Basketball (M)

Bradley Basketball's State Farm MVC Tournament Notebook
Release: Thursday 03/01/2010 
by Bradley University

Bradley Basketball Pregame Notes
2010 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament - Quarterfinal #2
No. 5 Seed Bradley Braves (15-14, 9-9 MVC) vs. No. 4 Seed Creighton (16-14, 10-8 MVC)

Friday, March 5 - 2:35 p.m. CST - St. Louis, Mo. - Scottrade Center (21,472)
Series History - Creighton leads 41-39

Television:  MVC-TV (FS Midwest, Comcast SportsNet Chicago, FS Indiana, FS Kansas City, Metro Sports)

Satellite Coordinates:  TBA from the Missouri Valley Conference 

Radio:  1470 AM WMBD -- Dave Snell (play-by-play), Chuck Buescher (analyst) and Dan DiOrio (pregame host)

Audio Stream:  www.BradleyBraves.com

Tourney Time
Bradley begins the quest for its third Missouri Valley Conference Tournament championship, but its first since 1988, when it takes on Creighton in Friday's second quarterfinal game at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis...Bradley has never won an MVC Tournament away from Peoria, taking the title in 1980 at Robertson Memorial Fieldhouse and 1988 at Carver Arena...The Braves are playing in the second quarterfinal game between the 4 and 5 seeds for the fifth consecutive year...Bradley is 3-1 in its previous four quarterfinal tilts, including a split versus Creighton by beating the Bluejays in 2006 and falling to CU in 2008.

Familiar Foe
For the second time in three years, Bradley and Creighton meet in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals after closing the regular-season against each other in Omaha...This marks the eighth time Bradley has faced its final regular-season opponent in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals and the Braves are 4-3 in the previous seven return engagements:  1-2 versus Creighton in 1984 (L), 1998 (W) and 2008 (L); 2-0 against Drake in 1983 (W) and 1997 (W); and 1-1 versus Southern Illinois in 1999 (W) and 2002 (L).

Did You Know?
Bradley, Creighton and UNI are the only three teams to finish at least .500 in The Valley standings in each of the last five years...Bradley and Creighton are the only two teams to earn top five seeds for the State Farm MVC Tournament in each of the last five years.

Quarterfinal History
Bradley is 17-11 all-time in the quarterfinals of the MVC Tournament, including an 11-9 record in neutral-site quarterfinal games...Bradley has won 10 of its last 14 quarterfinal games dating back to 1994...Bradley's 10-4 record in the MVC Tournament quarterfinals equals Missouri State and Southern Illinois for the best record in the quarterfinal round since 1994.

Against The Bluejays
Friday's quarterfinal matchup will be Bradley's eighth all-time versus Creighton in the MVC Tournament, making the Bluejays Bradley's most common postseason opponent...This year's matchup also is the seventh time the teams have met in the quarterfinals and the sixth time in the 4-5 game...Bradley is 4-3 all-time versus the Bluejays in the MVC Tournament and the teams have split their four neutral-site meetings since 1998...Creighton has dominated the overall series of late, winning six straight and 18 of the last 21 since 2001 to claim a 41-39 advantage against the Braves.

Alternating Fashion
Including Friday's matchup, all five St. Louis meetings between Bradley and Creighton have taken place in the quarterfinals, including four straight in the 4-5 game...The first four St. Louis meetings have featured an alternating result, a favorable trend for Bradley after its 2008 tourney loss to the Bluejays.
Bradley vs. CU in the MVC Tournament
Year  Location      Round    BU  CU  Result
1984  at Creighton  Quarters  5   4  L 40-50
1985  at Bradley    Quarters  4   5  W 66-59
1988  at Bradley    Semis     1   5  W 101-77
1998  St. Louis     Quarters  7   2  W 76-68
2000  St. Louis     Quarters  5   4  L 62-71
2006  St. Louis     Quarters  5   4  W 54-47
2008  St. Louis     Quarters  5   4  L 70-74
2010  St. Louis     Quarters  5   4

Not Exactly Veterans
As the Braves prepared for the 2009 State Farm MVC Tournament, Bradley's 13 active players last year had combined for only five individual games in the MVC Tournament, resulting in 80 minutes, 33 points and 13 rebounds...Bradley's 14 active players this time around have combined for 17 individual games in the MVC Tournament, resulting in 268 minutes, 88 points and 29 rebounds...Junior guard Sam Maniscalco, however, accounts for nearly half of Bradley's MVC Tournament playing time and scoring:  108 minutes (40.3 percent) and 43 points (.489).

