The Harvard men's basketball team has started 7-2 for the second straight season (Gil Talbot).
After an 11-day break, Harvard visits No. 4/4 Connecticut in a non-conference matchup at the XL Center in Hartford, Conn., Wednesday evening. The Crimson carries a 7-2 record into the game, while the Huskies are 9-0.
Follow From Home
The game will be broadcast live on in the New York Metropolitan Area on SportsNet New York (SNY), as well as nationally on ESPN3.com. In addition, the game is available for subscribers to ESPN's Full Court Package. Check local listings for complete channel information.
Harvard and Connecticut have met 15 times on the hardwood, with the Huskies owning a 13-2 lead in the series, which began in 1921-22. After not playing since 1988-89, the teams met last season, as UConn held off the Crimson, 79-73, in Storrs, Conn. Jeremy Lin '10 led all scorers with 30 points, making 11 field goals, and collected nine rebounds, while Keith Wright added 10 points and six boards.
Harvard improved to 5-0 at home with an 87-71 victory over Boston University Dec. 11, as the Crimson picked up its 13th straight win over a non-conference opponent at Lavietes Pavilion. Six Harvard players scored in double digits, led by Christian Webster's 18 points. Keith Wright, who picked up his fourth double-double of the season, scored 17 and grabbed 10 rebounds, while Laurent Rivard (15), Andrew Van Nest (13), Oliver McNally (11) and Brandyn Curry (10) also shot the ball well against the Terriers. The Crimson made 10 treys in the game and outrebounded BU, 40-28.
Harvard Against Ranked Opponents
The Crimson has not played a team ranked as high as No. 4, since Harvard fell at No. 1 Duke, 118-65, Nov. 30, 1991. Harvard head coach Tommy Amaker was an assistant coach with the Blue Devils in that meeting.
Top Of The Ivy League
The Crimson owns a 7-2 record through its first nine games and boasts the best overall mark for an Ivy League school this season. Harvard has started 7-2 two other times since 1996 (2002 and 2009).
Harvard owns a 5-0 record this season when scoring 70 or more points and is 2-2 when scoring less than that. The Crimson has allowed an opponent to score more than 70 points on only one occasion (Boston University, 71 (Dec. 11).
Harvard vs. The Big East
The Crimson owns a 7-38 record against current members of the Big East conference. Harvard last defeated a Big East team Nov. 18, 1998, when the Crimson knocked off Boston College, 62-61. Harvard last defeated a current member of the Big East Dec. 13, 1974, as the team downed Cincinnati, 77-76.
Keith Wright has made 55-of-83 shots from the floor this season for a shooting percentage of .663, which ranks second in the country (Kenneth Faried, Morehead State (.664). Wright, who is a 55 percent shooter for his career, leads the Ivy League in shooting and 3.1 blocks per contest, is second with 1.9 blocks and 8.8 rebounds per game and third with 15.7 points per contest.
The Crimson has earned victories over teams from the Patriot League, Atlantic Sun, Northeast Conference, Big XII, Atlantic 10, NEWMAC and America East this season. Harvard defeated teams from 10 different conferences during the 2009-10 season and has already topped teams from seven different conferences this year.
Scoring From All Areas
Six Harvard players reached double digits in scoring against Boston University: Oliver McNally, Christian Webster, Brandyn Curry, Laurent Rivard, Andrew Van Nest and Keith Wright. That marked the fourth time this season Harvard had at least four players score 10 or more points (Holy Cross Nov. 17, Fordham Dec. 1, WPI Dec. 7).
Harvard has grabbed 88 offensive rebounds this season and has scored 97 second-chance points. Keith Wright paces the Crimson with 28 offensive boards, while Christian Webster (14) and Brandyn Curry (11) have also been key players on the offensive glass for Harvard.
Defense Wins Games
Harvard leads the Ivy League in scoring defense, allowing the opposition only 62.6 points per game this season. The Crimson also paces the Ancient Eight in scoring margin (+9.6), nearly seven points more than Princeton (+2.8).
Opponents are shooting only 33.8 percent from long distance against the Crimson.
Feeling It From Long Range
At least one Harvard player has made at least two three pointers in all nine games this season. In the win over Fordham, Harvard made 15 threes as a team, with Laurent Rivard making five, as the Crimson was just two treys away from matching a program record (17 vs. Rice in 2002).
The Crimson has hit 80 shots from long range on the season and is shooting nearly 39.2 percent from three-point range. Harvard is 5-0 when making 10 or more three pointers in a game.
Harvard Against the BCS
The Crimson will play four teams from BCS conferences this season: Colorado (Big XII), Michigan (Big Ten), Connecticut (Big East) and Boston College (ACC). Harvard, which went 1-2 against BCS teams last year, boasts a 1-1 mark against BCS schools this season after beating Colorado Nov. 28, but falling at Michigan Dec. 1.
The Crimson owns a 4-6 record against BCS conference schools under head coach Tommy Amaker. Harvard has defeated Boston College twice, and topped Michigan and Colorado during Amaker's tenure in Cambridge.
Keeping Everyone Involved
Harvard handed out 22 assists on 25 field goals in the Crimson's 82-66 win over Colorado Nov. 28. The Crimson then dished out 21 helpers on 28 field goals in the 80-57 victory over Fordham Dec. 1.
Owning A Long Distance Plan
Laurent Rivard made five three-pointers in back-to-back games against Fordham Dec. 1, and Michigan Dec. 4. The Crimson freshman has buried 20 treys on the season, second most on the team (Christian Webster, 22).