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Belmont tops Lipscomb 87-62

Belmont tops Lipscomb 87-62

Posted on 17 November 2014 by Allen

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Behind strong defense and 16 three-point field goals, Belmont University men’s basketball defeated Lipscomb, 87-62, Monday evening.

Seething from a hard-to-swallow last second loss at Wright State Friday, the Bruins came out purposeful and determined by scoring 19 of the game’s first 24 points.

But after holding Lipscomb to one made field goal over the first five and a half minutes, the Bisons eventually found their range a bit, closing within 24-16 on a Josh Williams basket.

The Bruins answered with a convincing 10-0 run over the next five minutes, highlighted by three-pointers from sophomore Taylor Barnette (Lexington, Ky.) and freshman Amanze Egekeze (Lake in the Hills, Ill.).

Belmont got a great lift from its bench, as senior Spencer Turner (Bloomington, Ind.), sophomore Nick Smith (Bentonville, Ark.) and sophomore Caleb Chowbay (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.), among others, contributed immediately upon entry.

Williams scored six straight points late in the half, and after two driving baskets from junior Craig Bradshaw (Ridgetop, Tenn.), Nathan Moran sank a wing three-pointer to close the hosts within 11, 48-37, at halftime.

Belmont shot 55 percent (18-for-33) from the field in the opening 20 minutes – including 9-for-19 from three-point distance.

The Bruins also committed only six first half turnovers.

Barnette and Bradshaw continued their torrid pace, teaming up to score Belmont’s first 10 points of the second half. A conventional three-point play from sophomore Evan Bradds (Jamestown, Ohio) and a layin from Smith pushed the lead to 63-43 with 15:44 left.

Lipscomb inched within 14 points, before senior Holden Mobley (Nashville, Tenn.) and Smith buried consecutive shots from behind the arc in reply.

With Chamberlain’s hard-nosed play leading the charge, Belmont continued to challenge Bison passes and shot attempts.

Some unfortunate decision-making and risky passes down the stretch aside, Belmont completed a workmanlike performance. All told, the Bruins shot 58 percent (33-for-57) from the field – including 16-for-33 from three-point distance. Belmont handed out 23 assists on 33 made field goals, and outrebounded Lipscomb by nine, 41-32.

Bradshaw led three Bruins in double figures with 22 points and a career-high eight assists. Barnette added a career-high 17 points and five rebounds, while Smith scored a career-high 13.

Chamberlain added eight points, five assists, four rebounds and four steals.

Williams led Lipscomb with 13 points.

Belmont (1-1) returns to game action Wednesday, Nov. 19 versus Trevecca Nazarene. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. from the Curb Event Center.

Students are encouraged to arrive early and gather in the Beaman Student Life Center for ‘First on the Floor’ festivities prior to the game.

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Belmont announces 2014-15 TV schedule

Belmont announces 2014-15 TV schedule

Posted on 10 November 2014 by Allen

Rick Byrd

Belmont University men’s basketball announced Monday its slate of televised regular season games for the 2014-15 season.

The Bruins are slated to have a minimum of 10 regular season games televised, including eight nationally televised broadcasts.

The schedule has nice balance, with five non-conference games and a minimum of five games as part of the Ohio Valley Conference package.

High-profile games include at nationally-ranked VCU (Dec. 16) on Mid-Atlantic Sports Network and at 2010 & 2011 National Runner-Up Butler (Dec. 28) on Fox Sports 1.

The Bruins will play at OVC rivals Murray State (Jan. 15) and Eastern Kentucky (Feb. 5) on ESPNU.

In addition, Belmont will have three televised home games: SIU Edwardsville (Jan. 7) and Tennessee State (Feb. 28) on CBS Sports Network, as well as Middle Tennessee (Dec. 2) on the newly-formed American Sports Network. That contest will air nationally on affiliates of Sinclair Broadcasting Group.

Moreover, an additional 16 Belmont men’s basketball games will be available online, tablet and mobile via the OVC Digital Network.

Other television partnership announcements could come at a future date.

Belmont men’s basketball has had 33 televised games over the last two seasons, including six nationally-televised home victories on the ESPN family of networks.

