Memphis Basketball Notes
Go Tigers!
Go Tigers!

Go Tigers!

Feb. 4, 2011

Complete Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Tigers On TV/Radio/Web
Television: ESPN/Comcast Channel 24 or digital channel 23 (Brad Nessler, play-by-play; Jimmy Dykes, color analyst)
Radio: WREC 600 AM (Dave Woloshin, play-by-play; Matt Dillon, color analyst; Forrest Goodman, studio host)

The University of Memphis squad (16-6, 5-3 C-USA) travels to Spokane, Wash., on Saturday, Feb. 5 to meet Gonzaga (15-8, 5-3 WCC) in a non-league encounter. Game time is 3 p.m. (CT) at Spokane Arena.

The Memphis-Gonzaga match-up is slated to air on ESPN (Memphis Comcast channel 24 and digital channel 23).

Memphis opened February with a 68-65 Conference USA setback to Tulsa at FedExForum. It was only the second C-USA setback for the Tigers at home since 2005-06 (42-2 record).

The Tigers closed the January portion of their Conference USA schedule with a 5-2 mark. Memphis was 3-0 at FedExForum with victories over East Carolina 61-58 Jan. 8, Marshall 77-61 Jan. 15 and UCF 77-61 Jan. 26. On the road in league play, the Tigers went 2-2 in January, posting wins at Southern Miss 76-75 Jan. 19 and UAB 76-73 (ot) Jan. 22 and dropping decisions at SMU 64-58 Jan. 12 and Marshall 85-70 Jan. 29.

After closing a five-game homestand over the holidays, Memphis played its first road game of the season Jan. 5 at Tennessee. The Tigers fell to the Volunteers 104-84. In the five-game homestand, Memphis posted a 4-1 record with wins over Austin Peay Dec. 16, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Dec. 20, Lipscomb Dec. 30 and Tennessee State Jan. 2 and a loss to No. 10/9 Georgetown Dec. 23.

Gonzaga enters Saturday's showdown on a two-game winning streak after victories over San Diego Jan. 29 and Portland Feb. 3. Prior to that, the Bulldogs dropped three-straight West Coast Conference games to Santa Clara, San Francisco and Saint Mary's.

Gonzaga brings a 15-8 overall record into Saturday's game. The Bulldogs are 5-3 in West Coast Conference (WCC) play. Gonzaga enters Saturday's showdown on a two-game winning streak after victories over San Diego Jan. 29 and Portland Feb. 3. Prior to that, the Bulldogs dropped three-straight West Coast Conference games to Santa Clara, San Francisco and Saint Mary's.

Senior Steven Gray leads three Bulldogs averaging double figures at 15.0 ppg. Robert Sacre (13.7 ppg) and Elias Harris (12.0 ppg) are also averaging double digits for Gonzaga. Sacre leads the Bulldogs on the glass with a 6.9 rebounding average, followed by Harris at 5.5 rpg.

Gray is the team's top threat from the arc, hitting 40.5 percent of his three-point attempts. Gray is also tops on the squad with 90 assists and 38 steals. Sacre has a team-best 43 blocked shots.

The Bulldogs are shooting 48.7 percent from the field, 38.6 percent from the three-point arc and 74.2 percent from the charity stripe. Gonzaga is out-rebounding its opponents by an average margin of +6.6 boards per game (37.3-30.7).

Of course, Saturday is only the second time that Josh Pastner and Mark Few are matching wits as head coaches of their respective teams. Last year, Few's Bulldogs posted a 66-58 win over Pastner's Tigers.

But, prior to last year, Pastner and Few were foes in two games. Pastner was on the other bench at Arizona when the Wildcats faced Few's Bulldogs in 2000-01 and 2002-03. Arizona won both meetings (2-0 record).

The Wildcats defeated Gonzaga 101-87 in the 2000-01 regular season (Pastner was an undergraduate assistant coach). The next meeting came in the 2003 NCAA Tournament, and that Arizona 96-95 double overtime win became a classic in NCAA Tournament lore (Pastner was a full-time assistant).

