Devin Oliver has scored in double figures in the last five games.
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FLYERS FACE TOUGH ROAD TEST AT ALABAMA ON WEDNESDAY
The University of Dayton Flyers face a difficult road test on Wednesday against the Alabama Crimson Tide. Tip-off is at 9 p.m. ET. The game will be televised across Ohio on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel, carried by WHIO Radio and are available with live video, stats and streaming audio at DaytonFlyers.com.
Early in the 2012-13 season, the Flyers have shown balance offensively. Four different players are averaging double figures in scoring. Kevin Dillard leads the charge, averaging 13.9 points and 4.0 assists per game. Vee Sanford (11.7 ppg), Josh Benson (10.6 ppg) and Devin Oliver (10.6 ppg) have also stepped up at various times this season. One area of improvement from coach Archie Miller’s first season has been the UD defense. In the last three games, Dayton is forcing 22.3 turnovers per contest. The Flyers have also out-rebounded all but one opponent this year.
The Alabama Crimson Tide enters the contest 6-1 overall, but is a second away from being undefeated after losting to No. 17 Cincinnati on a last-second field goal. Led by former Flyer great Anthony Grant, the Crimson Tide ranks 14th in the NCAA in scoring defense, allowing just 54.9 points per game. Alabama is also 4-0 this season at home. Junior Trevor Releford, a second team All-SEC selection, leads Alabama averaging 17.5 points, while shooting .522 from three-point range. Sophomore Rodney Cooper averages 14.5 points and 4.3 rebounds, while classmate Trevor Lacey chips in with 13.9 points and 3.9 assists per contest.
The series is tied at 1-1. Last season UD defeated No. 16/15 Alabama at home, 74-62. Kevin Dillard chipped in 14 points, eight rebounds and six assists.
The Flyers have been powerful against the power conferences. Dayton is 18-8 in the last six years against BCS programs. Dayton’s 18 victories have come against Ole Miss (thrice), Auburn (twice), Boston College, Alabama, North Carolina, Minnesota, Illinois, Louisville, West Virginia, Georgia Tech, Marquette, Cincinnati, Seton Hall, Wake Forest and Pittsburgh.
UD has won its last six versus the SEC and the last four against the ACC. The Flyers have won 10 of the last 13 overall and five of the last eight games against BIG EAST opponents. UD is 2-1 this season with wins over Boston College and Auburn. The only loss was to the eventual 2012 Charleston Classic champion, Colorado.
The month of December has been kind to the Flyers in recent years. Dayton has had a winning record in the month of December in the last 10 seasons, which includes the 2012-13 season. Dayton is 53-16 (.768) during the previous nine campaigns. UD has won 32 of its last 37 dating back to the 2007-08 campaign.
• The Flyer defense set a program record by allowing five points in the first half against Northern Illinois. NIU shot 11 percent from the field and committed 12 turnovers.
• In their last three contests, the Flyers have forced 22.3 turnovers per game.
• UD has out-rebounded every opponent in all but one game this season.
• Dayton ranks fourth in the Atlantic 10 in scoring defense (60.7 ppg) and defensive rebounding (29.9).
• In Archie Miller’s two seasons as head coach, Dayton is 10-0 when the Flyers shoot 40 percent or better from beyond the arc.
• Dayton went 2-1 at the 2012 Charleston Classic. The Flyers defeated the Boston College Eagles and Auburn Tigers and lost to the eventual champion Colorado Buffaloes.
• During the early signing period, Archie Miller announced the addition of three top high school players to letters of intent: guards Kyle Davis, Kendall Pollard and Dayshon “Scoochie” Smith. Two signees (Davis and Smith) are Rivals.com Top 125 players. This is the first time UD has had more than one Top 125 player in a single class.
• Kevin Dillard, a First Team Pre-Season All-Atlantic 10 selection, leads Dayton in scoring (13.9 ppg), assists (4.0 apg) and tied for the team lead in steals (9).
• Dillard has at least one assist in each of his 40 career games in a Flyer uniform.
• Vee Sanford averaging 12.0 points and is shooting .467 from the field in his last three games.
• Devin Oliver continues to produce at an efficient level on the glass. He leads the Flyers in overall rebounding (8.0 rpg) and offensive rebounds (19). Oliver has scored in double figures in the last five games. He is averaging 12.8 points, 8.2 rebounds and shooting .575 from the field.
• Oliver ranks fifth in defensive rebounding (5.3) and is tied for 15th in the A-10 in field goal percentage (.519)
• Jalen Robinson has become Dayton’s top performer off the bench. In his three non-starts, he is averaging 8.8 points and shooting 17-of-29 (.586) from the field.
• Josh Benson is producing at a similar clip as he did last season before his torn ACL. In 2012-13, Benson is averaging 10.6 points. Last year, he scored 10.9 ppg in non-conference action.
• Dyshawn Pierre was the first freshman, first Canadian and first player making his first career start to score a minimum of 20 points by making at least eight FG, five 3-pt FG and two free throws without missing a single shot when he scored 23 in the Boston College win.