Memphis Basketball/NCAA Final Four Notes
Go Tigers! Joey Dorsey and the Tigers face UCLA in the NCAA Final Four on Saturday.
Go Tigers!
Joey Dorsey and the Tigers face UCLA in the NCAA Final Four on Saturday.
Go Tigers!

April 1, 2008

Final Four Central
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The University of Memphis squad (37-1, 16-0 C-USA), ranked No. 2 in the Associated Press poll and No. 3 in ESPN/USA Today poll, continues its quest for the 2008 NCAA title Saturday, Apr. 5 when it meets UCLA (35-3, 16-2 Pac-10) in an NCAA Tournament national semifinal contest in San Antonio's Alamodome. The game, to be televised by CBS Sports, is slated to start at 5:07 p.m. (CT).

Memphis is the South Region's No. 1 seed, while the Bruins are the West Region's top seed. The second national semifinal game has the East Region No. 1 seed North Carolina meeting the Midwest Region top seed Kansas at approximately 7:47 p.m. (CT).

Memphis advanced to the NCAA Tournament Final Four with victories over Texas-Arlington 87-63, Mississippi State 77-74, Michigan State 92-74 and Texas 85-67. Prior to the NCAA Tournament, the Tigers swept the Conference USA regular season and tournament crowns for a third-straight year in 2007-08. The Tigers posted a perfect 16-0 league mark in regular season play for a second-consecutive year.

The Tigers enter Saturday's NCAA Tournament national semifinal on an 11-game win streak after a Feb. 23 setback to then-No. 2 Tennessee. The Tigers defeated Tulsa, Southern Miss, SMU and UAB to close the regular season and then posted victories over Tulane, Southern Miss and Tulsa in the C-USA Tournament. Memphis defeated Texas-Arlington, Mississippi State, Michigan State and Texas in the NCAA Tournament.

The Bruins advanced to the NCAA Tournament Final Four with wins over Mississippi Valley State, Texas A&M, Western Kentucky and Xavier. Prior to the NCAA Tournament, UCLA won the Pac-10 Conference Tournament.

UCLA brings a 35-3 overall record into Saturday's NCAA Tournament Final Four contest. The Bruins, which swept the Pac-10 Conference regular season and tournament titles, are on a 14-game win streak entering the Final Four.

The Bruins advanced to the NCAA Tournament Final Four with wins over Mississippi Valley State, Texas A&M, Western Kentucky and Xavier.

UCLA has four players averaging double figures in the scoring column with Kevin Love (17.6 ppg), Darren Collison (14.8 ppg), Russell Westbrook (12.5 ppg) and Josh Shipp (12.3 ppg). Love leads the Bruins on the glass with a 10.7 rebounding average, while Westbrook is tops on the team with 165 assists (4.3 apg). Collison leads UCLA from the arc at 53 percent, while Love is second at 36.3 percent from the three-point line.

The Bruins are shooting 47.9 percent from the field, 35.1 percent from the arc and 73 percent from the charity stripe. UCLA is out-rebounding its opponents by an average margin of +8.6 boards per game (36.7-28.1).

Saturday's Memphis/UCLA NCAA Tournament national semifinal game winner will meet the North Carolina/Kansas national semifinal winner in the NCAA Tournament championship game on Monday, Apr. 7 in the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

The Tigers are playing in their 21st NCAA Tournament in 2008. Memphis has an overall NCAA Tournament record of 29-20 (.592 winning percentage; see all-time NCAA Tournament results in box below).

In this year's NCAA Tournament, the Tigers defeated Texas-Arlington 87-63, Mississippi State 77-74, Michigan State 92-74 and Texas 85-67 to advance to the NCAA Final Four for the third time in the program's history. Last year, Memphis advanced to the Elite Eight/South Regional final, where it lost to NCAA championship game participant Ohio State 92-76.

The Tiger program made its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 1955. Memphis advanced to the 1973 NCAA Tournament championship game, where it lost to UCLA. The Tigers advanced to their second Final Four in 1985, falling to Villanova in the national semifinals. Memphis earned five-straight NCAA Tournament bids from 1982-86.

