Memphis/Conference USA Tournament Notes
March 9, 2010
2010 GMC Sierra Conference USA Tournament
Tigers On TV/Radio/Web
TIGERS OPEN C-USA TOURNAMENT PLAY THURSDAY VS. EAST CAROLINA OR HOUSTON
The Tigers' C-USA Tournament quarterfinal game, to be aired on CBS College Sports (Comcast digital channel 222), is slated for a 12 p.m. (CT) start.
Memphis wrapped up its 2009-10 regular season winning seven of its last eight. In that stretch, the Tigers posted wins over UCF 76-70 Feb. 10, Tulsa 93-86 Feb. 13, Tulane 77-64 Feb. 17, SMU 76-63 Feb. 20, Southern Miss 76-69 Feb. 27, UAB 70-65 Mar. 3 and Tulsa 75-53 Mar. 6. The lone loss was a 92-75 setback at Houston Feb. 24.
After having their 64-game Conference USA win streak snapped Jan. 20 with a 72-67 loss to UTEP, the Tigers responded with back-to-back league wins over Houston 92-77 Jan. 23 and Marshall 75-72 Jan. 27. Prior to the Jan. 20 UTEP loss, Memphis opened Conference USA play with three-straight league victories over Southern Miss 59-57, East Carolina 77-57 and Rice 80-68.
East Carolina enters the C-USA Tournament having dropped four of its final six regular season games. The Pirates' two wins were road victories at Rice 76-65 Feb. 20 and at UCF 68-66 Mar. 2.
Houston also lost four of its final six games of the regular season. The Cougars' two victories were home wins over Memphis 92-75 Feb. 24 and Rice 78-70 Mar. 3.
SCOUTING THE PIRATES
Junior guard Brock Young, a 2010 All-Conference USA third team pick, leads a trio of double-figure scorers for the Pirates with a 15.3 scoring average. Darrius Morrow (12.3 ppg) and Jamar Abrams (11.3 ppg) also average double digits in the scoring column for East Carolina. Morrow is the team's leading rebounder (6.6 rpg), and Young is tops on the squad with 166 assists (5.5 apg; first in C-USA). Abrams is the Pirates' top three-point threat at 35.8 percent from the arc.
East Carolina is shooting 43.3 percent from the field, 32.3 percent from the three-point line and 70.2 percent from the charity stripe. The Pirates are out-rebounding their foes by an average margin of +1.4 boards per game (35.6-34.2). East Carolina is averaging 16.8 turnovers per game, which is tops in the league.
SCOUTING THE COUGARS
Senior guard Aubrey Coleman, Conference USA's leading scorer, paces the Houston offense with a 26.0 scoring average. Kelvin Lewis is the Cougars' only other double-figure scorer at 15.1 ppg. Coleman is also Houston's top rebounder at 7.5 rpg, followed by Maurice McNeil's 7.4 rebounds per game. Desmond Wade is the squad's assists leader with 147 dimes (4.9 apg). Lewis (39.7 percent), Sean Coleman (38.8 percent) and Adam Brown (37.5 percent) all shoot over 35 percent from the three-point line.
The Cougars are shooting 41.9 percent from the field, 35.3 percent from the arc and 71.1 percent from the free throw line. Opponents are out-rebounding Houston by an average margin of +8.7 boards per contest (33.9-42.6). The Cougars lead C-USA in turnovers forced per game (17.5) and turnover margin (+8.1).
Memphis vs. East Carolina Notes
DID YOU KNOW?
All 12 C-USA schools played on Jan. 11, but the Memphis-East Carolina was the first game to tip off that night. The contest was also first C-USA game televised by CSTV (now CBS College Sports).
AN ARC ADVANTAGE FOR TIGERS?
Memphis enters the tournament as C-USA's top three-point shooting squad at 38.5 percent, while East Carolina is last in the league in three-point field goal percentage defense at 36.7 percent. In Conference USA play only (16 games), the Tigers lead the league at 42.1 percent from the arc. East Carolina is 10th in C-USA in three-point field goal percentage defense at 36.3 percent (league games only).
TURN `EM OVER
On the other side, Memphis is second in C-USA in turnovers forced (15.7) and turnover margin (+4.3).
Memphis vs. Houston Notes
HOME AREA BOY VERSUS HOMETOWN SCHOOL
Pastner is a Kingwood, Texas, native, and Kingwood is a suburb of Houston. In fact, Pastner grew up approximately 20 miles from the University of Houston campus.
