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August 10, 2001

USI menís basketball schedule features four NCAA Tournament teams

The University of Southern Indiana menís basketball team will tip-off the 2001-02 regular season on November 16-18 in the Disney Division II Tip-Off Classic at Disneyís Wide World of Sports. USI will play Texas A&M University Kingsville in the first round of the three-day tournament.

The Tip-Off Classic also features Grand Valley State University, in the opposite bracket, and Wingate University, a likely opponent for USI on the second day of the tournament. Both were in the NCAA Division II Tournament last spring.

In addition to the classic, the non-conference schedule will feature home contests with Oakland City University on December 15 Abilene Christian University, December 18 Brescia University, December 29 Wilberforce University, January 5 and Olivet Nazarene University, January 31.

The 2001-02 campaign would not be a worthy schedule without the 20 Great Lakes Valley Conference contests. The GLVC schedule, as each year, is highlighted with a home-and-home series with Kentucky Wesleyan College, the defending national champion on January 3 at the Physical Activities Center and February 23 in Owensboro, Kentucky and Northern Kentucky University, an NCAA Division II Tournament team on December 8 in Highland Heights, Kentucky, and January 24 at the PAC.

With the departure of Indiana University/Purdue University Ft. Wayne from the GLVC, the Eagles will play a home-and-home schedule with each team in the GLVC, something which has not been done the last two seasons.

The 2001-02 schedule is very fan friendly with a seven-game homestand in December and January and a four-game homestand at the end of January.

USI will have a new head coach at the helm for the first time in 10 seasons when Rick Herdes leads the team this year. Herdes, who was the associate head coach a year ago, has helped lead USI to a 231-46 record over nine campaigns.

Herdes will depend heavily upon the two returning starters, senior forward Marlowe Currie and senior guard/forward Wes Attebury to set the tone for the Eagles in 2001-02. Curries, who was second team All-GLVC and second team All-Region in his first season for the Eagles, led USI with 17.0 ppg and 7.6 rpg. Attebury, who became a starter late last season, averaged 8.6 ppg and 2.7 rpg.

Currie and Attebury will have plenty of help with the return of forwards Diondíre Givens, a junior, and Billy Harris, a sophomore. Givens, a part-time starter, averaged 8.6 ppg and 4.4 rpg, Harris should return from a season-ending knee injury this fall to pick-up where he left off his freshman season (8.6 ppg and 3.9 rpg).

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information

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