March Madness Begins Friday for the Chanticleers
March 19, 2014
CONWAY - The Coastal Carolina University men's basketball team will take part in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 21 years beginning Friday night at 9:25 p.m. The Chanticleers will take on the #3/4 Virginia Cavaliers inside PNC Arena in Raleigh, N.C. The game will be broadcast live on TBS. Coastal is looking for its first NCAA Tournament victory in program history while head coach Cliff Ellis is leading his fourth different program to the "Big Dance." The Chants are 2-3 against members of the ACC under coach Ellis' watch. CCU is 2-1 against Clemson, 0-1 against Duke and 0-1 against Florida State.
Coastal Carolina (21-12, 11-5 Big South) vs. #3/4 Virginia (28-6, 16-2 ACC)
Friday, March 21 | 9:25 p.m. | Raleigh, N.C. | PNC Arena (20,000)
CCU in the NCAA Tournament
Coastal is 0-2 in NCAA Tournament appearances.
The Chants advanced to both the 1991 and 1993 NCAA Tournaments.
Coastal fell to the number two seed Indiana in the 1991 Southeast Region in Louisville, Ky. 79-69.
CCU trailed by 16 at the half but 25 points from Brian Penny helped the Chants pull to within three with 2:55 left in the game. The Hoosiers went on to pull away thanks to clutch free throws down the stretch.
Coastal fell to the number one seed in the West Region, Michigan, 84-53 in the 1993 Tournament.
Michigan featured the "Fab Five" and dominated the game but CCU's Mohammed Acha was named the CBS/Chevrolet Player of the Game.
Coach Ellis in the NCAA Tournament
Head coach Cliff Ellis has been to the NCAA Tournament eight previous times.
He took South Alabama in 1979 and 1980, Clemson in 1987, 1989 and 1990 and Auburn in 1999, 2000 and 2003.
Ellis' career record in NCAA Tournament play is 8-8.
He has advanced to the "Sweet 16" with both Clemson and Auburn (twice). He lost his three "Sweet 16" games by a combined 11 points.
His teams have entered as a No. 1, No. 4, No. 5, No. 6, No. 7, No. 9 (2x) and No. 10 seed.
Ellis' last trip to the Tournament was in 2003. His Auburn Tigers entered as a No. 10 seed and won their first round game in overtime, 65-63, over the No. 7 seed St. Joseph's. They won the second round game, 68-62, over the No. 2 seed Wake Forest before falling in the "Sweet 16" to No. 3 seed and eventual national champion Syracuse, 79-78.
Coastal Carolina Versus Virginia
Coastal Carolina and Virginia have met twice on the basketball court.
Virginia holds the series lead at 2-0.
The Cavaliers won the first meeting between the two squads in 2001, 117-78. UVA was ranked #25 at the time.
The most recent meeting was in 2003, UVA won 89-74.
Both meetings took place in Charlottesville, Va.
Coach Ellis Versus Virginia
Coastal Carolina head coach Cliff Ellis has faced the Cavaliers 23 times on the hardwood.
22 of the 23 meetings came when coach Ellis was the head coach at Clemson University.
Ellis holds a career 8-15 record against UVA.
His only other meeting with Virginia outside of Clemson came during the 2001-02 season at Auburn. UVA won 77-72 at the Arby's Hardwood Classic in Birmingham, Ala.
Coach Ellis in Elite Company
Head coach Cliff Ellis became just the 10th coach in NCAA Division I history to lead four different programs in the NCAA Tournament (South Alabama, Clemson, Auburn and Coastal Carolina).
Lon Kruger (Kansas State, Florida, Illinois, UNLV and Oklahoma State)
John Beilein (Canisius, Richmond, West Virginia and Michigan)
Lefty Driesell (Davidson, Maryland, James Madison and Georgia State)
Larry Eustachy (Utah State, Iowa State, Southern Mississippi and Colorado State)
Jim Harrick (Pepperdine, UCLA, Rhode Island and Georgia)
Tom Penders (Rhode Island, Texas, George Washington and Houston)
Rick Pitino (Boston University, Providence, Kentucky and Louisville)
Tubby Smith (Tulsa, Georgia, Kentucky and Minnesota)
Eddie Sutton (Creighton, Arkansas, Kentucky and Oklahoma State)
Coastal currently leads the Big South and is 28th in the NCAA in field goal percentage defense (40.0).
CCU has held opponents at or below 40.0 percent shooting 17 times this season and is 16-1 in those contests.
Gillis named All-Big South Second Team
Gillis, a junior, earned his first all-conference selection.
During the regular season, he ranked 11th in the conference in scoring (14.5 ppg.), third in free throw percentage (.854), fourth in steals (1.7 spg.) and 10th in assists (3.0 apg.).
He is currently riding a 20-game double-digit scoring streak dating back to Jan. 3. His game-high 21 points against Charleston Southern University helped clinch the Chanticleers' first Big South Conference South Division Title.
Wilson named All-Big South Honorable Mention and All-Freshman Team
Wilson, a freshman, had a phenomenal rookie campaign.
He led the Chants in scoring while breaking Coastal Carolina Hall of Fame member Jack Leasure's freshman scoring record by more than 70 points during the regular season. He also broke the school's freshman field goals made record which stood for 29 years with 185 made baskets. The previous record was held by William Calvin who made 156 shots during the 1984-85 season.
Wilson finished the regular season ranked among the top-10 freshmen scorers in the country and ninth overall in the Big South (16.4 ppg.)
MVP! MVP! MVP!
Junior Warren Gillis became just the second Coastal Carolina University men's basketball player to be named the Big South Tournament's Most Valuable Player after his stellar performance during the 2014 VisitMyrtleBeach.com Big South Conference Tournament.
Gillis joined Big South Hall of Fame member Tony Dunkin as the only two Chanticleers to earn the honor. Dunkin was named Tournament MVP in 1991 and 1993. Gillis averaged 17.3 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game.
Junior Josh Cameron was named to the All-Tournament team as well after averaging 18.7 points per game.
Climbing the Coaching Ranks
Head coach Cliff Ellis passed legendary head coach John Wooden for career wins with CCU's 63-61 victory over Charleston Southern.
Wooden won 664 games over 29 seasons, 27 of which were at UCLA where he won 10 NCAA Championships.
Ellis is now tied for 27th all-time in career victories after CCU's win over Winthrop.
Ellis' 668 wins tie him with former Maryland head coach Gary Williams for 27th overall.