Belmont Men’s Basketball 2014-15 Regular Season Television Schedule
Nov. 14 at Wright State (ESPN3)
Nov. 17 at Lipscomb (ESPN3)
Dec. 2 vs. Middle Tennessee (American Sports Network)
Dec. 16 at [15/16] VCU (Mid-Atlantic Sports Network)
Dec. 28 at Butler (Fox Sports 1)
Jan 7. vs. SIU Edwardsville (CBS Sports Network)
Jan. 15 at Murray State (ESPNU)
Jan. 25 at Tennessee State (American Sports Network)
Feb. 5 at Eastern Kentucky (ESPNU)
Feb 28 vs. Tennessee State (CBS Sports Network)

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Bruins picked to win OVC

Bruins picked to win OVC

Posted on 21 October 2014 by Allen

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Belmont University men’s basketball has been picked first in the OVC East Division, the league office announced Tuesday at OVC Basketball Media Day.

Senior guard Reece Chamberlain (Goodlettsville, Tenn.) and junior guard Craig Bradshaw (Ridgetop, Tenn.) were named to the 2014-15 Preseason All-OVC Men’s Basketball Team.

Despite losing 2013-14 OVC Player of the Year J.J. Mann, conference three-point shooting leader Drew Windler, and versatile forward Blake Jenkins to graduation, the Bruins received 16 of 24 first-place votes. Morehead State and Eastern Kentucky each received four first-place votes to stand second and third, respectively. Tennessee Tech, Jacksonville State, and Tennessee State rounded out the East Division predicted order of finish.

2014 CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament (CIT) champion Murray State was the consensus pick to win the OVC West. Southeast Missouri, SIU Edwardsville, Austin Peay, Eastern Illinois, and UT Martin followed in the West Division predicted order of finish.

“It is exciting to begin another basketball season and have the privilege of coaching this group of players,” Belmont head coach Rick Byrd said. “While they serve a purpose for publicity, preseason polls are not my favorite thing. What is on a piece of paper or press release in October means very little when they keep score in January, February and March.”

“Our staff enjoys coaching this team, and collectively we look forward to getting better each day in what promises to be another highly-competitive season.”

Chamberlain ranked among the OVC leaders in scoring, assists, assist-to-turnover ratio, steals and free throw percentage last season. The Goodlettsville, Tenn. native had 18 games of five or more assists in 2013-14, including a career-high 11 versus Eastern Illinois (2/20/14).

Bradshaw, a Second Team All-OVC selection a year ago, averaged 17.4 points per game on 53 percent shooting in OVC games last season. The Ridgetop, Tenn. native recorded 29 double figure scoring games, including a career-high 25 points in Belmont’s NIT victory at Horizon League champion Green Bay. Bradshaw was also named 2013-14 Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame Tipoff Tournament Most Valuable Player.

In regards to overall OVC champion, Murray State received 15 of 24 first-place votes, eight more than the Bruins.

Cameron Payne of Murray State was named OVC Preseason Player of the Year.

Belmont was also tabbed to win the OVC East in the media poll released Oct. 17.

The 2015 OVC Basketball Championship will take place Mar. 4-7 at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium. The top two teams in the regular season standings will earn byes into the semifinals, with the third and fourth seeds earning byes to the quarterfinal round.

Belmont enters the 2014-15 season as one of only six NCAA Division I programs to win 26 or more games each of the last four seasons, joining Duke, Florida, Syracuse, VCU, and Wichita State.

Belmont (2010-14) is also one of only eight NCAA Division I programs to win five consecutive regular season conference championships in the last two decades, joining Butler (Horizon, 2007-11), Cincinnati (CUSA, 1997-2002), Duke (ACC, 1997-2001), Gonzaga (WCC, 2001-11), Kansas (Big XII, 2005-14), Nevada (WAC, 2004-08) and Xavier (Atlantic 10, 2007-11).

Byrd enters the 2014-15 season ranked seventh among all active NCAA Division I head coaches in career victories with 689.

Belmont men’s and women’s basketball will host a season tipoff celebration event – Meet the Bruins Night presented by Pepsi – Thursday, Nov. 6 at 6 p.m. CT in the Curb Event Center. Admission is FREE and the event is open to the public.

