Memphis Basketball Notes Vs. UCF

Feb. 12, 2013

UCF (17-6, 7-2) at Memphis (20-3, 9-0)
FedExForum (Memphis, Tenn.)
Wed., February 13, 2013 - 7 pm (CT)


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Tigers On TV/Radio/Web
Television: CBS Sports Network/Comcast digital channel 222 (Dave Ryan, play-by-play; Pete Gillen, analyst; Gary Parrish, sideline reporter)

Radio: WREC 600 AM (Dave Woloshin, play-by-play; Matt Dillon, color analyst; Forrest Goodman, studio host)



  • Memphis (20-3, 9-0 C-USA) returns home to FedExForum Wednesday, Feb. 13 for a Conference USA showdown with UCF (17-6, 7-2 C-USA). The game, scheduled for a 7 p.m. (CT) start, is slated for a CBS Sports Network (Comcast digital channel 222) telecast.
  • The Tigers made a return to the national polls this week. Memphis jumped to the No. 22 spot in the Associated Press poll and is No. 25 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll.
  • The Tigers bounced back after their Dec. 15 setback to No. 6/6 Louisville with 14-consecutive wins over Lipscomb 62-56 Dec. 20, Oral Roberts 72-57 Dec. 28, Loyola, Md., 78-64 Dec. 30, Tennessee 85-80 Jan. 4, East Carolina 67-54 Jan. 9, UAB 69-53 Jan. 12, Rice 77-51 Jan. 16, Harvard 60-50 Jan. 19, Tulane 71-60 Jan. 22, Marshall 73-72 Jan. 26, East Carolina 75-68 Jan. 30, Tulsa 94-64 Feb. 2, SMU 60-52 Feb. 6 and Southern Miss 89-76 Feb. 9.
  • Prior to the Dec. 15 loss, Memphis had won four straight with victories over Northern Iowa 52-47 Nov. 24, UT Martin 93-65 Nov. 29, Ohio 84-58 Dec. 5 and Austin Peay 83-65 Dec. 8.
  • UCF has won six of its last seven games, including road contests at Houston and Tulane.
  • The Knights are 4-3 in road games this season, with two of the three setbacks being narrow losses in C-USA play at East Carolina 88-85 in overtime Jan. 12 and 75-71 at Marshall Feb. 2.
  • UCF returns four starters and seven letterwinners from last year's 22-11 squad.


  • The Tigers take to the road Saturday, Feb. 16 when they travel to Huntington, W.Va., for a Conference USA clash with Marshall. The contest, set for a 7 p.m. (CT) start, is slated for a CBS Sports Network (CBS SN) telecast.
  • The Knights continue their two-game road swing at UTEP Saturday, Feb. 16. The game is scheduled for an 8 p.m. (CT) tip.


  • UCF posted a 22-11 overall record and a 10-6 Conference USA mark.
  • The Knights finished in a third-place tie in the C-USA regular-season standings. UCF earned the C-USA Tournament's No. 4 seed.
  • UCF advanced to the Conference USA Tournament semifinal round, before falling to top-seed Memphis 83-52.
  • The Knights received a National Invitation Tournament (NIT) bid and dropped an 81-56 first-round decision to Drexel.


  • UCF brings a 17-6 overall record and a 7-2 league mark into Wednesday's Conference USA match-up.
  • The Knights have won six of their last seven contests.
  • UCF is 4-3 on the road this year, including a 2-2 road record in C-USA play.
  • Four of the Knights' five starters average double figures, and they are Keith Clanton (16.0 ppg), Isaiah Sykes (15.7 ppg), Calvin Newell (11.6 ppg) and Tristan Spurlock (11.0 ppg).
  • Keith Clanton, the 2012-13 preseason C-USA Player of the Year, is UCF's top rebounder at 9.2 boards per game (third in C-USA). Sykes is second at 7.1 rpg.
  • Sykes, who is the only player in the nation with two or more triple-doubles this season, leads the Knights with 107 total assists (4.7 apg; fifth in C-USA).
  • Kasey Wilson (50 percent), Matt Williams (41.7) and Sykes (37.5) all shoot over 37 percent from the three-point line.
  • UCF is shooting 47.2 percent from the floor, 36.8 percent from the three-point line and 64.7 percent from the charity stripe.
  • The Knights are out-rebounding their opponents by an average margin of +3.7 boards per game (36.9-33.2).
  • Four UCF starters -- Clanton (35.7), Sykes (34.6), Spurlock (33.1) and Newell (32.1) -- average over 30 minutes played per game.
The Last Meeting
UCF (Semifinals)52
March 9, 2012
Memphis Cruises to 83-52 Victory over UCF to Reach C-USA Championship Game
Wesley Witherspoon scored a game-high 15 points to lead Memphis past UCF, 83-52, in the semifinals of the Conference USA Tournament on Friday evening at FedExForum.


  • That's what the Tigers hope to do Wednesday in their match-up with UCF.
  • A Memphis win would give the Tigers a three-game lead in the race for the C-USA regular season crown.
  • A Knights' victory would pull them to within one game of the Tigers in the league's regular-season title run.


