PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Rutgers (1-0) travels to the Yellowhammer State to meet Conference USA foe Alabama-Birmingham (1-0) in an 8 p.m. ET (7 p.m. local) tip-off Monday night at 8,508-seat Bartow Arena. UAB, which installed a new hardwood surface this past Thursday, will pay tribute to legendary coach Gene Bartow that night and has titled the game the “Bartow Classic.” It will mark the second time the Scarlet Knights will hit the hardwood in the state of Alabama after suffering an 82-70 loss at Auburn on Dec. 8, 2002. The Nov. 11 date signals the earliest the Scarlet Knights have played a road game in team history. RU has a program-record eight games in the month of November.
The game will be televised live on SNY and Comcast Sports South, with Mike Morgan calling the action and Brian Oliver providing the analysis. On the radio, the contest will be broadcast live on the Rutgers IMG Sports 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.
The Scarlet Knights have a 1-0 series advantage over UAB after defeating the Blazers 88-79 at the RAC last season. RU made its initial 10 shots and 15 of its first 16 en route to shooting 60 percent (27-45). Guard Myles Mack (Paterson, N.J.) made 6-of-9 field goals, including 4-of-5 from behind the arc, to score 23 points with five steals. Rutgers led by as many as 25 points in the first half.
In the season opener this past Friday night at the RAC, redshirt junior forward Kadeem Jack (Queens, N.Y.) shot 12-of-18 to score a career-high 30 points, while also grabbing 12 rebounds, to lead Rutgers to a 92-84 win over Florida A&M. Senior forward J.J. Moore (Brentwood, N.Y.) also added a double-double, making 5-of-9 field goals en route to 17 points, while totaling 11 rebounds. Mack contributed 19 points and six steals. RU established a 50-37 rebounding advantage and forced 20 Florida A&M turnovers.
It marked the first game at the helm for Eddie Jordan, who led the Scarlet Knights to their most points scored in a regulation season opener since a 114-86 victory over Bentley in 1976-77, which was Jordan’s senior season “On the Banks.” The 92 points were also the most for an RU men’s hoops head coach in their debut. The previous high was 82 under Bob Wenzel in 1988-89, when Jordan was an assistant on staff.
UAB, under the leadership of second-year head coach Jerod Haase, also opened its season with a home game Friday evening, defeating Columbus State, 76-56. Junior point guard Chad Frazier had a double-double with 12 points and 10 assists and four Blazers scored in double figures.