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Southern Miss Opens Men's Basketball Season Saturday against Loyola (N.O.)

Nov. 14, 2008

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The Southern Miss men's basketball team opens the 2008-09 campaign Saturday night when they host Loyola (N.O.) at 7:00 p.m. (CT) at Reed Green Coliseum.

Fans that arrive with a ticket from the Southern Miss-East Carolina football game can redeem their used football ticket for one to the basketball game free of charge at the Green Coliseum box office.

Loyola holds a 25-13 advantage over the Golden Eagles in a series that dates back to 1925. However, the teams have not met in the regular season since 1963. Loyola also holds a 10-6 advantage in Hattiesburg.

Southern Miss enters this season returning nine members of last year's team that went 19-14, including four starters. The Golden Eagles also welcome back their top seven scorers. Leading this year's squad is junior Jeremy Wise. Wise is a two-time All-Conference USA player who became the 31st member of the 1,000-point club last year.

Sophomore R.L. Horton and senior Courtney Beasley also return. Horton, a member of the Conference USA All-Freshman Team, averaged 11.9 points last year. Beasley averaged 10.5 points and 4.5 rebounds last year, and is just 17 point shy of joining Wise in the 1,000-point club.

Southern Miss head coach Larry Eustachy begins his fifth season at the helm of the Southern Miss men's basketball program. Eustachy holds a 60-63 record overall at Southern Miss, and is 320-208 overall.

Loyola (N.O.) enters Saturday's game with a 3-0 record as a member of NAIA. The Wolfpack are coming off a 93-87 victory over Huston-Tillitson last week. LUNO is led by guard Ryan Brock. Through three games, the sophomore is averaging 25.3 points per game while hitting 56 percent of his shots. As a team, the Wolfpack are averaging 95.7 points, while hitting 57.8 percent of their shots.

Loyola (N.O.) head coach Dr. Michael Giorlando is in his fourth year at the helm of the Wolfpack. He holds a 24-37 career record.

The game will be broadcast on WXRR-FM 104.5, with the pregame showing beginning at 6:30 p.m.

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