BIRMINGHAM – The UAB men’s basketball team will conclude its three-game homestand to open the 2021-22 regular season when the Blazers host Rhodes College on Sunday in Bartow Arena. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. and will streamed live on CUSA.tv.
UAB is 1-0 all-time against the Lynx, securing a 95-72 victory over Rhodes back on Dec. 1, 1984. A win in Sunday’s matchup would help the Blazers notch their 400th regular-season victory inside Bartow Arena.
The Blazers are averaging over 90 points per game over their first two regular-season appearances and look to move to 3-0 to open the year for the fourth time in the past five seasons.
UAB’s hot start on offense continued on Friday in an 85-71 victory over defending Ohio Valley Conference Tournament champions Morehead State in Bartow Arena. UAB doubled up the Eagles in the first half, using a key 10-0 run over just 2:12 to expand its lead from 12 points to 22 points with four minutes remaining in the first half. Jordan Walker (23) and Quan Jackson (15) paced the Blazers in points scored, while Tavin Lovan also reached double figures with 10 points of his own.
RHODES COLLEGE LATELY
Rhodes College opened the season with back-to-back wins, defeating the University of the Ozarks and Spalding University (Ky.) with a pair of 71-point performances. The University of Dallas handed the Lynx their first loss of the season on Friday as Rhodes let its slim one-point advantage at halftime slip away. Senior guard Kevin Shen leads Rhodes in scoring with 14 points per game to go along with 4.3 rebounds per contest. Junior guard Koki Wiley leads the Lynx on the glass with 6.7 rebounds per game.
The Blazers and Lynx will only play one shared opponent this season — Millsaps. UAB’s matchup against the Majors is set for Dec. 12.
In October, the league’s coaches selected UAB as the favorite to win the Conference USA regular season championship. The Blazers, who won a league-best 13 C-USA games this past season, earned eight of the 14 first-place votes.
A NOSE FOR THE BASKETBALL
After earning Conference USA All-Defensive Team honors this past season, graduate guard Quan Jackson is once again off to a hot start this year on the defensive side of the ball. Jackson not only leads the Blazers with 10 steals, but he also ranks tied for fourth nationally with 5.0 steals per game. Jackson only needed one half to log five steals in Friday’s win over Morehead State.
Transfer point guard Jordan “Jelly” Walker opened his UAB career with a bang in Tuesday night’s victory over UNC Asheville, pouring in 19 points to go along with a team-high five assists. Walker then topped his opening-night performance with 23 points, seven assists and a steal in Friday’s victory over Morehead State. Jelly is averaging 21.0 points and six assists per game so far this season.
AK EYES A NEW FIRST FOR A BLAZERS’ HEAD COACH
Head coach Andy Kennedy often talks about re-establishing the “Bartow Standard” in Birmingham by not only competing for championships, but winning them year after year. One thing that has never been accomplished in UAB men’s basketball history, however, is having a Blazer head coach start both his first and second year 3-0. Kennedy would be the first of seven UAB head coaches to open both his first and second seasons with three consecutive victories.
AK CLOSING IN ON 300
After posting his 11th 20-win season in 2020-21, Andy Kennedy sits just 10 wins away from posting his 300th career victory as a collegiate head coach. His first opportunity to reach 300 wins would come against his longtime mentor and friend Bob Huggins, who enters his 15th season at West Virginia in 2021-22.
THE RACE TO TRIPLE DIGITS
The 2021-22 UAB men’s basketball team surpassed 100 points in its season-opening exhibition on Nov. 1, getting fans in Bartow on their feet for a new era of offensive prowess under second-year head coach Andy Kennedy. On Tuesday, the Blazers did it “for real” with 102 points against UNC Asheville, exploding for 58 points in the second half. UAB’s 102 points on Tuesday marked only the third time the Blazers have eclipsed 100 points in a regular-season opener and the only time they’ve done it against a Division I opponent.
Blazer men’s basketball games are set to air on 100.5 ESPN JOX 2 with David Crane and Murry Bartow on the call.
In addition, Crane will host Blazer Sportsline every Tuesday beginning Dec. 28. The show takes place live from Iron City Grill in downtown Birmingham and features men’s basketball head coach Andy Kennedy and women’s basketball head coach Randy Norton.
The nine-episode show, airs from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Blazer Sportsline can be heard on 100.5 ESPN JOX 2 and fans will be encouraged to tweet questions to @BlazersLIMGC.
Fans may also follow the Blazers this season by downloading the free TuneIn Radio app, online through Blazers All-Access at UABSports.com, or on the UAB Gameday mobile app.
Sunday’s game will be streamed through CUSA.tv. This is a subscription-based service.
Sunday’s game against Rhodes College will mark UAB men’s basketball’s first of two Fan Appreciation offers this month. While the offer for $10 tickets to Sunday’s game has expired, fans have until Friday, Nov. 19, at 5 p.m. to take advantage of this deal when UAB hosts in-state foe Alabama A&M in Bartow Arena on Nov. 21. Fans can take advantage of this offer by clicking here.
UAB will hit the road for the first time in 2021-22 when the Blazers head East to take on South Carolina on Thursday. The Green and Gold are 1-2 against the Gamecocks all-time, winning the original matchup 83-54 back in 1986.
MEN’S BASKETBALL TICKET INFORMATION
UAB men’s basketball single-game tickets start as low as $12 and can be purchased by clicking here or calling the UAB Athletics Ticket Office at (205) 975-UAB1. Season tickets are also still on sale and provide the most cost-effective way to attend games during the 2021-22 men’s basketball season with individual season tickets starting as low as $100 within Blaze’s Corner. Season ticket holders also have access to the best seating locations in Bartow Arena. You can request more information or purchase by clicking here.
Discounted group tickets and fan experiences are available for a minimum purchase of 15 tickets to any home basketball game during the 2021-22 season. Groups are encouraged to complete the UAB Basketball Group Ticket Request Form or call the UAB Athletics Ticket Office for more information.