For a 12th straight season, the live play-by-play of Voice of the Bruins Kevin Ingram can be heard on the Bruin Sports Network and WGFX-FM 104.5 The Zone Nashville.

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Murray State Men and Belmont Women picked to win OVC

Murray State Men and Belmont Women picked to win OVC

Posted on 17 October 2014 by Allen

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For the first time in recent history the Ohio Valley Conference has conducted a Preseason Men’s and Women’s Media Poll prior to the start of the season. In total 22 voters from around the league cast a ballot on whom they thought would be the 2014-15 basketball favorites and preseason players of the year.

The OVC will release its preseason poll and All-OVC team, as voted on by league head coaches and sports information directors, on Tuesday during the league’s annual Media Day in Nashville.

The media panel picked the Murray State men’s team and the Belmont women’s team as the preseason favorites. Murray State sophomore guard Cameron Payne was tabbed the OVC Men’s Basketball Preseason Player of the Year while Eastern Illinois senior forward Sabina Oroszova was picked the OVC Women’s Basketball Preseason Player of the Year.

In the men’s voting Murray State picked up 16 of the 22 first-place votes in the overall regular season championship category (Belmont received the other six first-place votes). The Racers were a unanimous favorite in the West Division, a title they have claimed each of the past two years. MSU picked up 132 total points to finish ahead of Southeast Missouri (109), Eastern Illinois (68), Austin Peay (60), SIUE (57) and UT Martin (36). Belmont was picked the East Division favorites in receiving 19 of the 22 first-place votes and 127 total points. Eastern Kentucky picked up one first-place vote and 104 total points while Morehead State was tabbed the East favorites by two pollsters and totaled 97 points. The East balloting was rounded out by Tennessee Tech (62), Jacksonville State (41) and Tennessee State (31).

This year the OVC women’s basketball teams will no longer compete in divisional play as they have the past two years. Belmont picked up nine of the 20 first-place votes cast for women’s teams to finish with a preseason best 216 points. UT Martin was picked second after receiving six first-place votes and 210 points, Eastern Kentucky received four first-place votes and 208 points while Jacksonville State picked up the final vote and 155 total points. Tennessee State received 147 points in being picked fifth and were followed by Tennessee Tech (143), SIUE (100), Eastern Illinois (99), Austin Peay (80), Murray State (74), Southeast Missouri (65) and Morehead State (63).

The pollsters for the 2014-15 OVC Media Poll were: Bob Belvin, ESPN Clarksville; Jason Blanton, Morehead State Radio; Catlin Bogard, OVC Ball; Mike Bradd, Eastern Illinois Radio; Neal Bradley, Murray State Radio; Chris Brinkley, UT Martin Radio; Chris Brown, Anniston Star; Thomas Corhern, Cookeville Herald-Citizen; Craig Delk, Cookeville Herald-Citizen; James Horne, Paducah Sun; David Loos, Austin Peay Radio; Courtney Martinez, Belmont Vision; JR McHenry, JR The Bossman Show; Brian Nielsen, Journal Gazette/Times-Courier; Mike Organ, The Tennessean; Mike Parris, Jacksonville State Radio; Harry Schroeder, ValleyHoopsInsider.com; Erik Sean, Southeast Missouri Radio; Aldo Soto, Daily Eastern News; Greg Stotelmyer, Eastern Kentucky Radio; Craig Thomas, Jackson Sun; Rich Tiner, Belmont Radio.

2014-15 Media OVC Preseason Men’s Predicted Order of Finish
Overall Champion: Murray State (16 first-place votes)

East Division
1. Belmont (19 first-place votes) – 127 points
2. Eastern Kentucky (1) – 104
3. Morehead State (2) – 97
4. Tennessee Tech – 62
5. Jacksonville State – 41
6. Tennessee State – 31

West Division
1. Murray State (22 first-place votes) – 132 points
2. Southeast Missouri – 109
3. Eastern Illinois – 68
4. Austin Peay – 60
5. SIUE – 57
6. UT Martin – 36

