Dec. 21, 2011
Tigers On TV/Radio/Web
Television: ESPN2/Comcast digital channel 24 (Sean McDonough, 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 (6-4) takes to the road for the third time in 16 days, this time traveling to Washington, D.C., to meet Georgetown (9-1) in a non-conference encounter. The game, to be televised on ESPN2, is slated for a 6 p.m. (CT) start.
The Tigers are in the Also Receiving Votes category of the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll (No. 34), which was released Dec. 19. Memphis is not ranked in the Associated Press poll. Georgetown is ranked No. 16 in both national polls.
Memphis enters Thursday's encounter after a Dec. 19 home victory over Lipscomb 85-75. The win ended a two-game slide with setbacks to Murray State 76-72 Dec. 11 and No. 4/4 Louisville 95-87. Prior to the two losses, the Tigers had won three-straight with victories over Jackson State 70-45 Nov. 28, Austin Peay 91-60 Dec. 3 and Miami, Fla., 71-54 Dec. 6.
Memphis returns all five starters and 10 letterwinners from last year's squad.
The Hoyas are on a seven-game winning streak since their lone loss to Kansas 67-63 in the opening-round of the 2011 EA Sports Maui Invitational.
Georgetown returns two starters and five letterwinners from last year's team that posted a 21-11 overall record.
WHAT'S UP NEXT...
Memphis returns to action after the Christmas break on Thursday, Dec. 29 when it hosts Robert Morris at FedExForum. Game time is 6 p.m. (CT).
The Hoyas opens Big East Conference play after Christmas on Wednesday, Dec. 28 when they travel to Louisville to face the No. 4/4 Cardinals.
WHAT THE HOYAS DID LAST YEAR
Georgetown posted a 21-11 overall record and a 10-8 Big East Conference mark.
The Hoyas finished eighth in the Big East Conference regular season standings.
Georgetown lost in the Big East Conference Tournament opening round to Cincinnati.
The Hoyas received at at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament and dropped a second-round game to eventual NCAA Final Four participant VCU.
SCOUTING THE HOYAS
Georgetown is 9-1 entering Thursday's game.
The Hoyas have won seven straight since their lone loss of the season to Kansas in the EA Sports Maui Invitational.
The trio of Jason Clark (15.5 ppg), Hollis Thompson (14.7 ppg) and Henry Sims (12.6 ppg) paces the Georgetown offense.
Otto Porter comes off the bench and leads the Hoyas on the glass with a 6.1 rebounding average. Thompson is second at 5.8 rpg.
Sims is tops on the team with 39 assists (3.9 apg) and 16 blocked shots, while Clark has a team-high 17 steals.
Georgetown is shooting 49.2 percent from the field, 37 percent from the arc and 74.5 percent from the charity stripe.
The Hoyas are out-rebounding their foes by an average margin of +6.7 boards per game (36.9-30.2).
John Thompson III is in his eighth year as head coach at Georgetown and has a 169-74 record at the school.
MEMPHIS VERSUS THE BIG EAST
The Tigers are 127-142 all-time versus current members of the Big East Conference.
Memphis has played Cincinnati (31-36), Connecticut (1-0), DePaul (14-12), Georgetown (2-9), Louisville (34-52), Marquette (14-12), Pittsburgh (1-1), Providence (2-3), St. John's (1-1), Seton Hall (3-1), Syracuse (1-3), USF (18-3), Villanova (4-8) and West Virginia (1-1).
Memphis has played 14 of the 16 Big East schools, leaving Notre Dame and Rutgers as the two league programs the Tigers have not faced.
Most of the contests versus Cincinnati, DePaul, Louisville, Marquette and USF were former league games (Missouri Valley, Metro, Great Midwest, Conference USA).
Since the start of the 2005-06 campaign (when the Big East realigned), Memphis is 9-6 against teams from the Big East.
The last time the Tigers played a Big East opponent was five days ago (Dec. 17). Memphis dropped a narrow 95-87 decision to the No. 4/4 Cardinals in Louisville, Ky.
TIGERS LOVE HOLIDAY HOOPS
The holidays are a time to spread good cheer. Well, the Tigers have done just that for their fans since the 1999-2000 campaign.
When playing over the holidays (Dec. 22-Jan. 4), Memphis has an impressive 31-7 record (.816 winning percentage) since the 1999-2000 campaign.
Since 2005-06, the Tigers are 18-3 (.889 winning percentage) in "Holiday Hoops" contests.
A TIGERS PRE-CHRISTMAS GIFT
The Tigers enjoy this time of the year -- the season of giving. And they enjoy it most when they can give their fans a win right before the Christmas holiday.
In the last 10 years, Memphis is 8-2 in its final game before Christmas, including an 85-71 victory over Georgetown in 2007-08.
A BARTON HOMECOMING
For the Barton brothers, Antonio and Will, Thursday's game is a homecoming for them.
