Lumberjacks Continue To Garner National Attention
Feb. 5, 2014
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin men's basketball team achieved a program-best on Monday and now looks to continue their storied run under first-year head coach Brad Underwood on Thursday night.
The Lumberjacks (20-2, 9-0 SLC) picked up a pair of wins over Abilene Christian and Incarnate Word in Week 13 to help catapult SFA up to the third spot in CollegeInsider.com's Mid-Major Top 25 poll, its highest in program history in the polls 15 years of existence. The previous mark for the `Jacks was fifth, set last season prior to the National Invitational Tournament.
SFA also enters this week's conference games ranked eighth in the Mid-Major Madness Power 15 Poll and receiving one vote in the latest USA Today Coaches Poll for a third-straight week, a feat the 'Jacks accomplished last season during their title run for the first time since the 2007-08 campaign.
The `Jacks, who haven't lost since Nov. 23, have continued to sit atop the nation in several win streaks. SFA picked up its 28th consecutive home win on Saturday to retie No. 11 Duke and extended its overall win streak to 17-straight games, which ranks fourth in the nation, passing the previous mark of 16 set back in the 1971-72 season for second-most all-time. The program's all-time mark is 29-straight, set during the 1969-70 campaign.
Despite not playing on the road last week, the `Jacks also leads the nation with an eight-game win streak away from William R. Johnson Coliseum and 10 road wins overall.
Underwood continues to extend his first-year success with 20 wins, already the program's all-time winningest head coach in their first season at SFA. With the 74-58 victory at Northwestern State (Jan. 16), Underwood passed Glen Rose (1948) and John O. Stephens (1952), who both recorded 15 wins back in their respective first seasons.
One of 351 NCAA Division I men's basketball programs in the country, the `Jacks currently rank in the top 10 in both turnover margin (6th-5.5) and win percentage (6th-90.9). SFA also ranks 23rd in scoring defense (62.1), tied for 24th in scoring margin (12.5) and are 25th in assists per game (15.8). Rounding out the top 50, the `Jacks sit 32nd in assist-turnover ratio (1.38) and 48th in steals per game (7.7).
SFA will look to extend its current win streaks with two more home games in Week 14. The `Jacks will play Nicholls State on Thursday, Feb. 6, followed by McNeese State on Saturday, Feb. 8.