COLLEGE STATION – The Texas A&M men’s basketball team will hold its final dress rehearsal for upcoming Southeastern Conference play Saturday when the Aggies host UTPA in a non-conference contest inside Reed Arena at 3 p.m.
The match-up will be televised on Fox Sports Southwest with Bob Licht (play-by-play) and Jim Haller (commentary) calling all the action. Fans are encouraged to check with their cable provider for availability and channel listings in their area.
Additionally, the game can be heard on the Texas A&M Sports Network with local coverage in the Bryan-College Station area on WTAW (1620 AM).
Saturday’s contest is part of the Holiday Hoops promotion presented by Texas A&M Physicians which offers fans discounted $5 tickets to Aggie men’s games. Holiday Hoops runs through A&M’s SEC opening match-up with Arkansas on Jan. 8.
The young Aggie squad enters the weekend looking to build momentum for its upcoming run through SEC play as well as shake off the shooting woes that have plagued the team in its last two contest. Texas A&M (8-4) is seeking to regain the rhythm it displayed during the first 10 games of the season when the Aggies maintained a solid .496 team shooting percentage.
Sophomore Alex Caruso continues to be a leader on the court for A&M as the dynamic sophomore paces the SEC in both total assists (52) and assists per game (4.3) while ranking second on the team in scoring (9.3 points per game).
The Broncs (4-11, 0-1 WAC), meanwhile, come to Aggieland trying to reverse an unfortunate trend that has seen them drop seven straight contests, including a 0-5 record in the month of December.
Head coach Dan Hipsher is in his first season at the helm of the UTPA program after previous head coaching stops at Wittenberg (1989-92), Stetson (1993-95) and Akron (1995-2003). Most recently, Hipsher spent four seasons as the associate head coach at Alabama where he was on the bench for a 50-49 Crimson Tide victory over the Aggies in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on Jan. 19 of last season.
UTPA features three players in double-figure scoring on the season led by G/F Javorn Farrell, who paces the Broncs by averaging 17.1 points per contest.
Aggie Basketball Game #13:
UTPA (4-11) at Texas A&M (8-4)
Jan. 4, 2013 · 3:00 p.m. (CT)
Reed Arena (12,989)
College Station, Texas
TV: Fox Sports Southwest (For more info - AggieAthletics.com/TV)
Bob Licht, Play-by-Play
Jim Haller, Commentary
RADIO: Texas A&M Radio Network
Dave South, Play-by-Play
Al Pulliam, Commentary
Local: WTAW-AM 1620 (College Station/Bryan)
LIVE AUDIO/STATS: AggieAthletics.com
LIVE MOBILE LIVE STATS: tamustats.com
TICKETS: Available at the door or online at tickets.12thManFoundation.com
• Saturday's contest will mark the fifth time the Aggies and Broncs have met in men's basketball with A&M holding a 3-1 advantage in the all-time series, which dates back to 1984.
• Texas A&M and UTPA have three common opponents this season with each squad having faced Houston, Sam Houston State and SMU ... Against these common foes the Broncs were 0-3 and outscored by a margin of 14 points in each contest while A&M was 2-1 with a 10.3 advantage in scoring margin.
• The Aggies are looking to buck the disappointment of back-to-back losses during which they shot a combined 28.2 percent from the field … A&M maintained a .496 shooting percentage during the first 10 games of the season.
• Sophomore guard Alex Caruso has been a steady producer for the Aggies this season and enters the weekend leading the SEC in both total assists (52) and assists per game (4.3) ... Additionally, Caruso ranks fourth in the league in steals per game (2.2) while ranking second on A&M in scoring (9.3 points per game).
• The Aggies are 116-12 (.906) all-time in non-conference games inside Reed Arena, which hosted its first basketball game in the fall of 1998.
SERIES HISTORY VS. UTPA (A&M LEADS 3-1)
• Saturday marks the fifth time the Aggies & Broncs have squared off on the hardwood ... A&M holds a 3-1 lead in the all-time series.
• Most recently, the two programs met at Reed Arena on Feb. 14, 2001, with the Aggies earning an 81-78 win ... The Aggies featured five players in double-figure scoring in the contest, led by Bernard King's 22 points.
• The first meeting in the series took place on Dec. 8, 1984, in Edinburg, Texas, with A&M notching a 74-53 victory.
• Aggie floor general Billy Kennedy has never faced the Broncs as a head coach nor has UTPA's Dan Hipsher taken on A&M during his career as a head coach ... Hipsher did, however, face the Aggies once last season while serving as the associate head coach at Alabama.
Southeastern Conference play is on tap for the Texas A&M men's basketball team next week when it renews rivalries with former Southwest Conference foe Arkansas. The Aggies and Razorbackers will square off inside Reed Arena on Wednesday, Jan. 8, during an 8 p.m. contest that will be televised by FSN.
GEARING UP FOR SEC ACTION
Year two of Texas A&M's membership in the Southeastern Conference has seen the Aggies earn a regular season and postseason league title in women's soccer and the A&M men's basketball team is ready to make its impression on the SEC when conference play begins next week.