  • Wednesday's contest could get offensive -- as in scoring points.
  • Memphis and UCF both rank in the top-half of Conference USA in four offensive categories:
UofM/Rank Statistic UCF/Rank
74.3/3rd Score Offense 71.5/6th
47.4/2nd FG Pct. 47.2/3rd
36.1/5th 3P FG Pct. 36.8/3rd
16.1/3rd Assists 14.3/6th


  • Wednesday's C-USA match-up could be won above the rim in terms of rebounding the ball and blocking shots.
  • Memphis and UCF both rank in the top-four of Conference USA in rebound margin and blocked shots:
UofM/Rank Statistic UCF/Rank
+5.0/3rd Rebound Margin +3.7/4th
6.7/1st Blocked Shots 4.7/2nd


  • Wednesday's Memphis-UCF encounter features individual match-ups ranked in the top-six of five statistical categories:
Statistic UofM Player/Rank UCF Player/Rank
FG Pct. Black/1st (.606) Clanton/3rd (.589)
Assists Jackson/6th (4.6) Sykes/5th (4.7)
3P Pct. Jackson/2nd (.482) Wilson/1st (.500)
Steals Johnson/3rd (1.8) Sykes/1st (.20)
Blocks Stephens/1st (2.3) Clanton/2nd (2.1)


  • When Josh Pastner hit the 20-win plateau in 2011-12, he became the fourth head coach in Tigers hoops history to post 20-win campaigns in each of his first three years at the helm, joining Wayne Yates (1975-77), Larry Finch (1987-89) and John Calipari (2001-03) in that group.
  • Well, that list is now trimmed to only two head coaches to have 20-win seasons in each of his first four years, and Pastner became one of those two after the Tigers' 89-76 victory at Southern Miss Feb. 9.
  • Pastner and Calipari are the only two head coaches in Memphis basketball history to record 20 wins in each of his first four seasons, and the following shows that:
Head Coach/1st 4 Years Records
Josh Pastner/2010-13 24-10 25-10 26-9 20-3
John Calipari/2001-04 21-15 27-9 23-7 22-8


  • With its 89-76 victory over Southern Miss Feb. 9, Memphis recorded another 20-win season. The Tigers current overall record is 20-3.
  • This year's 20-win season is the Tigers' school-record, 13th-consecutive 20-win campaign.
  • The following shows the top-five longest streaks of 20-win seasons in Tigers history:
Consec. 20-Win Seasons Yrs.
13 2001-13
8 1982-89
3 1975-77
2 4 Different Spans


  • Of course, head coach Josh Pastner will pass on credit to the current players, former players, current assistant coaches, former head coaches and, yes, even Tiger Nation.
  • But, the fact is Pastner is the winningest head coach in Tigers hoops history for the first four years.
  • After the 2011-12 campaign, Pastner had 75 wins, the most victories by a Tigers head coach in his first three years.
  • The following shows the head coaches' win totals for their first four seasons since 1949:
Head Coach First 3 Years Wins Total
Josh Pastner** 2010-13 95
John Calipari 2001-04 93
Larry Finch 1987-90 85
Gene Bartow 1971-74 82
Wayne Yates 1975-78 80
Bob Vanatta 1957-60 74
Dana Kirk 1980-83 73
Eugene Lambert 1952-55


Dean Ehiers 1963-66 53
Moe Iba 1967-70 37
**Pastner's fourth season still in progress


  • With their next league win, the Tigers will post their 15th double-digit winning season in Conference USA. It will also be Memphis' eighth-consecutive season in which it had double-figure victories in C-USA action.
  • In 2011-12, Memphis recorded its 14th season of double-digit victories in C-USA play with a 13-3 league record.
  • Before the shift in C-USA prior to the 2005-06 campaign, the Tigers were tied for the second-most, double-digit conference win seasons with seven (at the time tied with Charlotte).
  • The following lists the top-five teams in C-USA history with double-digit league win seasons:
No. of C-USA Seasons
with Double-Digit League Wins
1. Memphis 14
2. UAB 10
3. Cincinnati 9
4. Charlotte 7
5. Tulsa/UTEP/Louisville 4


  • Since moving to FedExForum in 2004-05, Memphis has turned its homecourt into one of toughest arenas for opponents to play, and that is seen in the Tigers' 158-18 overall record.
  • But, it is even tougher for Conference USA foes since conference realignment in 2005-06.
  • Memphis has an incredible 71-3 record (.959 winning percentage) at FedExForum versus C-USA opponents (regular season and conference tournament) since 2005-06.
  • The following shows the nation's top-10 conference homecourt records since 2005-06 (regular season and conference tournament; credit to Bryan McEldowney for compiling this list and Travis Chell for its updates this season):
Best Homecourt Records in Conference Play Only
(Reg. Season & Tourney) Since 2005-06 
1. Gonzaga 56-2 (.966)
2. Memphis 71-3 (.959)
3. Kansas 58-4 (.935)
4. Xavier 55-5 (.917)
5. Belmont 65-7 (.903)
Butler 65-7 (.903)
7. Utah State 53-7 (.883)
8. BYU 55-7 (.877)
9. Wisconsin 58-9 (.866)
10. Ohio State 57-9 (.864)


  • He's wowed Tigers fans with his high-flying acrobatics during his career.
  • His dunks have been in ESPN's SportsCenter Top-10 five times in 2012-13.
  • And he was Intersport's Dunks of the Year winner in 2011-12.
  • And senior D.J. Stephens is approaching another milestone for dunks. The 6-foot-5 forward currently has 98 career slams and needs two more to reach 100.
  • The following is a year-by-year breakdown of Stephens' dunks:
Senior 40
Junior 19
Sophomore 27
Freshman 12


  • After leading C-USA in blocks a year ago (5.6 bpg), Memphis began 2012-13 averaging only 3.9 blocks in the first seven games (27 total blocks).
  • Well, the Tigers have picked up their intensity on the defensive end in the last 16 games with 126 total blocks (7.9 bpg).
  • • In each of the last 16 games, Memphis had no fewer than four blocks.



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