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TU Set To Face UConn After Big Win Over SMU

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STORRS, Connecticut -

The Tulsa men's basketball team continues its two-game road swing with a trip to Storrs, Conn., to take on American Athletic Conference foe UConn at 7 p.m. CT Saturday at Gampel Pavilion.
 

The Golden Hurricane (16-8, 8-4 American) has won eight of its last 10 games, including an 82-77 win at No. 16 SMU Wednesday. The Huskies (17-7, 7-4 American) have won seven of their last 10 games, and fell at Temple, 63-58, Thursday. TU defeated UConn, 60-51, in Tulsa back on Jan. 14.
 
The game will be broadcast on Big Country 99.5 FM and the Golden Hurricane Radio Network, and televised on ESPN2.
 

The Series
This will be the sixth meeting between Tulsa and UConn. UConn leads the series, 3-2. The Golden Hurricane won earlier this season, 60-51, on Jan. 14 in Tulsa. Tulsa also won last season in Tulsa, 66-58. The Huskies won twice last year in Hartford, Conn. – 70-45 on Feb. 12 and 47-42 on March 14 in the American Athletic Conference Tournament semifinals. UConn also won the first meeting between the schools, 89-68, in 1978 in New Haven, Conn.
 
About UConn
UConn averages 73.8 points and 37.4 rebounds per game, as well as a .461 field goal and .352 3-point percentage while allowing 61.5 ppg, 34.2 rpg, a .369 field goal and a .315 3-point percentage. Shonn Miller leads the Huskies with 13.5 points per game, adding 5.7 rebounds while Rodney Purvis averages 13.4 points per contest. Sterling Gibbs scores 12.5 points, and Daniel Hamilton puts up 11.7 points, 9.1 rebounds and 5.0 assists per outing.
 
Tulsa Statistical Leaders
James Woodard leads the Golden Hurricane with 16.4 points and adds 5.1 rebounds per game, while Shaquille Harrison averages 15.3 points and a team-high 5.4 rebounds, along with 4.1 assists and 2.0 steals per contest. Pat Birt adds 11.3 points, Rashad Smith scores 7.1 points, andBrandon Swannegan puts up 6.3 points. Tulsa averages 73.7 ppg, 34.9 rpg, a .444 field goal percentage, .329 3-point pct. and a .674 free throw pct. The Hurricane allows opponents 68.3 ppg, 36.8 rpg, a .412 field goal pct. and a .356 3-point pct.
 
Quick Hits
• Tulsa has won eight of its last 10 games.
• Tulsa defeated No. 16 SMU, 82-77, Wednesday in Dallas. Shaquille Harrison tallied 21 points and eight assists, James Woodard scored 20 points and Pat Birt added 17 points with four 3-pointers.
• Tulsa is ranked No. 41 in the RPI, and has a strength of schedule ranking of 39th, the top SOS ranking and second-best RPI ranking in The American.
• James Woodard, Shaquille Harrison and Pat Birt combine to average 43.0 points per game.
• Tulsa is 2-2 vs. ranked opponents this season, with wins over No. 9 Wichita State (77-67) and No. 16 SMU (82-77), and losses to No. 18 SMU (69-81) and No. 22 Cincinnati (57-76).
• Tulsa has two wins against top-25 opponents for the first time since the 1999-00 season.
• Tulsa's road win against SMU was its first road win over a top-25 team since the 1996-97 season opener against UCLA.
• Through 24 games this season, Tulsa has a 1.3 assist/turnover ratio. TU has totaled 334 assists to 265 turnovers. In 2014-15 through 24 games, the Hurricane had 253 assists-272 turnovers–0.9 ratio.
• Two Tulsa players have scored 20 points in the same game six times this season – the most since the 1993-94 team had at least two players score at least 20 points in the same game eight times.
• James Woodard and Shaquille Harrison make up the top scoring duo in the American Athletic Conference, averaging a combined 31.7 points per game and 42 percent of the team's total points.
•  Tulsa is 5-3 on the road this season.
• James Woodard is one of only three players in Tulsa history to total at least 60 3-pointers in three consecutive seasons.
•  Rashad Ray has a 3.2 assist-turnover ratio this season (51 assists to 16 turnovers). For his career, Ray has a 1.8 assist-turnover ratio, including a 2.4 ratio over his last three years (234 assists to 96 turnovers).
•  Harrison ranks 37th in the nation in steals (2.0 spg).
•  The Hurricane has scored 90 points in four games so far this season. It is the most 90-point games since 2013-14 when Tulsa scored 90 points five times and is the second-most since 2000-01.
•  Harrison is on the 2016 Naismith Trophy Men's College Player of the Year Early Season Watch List, from the Atlanta Tipoff Club.
•  Harrison has been nominated for the Allstate NABC Good Works Team, which recognizes players at all levels of college basketball who have made outstanding contributions in the areas of volunteerism and civic involvement.
•  TU nabbed the first two American Athletic Conference Player of the Week awards of the season. Woodard won the award on Nov. 16, and Harrison received the honor on Nov. 23.
•  Tulsa is playing this season with nine seniors – the most seniors on one roster in the country.
•  Tulsa is in its second year season under the direction of head coach Frank Haith. In his first season, the Hurricane posted a 23-11 overall record and a 14-4 conference record. TU finished second in the American Athletic Conference regular season, played in the semifinals of the conference tournament, and reached the second round of the postseason NIT.
 
Tulsa Career Top-10 Rankings
     James Woodard ranks fifth in TU career scoring with 1,781 points and fourth with 244 career 3-pointers, and with four threes, he can match Scottie Haralson (2010-13) for third place (248).
     Harrison ranks third at TU with 231 career steals, and fourth with 428 career assists. He needs 40 steals to match Steve Harris (1981-85) for second place (271), and 29 assists to match Byron Boudreaux (1983-87) for second place (457).
     Brandon Swannegan has 142 career blocks, ranking fourth in TU history. He needs 109 blocks to match Kevin Johnson (1999-03) for third place.
 
Other Statistical Notes
      Tulsa averages 31.6 points in the paint per game and has scored 758 points, or 43 percent of its season total, in the paint – that is 8.5 ppg more than its opponents. Tulsa averages 17.4 points off turnovers per game and has scored 417, or 24 percent of its season total, off turnovers – 5.9 ppg more than its opponents. Tulsa averages 9.0 fastbreak points per game and outscores opponents by an average of 5.5 fastbreak points per game. The Tulsa bench averages 20.2 points per game and outscores opponents by an average of 1.8 points per game.

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