SEC basketball tips off in Aggieland on Wednesday, Jan. 8, when Texas A&M reignites its long-standing rivalry with former Southwestern Conference running mate Arkansas.
Following a trip to Tennessee on Jan. 11, the Aggies return to College Station to face South Carolina on Wednesday, Jan. 15, before hitting the road once again for a two-game road swing that features games at Mississippi State on Jan. 18 and at Kentucky on Jan. 21.
The UK contest will see the Aggies and Wildcats face off in front of a national ESPN audience as part of Super Tuesday.
For the second year in a row, Texas A&M basketball will be visible across the country as every one of the Aggies’ 18 SEC games is slated to be broadcast on one of the ESPN family of networks, FSN, CSS or the SEC Network.
Vanderbilt pays a visit to the Lone Star State on Saturday, Jan. 25, and Texas A&M will return the favor with a trip to Nashville to battle the Commodores inside Memorial Gymnasium on Feb. 15.
As the calendar fades from January to February, the Aggies will travel to the East Coast for road contests at South Carolina (Jan. 29) and at Florida (Feb. 1).
Mississippi State will visit Aggieland for the first time in hardwood history on Wednesday, Feb. 5, before the Aggies return to the court for a road tilt three days later on Feb. 8 at Georgia.
LSU travels to College Station for a mid-week contest on Wednesday, Feb. 12, and two weeks later on Feb. 26 the Aggies make an appearance at the Tigers’ Maravich Center.
On Feb. 20, Alabama and Texas A&M will face off during their only meeting of the regular season with a Thursday night match-up at Reed Arena.
Closing out the regular season in March, the Aggies will host a pair of SEC foes with Ole Miss coming to College Station on Saturday, March 1, and Auburn making the trip to Texas a week later on Saturday, March 8. The final road contest of the year will see Texas A&M travel to Columbia, Mo., to battle Missouri on March 5.
REED ARENA SUCCESS
• A&M is 82-19 at Reed Arena since the start of the 2008-09 season with a 28-16 mark in conference games.
• The Aggies are 111-24 (.822) at home since the start of the 2006-07 season and are 144-29 (.832) since the start of the 2004-05 campaign.
• A&M has won 58 of its last 69 home games against unranked opponents (18 of last 23 in conference play).
• A&M is 185-70 (.725) in 15 seasons at Reed Arena ... the Aggies were 41-41 the first six years at Reed and are 144-29 since.
• Texas A&M is 8-1 in non-conference games at Reed Arena this season ... the Aggies are 116-12 (.906) all-time in non-conference games inside the facility, which hosted its first basketball game in the fall of 1998 ... a loss to Rice on Dec. 22, 2011, snapped A&M’s 67-game non-conference home win streak at Reed Arena (which dated back to the start of the 2005-06 season) and 80-game regular-season, non-conference home win streak (which dated back to 2003), both school records.
MOBILE LIVE STATS
Fans can access official live statistics on their mobile devices of all Texas A&M basketball home games and select road games by visiting tamustats.com
PROMOTIONS – JAN. 4 VS. UTPA
SPORTS PASS SPECIAL
Texas A&M students who have an All-Sports pass can bring a fellow student into the game for free. This promotion will run during all December and January home games.
A&M STUDENTS GET A RIDE TO THE GAME
On basketball game days, the Aggie Hoops bus will run on Route 01 beginning a few hours before tipoff and throughout the game. This route runs by the Quad, close to the dorms on the south side of campus and will drop students off at the corner of Kimbrough by the West Campus Garage, across the street from Reed Arena.
TAKE A KID TO THE GAME
Fans are encouraged to “Take a Kid to the Game” on Saturday with this promotion which features admission for up to four kids with the purchase of one adult ticket.
AGGIE BASKETBALL CAMPER APPRECIATION DAY
Students who took part in any of Aggie Basketball’s skills camps this summer are invited back to be a part of the Texas A&M hoops action. Campers who attended a camp session this past summer will be admitted into the UTPA game for free for just wearing their camp shirt.
HOLIDAY HOOPS PRESENTED BY TEXAS A&M PHYSICIANS
Every Texas A&M men's and women's home basketball game between December 5th and January 8th, will have reduced General Admission prices as part of "Holiday Hoops Presented by: Texas A&M Physicians". Come see the Aggie Men for $5 and Aggie Women for $4.
WELLS FARGO FREE PARKING
Wells Fargo is offering free parking to the men’s games during holiday hoops. Fans can pick up a parking flyer at a Bryan/ College Station Wells Fargo location and give the flyer to parking attendants at Reed Arena to receive free parking.
As the players head to the locker room for halftime, fans will be treated to a performance by Powersports Cheer on the court during the intermission.
POST-GAME COACHING CLINIC
Following the conclusion of the game, kids from six-years-old through the sixth grade are invited to participate in a Coaching Clinic put on by the Aggie basketball coaches and student-athletes. To take part, join with other participates at the bottom of Sections 112 and 113 and the clinic will begin shortly after the end of the game.