Piscataway, N.J. - Rutgers, under the leadership of third-year head coach Mike Rice, hosts MAAC and Garden State foe St. Peter’s Friday evening in a 7:30 p.m. tip-off at the RAC in the 2012-13 season opener. The Peacocks will drive approximately 30 miles south from Jersey City for the meeting. Fans in attendance will receive a free men’s basketball schedule poster.
In conjunction with the Rutgers Athletics relief plan to aid those affected by Hurricane Sandy, the Red Cross will be on site Friday evening collecting monetary donations. In addition, fans who wish to donate to the Red Cross Relief Fund can do so via text message by sending the text “REDCROSS” to 90999. Rutgers Athletics also designed a t-shirt with the state outline of New Jersey and the word “stRong” featured. Fans can purchase the t-shirt for $15 at the game with ALL proceeds going to the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund.
The Scarlet Knights have a 73-27 all-time record in game one contests.
The game will be televised live in the New York metro market on SNY and via the web at WatchESPN.com with Mike Corey calling the action and John Celestand providing the analysis. On the radio, the contest will be broadcast live on the Rutgers Radio Network, WOR 710 AM in New York and WCTC 1450 AM in New Brunswick. Chris Carlin will serve as play-by-play announcer and Dick Lloyd will provide commentary. WRSU (88.7) will also broadcast the game.
Friday evening’s match-up will mark the 14th meeting between Rutgers and St. Peter’s on the hardwood dating back to 1975, with the Scarlet Knights holding an 11-2 advantage, including a 9-1 mark at home. In the last meeting, then freshman Mike Poole (Rosedale, N.Y.) shot six-of-seven to score 14 points off the bench to help Rutgers to a 55-52 win on Dec. 23, 2010 at the RAC. He sank two clutch free throws with 17 seconds remaining as the Scarlet Knight overcame a 12-point deficit to earn the victory.
Rutgers returns 10 letterwinners, including nine with starting experience, to highlight its roster. Last season, RU was the nation’s fifth-youngest team with seven freshmen. Of the five most youthful squads, the Scarlet Knights had the best winning percentage. Void of a scholarship senior last season, Rutgers returns seniors Dane Miller (Rochester, N.Y.) and Austin Johnson (Elkins, Park, Pa.) to provide veteran leadership in 2012-13.
On Monday, the Scarlet Knights downed Holy Family, 92-52, in exhibition action at the RAC. Guard Myles Mack (Paterson, N.J.) paced RU with 17 points on six-of-10 shooting, adding six rebounds and five steals. Fellow sophomores Jerome Seagears (Silver Spring, Md.) and Eli Carter (Paterson, N.J.) added 16 and 14 points, respectively. The trio combined for 13 assists, including six by Carter, and shot 17-of-33 from the floor.
Friday evening will mark the first regular season game in Scarlet for highly-touted juniors Wally Judge (Washington, D.C) and Vincent Garrett (Chicago, Ill.). Judge had seven points and six rebounds in 18 minutes versus Holy Family, while Garrett shot two-of-four in 15 minutes.
St. Peter’s is under the leadership of eighth-year head coach John Dunne. Last season, the Peacocks posted a 5-26 (4-14) record, dropping 12 of their final 13 contests. Senior forward Darius Conley returns after averaging a team-best 11.6 points and 7.4 rebounds-per game. The SPC roster also features graduate student Patrick Jackson, who played for the Scarlet Knights in 2008-09 and 2009-10.
Season tickets for Rutgers basketball are available now. To place your order, please log on to http://tickets.scarletknights.com. You may also order by contacting the Rutgers Athletic Ticket Office in person at the RAC or by calling 866-445-GoRU (4678).