March 2, 2012
Memphis Game Notes vs Tulsa
Tigers On TV/Radio/Web
Television: CBS Sports/Comcast digital channel 3 (Spero Dedes , play-by-play; Bill Raftery, color analyst)
Radio: WREC 600 AM (Dave Woloshin, play-by-play; Matt Dillon, color analyst; Forrest Goodman, studio host)
SETTING THE SCENE
Memphis (22-8, 12-3 C-USA) closes its 2011-12 Conference USA season on the road Saturday, Mar. 3 at Tulsa (17-12, 10-5 C-USA). The C-USA clash, to be televised on CBS Sports (Comcast digital channel 3), is slated for an 11 a.m. (CT) start.
The Tigers appeared in the Also Receiving Votes category of both national polls this week (No. 35 AP, No. 37 coaches). Tulsa was not ranked in either national poll.
Memphis enters Saturday's encounter having won 16 of its last 19.
With their win over UCF Feb. 28, the Tigers clinched a share of the 2011-12 C-USA regular season crown.
The Tigers bounced back after their Feb. 18 loss to UTEP with three-consecutive victories over East Carolina 70-47, Marshall 87-67 and UCF 84-55.
Prior to the narrow 60-58 loss to UTEP, Memphis had won four straight with victories over Xavier 72-68, East Carolina 70-59, UAB 79-45 and Tulane 82-64.
Tulsa has won three of its last five, with narrow road setbacks at Southern Miss and UAB.
The Golden Hurricane have a 10-4 record at the Reynolds Center (6-1 in C-USA home games).
WHAT'S UP NEXT...
Memphis opens play in the Conference USA Tournament Thursday, Mar. 8 at FedExForum. The Tigers earned a first-round bye. Game time for Memphis' C-USA Tournament quarterfinal is 6:30 p.m. (CT) on Mar. 8.
Tulsa opens play in the Conference USA Tournament Thursday, Mar. 8 at FedExForum. The Golden Hurricane earned a first-round bye. Game time for Tulsa's C-USA Tournament quarterfinal will be announced later.
WHAT THE GOLDEN HURRICANE DID LAST YEAR
Tulsa posted a 19-13 overall record and an 11-5 Conference USA mark (tied for second in C-USA).
The Golden Hurricane defeated Rice in the C-USA Tournament quarterfinals, before falling to UTEP in the semifinal round.
Tulsa did not participate in any of college basketball's postseason tournaments.
SCOUTING THE GOLDEN HURRICANE
Tulsa enters Saturday's C-USA match-up with a 17-12 overall record and a 10-5 league mark.
The Golden Hurricane have won 10 of their last 13 games, including a seven-game C-USA win streak from Jan. 11-Feb. 4.
Tulsa's three setbacks in that stretch were single-digit road losses at UTEP (64-55), Southern Miss (77-69, ot) and UAB (68-64).
The trio of Jordan Clarkson (16.5 ppg), Scottie Haralson (11.0 ppg) and Steven Idlet (10.2 ppg) paces the Golden Hurricane offense.
Kodi Maduka is Tulsa's leading rebounder at 6.4 rpg, while D.J. Magley is second at 5.7 rpg.
Clarkson leads the team with 74 assists (2.6 apg), while Tim Peete has a team-high 30 steals.
Haralson (40 percent), Eric McClellan (38.6 percent), Clarkson (38 percent) and Peete (34.4 percent) all shoot over 34 percent from the arc for Tulsa.
The Golden Hurricane are shooting 45 percent from the field, 37.9 percent from the arc and 68.1 percent from the free throw line.
Tulsa is out-rebounding its opponents by an average margin of +6.3 boards per game (36.5-30.2).
DOWN TO TWO; TIGERS HAVE CLINCHED A SHARE OF TITLE
Conference USA is in its final weekend of regular season action, and two teams -- Memphis and Southern Miss -- are still in the running for the league crown and the tournament's No. 1 seed.
Entering last weekend's action (Feb. 25), eight teams were still in the title chase.
Memphis has already claimed a share of the Conference USA regular season title, the program's seventh C-USA regular season crown. Memphis won four-straight outright C-USA regular season titles from 2006-09 and tied for the crown in the 1995-96 and 2003-04 seasons.