Preseason Player of the Year: Cameron Payne, Murray State

2014-15 Media OVC Preseason Women’s Predicted Order of Finish
1. Belmont (9 first-place votes) – 216 points
2. UT Martin (6) – 210
3. Eastern Kentucky (4) – 208
4. Jacksonville State (1) – 155
5. Tennessee State – 147
6. Tennessee Tech – 143
7. SIUE – 100
8. Eastern Illinois – 99
9. Austin Peay – 80
10. Murray State – 74
11. Southeast Missouri – 65
12. Morehead State – 63

Preseason Player of the Year: Sabina Oroszova, Eastern Illinois

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Belmont Releases Game Tip Times

Belmont Releases Game Tip Times

Posted on 16 October 2014 by Allen

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Belmont University men’s basketball released its 2014-15 game tip times Thursday.

The Bruins’ season opener Nov. 14 at Wright State will be 6 p.m. CT tip. Then after playing at Lipscomb Nov. 17 (6:30 p.m. CT), Belmont will host Trevecca Nazarene Nov. 19 at 7 p.m CT. The game will feature the annual ‘First on the Floor’ tradition, with incoming freshmen and transfer students welcoming the Bruins to the Curb Event Center arena floor.

Belmont will host Lipscomb Nov. 24 at 7 p.m. CT.

Following a road trip to Mid-American Conference stalwart Ohio, the Bruins will host Middle Tennessee Dec. 2 for a 7 p.m. CT tip.

Other notable non-conference tip times include Dec. 16 at VCU – ranked No. 16 in the USA Today Preseason Coaches’ Poll – at 6 p.m. CT and Dec. 28 at Butler at 5 p.m. CT.

Belmont opens OVC play New Year’s Day versus Southeast Missouri at 1 p.m. CT.
The regular season conference slate concludes Feb. 28 versus Tennessee State at 5 p.m. CT as part of Homecoming 2015 festivities.

Belmont men’s basketball enters the 2014-15 season as one of only six NCAA Division I programs to win 26 or more games each of the last four years, joining Duke, Florida, Syracuse, VCU, and Wichita State.

Moreover, only Belmont, Kansas and Memphis have earned NCAA Tournament automatic berths in six of the last nine years.

Belmont, which has had 33 televised games over the past two seasons, is expected to have significant television coverage in 2014-15. A complete televised game schedule will be released in the coming weeks.

For more information on purchasing Belmont Basketball season tickets, contact the Curb Event Center Box Office at (615) 460-BALL or visit belmontbruins.com. (Young alumni are eligible to receive a 50 percent discount off regularly-priced season tickets.)

2014-15 Belmont Men’s Basketball Home Schedule
Nov. 14 at Wright State 6 p.m. CT
Nov. 17 at Lipscomb 6:30 p.m. CT
Nov. 19 vs. Trevecca Nazarene 7 p.m. CT
Nov. 22 at Western Kentucky TBA
Nov. 24 vs. Lipscomb 7 p.m. CT
Nov. 26 vs. Denver 1 p.m. CT
Nov. 29 at Ohio 6 p.m. CT
Dec. 2 vs. Middle Tennessee 7 p.m. CT
Dec. 9 vs. Evansville 7 p.m. CT
Dec. 11 vs. Wright State 6 p.m. CT
Dec. 16 at VCU 6 p.m. CT
Dec. 20 at Fairfield 12:30 p.m. CT
Dec. 28 at Butler 5 p.m. CT
Jan. 1 vs. SEMO 1 p.m. CT
Jan. 7 vs. SIU Edwardsville 8 p.m. CT
Jan. 10 at Eastern Illinois 3:15 p.m. CT
Jan. 15 at Murray State 8 p.m. CT
Jan. 17 at Austin Peay 7:30 p.m. CT
Jan. 22 vs. UT Martin 7 p.m. CT
Jan. 25 at Tennessee State 5:30 p.m. CT
Jan. 29 vs. Jacksonville State 7 p.m. CT
Jan. 31 vs. Tennessee Tech 2 p.m. CT
Feb. 5 at Eastern Kentucky 8 p.m. CT
Feb. 7 at Morehead State 6:30 p.m. CT
Feb. 11 at Jacksonville State 8 p.m. CT
Feb. 14 vs. Morehead State 6 p.m. CT
Feb. 19 vs. Eastern Kentucky 7 p.m. CT
Feb. 21 at Tennessee Tech 7:30 p.m. CT
Feb. 28 vs. Tennessee State 5 p.m. CT
Mar. 4-7 OVC Tournament

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Former Belmont star leads upset of Spurs

Former Belmont star leads upset of Spurs

Posted on 09 October 2014 by Allen

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All-American Alex Renfroe was part of the Alba Berlin squad that defeated the reigning NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs, 94-93, Wednesday night in an NBA Global Games exhibition.