Memphis is making its third trip to the NCAA Final Four in the program's history. The Tigers have a 1-2 record in their previous two Final Four appearances (1973, 1985).

Memphis went 1-1 in the 1973 Final Four in St. Louis. The Tigers defeated Providence 98-85 in the semifinals, before falling to UCLA 87-66 in the NCAA title game.

In 1985 Final Four in Lexington, Ky., Memphis lost to Villanova 52-45. The Wildcats went on to upset Georgetown 66-65 in the title game.

With its win over Texas Mar. 30, Memphis posted its 37th victory of the season and also joined an elite NCAA Division I elite group. The Tigers are one of five teams in NCAA Division I history to have 37 wins in a single season, which is an NCAA Division I record. The following shows the 37-win teams in NCAA Division I history:

Year/Team	Wins	Year/Team	Wins
1987/UNLV*	37	1986/Duke*	37
1999/Duke*	37	2008/Memphis*	37
2005/Illinois*	37
* made NCAA Final Four

With its win over Texas Mar. 30 in the NCAA Tournament South Region semifinal game, Memphis has won an incredible 103 games the last three seasons. The 103 victories since 2005-06 place Memphis in the No. 2 spot on the all-time NCAA Division I list for most wins in three years. Kentucky tops the list with 104 wins from 1996-98. The following shows the top five teams on that list (head coaches) and where Memphis stands:

Most Wins In a Three-Year Period
NCAA Division I
1.	 Kentucky/Pitino-Smith	1996-98	104
2.	 Memphis/John Calipari	2006-pres.	103
3. 	Kentucky/Adolph Rupp	1947-49	102
t.	 Montana St./Ott Romney	1927-29	102
5.	 Duke/Mike Krzyzewski	1999-2001	101

Although the two schools have played five times since their first match-up, the Memphis-UCLA encounter in the 1973 NCAA Tournament title game still brings back fond memories for many Tiger fans. Memphis dropped an 87-66 decision (see boxscore in NCAA Tournament History section of this booklet) to the Bruins and Bill Walton, but that was the only thing that dampened the spirits of the Tigers' NCAA Tournament run.

The Memphis trio of Larry Finch, Larry Kenon and Ronnie Robinson led the Tigers to the title game. Memphis defeated South Carolina 90-76, Kansas State 92-72 and Providence 98-85 en route to the championship contest. In fact, the Tigers' win over South Carolina was the program's first NCAA Tournament victory.

Gene Bartow was the Tigers' head coach at the time, and John Wooden coached the Bruins. Kenon, who scored 20 points in that game, lives in San Antonio.

Despite the Tigers losing 87-66 in the 1973 NCAA title game, the UCLA athletics administration must have been impressed by then-Memphis head coach Gene Bartow because, when John Wooden retired following the 1974-75 campaign that ended with his 10th NCAA title, Bartow was hired as Wooden's successor.

Bartow coached two years (1975-76, 1976-77) at UCLA and directed the Bruins to a combined 52-9 record and consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. The 1975-76 team advanced to the NCAA Final Four and finished third. Following those two seasons at UCLA, Bartow moved on to UAB, where he was hired as athletics director and basketball head coach. His charge was to start an entire athletics department from scratch.

Bartow is now president of Hoops, LP, which is the company that runs the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies and FedExForum, the arena where the Tigers also play their home games.

When the Tigers defeated Texas to advance to the NCAA Final Four, they pushed head coach John Calipari into another elite group of NCAA Division I coaches. Calipari is one of 12 head coaches in NCAA Division I history to lead two different programs to the Final Four. Calipari guided UMass to the 1996 Final Four and now Memphis to the 2008 Final Four. The following lists the coaches and the teams they led to the Final Four:

Coach	1st FF Team	2nd FF Team
John Calipari	UMass	Memphis
Roy Williams	Kansas	N. Carolina
Eddie Sutton	Arkansas	Oklahoma St.
Lee Rose	Charlotte	Purdue
Lute Olson	Iowa	Arizona
Frank McGuire	St. John's	N. Carolina
Lou Henson	N. Mexico St.	Illinois
Jack Gardner	Kansas St.	Utah
Hugh Durham	Florida St.	Georgia
Larry Brown	UCLA	Kansas
Gene Bartow	Memphis	UCLA
Forddy Anderson	Bradley	Michigan St.
* list does not include Rick Pitino, who is the only coach to take three teams to the Final Four

The Tigers have an all-time record of 11-13 (.458 winning percentage) against members of the Pacific-10 Conference. In its history, Memphis has played seven -- Arizona (4-3), Arizona State (1-2), Oregon State (1-1), Southern California (2-1), Stanford (0-1), UCLA (2-4) and Washington (1-1) -- of the league's institutions.

During the 2007-08 regular season, Memphis played two Pac-10 Conference foes. The Tigers defeated Southern California 62-58 in overtime in the Jimmy V Classic in New York City on Dec. 4, 2007. Later in December (Dec. 29), Memphis posted a 76-63 home victory over Arizona at FedExForum.

In NCAA Tournament play, Memphis is 0-3 versus Pac-10 Conference foes. The Tigers lost to UCLA in the 1973 NCAA title game and 2006 NCAA Oakland Regional final. Memphis also dropped a first-round decision to Arizona State in the 2003 NCAA Tournament.

Head coach John Calipari has a 7-5 record (.583 winning percentage) against Pacific-10 Conference opponents. Calipari has coached against Arizona (1-1), Arizona State (0-1), Oregon State (1-0), Southern California (2-0), Stanford (2-2) and UCLA (1-1).

In NCAA Tournament play, Calipari has a 2-2 record against Pac-10 foes. Calipari directed his UMass teams in 1995 and 1996 to wins over Stanford. At Memphis, he has a 0-2 mark against Pac-10 opponents in NCAA Tournament play with losses to Arizona State (2003) and UCLA (2006).

John Calipari is coaching his 10th team in the NCAA Tournament in 2008. He has a 22-9 record (.710 winning percentage) in his 10 NCAA Tournament trips.

Calipari guided the UMass Minutemen to five-straight NCAA Tournaments, including a trip to the 1996 NCAA Final Four. The 2007-08 Tiger squad is Calipari's fifth NCAA Tournament team at Memphis. The 2002-03, 2003-04, 2005-06 and 2007-08 teams also made the "Big Dance." Memphis' 2005-06, 2006-07 teams reached the Elite Eight, while the 2007-08 Tiger squad made it to the Final Four.

John Calipari's teams always improve as the season progresses toward March, which is the month all college teams play for. And, Calipari's teams are ready to play in March and that can be seen in his career record in the month.

Calipari has an 85-27 record (.759 winning percentage) in games played in March. In his 16 years as a collegiate head coach, Calipari has guided his teams to 15 postseasons (10 NCAA, five NIT). He led UMass to the 1996 NCAA Final Four and Memphis to the 2002 NIT championship and 2008 NCAA Tournament Final Four.

Memphis and UCLA have played four common opponents in 2007-08. The Tigers were 4-0 versus the common foes, while the Bruins went 4-2 against the same opponents. The following shows the common foes results (site in parentheses):

	Memphis	Opponent	UCLA
	92-74, W (N)	Michigan St.	68-63, W (N)
	85-67, W (N)	Texas	61-63, L (H)
	62-58, W (N)	USC	63-72, L (H)
			56-46, W (A)
	76-63, W (H)	Arizona	82-60, W (H)
			68-66, W (A)

There must be something in the water in Texas that the Tigers must like because they have had tremendous NCAA Tournament success in the Lone Star State. Memphis has made eight NCAA Tournament stops (15 games; includes 2008) in Texas and is 13-2 in those 15 contests.

