Herd’s Elmore going out atop school, C-USA record books
HUNTINGTON — Jon Elmore is making a strong case to go out as the Marshall Thundering Herd’s best player ever statistically.
• Elmore’s 2,417 career points is 40 away from breaking the Conference USA men’s basketball record of 2,456 set by Stefon Jackson at UTEP from 2006 to 2009. Elmore needs 158 points to become Marshall’s all-time leader. Skip Henderson set the Herd mark of 2,574 from 1984 to 1988.
• The senior guard from Charleston already owns C-USA and school records for career assists with 729.
• His 313-for-903 career 3-point field goal totals are Marshall records. The C-USA record for 3-point field goals is 346 held by Jobey Thomas of Charlotte (1999-02). The league record for 3-point attempts is 960 held by Demon Brown of Charlotte (2000-04).
• He is 646-for-799 shooting free throws, both Herd records. C-USA’s records set by UTEP’s Jackson are 726 made free throws and 945 attempts.
BONUS PLAY IS GOOD: C-USA bonus scheduling at least has basketball fans talking. At most, the innovative format might help the postseason chances of some teams.
C-USA Bonus Play for men’s basketball only begins Saturday within three pods determined by the current standings (first to fifth, sixth to 10th, 11th to 14th). Each team has four games — two at home, two on the road — to finish the regular season and establish seeding for the conference tournament.
The idea devised by ESPN analyst Mark Adams is having teams in the top pod — Old Dominion, Western Kentucky, Southern Miss, UTSA and UAB — playing each other and not losing games late in the season against lesser opponents that might affect their NCAA Tournament resumes.
C-USA is usually a one-bid NCAA Tournament league — the only certain berth goes to the conference tournament winner — and it might be that way again this season, but trying something different was a good idea. It can’t hurt anything.
SCHEDULE UPDATED: Marshall’s bonus play schedule had some changes to tip-off times and TV arrangements. Following is the schedule.
• Thursday, Feb. 28 at Louisiana Tech, 7:30 p.m., CUSA.tv.
• Sunday, March 3 at North Texas, 4 p.m., Stadium.
• Wednesday, March 6 vs. FIU, 7 p.m., ESPN+.
• Saturday, March 9 vs. Florida Atlantic, noon, Stadium.
Season ticket holders already have their seats for Marshall bonus play games. Individual game tickets for FIU and Florida Atlantic are on sale in the Cam Henderson Center box office and on HerdZone.com.
PRE-MARCH MADNESS: Conference tournament seeds are locked in by the pods. Marshall is in the second pod with LA Tech, North Texas, FIU and Florida Atlantic and following four more games the Herd can be seeded anywhere from sixth to 10th in the tournament from March 13-16 in Frisco, Texas.
For some teams such as Rice and Middle Tennessee, however, the tournament basically begins with their first bonus games Saturday.
Only 12 of the 14 teams will advance to the tournament. Rice and Middle Tennessee are in the bottom pod and hold the final two berths right now with UTEP and Charlotte chasing them.
On Saturday, Rice plays at UTEP and Charlotte visits Middle Tennessee for games against teams they want to keep out of the tournament.
COINCIDENCE, OR NOT?: Referees called 50 fouls in the Marshall game with Middle Tennessee that was one fewer than they called in the Herd season opener at Eastern Kentucky.
Barry Mathis was one of the referees in both games.
D’Antoni was asked if he realized that many fouls were called.
“Yeah, I know,” D’Antoni said. “That’s all I can say.”
TURNSTILE COUNT: Marshall’s fifth-largest crowd this season of 6,927 for the Middle Tennessee game kept the Herd atop C-USA in average attendance.
Marshall average home crowd of 6,565 is first in the league followed by Old Dominion (6,456) and Western Kentucky (5,876).
MARSHALL (14-13, 7-7) AT LOUISIANA TECH (17-10, 7-7)
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Feb. 28
WHERE: Thomas Assembly Center; Ruston, Louisiana
RADIO: WDDG 93.7-FM, ESPN 94.1-FM and 930-AM