Renfroe, who recently signed with Alba Berlin for his second stint in Germany following distinguished professional campaigns in Spain, Italy, Russia, and Croatia, showcased his trademark dynamic open-court play and relentless drives against the five-time World Champions.

The 6-2 guard played 29 minutes, scoring 15 points on 5-for-9 shooting and 4-for-5 from the free throw line. Renfroe added three rebounds, three assists, one steal and one blocked shot. He also defended former NBA Finals’ MVP Tony Parker for long stretches.

Alba Berlin trailed by as many as 16 points, but behind Renfroe, former Xavier standout Jamel McLean, and former Clemson star Cliff Hammonds, the German pro team methodically worked back into the game.

Trailing 93-92 with 5.1 seconds left, former Villanova guard Reggie Redding stole a San Antonio inbounds pass and sparked one final possession.

McLean worked into the frontcourt and heaved a desperation shot that banked in just before the buzzer. Renfroe was actually at the rim in rebounding position as the game-winning basket went in.

As Alba Berlin erupted in jubilation, Renfroe can be seen going through the handshake line with future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan.

Renfroe, who earned Associated Press Honorable Mention All-America and Atlantic Sun Conference Player of the Year honors for the Bruins in 2009 and led Belmont to wins over Cincinnati and Alabama, was part of three consecutive pro league titles. He helped Brose Baskets Bamberg to the German Bundesliga title in 2012-2013. In 2011-12, he directed Enel Brindisi to the Italian pro league championship. And in 2010-11, Renfroe directed KK Zagreb to the Croatian league crown.

The Nashville, Tenn. native stills trains at Belmont in the offseason, and plays pickup games when he is in town.

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EKU and Belmont battle to draw

EKU and Belmont battle to draw

Posted on 29 September 2014 by Allen

eku

Freshman goalkeeper Anna Hall made a career-high 14 saves as the Eastern Kentucky University soccer team battled host Belmont to a scoreless draw on Sunday afternoon at Rose Park.

The gritty road result earns EKU (2-8-1, 0-1-1 OVC) its first point in the Ohio Valley Conference standings.

“Getting points on the road is always tough in conference,” head coach Melissa Barnes said. “I am very proud of our team for battling hard in a physical match on a warm Nashville day. We end three tough weeks on the road and earned a point against a good Belmont team.”

Hall’s 14 saves are the most by any keeper in the OVC this season. The Ross, Ohio native withstood 27 Belmont shots on the day to come away with her third clean sheet of the fall.

Senior Paige Larkin and junior Merrissa Vault played all 110 minutes of the double-overtime draw on EKU’s backline.

Senior Emily D’Italia came forward from her center back position to lead EKU with three shots in the game, one of which was on frame.

After four consecutive road games, Eastern returns home next weekend to host Tennessee Tech on Friday and Jacksonville State on Sunday.

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Kerron Johnson Signs Deal in Germany

Kerron Johnson Signs Deal in Germany

Posted on 22 September 2014 by Allen

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Former Belmont University men’s basketball star Kerron Johnson (Huntsville, Ala.) has signed a professional contract with MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg of the German Bundesliga for the 2014-15 season.

The Huntsville, Ala. native took the Belmont program to new heights, leading the Bruins to 102 victories, four regular season conference championships, three conference tournament championships and three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.

Moreover, Johnson helped Belmont earn national Top 25 poll votes three straight seasons and the program’s best NCAA Tournament seed – No. 11 – in 2013.

Among Johnson many career accomplishments was being named all-conference four straight years, 2012 NABC All-District and back-to-back conference tournament Most Valuable Player honors in 2012 and 2013.
Johnson delivered two of the most memorable moments in program history in the 2013 OVC Championship game against Murray State, hitting the game-tying and eventual game-winning shots to lift the Bruins to another NCAA Tournament automatic berth.

