AAC Tournament: Tulsa To Face Memphis In Quarterfinal Round

Thursday, March 10th 2016, 5:23 pm
By: News On 6

The third-seeded Tulsa men’s basketball team opens the 2016 American Athletic Conference Championship Friday in the quarterfinal round against sixth-seeded Memphis at 8 p.m. CT at the Amway Center.

The Golden Hurricane (20-10, 12-6 American Athletic Conference) has won 12 of its last 16 games, including an 84-74 win over USF on Saturday at the Reynolds Center. The Tigers (17-14, 8-10 American) defeated East Carolina, 83-53, on Sunday. TU and Memphis met just 11 days ago in Memphis, and the Tigers won that game, 92-82.

The game will be broadcast on Big Country 99.5 FM and the Golden Hurricane Radio Network, and televised on ESPNU.

No. 3 TULSA (20-10, 12-6 American) vs. No. 6 MEMPHIS (17-14, 8-10 American)

Friday, March 11, 2016• 8 p.m. CT • Amway Center (18,846)

TV: ESPNU (Allen Bestwick and Tim Welsh)

Radio: Big Country 99.5 FM and the Golden Hurricane Radio Network (Bruce Howard and J.R. Rollo)

Internet: Live Audio on Hurricane Vision

Live Stats: www.TulsaHurricane.com

Twitter: @TUMBasketball | @TulsaHurricane

Instagram: TulsaMBasketball

The Coaches

Tulsa: Frank Haith (Elon ’88)

Career Record: 248-150 (12th year)   Record at Tulsa: 43-21 (second year)

Memphis: Josh Pastner (Arizona, ‘98)

Career Record: 165-72 (seventh year)           Record at Memphis: same

The Series

This will be the 40th meeting between Tulsa and Memphis. Memphis leads the series, 24-15. The Tigers won the first meeting this season, 92-82, in Memphis on Feb. 28. The Golden Hurricane won both meetings last season, 73-55 in Tulsa and 74-72 in overtime in Memphis. The Tigers won 15 of 16 meetings from 2006-13 when both schools were members of Conference USA. The Hurricane also won in Memphis, 68-65, in 2011, and in the 2001 NIT semifinals in New York, 72-64. The Tigers won eight in a row between 1972-1989, and Tulsa won the first 11 against Memphis, between 1964-71.

About Memphis

Memphis averages 76.8 points and 40.9 rebounds per game, as well as a .414 field goal and .325 3-point percentage while allowing 70.9 ppg, 38.6 rpg, a .400 field goal and a .307 3-point percentage. Decric Lawson leads the Tigers with 15.4 points and 9.2 rebounds per game while Shaq Goodwin averages 15.2 points and 8.0 rebounds per contest. Ricky Tarrant Jr. adds 11.7 points and 3.4 assists per outing.

Tulsa Statistical Leaders

James Woodard leads the Golden Hurricane with 15.8 points and adds 5.2 rebounds per game, while Shaquille Harrison averages 14.8 points and a team-high 5.5 rebounds, along with 4.1 assists and 1.9 steals per contest. Pat Birt adds 12.6 points, Rashad Smith scores 7.1 points, Brandon Swannegan puts up 6.3 points, and Marquel Curtis scored 6.8 points per outing. Tulsa averages 74.2 ppg, 35.0 rpg, a .444 field goal percentage, .331 3-point pct. and a .679 free throw pct. The Hurricane allows opponents 69.0 ppg, 36.8 rpg, a .416 field goal pct. and a .363 3-point pct.

Quick Hits

• Tulsa’s RPI is No. 48, and its strength of schedule is ranked 52nd in the nation.

• Tulsa has won 12 of its last 16 games.

• Tulsa defeated USF, 84-74, Saturday at the Reynolds Center. Brandon Swannegan led the Golden Hurricane with 21 points while James Woodard added 18 points, Shaquille Harrison tallied 15 points and eight assists and Pat Birt put up 12 points.

• Tulsa has reached 20 wins for the 23rd time in program history, and third year in a row.

• Shaquille Harrison is the first player in TU history to compile 1,300 points, 400 assists and 200 steals James Woodard is the third player in TU history to compile 1,800 points and 700 rebounds.

• James Woodard, Shaquille Harrison and Pat Birt combine to average 43.2 points per game.

• Three Tulsa starters are left-handed (60%), but only 12 percent of the population is left-handed.

• 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).         

• Through 30 games this season, Tulsa has a 1.3 assist/turnover ratio. TU has totaled 413 assists to 322 turnovers.

• Tulsa has two wins against top-25 opponents for the first time since the 1999-00 season.

• 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.

• Tulsa is 2-1 at neutral sites this season.

• James Woodard is one of only three players in Tulsa history to total at least 60 3-pointers in three consecutive seasons.

•  Harrison ranks 42nd in the nation in steals (1.9 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.

•  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.

All-American Athletic Conference Honors

 Shaquille Harrison was awarded the American Athletic Conference Men’s Basketball Scholar Athlete of the Year. He and James Woodard earned all-conference honors, as Woodard was named to the All-American Athletic Conference First Team, and Harrsion was a second-team selection.

Tulsa Career Top-10 Rankings

James Woodard ranks fourth in TU career scoring with 1,861 points, and second with 259 career 3-pointers. He needs 90 points to match Ben Uzoh (2006-10) for third place (1,951) and 40 threes to match Shea Seals (1993-97) for first place (299).

Harrison ranks third at TU with 242 career steals, and fourth with 453 career assists. He needs 29 steals to match Steve Harris (1981-85) for second place (271), and four assists to match Byron Boudreaux (1983-87) for second place (457).

Brandon Swannegan has 145 career blocks, ranking fourth in TU history. He needs 106 blocks to match Kevin Johnson (1999-03) for third place.

Other Statistical Notes

Tulsa averages 32.1 points in the paint per game, and has scored 962 points, or 43 percent of its season total, in the paint – that is 7.7 ppg more than its opponents. Tulsa averages 17.0 points off turnovers per game, and has scored 510, or 23 percent of its season total, off turnovers – 6.4 ppg more than its opponents. Tulsa averages 8.7 fastbreak points per game, and outscores opponents by an average of 5.3 fastbreak points per game. The Tulsa bench averages 19.8 points per game. Rashad Ray has a 3.0 assist-turnover ratio this season (57 assists to 19 turnovers). For his career, Ray has a 1.8 assist-turnover ratio, including a 2.4 ratio over his last three years.