Morgan faces Florida A&M Thursday in MEAC Tournament quarterfinals

March 12, 2014 | WNST Staff

Game Dates: Thursday, March 13, 2014
Opponent: No. 6 Florida A&M
Site: The Scope Arena, Norfolk, Va.
Game Time: 6 p.m.
Live Stream/Live Stats: www.meachoops.com
In-game Twitter Updates: @morganstbears.com
Record:  MSU 13-15 (11-5 MEAC)
Last MSU Win: 68-66 OT (A) March 6, 2014
MSU Coach: Todd Bozeman (141-115 – 8th yr)

BALTIMORE, Md. – Morgan State carries the No. 3 seed as the Bears begin their quest for the 2014 MEAC Tournament championship this week at The Scope Arena in Norfolk, Virginia. Morgan State will begin tournament play Thursday at 6 p.m. against No. 6 Florida A&M.

The Bears have had unprecedented success in the MEAC Tournament under head coach Todd Bozeman. The Bears have participated in five of the last seven MEAC Tournament championships, captured back-to-back MEAC Titles, and made appearances in the NIT and two NCAA Tournaments.

Morgan State capped the regular season with a 68-66 overtime win over Howard at Burr Gymnasium to garner the No. 3 seed. Although the Bears have won five of its last seven games, now everyone is zero and zero again when teams take the floor at the Norfolk Scope Arena.

FOLLOW ALONG WITH LIVE STATS & LIVE STREAM
Live stats of all games will be available on the conference’s official website, www.MEAChoops .com. The preliminary games will also be streamed live on MEACsports.com.

IT’S OK TO BE A FOLLOWER 
MSU men’s basketball fans can follow their favorite team, or any of the other MSU athletics programs on Twitter through the handle @MorganStBears.

MEAC TOURNAMENT FACTS
• Morgan State has won three MEAC Tournaments (1977, 2009 & 2010) and has made five championship appearances under Coach Bozeman.

• Todd Bozeman has led Morgan State to 15 of the school’s 30 MEAC Tournament wins.

• Morgan State coach Todd Bozeman was the 2009 and 2010 Outstanding Coach of the MEAC Tournament.

• Morgan State has had four MVP’s of the MEAC Tournament: Marvin ‘The Human Eraser” Webster (1975); Eric “The Pencil” Evans (1977); Reggie Holmes (2009); and Kevin Thompson (2010).

• Morgan State legendary center Marvin Webster averaged 21.3 rebounds per game during the 1975 MEAC Tournament.

FOR THE RECORD: Morgan State trails Florida A&M 33-20 in their series meetings, and Todd Bozeman holds a 6-4 record against the Rattlers since becoming MSU’s head coach in 2006.

SCOUTING FLORIDA A&M
Florida A&M, 13-17 overall, finished 8-8 in the MEAC and earned the number six seed. The Rattlers enter the tournament having won five straight games (including a 78-73 win against the Bears in Baltimore), before losing 70-68 in the regular season finale against Bethune-Cookman.

LAST TIME VS. THE RATTLERS
March 3, 2014 — Jamie Adams scored 23 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer, to lift Florida A&M to a 78-73 victory over Morgan State on Senior Night at Hill Field House. After a tight game featuring several lead changes, clinched the win with Adams’ 3 that made it 74-72 with 1:39 to play, then padded the advantage down the stretch. Anthony Hubbard led the Bears with 20 points, Ian Chiles had 18 and Shaquille Duncan 10 and nine rebounds. Justin Black, the MEAC’s No. 3 leading scorer (18.8 ppg), was held to nine points.

NEXT UPIf Morgan State wins, they will advance to the semifinals on Friday, March 14 at 8 p.m. The Bears will take on the winner of Wednesday’s game (6 p.m.) between No. 2 Hampton and the winner between No. 7 Coppin State/No. 10 Bethune-Cookman.

THREE IN DOUBLE FIGURES
Thru 28 games last season, three Bears averaged more than 10 points a game. Justin Black leads with by averaging 18.5 ppg (No. 3 in MEAC), Ian Chiles averages 15.2 points per game (No. 9 in MEAC), while Anthony Hubbard is averaging 10.8 points and leads the squad averaging 6.6 rpg (No. 9).

BLACK A MEMBER OF THE 1,000 POINTS CLUB 
Senior guard Justin Black eclipsed the 1,000 point mark for his career as a result of his 24-point outing against Cal State Northridge (12/27) … Black recently moved in front of Jason McCoy (1,292 pts – 1987-91) as the school’s No. 13 leading scorer and currently has 1,321 career points.

POUNDING THE PAINT
MSU is eager to get the ball inside this season, even more so than normal. Through 16 conference games, MSU ranked No. 2 in the MEAC averaging 74.2 points per game, including 15 points in the paint. This includes a dominating 50-22 edge in the paint at Hampton (1/20), 42-20 advantage at Coppin State (2/10), and 48-30 versus Bethune-Cookman (3/1).

THEIVES IN THE NIGHT
Two Bears are averaging better than 1.0 steals per game - Justin Black (2.0 – ranked No. 2 in MEAC), and Donte Pretlow (1.4 – No. 8). Morgan State ranked No. 6 in the MEAC by averaging 6.3 steals per game.

LOOK WHO’S IN SLAM 
Morgan State senior guard Justin Black was recently featured in SLAM ONLINE (www.slamonline.com) in an article entitled “Game Plan.”

TOUGH IN THE PAINT
Ian Chiles and Thair Heath are shooting better than .500 from the field this year. Thru the first 28 games Chiles is shooting 55.4 pct (ranks No. 4 in MEAC). Heath is shooting 57.7 pct., while frontcourt teammate The Bears are among the top teams in the MEAC ranked No. 3 in field goal percentage (.427).

WELCOME TO MY BLOCK PARTY
Ian Chiles has been making the most of his 7-foot-2 frame. The senior recorded a career-high 9 blocked shots against Norfolk State on Feb. 8. He completed the regular season ranked No. 3 in the MEAC averaging 3.0 rejections per contest (84) and now has 183 career blocks.

THE ALMOST-TRIPLE-DOUBLE
Despite the loss against Norfolk State (Feb. 8), Ian Chiles had a strong effort and came close to finishing with the oh so rare — triple-double. “Big Slew” completed the night with 15 points on 5-of-8 shooting, grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds and notched a career-high nine blocked shots … one rejection short a triple-double.

A BLOSSOM ON THE OFFENSIVE GLASS
Cedric Blossom leads the Bears with 75 offensive rebounds thru the first 28 games. The sophomore has started in 27 of 28 games and is averaging 7.0 ppg, 5.4 rebounds in 23.5 minutes. He had a sensational game at UMES (Feb. 17) where he posted a career-high 20 points and 11 rebounds — and has recorded three double-doubles during his career.

THE 3-HEADED GRIZZLY
During the 16 conference matchups this season Justin BlackIan Chiles and Anthony Hubbard have scored 668 points, while the rest of the squad has produced 504 points. In the blowout of Howard (12/7), the trio combined to score 39 points with Black scored a team-high 17 points. Against Coppin State (2/10), the trio accounted for 61 of the Bears’ 82 points with Black and Chiles leading the way with 23 apiece. The trio has totaled 1,247 of the team’s 1,993 points, 63 percent of the team’s scoring load.

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