The following shows teams remaining in the hunt for the C-USA Tournament top seed:
Team C-USA Rec. What's Left
Memphis 12-3 @TLS
Southern Miss 11-4 @MU
MEMPHIS LOOKING TO SET C-USA CLOSE-CALL HISTORY
If there is such a category in the Conference USA record book, the Tigers will be a part of it with a win or narrow loss (fewer than five points) at Tulsa Saturday.
Memphis' three C-USA losses to date all were fewer than five points (68-67 at UCF; 75-72 at Southern Miss; 60-58 home loss to UTEP).
Heading into Saturday, that makes Memphis the first C-USA regular season champ (outright or shared) with multiple losses (two or more) to have all its setbacks by five or fewer points.
C-USA Regular Season Champion
(Two or more losses)
Champ/C-USA Rec./Yr. Fewer 5 Total
Memphis/12-3/2011-12 3 6
Memphis/12-4/2003-04 2 22
Marquette/14-2/2002-03 1 10
Cincinnati/11-5/2000-01 3 26
Cincinnati/12-4/1998-99 3 15
Cincinnati/14-2/1997-98 1 10
Cincinnati/11-3/1995-96 2 10
Fewer 5 -- losses by five or fewer points
Total -- combined margin (total points) in all losses
DO YOU REMEMBER? ... PART 1
After they took over the No. 1 spot in both national polls in 2007-08, the Tigers' first foe was Tulsa in Tulsa, Okla., on Jan. 23, 2008.
Memphis moved to the top position in both national polls on Jan. 21, 2008, and then two days later, met the Golden Hurricane in the Reynolds Center. Memphis won that encounter 56-41.
DO YOU REMEMBER? ... PART 2
Well, it happened just three seasons ago, so it won't be hard to recall -- especially for Tiger Nation.
With only :04.5 left, it looked as if the Tigers' Conference USA win streaks would come to an end at Tulsa on Jan. 13, 2009.
The Golden Hurricane took a 54-53 lead on two Ben Uzoh free throws, but Memphis had one final chance.
Using the play called "Maryland," Antonio Anderson took the in-bounds pass from Willie Kemp near midcourt and streaked up the right side. Anderson charged toward the basket and double-clutched a layup over Jerome Jordan at the buzzer for the 55-54 victory.
The victory extended the Tigers' C-USA win streaks to 45 games overall (including postseason tournament) and 36 regular season games.
Memphis' league win streaks continued through January of 2010 when both were broken versus UTEP. The 64-game overall win streak tied an NCAA record, while the 52-game regular season win streak is an NCAA mark.
On the Memphis bench during that Jan. 13, 2009, game were Josh Pastner, then an assistant, and current seniors Preston Laird and Wesley Witherspoon (then freshmen).
TIGERS IN RECENT REGULAR SEASON FINALES
Memphis has an 8-2 record in its previous 10 regular season finales (home or road).
The Tigers have won their last six regular season finales (5-0 at home; 1-0 on road).
Memphis hosted Tulsa in its 2009-10 final regular season home game at FedExForum and posted a 75-53 victory over the Golden Hurricane.
TIGERS HOPING TO CHANGE TULSA VIBE
While they have won the last nine over the Golden Hurricane in Tulsa, the Tigers have come up on the short end of the stick in their last two visits to the city of Tulsa.
The last two Memphis trips to Tulsa, however, have been to the BOK Center downtown and not at the Reynolds Center.
Last year, the Tigers played at the BOK Center in the NCAA Tournament second round and dropped a narrow 77-75 decision to Arizona.
The Tigers also played at the BOK Center in the 2010 C-USA Tournament and fell to Houston 66-65 in the quarterfinal round.
TIGERS BOARD BATTLIN'
Since Conference USA play began, Memphis has done a better job on the glass. The Tigers have a +2.8 rebound margin in league action only (fifth in C-USA).
For the seventh time in the C-USA season, Memphis faces a foe that does a tremendous job on the boards.
Tulsa is second in the conference in rebound margin at +6.3 in overall games and second in C-USA games only at +5.6. Memphis is seventh in C-USA in rebound margin at +1.4 (overall games).
