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Old 12-17-2021, 10:25 AM   #1
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Texas Southern

Saturday, December 18th, 2021
12:00 PM
Fifth Third Arena

Texas Southern (NET #159/KP #187) are the third and highest ranked SWAC team we'll face in our OOC schedule. After starting the season with 7 consecutive losses, they upset Florida 69-54 and just followed that up with a 70-60 victory over UT-Rio Grande Valley on Tuesday.

They are one season removed from an NCAA appearance where they lost to #1 seed Michigan 82-66 in the Round of 64. They return/boast a lot of length, athleticism, and talent - which includes Houston grad transfer Brison Gresham.

Like our last opponents, Florida A&M, they don't shoot the 3 ball well (27%) but don't take many deep shots either (just under 15 3s/game). They're a very strong offensive rebounding team that averages just under 14 boards/game.

This match-up will hopefully serve as a Q3 game for us on our NET profile.

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Old 12-17-2021, 03:07 PM   #2
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Texas Southern is coached by Johnny Jones, who was at LSU during the Ben Simmons era. They are great offensive rebounding team, ranking #13 in the country. They are also top 40 in defending the 3pt line, holding opponents to 28%. And they block a lot of shots, ranking #53. So this won't be a typical SWAC team. They demolished Florida and had second half leads on the road against several other major conference or top 100 teams (NC St, Washington, St Mary's).

On the flip side, in addition to poor 3pt shooting, they turn the ball over a lot and don't create many turnovers. We should win the turnover battle, but this game will be decided on the boards. Texas Southern lost the turnover margin at Florida by 12, but doubled them up in rebounds 46-23. The game was never within 8 pts in the second half. Brison Gresham had 13 rebounds in only 22 minutes.

On offense, a trio of 6'9" seniors do the bulk of the work. John Walker is the most efficient scorer, largely by getting to the foul line 5 times a game. The aforementioned Gresham is an efficient rim scorer as well as elite offensive rebounder. Joirdon Karl Nicholas has the highest usage on the team and more than two thirds of his attempts come at the rim. He turns it over a lot and doesn't shoot free throws well though, so maybe a Kofi Cockburn strategy is in order.

To combat the interior scoring of that trio and compete on the boards, I'd like to see heavy use of big lineups. I think Davenport and Hensley should be playing the 3 spot in this one. Florida only had one guy over 6'7", and he grabbed a decent 5 rebounds in 26 minutes. That means they went 14 minutes with players 6'7" or shorter trying to battle Texas Southern's elite rebounders. Hopefully our size will be an advantage for us.

Torvik says Bearcats win by 11.
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Old 12-17-2021, 04:24 PM   #3
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Game cancelled due to Covid issues on Texas Southern. We are looking for a replacement game.
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Old 12-17-2021, 05:44 PM   #4
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Per UC twitter, we have found a replacement game. We will be playing against Ashland University and start time will be pushed back to 1 p.m. still on ESPN+.
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