Johnson also ranks among the program leaders in assists, steals and free throws made and attempted.
He played for the New Zealand Breakers of the NBL in 2013-14.

Johnson’s teammates on MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg include former college standouts Matthew Bryan-Amaning (Washington), Shawn Huff (Valparaiso), Stephen Holt (St. Mary’s), Adam Waleskowski (Florida State), and Coby Karl (Boise State) – son of former NBA coach George Karl.

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Belmont announces 2014-15 basketball schedule

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Belmont announces 2014-15 basketball schedule

Posted on 26 August 2014 by Allen

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On the heels of a fifth consecutive conference championship, Belmont University men’s basketball head coach Rick Byrd released the program’s 2014-15 schedule Tuesday.

Packed with compelling storylines and unrivaled competition, the 2014-15 season promises to be another exciting chapter in the history of Belmont Basketball.

Annually playing one of the nation’s most demanding schedules, Belmont is one of only six NCAA Division I programs to win 26 or more games each of the last four seasons.

The slate features 11 contests against teams that won 20 or more games a year ago.

“Just like the past several years, we face a very demanding non-conference schedule,” Byrd said. “Starting new series with tradition-rich programs of area interest will benefit us greatly. We continue to believe that challenging ourselves early in the season will better prepare us for OVC play – the most important part of our schedule.”

The Bruins open regular season play Nov. 14 at Horizon League stalwart Wright State. The Raiders won 21 games last season in reaching the conference championship game. The game will also be mere minutes away from the hometown of Belmont sophomore Evan Bradds (Jamestown, Ohio).

Three days later, Belmont and Lipscomb meet at Allen Arena, the first of two meetings within a one week span. ‘The Battle of the Boulevard’ series has become a staple of the Nashville sports landscape. It will mark the fifth and sixth head-to-head meetings between Byrd and former Belmont player/assistant coach and current Lipscomb head coach Casey Alexander.

Belmont opens its home schedule Nov. 19 against Trevecca Nazarene, before heading up I-65 to Bowling Green to face Conference USA newcomer Western Kentucky. The Hilltoppers won 20 games last season in their Sun Belt Conference farewell.

The Bruins conclude their stretch of five consecutive mid-state contests at home Nov. 26 against Denver.

Following the Thanksgiving holiday, Belmont travels to perennial Mid-American Conference contender Ohio Nov. 29. The Bobcats welcome first-year head coach Saul Phillips, who led North Dakota State to the Summit League title last season. Belmont and Ohio played in the 2013 ESPN Bracketbuster game before a raucous, standing-room only Curb Event Center crowd.

December opens will a familiar foe, as Belmont hosts Middle Tennessee Dec. 2. The Bruins and Blue Raiders have played 12 times since the 2004-05 season, with Belmont winning six of the last seven meetings. Middle Tennessee is again expected to challenge for Conference USA supremacy, going 24-9 last season.

One week later the Bruins welcome Missouri Valley Conference mainstay Evansville to the Curb Event Center. The Purples Aces, who won five NCAA College Division national championships from 1959 to 1971, hosted Belmont in the 2009 College Insider Postseason Tournament.

Belmont wraps up the three-game homestand with a Wright State return date Dec. 11.

The holiday season brings cheer and travel for the Bruins, as Belmont will head back to the River City of Richmond to face national power VCU Dec. 16. The Bruins and Rams have met each of the past two seasons, forging a compelling series between two of the nation’s most respected programs. Head coach Shaka Smart returns All-America candidates Treveon Graham and Briante Weber to a consensus national Preseason Top 25 squad.

The Bruins will pack the winter attire Dec. 20, for a matchup with Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference member Fairfield. The Stags played at the Curb Event Center last season.

The non-conference schedule concludes Dec. 28 at historic Hinkle Fieldhouse as the Bruins take on Big East member Butler. The 2010 and 2011 National Runners-Up return seven upperclassmen, in a game that promises to hold special meaning for Belmont’s three Indiana natives.

Belmont opens OVC play New Year’s Day against Southeast Missouri.

