GAME 1 -- NOVEMBER 15, 1997

Furman Paladins (0-0) vs. Newberry Indians (0-0)

Greenville, South Carolina, Herman W. Lay Physical Activities Center

7:30 P.M. EST

Furman's Probable Starters

Pos. No. Name Ht. Wt. Yr. Hometown PPG RPG
G 15 Marcus Dilligard 6-4 190 Fr. LaBelle, Mo. 0.0 0.0
G 24 Bubba Smith 6-4 190 Jr. Hendersonville, Tenn. 6.7 3.2
F 22 Andre Kerr 6-6 220 So. Augusta, Ga. 7.7 4.0
F 31 Chuck Vincent 6-7 235 Sr. Durham, N.C. 16.2 9.7
C 32 Daniel Quigley 6-7 205 Jr. Tipton, Ind. 8.3 6.0

Head Coaches

Furman: Larry Davis (Asbury '78)

Newberry: Grafton Young

The Series

Tonight's Furman-Newberry game marks the 63rd meeting between the Paladins and Indians since the series began during the 1919-20 season with a 24-16 Newberry win in Greenville. Furman leads the overall series 41-21.

Furman enters tonight's game having claimed 16 straight wins over Newberry since the 1951-52 season. The Paladins and Indians last met during the 1988-89 campaign, with Furman taking a 97-82 win in Greenville behind guard David Brown's game-high 31 points. Newberry's last win over Furman in basketball, a 63-60 verdict, came during the 1950-51 season in Newberry.

Furman is a 28-7 against Newberry in Greenville and 13-13 versus the Indians in Newberry. Newberry is 1-0 versus Furman in the only neutral site meeting between the two schools.

Noting The Paladins

FURMAN'S DAVIS TO MAKE COLLEGIATE COACHING DEBUT...Tonight's 1997-98 season opener marks the collegiate head coaching debut of Furman coach Larry Davis. Davis, who spent the last three seasons as an assistant at Minnesota, was named Furman's new head coach on April 9, 1997. As an assistant at Minnesota, Davis helped direct the Gophers to a 69-29 record and make two trips to the NCAA Tournament, including last year's Final Four squad that claimed the Big Ten Conference title on the way to a school best 31-4 record. Davis got his start as a coach in the Southern Conference, serving as a graduate assistant at East Tennessee State (1980-82).

FURMAN IN PRE-SEASON P0LLS...Furman was a consensus Southern Conference South Division third place pick in a pair of pre-season polls conducted by league head coaches and media. Chattanooga, which last year advanced to the NCAA Tournament's "Sweet 16", was the consensus pick to repeat as the SoCon's South Division champion, and The Citadel was selected second in both polls. Furman finished last (fifth) in the south division last year with a 10-17 overall record and 4-10 league mark.

VINCENT NAMED SOCON PRE-SEASON PLAYER-OF-THE-YEAR...Furman senior forward/center Chuck Vincent was selected by Southern Conference head coaches as the league's pre-season player-of-the-year two weeks ago at the conference's annual tip-off in Greensboro, N.C. A three-year starter, two-time all-conference performer, and former league freshman-of-the-year pick, Vincent averaged 16.2 points and a league leading 9.7 rebounds per game a year ago. He enters the 1997-98 season ranked 20th on Furman's all-time scoring ledger (1,179) and 12th on the school's career rebounding chart (718). If Vincent makes good on the pre-season tab, he will become the first Paladin to earn Southern Conference Player-of-the-Year honors since Jonathan Moore (1980).

VINCENT, KERR NAMED TO PRE-SEASON ALL-SOCON TEAM...Furman senior forward/center Chuck Vincent and redshirt sophomore forward Andre Kerr were named to the Southern Conference's pre-season all-conference team. While Vincent's selection was no surprise, Kerr's pick comes after the 6-foot-6 Augusta, Ga., product missed virtually all of the 1996-97 season with a sore back. Two years ago Kerr was named to the Southern Conference All-Freshman Team after averaging 12.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. In the last five games of the 1995-96 campaign, Kerr shot 63.2% from the field and averaged 20.8 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. Included in that stretch was a season high 29-point performance against eventual league tournament champion Western Carolina.

PALADINS SPLIT EXHIBITION GAMES...Furman split a pair of pre-season exhibition games, dropping a 90-83 decision to the Upstate Converse All-Stars on Nov. 3 before coming back to claim a 78-64 decision over Drobe-Juta from Lithuania on Nov. 8. Chuck Vincent led the Paladins in scoring in both games, tallying 28 and 20 points, respectively. Andre Kerr, meanwhile, claimed a game high 15 rebounds against the UpState All-Stars. Against Drobe-Juta, the Paladins got solid production from freshman guards Marcus Dilligard (12 points) and P.J. Brown (15 points).

TIMMONS ARENA NEARING COMPLETION...A little over a year after construction began, Timmons Arena, the school's new 5,000-seat, multi-purpose home, is rapidly nearing completion. As it stands now, Furman will play its first men's basketball game in Timmons Arena on Dec. 30 when the Paladins host Northeastern Illinois. Furman's Lady Paladin basketball squad will actually play the first game in Timmons Arena when it hosts Georgia Southern on Dec. 20. Timmons Arena will be the home court to the school's two basketball programs and Furman volleyball, and will serve as the home of Furman football, sports information, and strength training. Furman University will officially dedicate Timmons Arena on Jan. 17 prior to the Paladins' game against long-time Southern Conference rival Davidson.

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