Pastner, who attended Kingwood High School, coached the Houston Hoops summer ball team during his high school and collegiate (Arizona) days.
Already in 2009-10, Pastner has a 3-1 record versus Houston area universities. The Tigers defeated Houston Baptist 93-52 Jan. 3, Rice 80-68 Jan. 16 and Houston 92-77 Jan. 23. The setback was a 92-75 loss at Houston Feb. 24.
PASTNER VS. PENDERS
During his playing days for the Wildcats in the late 1990s, Pastner and his teammates battled Penders' Texas squads in back-to-back seasons in 1996-97 and 1997-98. Arizona won both games.
WILSON VS. HOUSTON
SCORING LEADERS COLLIDE
SCORE, SCORE AND SCORE SOME MORE
In C-USA games only, the Tigers are second in the league in scoring offense at 75.8 ppg, and Houston is third at 73.8 ppg.
Both teams lit up the scoreboard in their earlier meetings this season. Memphis posted a 92-77 victory over the Cougars Jan. 23 at FedExForum, and Houston returned the favor with a 92-75 win over the Tigers Feb. 24 at Hofheinz Pavilion.
THREES A-FLYING ON THURSDAY
In the NCAA rankings, Memphis is No. 15 and Houston No. 23 in treys made per game.
In the C-USA individual rankings, four of the league's leaders in three-pointers made per game are featured in Thursday's game. Houston's Kelvin Lewis leads C-USA with 3.0 treys made per game, while Doneal Mack and Roburt Sallie are tied for seventh at 1.9 three-pointers per contest. Memphis' Elliot Williams is ninth among C-USA's treys made per game leaders (1.8).
TOUGH TO TURN OVER...
The Cougars are ranked No. 1 in the nation in turnover margin and No. 2 in turnovers committed, while the Tigers are No. 28 in turnovers committed and No. 8 in turnover margin.
In the Jan. 23 game, Memphis won the turnover battle. The Tigers forced 16 Houston turnovers, while committing only 12 miscues. However, the Cougars won the turnover game in the Feb. 24 encounter (13-17). The following charts both teams' turnover categories and their league rankings:
Memphis Stat Houston
...BUT BEWARE, THIEVES ON COURT THURSDAY
In the NCAA rankings, Houston is No. 7 and Memphis No. 25 in steals per game.
A MATTER OF CITY PRIDE
Three Cougars call Houston home, and they are Aubrey Coleman, Sean Coleman and Jamon Wilson.
Memphis-Conference USA Tournament Notes
MEMPHIS IN C-USA TOURNEY
Memphis is this year's C-USA Tournament No. 2 seed, and it is the fourth time the Tigers are the tournament's second seed. Memphis has also been the No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, No. 4, No. 7, No. 8 and No. 11 seed in past C-USA Tournaments.
In Conference USA Tournaments held in Memphis (1996, 2000, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009), the Tigers have a 17-3 mark (.850 winning percentage). The Tigers won the championship in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009, and reached the semifinals in 1996, the second round in 2000 and the championship game in 2005.
In C-USA Tournament games played outside Memphis, the Tigers have a 2-7 record (.222 winning percentage). The following shows the Tigers' seed and record in the C-USA Tournament year-by-year:
Year Seed Record
MEMPHIS IN LEAGUE POSTSEASON OUTSIDE THE BLUFF CITY
The following shows the Tigers' record in conference tournaments hosted outside Memphis:
Conference Record Outside No. of
CARRY ON THE TIGER TRADITION IN POSTSEASON
The previous Memphis head coaches have had success in their first conference postseason tournaments, posting a 10-6 record (.625 winning percentage). The program's head coaches have been especially successful in their first league tournament game with a 6-1 mark (.857 winning percentage).
The following shows what Tiger head coaches have done in their first conference tournaments:
Coach/Conf. First-Game Record
TIGERS GOING FOR C-USA TOURNEY TITLE RECORD
Last year, Memphis tied Cincinnati for the most C-USA Tournament titles with four. The Tigers won the C-USA postseason classic from 2006-09, while the Bearcats won the 1996, 1998, 2002 and 2004 C-USA Tournaments. Memphis is the only C-USA program to have won four-straight league tournament championships.
For more Memphis/Conference USA notes, please click on the pdf link at the top of the page.