However, in five of their previous six match-ups with dominant rebounding teams in league play, the Tigers have held their own, and the following shows that:
Opponent Opp. Reb. Margin Reb. Margin
Going Into Gm In Gm
at Tulsa +6.3 ----
UCF +4.4 34-28, UM
at Marshall +7.6 34-31, MU
at Southern Miss +5.5 36-23, USM
Marshall +9.5 33-31, UM
at UCF +5.1 32-27, UM
Southern Miss +6.7 36-36, Tie
MEMPHIS IN CONFERENCE USA
The Tigers have an all-time record of 198-67 (.747 winning percentage) in C-USA play.
Memphis has posted double-digit league wins in 14 of its 17 seasons (includes 2011-12 season) in Conference USA, including a school-record and league-record tying 16 wins in 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09.
This season, the Tigers are currently in first place with a 12-3 record and have clinched a share of the C-USA regular season crown.
Memphis won its first outright C-USA regular season title in 2005-06, and followed that with outright regular season crowns in 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09.
Memphis also tied for the C-USA regular season crown in 2003-04 (12-4 record) and 1995-96 (11-3).
Memphis also won three National Division titles in 1997-98, 2001-02 and 2002-03, and captured two league White Division championships in 1995-96 and 1996-97.
PASTNER HAS THE "TRIFECTA 20"
With its 70-47 victory over East Carolina Feb. 22, Memphis recorded its 12th-consecutive 20-win campaign, and head coach Josh Pastner earned his third-consecutive 20-win ledger in as many seasons.
Pastner is only the fourth head coach in Memphis hoops history to have 20-win seasons in each of his first three years at the helm.
The other three coaches to do so were Wayne Yates, Larry Finch and John Calipari, and the following shows that:
Head Coach/1st 3 Years Records
Wayne Yates/1975-77 20-7, 21-9, 20-9
Larry Finch/1987-89 26-8, 20-12, 21-11
John Calipari/2001-03 21-15, 27-9, 23-7
Josh Pastner/2010-12 24-10, 25-10, 22-8
MOST WINS FIRST THREE YEARS
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, what's on the horizon is Pastner is close to becoming the winningest head coach in Tigers hoops history for the first three years.
After the 2010-11 campaign, Pastner had 49 wins, the most victories by a Tigers head coach in his first two years.
The following shows the head coaches' win totals for their first three seasons since 1949:
Head Coach First 3 Years Wins Total
Josh Pastner** 2010-12 71
John Calipari 2001-03 71
Larry Finch 1987-89 67
Gene Bartow 1971-73 63
Wayne Yates 1975-77 61
Bob Vanatta 1957-59 56
Dana Kirk 1980-82 50
Eugene Lambert 1952-54 50
Dean Ehlers 1963-65 43
McCoy Tarry 1949-51 40
Moe Iba 1967-69 31
**Pastner's third season still on-going
NO SOPHOMORE JINX
Tiger Nation is so happy Will Barton didn't suffer from a subpar season as a sophomore.
In fact, the 6-foot-6 guard has thrived in his second year, and his scoring numbers prove it.
The Baltimore, Md., native is the team's leading scorer at 18.3 ppg and is also Conference USA's leading scorer.
Barton moved into the top-five among top sophomore scorers in the program's history with his 18-point game versus UCF Feb. 28. The following lists the top-six sophomore scorers in Tigers history:
Player/Soph. Season Points
1. Elliot Perry/1988-89 620
2. Elliot Williams/2009-10 610
3. Anfernee Hardaway/1991-92 590
4. Keith Lee/1982-83 581
5. Will Barton/2011-12 550
6. Chris Douglas-Roberts/2006-07 538
JOE IN THE FLOW
Joe Jackson was re-inserted in the Tigers' starting lineup Feb. 22, and he more than made the most of it.
In the last three games, the 6-foot-1 guard averaged 14.3 points, 3.3 rebounds and 7.7 assists in 35 minutes of action.
Jackson shot 44.8 percent from the field and 84.2 percent from the free throw line.
The Memphis, Tenn., native also posted a 3.3 assist-to-turnover ratio in the last three games (23 assists/seven TO).
BACK IN BLACK
Tarik Black -- like his teammate Joe Jackson -- has played well in recent games.
But, Black's string of solid performances reaches back to the last five games.
In those five contests, the Tigers' 6-foot-8 forward averaged 17.0 points (scored double figures in four games) and 5.0 boards in 27 minutes of action.
The most impressive stat in Black's five-game stretch is his field goal percentage.
The Memphis, Tenn., native shot 80.9 percent (38-of-47) in his last five outings.