Seven For 1,000
Bradley junior guard Andrew Warren needs seven points to become the 44th player in Bradley Basketball history to score 1,000 career points...Although he has scored 993 career points, Warren still is looking for his first career points in the MVC Tournament:  he was scoreless in two games as a freshman in 2007 and has missed each of the last two tournaments due to injury.

2,000-Point Backcourt
Entering the State Farm MVC Tournament, Bradley's junior guard combo of Sam Maniscalco (1,111) and Andrew Warren (993) have combined for 2,104 career points...Maniscalco and Warren are the first pair of Bradley juniors to reach 2,000 combined points since the "G-Men" combo of Phillip Gilbert and James Gillingham during the 2002-03 season...Gilbert (1,352 points) and Gillingham (964) ended the 2002-03 season with 2,316 career points and eventually pushed their final overall career total to 3,105 combined points.

Triple Threat
The Bradley trio of junior guard Andrew Warren (14.4 ppg), sophomore forward Taylor Brown (14.1) and junior guard Sam Maniscalco (12.6) combine to score 41.1 ppg...Individually, Warren ranks fourth, Brown fifth and Maniscalco 11th among Valley players in overall scoring this year, making Bradley the only school with three players among the league's top 17 individual scorers...The Valley's next best scoring trio are Illinois State seniors Osiris Eldridge (15.9 ppg), Dinma Odiakosa (13.2) and Lloyd Phillips (10.4) at 39.5 ppg.

Maniscalco In Century Club
After equalling the Missouri Valley Conference record for the most games ever played by a second-year player (74), Bradley junior guard Sam Maniscalco now has played in 103 games to equal the school record for career games played by a third-year Brave...Maniscalco will equal the Missouri Valley Conference record for career games by a three-year player in Friday's MVC Tournament quarterfinal game.
100 Career Games by 3-Year MVC Players
1.  104  Randal Falker, S. Illinois       2004-07
2.  103  Sam Maniscalco, Bradley          2007-10
    103  Billy Mann, Bradley              1947-50
4.  102  Matt Shaw, S. Illinois           2004-07
    102  Gene Melchiorre, Bradley         1947-50
6.  100  Osiris Eldridge, Illinois State  2006-09

More Than A Scorer
Junior guard Sam Maniscalco has climbed to 33rd on Bradley's all-time scoring list with 1,111 points, but he is far more than just a scorer...Maniscalco is The Valley's active leader with 325 career assists and has dished out at least 100 assists in three straight seasons...Maniscalco has dished out 19 assists without committing a turnover during a span of 137 minutes that stretches back four games into the second half of the Feb. 16 contest at Indiana State...Maniscalco also is Bradley's active career leader with 104 career steals.

Maniscalco's Accuracy
Junior guard Sam Maniscalco shot 50.3 percent from the field in 18 Valley games this season...The 6-foot Maniscalco finished seventh in the league in field goal percentage in Valley play...Maniscalco was the only player standing less than 6-foot-8 inches to shoot at least 50 percent from the field in conference action this year.

How Hot Is Maniscalco?
So just how hot has Sam Maniscalco been from inside the 3-point line this season?..The 6-foot guard is shooting 58.9 percent (73-124) from inside the arc on the season, including a scorching 62.6 percent (57-91) in MVC play...He has a chance to become just the sixth, and easily the shortest, individual in Bradley history with at least 50 2FGM to shoot at least 60 percent from 2-point range for an entire season.
Bradley Season 2-Point FG Pct. (50 FGM)
Luke Jackson, 1987-88       .675  127-188
Roosevelt Davison, 1983-84  .661  111-168
*Joe Allen, 1967-68         .655  258-394
Zach Andrews, 2006-07       .640  155-242
Roosevelt Davison, 1982-83  .638  104-163
Joe Allen, 1966-67          .622  232-373
Jerome Robinson, 1998-99    .600   51-85
Sam Maniscalco, 2009-10     .589   73-124
* NCAA statistical national champion