The Tigers are 6-0 in Houston, 2-0 in Austin, 1-1 in San Antonio and 4-1 in Dallas. In fact, Memphis had won 11-straight games in NCAA Tournament games played in Texas before last year's loss to Ohio State in the South Region title game. The Tigers' only other Texas/NCAA Tournament setback was an 87-83 loss to Creighton in the 1962 tourney. The following shows the Tigers' success in Texas at NCAA Tournament time:

Tigers' NCAA Tournament Results in Texas
Year	Opponent/Site	Result
2008	Texas/Houston	85-67, W
2008	Michigan State/Houston	92-74, W
2007	Ohio State/San Antonio	76-92, L
2007	Texas A&M/San Antonio	65-64, W
2006	Bucknell/Dallas	72-56, W
2006	Oral Roberts/Dallas	94-78, W
1995	Purdue/Austin	75-73, W
1995	Louisville/Austin	77-56, W
1985	Oklahoma/Dallas	63-61, W
1985	Boston College/Dallas	59-57, W
1985	UAB (ot)/Houston	67-66, W
1985	Penn/Houston	67-55, W
1973	Kansas St./Houston	92-72, W
1973	South Carolina/Houston	90-76, W
1962	Creighton/Dallas	83-87, L

Since turning the ball over 22 times in a road victory at Houston Jan. 30, Memphis has taken better care of the ball. In the 18 games since that Houston contest, the Tigers are averaging only 9.8 miscues per game. (176 total). In that 18-game stretch, Memphis' turnover high was 14 versus UCF Feb. 9 and Houston Feb. 13.

In NCAA Tournament play, the Tigers have protected the ball even better. Memphis has only 33 turnovers in four NCAA Tournament contests (8.3 to/game).

The Tigers are the third Conference USA school to make the NCAA Final Four in the league's 13-year history. However, Memphis is the first current C-USA member to reach the NCAA Final Four. Former C-USA institutions Marquette (2003) and Louisville (2005) reached the Final Four.

Don't like to jinx things, but the Tigers have improved their percentage from the charity stripe in the postseason -- just as CBS hoops analyst Billy Packer said they would do.

In the three Conference USA Tournament games, Memphis hit 71.7 percent from the foul line (38-of-53). And, despite hitting under 50 percent from the line in the NCAA Tournament second-round win over Mississippi State, the Tigers are shooting 67.4 percent (93-of-138) in NCAA Tournament play (four games).

For the entire postseason combined, Memphis is hitting 68.6 percent (131-of-191). During the regular season, the Tigers hit just over 59 percent from the charity stripe.

Packer was the color analyst for the Tigers' Feb. 27 game versus Tulsa at FedExForum. During that game, Packer mentioned that the Tigers would shoot a better percentage from the free throw line in the postseason. To date, Memphis has proven Packer a prophet.

Chris Douglas-Roberts just keeps climbing the Memphis career scoring chart. With his 25-point performance versus Texas in the NCAA Tournament South Region title game, he moved into the top 10 on the Tiger all-time scoring list. He enters Saturday's NCAA Tournament Final Four contest with 1,495 career points and is in the No. 9 spot on the career scoring list.

Douglas-Roberts is the 43rd player in Tiger history to score 1,000 points in a career. The following is an abbreviated list of the top scorers in Tiger history:

Memphis Career Scoring
	1.	Keith Lee/1981-85	2,408
	8.	Bill Cook/1972-76	1,629
	9.	Chris Douglas-Roberts/2005-pres.	1,495
	10.	Kelly Wise/1998-2002	1,487
	11.	Phillip Haynes/1980-84	1,479

Derrick Rose entered collegiate play as a guard that could distribute the rock, and he hasn't disappointed. The 6-foot-3 guard set the Memphis freshman assists season mark in the Tigers' NCAA Tournament South Region title game win over Texas Mar. 30. The Chicago, Ill., native has 177 dimes, breaking the previous mark of 170 assists by Vincent Askew in the 1984-85 campaign.

Head coach John Calipari has coached two other Tiger freshmen ranked in the top six for assists in school history (144 by Darius Washington Jr. in 2004-05; 128 by Dajuan Wagner in 2001-02).

For more notes on the Memphis-UCLA NCAA Final Four match-up, click on the pdf link at the top of the page.



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