KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The UMKC men’s basketball team (0-6) will look to pick up its first win of the season when it welcomes in Avila (0-5) to Municipal Auditorium on Saturday Nov. 23, 2018 at 2 p.m. CT.
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About the Roos
The Roos return four starters from last year’s squad in senior Aleer Leek, juniors Xavier Bishop and Jordan Giles and sophomore Brandon McKissic, while Broderick Robinson is the lone departing starter. UMKC will also welcome back Marco Smith, Marvin Nesbitt, Jr., Steve Dulley and Tony Jackson from last season’s team. Redshirts Danny Dixon, Kaleb Roy and Brandon Suggs will each see their first action in the Blue & Gold, as will incoming juniors Rob Whitfield and Jamel Allen.
Early on this season, Bishop tops the Roos at 17.7 points, while McKissic is at 11.0 and Whitfield is at 10.5. On the glass, Allen (5.0) and Dixon (4.8) lead the squad.
Avila enters the game with an 0-5 mark on the season. To date, the Eagles have fallen to Benedictine, Baker, Ottawa, McPherson and Bethel.
Last Time Out
In the home opener of the 2018-19 season, the UMKC men's basketball team lost tonight to Drake University (3-1) by a 66-63 score at Municipal Auditorium. Junior guard Xavier Bishop rattled off his third-straight 20-point effort with 27 points on 10-of-18 shooting. The Roos had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but a 35-foot shot at the buzzer by Brandon Kissic went wide.
The Roos are 1-0 against the Eagles after an 89-58 victory last season.
Brandon McKissic is in his second season in the Blue & Gold and is currently averaging 11.0 points on the season. On the glass, the Ferguson, Mo., native is at 4.0 rebounds, while also dishing out 1.5 assists and notching 1.8 steals.
In 2017-18, the Roos finished 10-22 overall and 5-9 in WAC play. On the season, UMKC picked up nonconference DI wins over UT Martin, Manhattan and USC Upstate, while the WAC wins came at home to CSU Bakersfield, Seattle U, Utah Valley and Chicago State and a road victory over UTRGV.
The Roos were picked to finish seventh in the WAC Preseason poll by both the coaches and the media, while New Mexico State and Grand Canyon were chosen first and second in both polls.
Xavier Bishop was named to the Preseason All-WAC Second Team by both the conference’s head coaches and the media. Last season, Bishop started 28 games for the Roos, leading the team at 11.6 points and 3.3 assists, while adding 2.9 rebounds and nearly a steal a game. Three times he topped the 20-point mark, including a career-high 25 points at Incarnate Word on Dec. 16.
Head Coach Kareem Richardson
Kareem Richardson enters his sixth season at the helm of the UMKC program in 2018-19 and has led the Roos to unprecedented success during his tenure. He was named the head coach at UMKC on March 19, 2013, becoming the sixth in the Division I era at UMKC. Richardson guided the 2016-17 UMKC squad to the second-most victories in a season (18) in school history. The Roos were selected for a postseason tournament for the first time in the program's 30-year Division I history, which included a victory over Green Bay in the opening round of the College Basketball Invitational. In 2016-17, UMKC set program records for points (2,691), field goals (911), rebounds (1,213), defensive rebounds (860), 3-pointers (315) and free throws (554). The Roos finished second in team history in assists (451) and third in steals (236). UMKC posted the longest winning streak for the program in 12 years from Jan. 31 – Feb. 18, 2017. The Roos got off to the program's best start in 15 years and advanced to the semifinals of the WAC Tournament for the third straight year.
The Blue & Gold will be back in action again on Wednesday when they head to Brookings, S.D., to take on South Dakota State at 7 p.m. CT.
– UMKC –