November 28, 2000 - by
Seminoles Gearing Up For Second Annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge

Nov. 28, 2000

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Florida State Seminoles (1-3, 0-0 ACC)

vs.

Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-1, 0-0 Big Ten)


Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2000, 8:00 p.m.

Leon County Civic Center (12,200)

Tallahassee, Florida

ESPN Regional

Seminole Radio Network

SETTING THE SCENE
Florida State (1-3, 0-0 ACC) plays host to Minnesota (4-1, 0-0 Big Ten) in the second annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Wednesday night’s game between the Seminoles and the Golden Gophers comes on the second night of this year’s challenge. The ACC won the inaugural challenge by a 5-4 count last season. It was the Seminoles, by virtue of their victory over Northwestern, that captured the upper hand for the ACC in the inaugural challenge last season. The ACC won five of the nine games contested to prevail in the challenge, 5-4.

HOME SWEET HOME
Florida State returns to the friendly confines of the Leon County Civic Center after spending the Thanksgiving holiday in Anchorage at the Great Alaska Shootout. The Seminoles are 54-7 (88.5) at home since the beginning of the 1991-92 season. The Seminoles have won two of their last three non-conference home games and were undefeated in the arena (7-0) against non-ACC teams during the l998 season.

NIGEL DIXON DOUBLES UP RHODE ISLAND
Sophomore Nigel Dixon recorded his first career double/double of 23 points and 10 rebounds as Florida State defeated Rhode Island in the third round of the Great Alaska Shootout. Dixon established individual career-highs for field goals made (nine), field goals attempted (12), free throws made (five), free throws attempted (nine), rebounds (10), and minutes played (22). In addition, he tied his career high with four offensive rebounds.

NIGEL DIXON WARMS UP TO ALASKA
Sophomore Nigel Dixon averaged 15.6 points and 6.3 rebounds in three games during the Great Alaska Shootout. His 15.6 points and 6.3 rebounds per game averages in the last three games were higher than his per game averages during the entire 1999-00 season.

JOINER RECORDS FIRST CAREER DOUBLE/DOUBLE
Freshman Michael Joiner scored 12 points and grabbed 10 rebounds against Rhode Island to record the first career double/double.

JOINER PERFECT FROM THE FREE THROW LINE
Freshman Michael Joiner was a perfect six-of-six from the free throw line in Florida State’s three games during the Great Alaska Shootout. Joiner was two-for-two against Ohio State and four-for-four against Rhode Island. He enters Wednesday night’s game against Minnesota as the team leader in free throw percentage (.909) and has hit eight consecutive attempts from the line. Joiner is nine-of-ten from the free throw line and has not missed since the first half of the season opener against Florida. Since missing his first collegiate attempt he has not missed.

JOINER IN DOUBLE FIGURES
Freshman Michael Joiner has scored in double figures in three of Florida State’s first four games of the season. He scored his career-high of 18 in the season opener and is ranked first among team leaders in three categories and second in two others.

SEMINOLES SIGN PAIR OF TOP NATIONAL PROSPECTS
Florida State University head men’s basketball coach Steve Robinson announced during the early signing period that Anthony Richardson and Adam Waleskowski have signed National Letters of Intent to play for the Seminoles beginning in the 2000-01 season. Richardson is ranked among the top 20 players in the nation and Waleskowski is ranked among the top 100 giving the Seminoles one of the nation’s top recruiting classes.

“We are very excited to have Anthony Richardson and Adam Waleskowski join our program,” said Robinson. “Their addition gives us two more high level players which allows us to continue our efforts in transforming Florida State into one of the top programs in the nation.”

Richardson, a 6-7 small forward from Raleigh (N.C.) Leesville High School was the first player to commit to Robinson and the Seminoles this season. He averaged 14 points and eight rebounds per game as a junior. Richardson is hailed as one of the top “combo” forwards in the nation and is ranked as the 16th best prospect in the nation by recruiting analyst Brick Oettinger. He ranks as high as No. 4 nationally among small forward prospects nationally.

Richardson selected Florida State over Maryland, NC State and Wake Forest. He becomes the third player from the state of North Carolina to commit to the Seminoles in the last two years. Michael Joiner (Fayetteville, N.C.) and Ryan Lowery (Gastonia, N.C.) are current Florida State team members.

Waleskowski, a 6-9 power forward from Kettering (Ohio) Alter High School signed his National Letter of Intent with the Florida State program following a recruiting visit Nov. 3-5. He is rated among the top 100 prospects in the nation according to All Star Sports Publications. He averaged 17 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocked shots as a junior. In addition, he has a 31-inch vertical leap.

“The combination of the recruiting class which entered the university this fall (which was the 13th ranked recruiting class in the nation) and this recruiting class continues the influx of talented players into our program,” Robinson added. “We are continuously working to improve our program in every way and the additions of Anthony and Adam are very positive steps in our goal of becoming a better basketball team.”

