WKU MBB Enters Homestand Against Marshall on Saturday

With five of its last seven games at home, WKU Hilltopper Basketball enters a crucial stretch by hosting Marshall at 5 p.m. CT Saturday at E.A. Diddle Arena. The game will be a White Out, with all fans encouraged to wear white to the game.

The Hilltoppers (12-12, 6-5 Conference USA) most recently won 64-47 at Southern Miss on Feb. 4. WKU will also honor its 1985-86 and ‘86-87 teams at halftime against Marshall in a 30-year anniversary celebration.

Marshall (13-11, 6-5) has lost five of its last seven games and three straight overall, but the Thundering Herd beat WKU 94-80 on Jan. 21 in Huntington, W.Va. The Hilltoppers lead the all-time series against Marshall 13-9, including 7-1 at home, but have dropped three straight.

WKU head coach Rick Stansbury is 0-1 vs. the Herd.


Marshall (13-11, 6-5 C-USA) at WKU (12-12, 6-5 C-USA)
February 11, 2017 | 5 p.m. (CT)
Bowling Green, Ky. | E.A. Diddle Arena (7,326)


Listen: Hilltopper IMG Sports Network (WKLX 100.7 FM flagship), TuneIn Radio (free) (Randy Lee, pxp | Hal Schmitt, analysis)
Watch: Fox College Sports, WKU PBS in Bowling Green, WBNA in Louisville (radio simulcast)
Live Stats: Gametracker


• Justin Johnson needs just six points this season to become the 49th player in Hilltopper Basketball history to score 1,000 career points.
• WKU has made at least one 3-pointer in 930 consecutive games, dating back to March 15, 1987. The 3-point shot was instituted prior to the 1986-87 season.
• WKU has had an even or better assist-to-turnover ratio in 10 of its last 14 games, including eight of the last 10. The Hilltoppers accomplished that feat just twice in their first 10 games this season.
• WKU has made more free throws (345) than its opponents have attempted (332). The Hilltoppers’ 31 makes vs. North Carolina A&T were their most since netting 33 vs. Ball State on Feb. 22, 2003.
• Junior Justin Johnson has made 20 of 44 shots (.455) from 3-point range this year after netting just one 3-pointer over his first two seasons. His 55.9 percent career field goal shooting percentage would currently rank fifth in WKU history, and his 57.5 shooting percentage in league play leads C-USA. Johnson is averaging 18.4 points, 11.2 rebounds and 2.4 assists over his last five games, and shooting 60.3 percent in his last eight.
• Graduate senior Pancake Thomas has recorded 46 total assists with just 18 turnovers over his last 14 games. He had 17 assists and 14 turnovers across his first 10 games as a Hilltoppers. In Conference USA play, Thomas is tied for third in the league with a 2.5-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio.
• In 12 games since the holiday break, Pancake Thomas is averaging 15.1 points per game while shooting 43.4 percent from the field and 42.5 percent from 3-point range.
• Graduate senior Que Johnson shot 67.3 percent from the free-throw line with 17 assists and 29 turnovers in nonconference play. He’s shooting 82.1 percent from the stripe with 30 assists and 18 turnovers in C-USA.
• In WKU’s 11 conference games, senior forward Anton Waters is shooting 59.6 percent from the field with seven assists and eight turnovers. He shot 48.3 percent with two assists and 17 turnovers in nonconference play.
• Justin Johnson and graduate transfer seniors Que Johnson, Pancake Thomas and Junior Lomomba have each started every game this season. WKU hasn’t had at least four players start every game in a season since the 2002-03 campaign.
• Que Johnson, Pancake Thomas, Junior Lomomba and Ben Lawson have all reached the 100th career game milestone this season. Lawson played his 100th game as a Hilltopper against UTSA on Jan. 28, 2017.
• Pancake Thomas and Que Johnson have each reached 1,000 career points this season. Thomas reached 1,000 across his time at New Mexico, Hartford and WKU vs. UTEP on Jan. 26, 2017. Que Johnson reached 1,000 points across his time at WKU and Washington State vs. Ohio on Dec. 21, 2016.
• Ben Lawson ranks fourth in WKU history with 166 career blocked shots. Lawson joins Wilborn, Jeremy Evans and Chris Marcus as Hilltoppers with at least 50 blocks in multiple seasons.


White Out: All fans are encouraged to wear white!
Phone Card Wallet Giveaway: First 500 students receive a WKU phone card wallet.


WKU Ticket Office: Online at WKUTickets.com, in person at E.A. Diddle Arena, via phone at 1-800-5-BIG Red or 745-5222 locally.


Justin Johnson scored 21 points and led six players in double figures for the Hilltoppers, but it would not be enough as Western Kentucky fell to Marshall by a score of 94-80 in Huntington, W.Va. Jon Elmore scored 27 points, Stevie Browning added 23 as Marshall matched a program-best with 19 3-pointers.


WKU signee Mitchell Robinson was named a McDonald’s All American on Jan. 27, the first in program history. Robinson – a 7-foot, five-star center from Chalmette (La.) High School – is one of 24 players nationally selected for the prestigious all-star game, which brings together the top high school talent across the country and is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The final roster was announced live on ESPNU, with Robinson selected for the East squad. The McDonald’s All American Game is set for March 29 at the United Center in Chicago.

WKU has never had a McDonald’s All American in its storied basketball history. Robinson is the first McDonald’s All American from Conference USA since Memphis’ Shaq Goodwin in 2012. Robinson is also the sixth McDonald’s All American signed by WKU’s Rick Stansbury as a head coach, joining standouts Mario Austin, Renardo Sidney, Monta Ellis, Travis Outlaw and Jonathan Bender from Stansbury’s tenure at Mississippi State. Fellow WKU signees Josh Anderson and Taveion Hollingsworth were also nominated for the McDonald’s All American Game.

Robinson was also recently named one of 25 midseason candidates for the boys’ high school Naismith Trophy, as presented by the Atlanta Tipoff Club. At the end of January, Robinson was named one of 24 players for the Jordan Brand Classic, another star-studded all-star game that takes place April 14 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. Previous participants include LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul.


Despite a changing coaching staff and large roster turnover, the Hilltoppers turned in a stellar academic effort in the Fall 2016 semester with a team GPA of 3.18. Nine players finished the semester with a GPA of 3.0 or better – including five players with at least a 3.5 – and all players finished with at least a 2.5 GPA.


The 2016-17 WKU Basketball season is presented by Med Center Health. With The Medical Center at its core, Med Center Health has served Southcentral Kentucky for 90 years, and its system of care includes six acute care hospitals, a complete network of immediate to emergency services and services in dozens of specialties. Whether it is emergency treatment for heart attack victims or preventative programs to improve the health of the communities it serves, Med Center Health is committed to providing the highest level of care and service.

How to follow the Hilltoppers: For complete information on WKU Hilltopper Basketball, follow the team’s social media channels, @WKUBasketball on Twitter, @WKUBasketball on Instagram, and WKU Basketball on Facebook.


Zach Greenwell
Associate Director

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