NEW YORK - For the first time in three weekends, the Lions will play at Levien Gymnasium and host Brown and Yale for the first time this year. Columbia is returning from a 1-1 weekend on the road at Dartmouth (64-62 win) and Harvard (57-52 loss) where the Lions’ streak of close games continued.
Columbia (13-9, 2-4 Ivy) will meet Brown (7-16, 1-5 Ivy) on Friday night at 7 p.m. and then will face Yale (15-5, 5-1 Ivy) on Saturday night, also a 7 p.m. tipoff. This weekend marks the annual alumni weekend for the Columbia men’s basketball program with many alumni and friends expected to be in attendance.
Students are admitted free with Columbia or Barnard ID. Saturday's game is also Greek Spirit Night at Levien Gymnasium.
Tickets to the games are available online or by calling 888-LIONS-11.
Fans can also watch or listen live to the game via SideLION Pass with Jerry Recco (@JerryRecco) and Dalen Cuff (@DCuff21) on the call. WKCR 89.9 FM, Columbia's student radio station, will also call the game. Live stats and game notes are available.
LIONS AT LEVIEN
Over the past two seasons, Columbia is 16-8 at Levien Gymnasium. The Lions have won six of their last eight at home.
All six of Columbia’s Ivy League contests have been decided by a margin of five points or fewer.
LIONS TOE THE LINE
Last weekend at Dartmouth and Harvard, Columbia made 25 of 27 free throws. The Lions have shot the ball well from the foul line for the better part of two months and currently rank 31st in the nation and second in the Ivy League at 74.4 percent from the stripe.
IN OUR DEFENSE
Columbia ranks 22nd in the nation in scoring defense. The Lions yield an average of 59.3 points per game to opponents and are allowing teams to shoot 39.7 percent from the field. That number ranks 37th in the country, out of 345 Division I schools. Columbia has also improved at defending the three, as teams shoot just 33 percent from beyond the arc against the Lions.
COLUMBIA CONTROLLING THE GLASS
In 15 of its first 22 games, Columbia has totaled more rebounds than its opponents. In the last five Ivy League games, the Lions have outrebounded their opponents.
THE HISTORY NOTE – BROWN
Columbia has won five of the last six meetings with the Bears and the last three games played in Levien Gymnasium. In last season’s final game, the Lions defeated Brown 91-74 behind a career-high 31 points from Noruwa Agho after Brown had captured an 87-79 victory in Providence earlier last season.
THE HISTORY NOTE – YALE
Columbia and Yale have split the last four meetings at Levien Gymnasium, including a double-overtime thriller last season that the Bulldogs pulled out, 87-81. Yale has won the last five games in the series. Columbia’s last victory against Yale came on January 30, 2009 at Levien Gym, a 53-42 win.
Junior guard Brian Barbour has scored in double figures in each of the last eight games. Barbour is averaging 18.5 points per game during Ivy League action, which is tops in the league. The California native also ranks second in the nation in free throw percentage at 90.5 percent after shooting 91.7 percent from the line last season. Barbour currently leads the squad in scoring, assists, steals, free throw percentage and minutes played.
Junior center Mark Cisco ranks first in several statistical categories during the first round of Ivy League play. Cisco leads all Ivy players in rebounds (8.8 rpg), offensive rebounds (3.5 rpg), field goal percentage (69.0%) and free throw percentage (95.2%). Cisco is tied for fifth in the league in scoring at 13.0 ppg during league play and is ninth in blocked shots per game.
Columbia’s senior class has won 51 games during its four years on the court. The group has a chance to combine for the most wins over a four-year period since the class of 1979, headlined by Alton Byrd and Ricky Free, which won 56 games from the 1975-76 season to 1978-79.
THE FIRST TWO SEASONS OF THE KYLE SMITH ERA
Over the last two seasons with Kyle Smith as the Lions’ head coach, Columbia has won 28 games. That is the largest total in a head coach’s first two seasons since Lou Rossini (1950-58) won 39 games over his first two seasons as head coach, including Columbia’s magical 23-1 campaign in 1950-51.
BALL DON'T LYE
Sophomore guard Meiko Lyles is averaging 9.8 points and 3.0 rebounds per game, leads the team in three-point percentage at 40.4 percent and is tied with Brian Barbour for the team lead in steals with 23. Over his last 10 games, Lyles is averaging 11.7 points per game.
THE BLOOM IS ON ROSENBERG
Rookie Alex Rosenberg has had a strong start to his first collegiate campaign. Named Ivy League Rookie of the Week earlier this season, Rosenberg had solid games at Dartmouth and at Harvard last weekend. Against Dartmouth, he filled the stat sheet with five points, four rebounds, four assists and two blocked shots. At Harvard, he hit a big three and converted a conventional three-point play late in the game to keep Columbia within striking distance.
GO, JOHNNY, GO
Junior forward John Daniels has provided a big lift recently in Columbia’s frontcourt. In the game at Cornell on January 28, Daniels finished with six points and nine rebounds in 21 minutes of action. He currently ranks ninth in the Ivy League in rebounding, pulling down 5.9 boards per game.
BLAISE OF GLORY
In the game at Harvard, senior forward Blaise Staab provided a big lift off the bench for the Lions. Staab scored six points and grabbed seven rebounds, four of them on the offensive glass.
VAN THE MAN
Sophomore guard Van Green has provided big minutes off the Columbia bench in recent weeks. In the last three games, Green has shot 50 percent from the field, 60 percent from three-point range and added four steals and two blocked shots. In the win at Dartmouth, Green scored a career-high 10 points.
Senior Steve Egee has given the Lions strong outside shooting and leadership off the bench for a majority of the season. Egee has posted career highs in scoring and rebounding this season and is shooting 41.7 percent from long distance this season.
CROCKETT ROCKS IT
Senior guard Chris Crockett has provided instant offense off the Columbia bench early this season. In the win against North Texas on Dec. 3, Crockett scored a career-high 12 points on four three-pointers. A day later vs. La Sierra, Crockett matched his career best with four assists and added eight points.
Rookie Noah Springwater has provided strong two-way play off the bench this season for the Lions. In Columbia’s game at Cornell on January 28, Springwater played 22 minutes and added five points, three rebounds, an assist and a steal.
OSETKOWSKI’S BLOCK PARTY
Rookie center Cory Osetkowski leads Columbia with 15 blocked shots this season. In the game at Elon, Osetkowski scored five consecutive points in the second half, helping Columbia tie the game and eventually hold a lead.
BARBOUR CRACKS TOP 20 ASSIST MEN ALL-TIME
Junior Brian Barbour recently moved into 20th place all-time on Columbia’s career assist list, past former teammate Patrick Foley ‘10.
COLUMBIA CAREER ASSISTS
CISCO AMONG TOP OFFENSIVE REBOUNDERS
Junior Mark Cisco is tied for second all-time in offensive rebounds at Columbia after more than two and a half seasons. Offensive rebounds were kept as a separate stat beginning in the 1990-91 season.
CISCO ALSO RANKS IN TOP TEN IN BLOCKS
Not only is Cisco one of Columbia’s top offensive rebounders in recent history, he now ranks among the top ten shot blockers in program history. Blocked shots were first kept as an official statistic beginning in 1984-85.
COLUMBIA AMONG NATIONAL LEADERS
Through February 5, Columbia was ranked among the nation’s top 100 teams in several different categories:
|Field Goal Pct Defense||37th||39.7|
|Free Throw Pct||31st||74.4|
|Turnovers Per Game||98th||12.9|
|Personal Fouls Per Game||55th||16.6|
|Free Throw Pct||Brian Barbou||2nd||90.5|