FORT WAYNE, Ind. - The Gates Sports Center will be the site of men's basketball's first contest of 2020-21. The Mastodons will welcome Southeastern Louisiana to town in a 7 p.m. tip.
Game Day Information
When: Wednesday, November 25 | 7 p.m. ET
Where: Gates Sports Center | Fort Wayne, Ind.
Live Stats: Purdue Fort Wayne Live Stats
Play-by-Play: John Nolan, Rapheal Davis
Radio: 1380 The Fan
Play-by-Play: Brett Rump, Art Saltsberg
Series History: First meeting
Last Meeting: First meeting
KNOW YOUR FOE
• This will be the first ever meeting between the Mastodons and Southeastern Louisiana.
• The Lions were 8-23 last season and return three starters.
• David Kiefer is in his second season as head coach of the Lions.
• Freshman Jamon Kemp is the son of former NBA All-Star Shawn Kemp.
• The Lions have nine non-league games scheduled this season, all on the road. The slate includes a trip to California to play UC Santa Barbara and California Baptist.
FOR OPENERS: The Mastodons are 6-0 in home openers under Jon Coffman.
SPEAKING IN PERCENTS: The Mastodons return 57.9 percent of their scoring (1,310-of-2,261) from last season. The largest chunk of that total is Jarred Godfrey's 514 points last year.
TELL ME MORE ABOUT GODFREY: Jarred Godfrey was a 2019-20 All-Summit League Honorable Mention selection last year. His 514 points last year marked the 20th time in program history a Mastodon scored 500 points in a season. He finished the year leading the Summit League in steals (41) and ranked third in assists (114). He will enter the season with 737 career points.
ROUND TWO FOR DEONTE BILLUPS: Deonte Billups' 8.8 points per game last year stood as the most a Mastodon freshman averaged since John Konchar averaged 13.0 as a freshman in 2015-16. Worth noting, Konchar was a redshirt freshman in 2015-16 while Billups was a true freshman last year. The last true freshman to best Billups' mark was Mo Evans' 9.6 points in 2013-14.
LEAGUE PLAY WAS FOR BILLUPS: Deonte Billups entered the starting lineup for the first game of Summit League play last year. In 16 Summit League games he averaged 11.6 points per game, second only to Jarred Godfrey on the team in league scoring.
BILLUPS ON THE BOARDS: The 6-4 Deonte Billups was one of the Mastodons' best rebounders last season. He had 18 games with five or more rebounds. His 5.8 rebounds per game in Summit League play led the team in conference play. He had 18 games last season with five or more rebounds.
NEW TO THE CREW: The 2020-21 roster features seven newcomers to the Mastodons. An eighth Mastodon, Ra Kpedi, will see the court for the first time for Purdue Fort Wayne. Kpedi used last season as a redshirt season.
RA(W) DATA: Ra Kpedi played 12 games for Vermont in 2017-18 and 27 with six starts in 2018-19. He helped the Catamounts to an America East Championship and NCAA Tournament berth in 2018-19. The Indianapolis native played at Lawrence North High School where he earned Second Team Indy Star Super Team honors.
PIP: Jalon Pipkins has 53 NCAA Division I games under his belt. He played in 23 games at CSUN to start his career in 2017-18. He transfered to Paris Junior College in 2018-19 where he averaged 21.5 points per game. Last season at Loyola Chicago he played in 30 games with one start while averaging 3.4 points per game.
MAN WITH A PLAN: Bobby Planutis is a sharpshooter who spent his freshman campaign at Mount St. Mary's before transferring to St. Bonaventure. He has played in 63 career games with 28 starts.
THE NEED FOR THREES: Three additions to the Mastodons this year have a track record of connecting from long range at the college level. Bobby Planutis owns a 36.8 career 3-point percentage mark. As a freshman at Mt. Saint Mary's Planutis made 33-of-67 for a 49.3 percentage. Sophomore Bryce Waterman made 104 3-pointers at Pensacola State Junior College last season. Junior Demetric Horton connected on 43.0 percent from 3-point range at Independence Community College last year.
MORE BLOCKS THAN A TWITTER TROLL: Dylan Carl owns 93 career blocks. He is one block away from moving into the top five in program history. Fifth place Sean Gibson (1989-93) had 94 blocks. In fourth place is Brent Calhoun (2012-17) with 109. Carl and Calhoun were teammates in 2016-17.
I KNOW YOU!: The 'Dons have played every Horizon League school except for Green Bay and fellow newcomer Robert Morris.
START ME UP: Jarred Godfrey and Dylan Carl started all 33 games for the Mastodons last season. For Carl, it was the second straight year he started every game in the season.
LOOKING BACK: The 'Dons spent 13 years in the Summit League, finishing with a losing record only four times.
LOOKING BACK EVEN MORE: Joining the Horizon League is new for the Mastodons this season, but three opponents are long time rivals. IUPUI and Oakland were rivals for the 'Dons in Summit League while the Mastodons called Northern Kentucky a foe when both teams were NCAA Division II members in the Great Lakes Valley Conference from 1986-2001.
BACK-TO-BACK: This season's schedule features games against the same opponent on back-to-back days. The last time the 'Dons played the same opponent in back-to-back games was 2013 when the 'Dons closed the season with a win over Oakland on March 2, 2013 and then defeated Oakland a week later in the Summit League Tournament. The last time the 'Dons played games on back-to-back days was in 2018 when weather forced a Friday game at North Dakota to be moved to Saturday, Dec. 29. The 'Dons then played North Dakota State on Dec. 30. Purdue Fort Wayne won both games. The Dec. 30 win is remembered as perhaps John Konchar's best game as a Mastodon. He finished with a career-high 38 points including 27 in the second half and overtime. He added the game winning shot with 0.8 left in overtime.
SMART TOO: The men's basketball programed earned a perfect 100 in the most recent Graduation Success Rate (GSR) announced Nov. 17. Only three other Horizon League men's basketball programs earned a GSR of 100. Evansville and Indiana State were the only other men's basketball teams in the state of Indiana to record a 100.
3s PLEASE: The 'Dons have found considerable success beyond the arc over the last few years, finishing in the top 15 in the nation in 3-pointers per game in four of the last five seasons.
FROM WAY "DON"TOWN: Since the start of the 2014-15 season, the 'Dons are 8th in the nation in total made 3-pointers (1,900).
SO MANY POINTS: The 'Dons have been in the top 35 in the nation in points per game in five of the last seven seasons.
HOME COOKING: The Mastodons have attained an overall home record of 148-53 in Fort Wayne since 2006-07. The 'Dons are 91-30 in home games played at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum and 57-23 in home games played on campus at the Hilliard Gates Sports Center.
BENFORD REBOUNDING NUMBERS: Cameron Benford's offensive rebound percentage last season of 12.9 percent ranked second in the Summit League and 49th in the nation. The stat calculates the percentage of possible offensive rebounds a player grabs.