’s basketball season tickets for $20.
• Tickets purchased through the Cajuns Care program will be donated to local charitable and philanthropic initiatives, including Boys & Girls Club of Acadiana, the United Way and area military servicemen and servicewomen.
• Fans and supporters of Louisiana men’s basketball can find the option to purchase Cajuns Care season tickets online, by calling the Louisiana Athletics Ticket Office at the Cajundome (337-265-2357) or visiting in-person.
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.