Second only to Illinois State center Dinma Odiakosa (.629) in 2-point field goal percentage in all games, Maniscalco paced The Valley in 2-point field goal percentage in conference play by shooting 62.6 percent from inside the arc, a margin of 16 points better than the second-most accurate shooter, Southern Illinois' Gene Teague (61.0 percent).
2009-10 MVC 2-FG Pct. (MVC games only)
Minimum 2.5 2FGM/Game
1.   Sam Maniscalco, BU      .626   57-91
2.   Gene Teague, SIU        .610   50-82
3.   Will Creekmore, MSU     .590   62-105
4.   Dinma Odiakosa, ILS     .589   89-151
5.   Jermaine Mallett, MSU   .580   51-88
6.   Harry Marshall, INS     .565   61-108
7.   Jordan Eglseder,  UNI   .550   77-140
8.   Jackie Carmichael, ILS  .548   51-93
9.   Will Egolf, BU          .541   59-109
10.  Justin Carter, CU       .525   52-99

Top Heavy From The Stripe
The high-scoring trio of Andrew Warren, Taylor Brown and Sam Maniscalco pace Bradley's free throw shooting effort this season...Each member of the trio has attempted at least 100 free throws this year, making Bradley the only team in The Valley boasting three players that have each attempted 100 free throws...The trio also has combined to shoot 83.4 percent (257-308) from the line, while the team's other 12 players have combined to shoot just 61.1 percent (165-270):
Andrew Warren      88-102  .863
Sam Maniscalco     87-106  .821
Taylor Brown       82-100  .820
Other 12 Players  165-270  .596

Power Of The Post
Bradley is 11-5 (.688) this season when the quartet of sophomore forward Taylor Brown, sophomore center Will Egolf and reserve centers Sam Singh and Anthony Thompson combine for at least 20 points and 10 rebounds...The Braves are 4-9 (.308) when the post quartet falls below the 20-10 standard.

Wins And Losses
In Bradley's 15 wins this season, the Braves have allowed just 62.5 points per game on 38.3 percent shooting from the field and 27.0 percent shooting from 3-point range...Only two of those 15 victims scored at least 70 points, Indiana State in a 91-85 overtime win Jan. 6 and Wichita State in a 75-73 win Feb. 24...In Bradley's 14 losses this year, the Braves have allowed 73.8 points per game on 45.3 percent shooting from the field and 35.2 percent shooting from 3-point range...Nine of those 14 opponents scored at least 70 points, including Creighton in both regular-season meetings.

Brown's Improvement
Bradley sophomore forward Taylor Brown ranks among the nation's leaders in improved scoring from 2008-09 to this season...After averaging 3.4 ppg last year, Brown is The Valley's fifth-leading scorer at 14.1 ppg...His scoring increase of 10.7 ppg is the best in The Valley and ranks ninth among the nation's top improvements from a year ago (through Feb. 28).
Increased Scoring Chart
Player, School               08-09  09-10    +
*Tim Ambromaitis, Notre Dame   1.7   17.4  15.7
*Amu Saaka, Furman             2.6   15.8  13.2
Menji Mundadi, Alabama State   3.5   16.6  13.1
Jordan Sugars, Navy            3.2   15.9  12.7
Justin Greene, Kent State      2.2   14.1  11.9
Ashton Gibbs, Pittsburgh       4.3   16.0  11.7
Tramayne Moorer, Alabama St.   0.0   11.3  11.3
John Shurna, Northwestern      7.3   18.2  10.9
Taylor Brown, Bradley          3.4   14.1  10.7
Jeremy Green, Stanford         6.4   17.0  10.6
* redshirted last year, stats from 2007-08

Big Media Numbers
Now in his 31st year as the radio Voice of the Braves, Dave Snell has participated in 950 Bradley Basketball game broadcasts, all in succession, on WMBD AM 1470 since taking over play-by-play duties for the 1979-80 season...Snell was inducted into the Bradley Athletics Hall of Fame Jan. 23...Snell's longtime radio sidekick, Joe Stowell, has been witness to 1,543 Bradley Basketball games in his various roles as player (103, 1947-50); assistant coach (250, 1956-65); head coach (344, 1965-78); assistant athletic director (107, 1978-85); and radio analyst (739, 1985-present)...Peoria Journal Star beat writer Dave Reynolds has covered 613 consecutive Bradley Basketball games since taking over the beat for the start of the 1990-91 season.

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