Name: Presbyterian College
Location: Clinton, South Carolina
Where? About an hour northwest of Columbia, SC
Really? Yep. It wasn't PC when it was founded, though. Presbyterian College got its start as (surprise) Clinton College, but I can't seem to find a solid marker as to when they changed the name. I'm guessing that it was pretty early on in the life cycle.
It Seems Like It Should Be Newer Because They're New-ish To Division 1, Right? Correct. They started as an independent in 2007-08, and they've been in the Big South ever since.
Enrollment: 1,172 undergraduates.
WOAH. I know, right? That's smaller than Marquette's freshman class of 1,972. PC seems very proud that one-third of their student body participates in intercollegiate athletics, whereas I find that to be kind of weird.
Nickname: Blue Hose
Hose As In "Socks?" Of course. As these things tend to go, local newspaper writers nicknamed the football team "Blue Stockings" and "Blue Hose" because of the socks they wore back around the turn of the 20th century. It kind of stuck, and the student body officially adopted the nickname in the 1950s.
I Heard Something About A Statue? At the entrance to their football stadium, Presbyterian has a 15 foot bronze statue of their mascot. He's nicknamed Cyrus, and it's believed to be the largest bronze statue of a Scotsman on the planet.
Notable Alumni: Jim Samples, president of the HGTV television network; George L. Mabry, Jr., US Army Major General and Medal of Honor recipient; Kimberly Nicole Hampton, US Army Captain and first female US military pilot to be killed by hostile fire.
That Turned Into A Bummer: Yeah. They've got a bunch of other alumni listed on their Wikipedia page, but I don't know if "president of Hastings College" and "founder of Georgia Magazine" really catches the eye.
Last Season: 10-22, with a 6-12 record in the Big South and a first round exit in the Big South tournament.
This Season: 5-7, but just 2-7 against Division 1 opponents.
Current KenPom Ranking: #337
KenPom Projection: 10-19, with a 5-13 record in the Big South.
Don't Confuse A Bad Ranking With Being Harmless: While the Blue Hose are the owners of the ninth least efficient offense in the country, according to KenPom, they do force turnovers like crazy. Just over 20% of their opponent's possessions end in a turnover, the 89th best mark in the country. Combine that with Marquette's penchant for turning it over (19.1% Turnover Rate on offense, #245 in the country), and this has "potential disaster" written all over it.
Of course, PC (22.1% Offensive Turnover Rate) turns it over more than they force it out of their opponents' hands, so maybe everything will work out okay.
Points: DeSean Murray, 20.8 ppg
Rebounds: DeSean Murray, 7.2 ppg
Assists: Darius Moore, 2.4 apg
Head Coach: Gregg Nibert, in his 27th season at PC. Unsurprisingly, with that kind of tenure, it's the only head coaching job that he's ever held, coming after stints as an assistant at Rice, Furman, and also Presbyterian. Nibert is 413-396 as a head coach, but just 78-180 as a Division 1 head coach.
All Time Series: Marquette is 2-0 against Presbyterian. The two previous contests came in consecutive seasons, with Marquette taking an 84-45 win in December 2008, as well as a 102-62 victory in December 2009.