The brothers are Baltimore natives and grew up around 40 miles outside Washington, D.C.
Prior to playing their final season of high school hoops at different prep schools (2009-10), the brothers played together on the 2008-09 Lake Clifton squad that went 28-0 and won the Maryland state 3A title.
FINAL FOUR "FEEL" ON THURSDAY
Thursday's contest will have a Final Four "feel," as both Josh Pastner and John Thompson III have been a part of squads that played on the "Big Dance's" largest stage.
For Pastner, he's made two trips to the NCAA Final Four -- once as a player and once as a staff member -- while at Arizona.
Pastner was a player on the 1997 Arizona squad that won the NCAA title, and was a member of Lute Olson's staff that advanced to the NCAA championship game in 2001.
In only his second season at Georgetown, Thompson guided the Hoyas on an NCAA Final Four ride in 2007.
Tigers assistant coaches Damon Stoudamire and Jack Murphy also have been to an NCAA Final Four. Stoudamire was a player on the 1994 Arizona squad that advanced to the Final Four, while Murphy was a member of Olson's staff that coached in the 2001 Final Four.
HEY, I KNOW THEM!
One Tiger enters Thursday's game a little more familiar with Georgetown than the rest of his teammates and coaches.
Junior Ferrakohn Hall, who made his debut for Memphis Dec. 17 against another Big East Conference foe Louisville, was on the 2009-10 Seton Hall squad that dropped an 85-73 decision at Georgetown on Jan. 14, 2010.
Hall made his first collegiate start against the Hoyas. He had eight points and three rebounds in 18 minutes versus Georgetown.
ODD BUT NOT ABNORMAL
Memphis will play Georgetown for a second time this season Thursday, making it an odd "two-meetings-in-a-single-season" for non-conference foes.
The Tigers and Hoyas previously played on Nov. 23 in the 2011 EA Sports Maui Invitational, with Georgetown taking a 91-88 win in overtime.
Memphis will also play Tennessee Jan. 4 for a second time in 2011-12.
While it's a rare occurrance to play a non-league foe twice in a season, Memphis has done it three previous times since 2000-01.
The last time Memphis played a non-conference opponent twice in a season was the 2005-06 campaign. That year, the Tigers played UCLA twice, defeating the Bruins 88-80 in the NIT Season Tip-Off and falling to them 50-45 in the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight.
The last time Memphis played a non-league opponent twice within the regular season was in 1994-95. The Tigers split a pair of games with UAB (80-63 away loss; 74-67 home win).
The following is a history of Memphis playing non-conference foes twice in a season since the Tigers began conference affiliation in 1967-68:
Year Opponent Results
* both meetings occurred within regular season (no postseason)
2011-12 Georgetown* 88-91, L; --
2005-06 UCLA 88-80, W; 45-50, L
2001-02 Temple 64-54, W; 78-72, W
2000-01 Utah 58-61, L; 71-62, W
1994-95 Arkansas 87-88, L; 91-96, L
UAB* 63-80, L; 74-67, W
1991-92 Southern Miss* 59-67, L; 80-61, W
Arkansas 92-88, W; 82-80, W
1990-91 Miami, Fla.* 80-72, W; 83-82, W
1989-90 Tennessee 91-72, W; 71-73, L
1987-88 Arkansas St.* 60-59, W; 47-48, L
1985-86 New Orleans* 68-64, W; 63-52, W
1983-84 Miss. State* 49-50, L; 43-42, W
1981-82 East Tenn. St.* 62-67, L; 91-74, W
1980-81 Southern Miss* 70-65, W; 65-90, L
1979-80 Southern Miss* 54-59, L; 68-85, L
Oklahoma City* 82-72, W; 69-81, L
1975-76 Southern Miss* 84-70, W; 87-72, W
Oklahoma City* 87-70, W; 96-72, W
1968-69 Loyola-N.O.* 74-54, W; 80-62, W
1967-68 Loyola-N.O.* 72-64, W; 53-56, L
The Tigers and Hoyas have several similarities statistically -- especially on the offensive end -- and the following shows that (respective conference rank follows stat):
UofM/Rank Statistic GU/Rank
82.1/1st Score Off 77.6/5th
69.5/3rd FT Pct. 74.5/2nd
48.7/1st FG Pct. 49.2/3rd
38.9/2nd 3P FG Pct. 37.0/4th
14.5/2nd Assists 15.2/5th
1.2/2nd Asst.-TO Ratio 1.3/5th
SHARING THE WEALTH
For the first time in four years, the Tigers had six players score double figures in a single game.
In the Dec. 19 victory over Lipscomb, Adonis Thomas scored 18 points, Will Barton 16, Tarik Black 13, Chris Crawford 11, Joe Jackson 10 and Antonio Barton 10.
The last time the Tigers had six players score double digits in a game was Nov. 27, 2007, in a 104-82 win over Austin Peay.