The Tigers have an all-time record of 13-8 (.619 winning percentage) versus West Coast Conference (WCC) schools. Memphis has played Gonzaga (4-2), Pepperdine (6-1), Portland (0-3), San Francisco (2-0), St. Mary's (1-0) and Santa Clara (0-2). The Tigers have never met Loyola-Marymount and San Diego.

The last time Memphis played a West Coast Conference school was last season (2009-10). The Tigers fell to Gonzaga 66-58 on Feb. 6, 2010, at FedExForum.

Saturday's match-up pits two of the winningest programs since the 2000-01 campaign. On the list of winningest NCAA Division programs since 2000-01, Memphis is third with 307 wins and Gonzaga is fourth with 304 victories (see box on page 7).

Both schools are also in the top 10 for most victories since the 2005-06 season. Memphis tops that list with 177 victories, while Gonzaga is 10th with 147 wins.

With their success this century, the Memphis and Gonzaga programs joined an elite group in college basketball earlier this season. Both the Tigers and Bulldogs joined the 21st century 300-wins club in 2010-11.

Memphis earned its 300th win of the 21st century Dec. 20 with a 68-63 victory over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at FedExForum. Then, on Jan. 8, 2011, Gonzaga became the fourth NCAA Division I school to reach 300 wins since 2000-01 with a 74-61 home victory over Portland.

The only other two programs with 300 wins since 2000-01 are Duke and Kansas. Syracuse is fifth with 299 wins.

Despite the over 2,000 miles between the two schools, Memphis and Gonzaga share a couple of things in common with their respective basketball programs, and the following details that:

• The Tigers and Bulldogs are two of only four programs in NCAA Division I history to have won at least four-straight outright league regular season and tournament titles in the same season. Memphis made it four-straight sweeps of the Conference USA regular season and tournament crowns from 2006-09, while Gonzaga turned the same trick in the West Coast Conference from 2004-07. The other two schools to accomplish the feat were N.C. State (1947-51) and UMass (1992-96).

• Both Memphis and Gonzaga had their conference win streaks come to a halt in 2009-10. The Tigers had their 64-game overall and 52-game regular season league win streaks ended with a Jan. 20, 2010, setback to UTEP. Both streaks are NCAA records. On Jan. 30, 2010, the Bulldogs saw their 27-game West Coast Conference win streak end with a loss at San Francisco.

For the first time since the first meeting between the two programs in 1998, Memphis and Gonzaga both are unranked entering their match-up. The 1998 game was the second contest of the season for both teams, and it was the opening-round encounter of the Chase Preseason NIT. Gonzaga won that game 88-73 in Memphis.

Since that first encounter, one or both of the programs have been ranked entering their match-ups. The following shows the rankings (AP/coaches) and results of the past meetings:

Year  UofM Rank GU Rank Result
2010-11 NR/NR NR/NR  --
2009-10 NR/NR 17/13 GU, 66-58
2008-09 14/15 18/18 UM, 68-50 
2007-08 1/1 ARV/ARV UM, 81-73
2006-07 8/9 NR/NR UM, 78-77 
2005-06 4/4 8/9 UM, 83-72 
1998-99 NR/NR  NR/NR GU, 88-73

For the only the third time since the late 1980s, Memphis plays a collegiate basketball game in the state of Washington. Overall, Saturday's game is the fourth trip to Washington in the program's history.

The last time a Tiger squad ventured to the state of Washington was two years ago when Memphis faced Gonzaga on Feb. 7, 2009. The Tigers recorded a 68-50 over the Bulldogs in that contest.

Prior to its 2007 visit to Spokane, the previous time Memphis played in Washington state came on Dec. 17, 1988. The Tigers played at the University of Washington in Seattle, and dropped a narrow 89-88 decision to the Huskies.

For more notes on the Memphis-Tulsa match-up, click on issuu and pdf links at the top of the page.



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