The Bruins’ lone regular season meeting with Murray State will take place Jan. 15 in the commonwealth. Since Belmont joined the OVC, all three meetings with the Racers have been decided in the final seconds – with the combined point total being 243-243.

A rematch of the 2014 OVC Championship game will come Feb. 5 as Belmont plays at Eastern Kentucky.

Three of Belmont’s final four conference games will be at home, including Feb. 28 against Tennessee State.

The 2015 OVC Basketball Championship will take place Mar. 4-7 at the Nashville Municipal Auditorium. The top two teams in the regular season standings will earn byes into the semifinals, with the third and fourth seeds earning byes to the quarterfinal round.

Belmont joins Kansas and Memphis as the only three programs in the nation to earn an automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament six of the last nine years. Moreover, only Belmont, Gonzaga, St. Mary’s (CA), VCU, and Wichita State among non-football playing universities have finished with a top 60 RPI each of the last four seasons.

Byrd enters the 2014-15 season ranked seventh among all active NCAA Division I head coaches in career victories with 689.

A complete listing of home tip times, schedule of televised games, and games with live video streaming on the OVC Digital Network will be released in the coming weeks.

For a 12th straight season, the live play-by-play of Voice of the Bruins Kevin Ingram can be heard on the Bruin Sports Network.

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Utah Jazz Pick Up Team Option on Ian Clark

Utah Jazz Pick Up Team Option on Ian Clark

Posted on 01 August 2014 by Allen

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The Utah Jazz have exercised their team option on former Belmont University men’s basketball All-American guard Ian Clark (Memphis, Tenn.) for the 2014-15 season.

The decision guarantees Clark’s contract for the upcoming NBA campaign.

Clark, whose exploits in 2013 NBA Summer League made him a national sensation and helped earn him a roster spot on the Jazz, shot 50 percent from behind the arc this year in Vegas NBA Summer League, averaging 8.4 points, 2.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.2 steals per game as part of Utah’s youthful guard rotation which includes Trey Burke and Dante Exum.

The Memphis, Tenn. native appeared in 23 games for the Jazz this past season, averaging 3.0 points per game on 36 percent three-point shooting.

Clark stands as Belmont’s NCAA-era career leader in points (1920) and three-point field goals (340).

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Belmont Claims 2013-14 OVC Institutional Academic Achievement Award; Record Number of Student-Athletes Named to OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll

Belmont Claims 2013-14 OVC Institutional Academic Achievement Award; Record Number of Student-Athletes Named to OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll

Posted on 01 August 2014 by Allen

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Belmont University has been awarded the 2013-14 Ohio Valley Conference Institutional Academic Achievement Award. The award is presented annually to the member institution with the greatest percentage of its eligible student-athletes that earn a 3.25 grade point average or higher for that academic year.

It marks the second-straight crown for Belmont who joined the OVC prior to the 2012-13 season. Morehead State, the 2011-12 champions, holds the record with 12 OVC Academic Achievement Awards. Eastern Kentucky is next on the list with eight crowns and Austin Peay has two awards while Jacksonville State, Tennessee State, UT Martin and former member Middle Tennessee State have earned one award apiece.

The league also announced the recipients of 16 OVC Team Academic Achievement Awards, which are presented annually in each Conference-sponsored sport to the member institution’s team with the greatest percentage of its eligible student-athletes who achieved a 3.25 grade point average or higher. Belmont claimed an OVC-best six awards, followed by Morehead State with three and SIUE with two awards. In total, seven different member institutions garnered at least one award.

The team/institution honorees are:

Baseball: Southeast Missouri

Men’s Basketball: Belmont

Women’s Basketball: Belmont

Men’s Cross Country: Morehead State

Women’s Cross Country: SIUE

Football: Tennessee Tech

Men’s Golf: Belmont

Women’s Golf: SIUE

Rifle: Columbus State

Women’s Soccer: Belmont

Softball: UT Martin

Men’s Tennis: Belmont

Women’s Tennis: UT Martin

Men’s Track and Field: Morehead State

Women’s Track and Field: Belmont

Women’s Volleyball: Morehead State

188 Student-Athletes Awarded OVC Medals of Honor; A Record 1,254 Tabbed For Commissioner’s Honor Roll

It was also announced that 188 Ohio Valley Conference student-athletes received the Medal of Honor for the 2013-14 season. The Medal of Honor is given annually to the student-athlete who achieves the highest grade point average in a Conference-sponsored sport. Every Medal of Honor recipient carried a perfect 4.0 grade point average during the year. Of the 188 award winners, 17 were awarded Medals of Honor for multiple sports (and counted just once in the final recipients list).