SEMINOLE STARTERS VS. SEMINOLE RESERVES
Head coach Steve Robinson has started the same five players (Michael Joiner, Antwuan Dixon, Nigel Dixon, Adrian Crawford and Delvon Arrington) and utilized the same bench rotation (Ryan Lowery, Andrew Wilson, Monte Cummings, Mike Mathews and David Anderson) during each of the Seminoles’ first four games. Both groups have proven highly effective during their time on the court and have allowed Robinson to use numerous combinations of players. One of the top facets of the deeper rotation has been the ability to substitute quality for quality throughout each game. Florida State’s reserves are combining to play 63 minutes per game (more than one-third of the total minutes). Only two players (Michael Joiner and Delvon Arrington) are averaging more than 30 minutes player per game this season as compared to three last season (Ron Hale, Damous Anderson and Arrington). In addition, eight of Florida State’s 10 players are averaging at least 12 minutes per game.

SEMINOLES SHOOTING THE BALL WELL
Florida State shot a season-high 54.2 percent from the field in its victory over Rhode Island in the third round of the Great Alaska Shootout. It marked the highest the Seminoles had shot from the field since a 54.5 performance against The Citadel on Dec. 30, 1999. In addition, it marked the fifth time in the last 33 games that the Seminoles had shot 50 percent or better from the field. The Seminoles are 5-0 in the last two seasons when they shoot 50 percent or better from the field with victories over Rhode Island (Nov. 25, 2000), at North Carolina (Jan. 22, 2000), vs. The Citadel, at Northwestern (Dec. 1, 1999) and vs. Jacksonville (Nov. 27, 1999).

SEMINOLES LENDING A HELPING HAND
Florida State has recorded 67 assists (16.8 per game) on 109 baskets (27.3) through the first four games of the season. The team recorded a season-high 18 assists against DePaul on Nov. 24 and had one assist on .681 of their baskets against Ohio State (15 assists on 22 baskets).

ALL IN THE SCORING COLUMN
All 10 players who have earned action for the Seminoles in the last three games have made it into the scoring column on the statistics sheet. For the season in four games, only two players out of a total of 40 have failed to score in any one game.

BACK TO BACK WITH FOUR IN DOUBLE FIGURES
Florida State has placed four players in double figure scoring in both of the last two games. Sophomore center Nigel Dixon led the four-play with 23 points against Rhode Island while senior guard Adrian Crawford scored 14 points to lead four players in double figures scoring against DePaul. It marked the first time since Dec. 29, 1998 (69-58 victory over Mississippi State) and Dec. 30, 1998 (80-76 overtime victory over Murray State) that the Seminoles had four players score in double figures in consecutive games.

LOWERY IN RELIEF
Possibly the most important statistic in the Seminoles’ statistic sheet are those of back-up point guard Ryan Lowery. He is averaging 8.5 minutes of play through the first four games of the season and doing a superb job of spelling starting point guard Delvon Arrington. Lowery has an assist to turnover ratio of 3.3:1 and is second on the team is assists with 13.

A PAIR OF DOUBLE/DOUBLES
Freshman Michael Joiner (12 points and 10 rebounds) and sophomore Nigel Dixon (23 points and 10 rebounds) both recorded double/doubles against Rhode Island on Nov. 25. It marked the first time since Dec. 29, 1997 that two Seminoles had recorded double/doubles in the same game. Most recently, Terrell Baker (23 points and 11 rebounds) and Corey Louis (13 points and 10 rebounds) recorded double/doubles against Southwestern Louisiana on Dec. 29, 1997.

THE REBOUNDING STORY
Led by 10 rebounds each by Michael Joiner and Nigel Dixon, Florida State enjoyed a +22 rebound margin against Rhode Island on Saturday. It was the Seminoles’ largest rebound margin since a +25 effort against Sam Houston State on Nov. 23, 1999. Florida State enters Wednesday night’s game against Minnesota with a +4.5 rebound margin through the first four games of the season.

NOTING STEVE ROBINSON
Wednesday night’s game against Minnesota is Steve Robinson’s 160th as a head coach on the Division I level and the 96th of his career at Florida State.

ON THE SEMINOLES’ 2000-01 SCHEDULE
Three of Florida State’s first four opponents are, or have been, ranked in the nation’s top-25 during the early part of the season. Florida, the Seminoles’ opening night opponent is 10th in the current Associated Press poll, while DePaul was ranked 21st when the Blue Demons and Seminoles met in the Great Alaska Shootout. A third opponent, Ohio State, received votes in the poll and is ranked in 49th place.

MATHEWS IS THE SEMINOLES BLOCKED SHOT LEADERS
Sophomore Mike Mathews, who blocked a career-high two shots against DePaul in the second round of the Great Alaska Shootout, leads the Seminoles with four blocked shots. He has blocked at least one shot in three of Florida State’s four games. Mathews enters the Seminoles’ game against Minnesota with a streak of three consecutive games with at least one blocked shot.

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