The OVC also announced that 1,254 student-athletes were named to the 2013-14 OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll, setting a new record. The 1,254 student-athletes surpassed the old record of 1,228 set a season ago. To be listed, recipients must have achieved at least a 3.25 grade point average and have been eligible and on the team throughout the competitive season in their chosen NCAA-sponsored sport(s) and used a season of competition. Those numbers included 33 student-athletes who compete in non-OVC championship sports that do not compete in another conference (i.e. Belmont men’s soccer, Southeast Missouri gymnastics, UT Martin equestrian and Eastern Illinois rugby) and 90 student-athletes who were recipients in multiple sports (and counted just once in the final total).

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Belmont receives Team Academic Excellence Award

Belmont receives Team Academic Excellence Award

Posted on 23 July 2014 by Allen

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Belmont University men’s basketball received the second annual Team Academic Excellence Award from the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Wednesday.

This news comes two days after five Bruins – recent graduates J.J. Mann (Smyrna, Ga.) and Drew Windler (South Milwaukee, Wis.), and rising seniors Reece Chamberlain (Goodlettsville, Tenn.), Holden Mobley (Nashville, Tenn.) and Spencer Turner (Bloomington, Ind.) – were named to the NABC Honors Court for outstanding academic achievement.

Created by the NABC Committee on Academics, the Team Academic Excellence Award recognizes superior academic achievement by a team with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better for the 2013-14 season.

In order to earn a NABC Team Academic Excellence Award, an institution must count the grade point averages of all men’s student-athletes competing during the 2013-14 season in NCAA Division I, II, III, and NAIA Division I and II.

Belmont is one of only 31 NCAA Division I men’s basketball programs to be honored.

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Belmont Basketball 55-2 in last 57 home games

Belmont Basketball 55-2 in last 57 home games

Posted on 17 July 2014 by Allen

Rick Byrd

When you think of the top basketball programs in the country you think Florida, Kansas, Arizona, North Carolina, Syracuse, Duke, and Kentucky. But according to a statistic recently sent out Belmont has been more dominant than all the above when playing at home. In fact in the last 57 games at the Curb Event Center the Bruins have gone 55-2.

Check out how the Bruins stack up against the other top schools in the country over the last 57 games.

Over the last 57 games
Belmont 55-2
Duke 54-3
Florida 54-3
Kansas 54-3
Creighton 53-4
Gonzaga 53-4
Kentucky 53-4
Syracuse 53-4
Wichita State 52-5
Arizona 51-6
Memphis 51-6
North Carolina 51-6
VCU 51-6

Belmont will kick off the 2014-15 basketball season this November. The schedule should be released in September.

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Ian Clark scores 17 in NBA Summer League game against Nuggets

Ian Clark scores 17 in NBA Summer League game against Nuggets

Posted on 16 July 2014 by Allen

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Former Belmont University men’s basketball All-American Ian Clark (’13) scored a team-high 17 points as the Utah Jazz defeated the Denver Nuggets, 87-69, Tuesday night in NBA Summer League play.

Clark, who set the Thomas & Mack Center ablaze one year ago en route to Summer League Championship Game Most Valuable Player honors, again provided steady, efficient play on both ends for the Jazz.

Clark went 6-for-11 from the field – including 4-for-6 from three-point distance – while adding three rebounds and two assists in 22 minutes of action.

The Jazz return to play Thursday against either Milwaukee or San Antonio in the tournament portion of Vegas NBA Summer League. Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m. CT, with full coverage on NBA.com.

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Scores

Temple 37 Vanderbilt 7 F
Alabama 33 West Virginia 23 F
Arkansas 21 Auburn 45 F
LSU 28 Wisconsin 24

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