Men's Basketball Set to Open Conference USA Play vs. SMU
Jan. 7, 2013
The Last Meeting
February 25, 2012
HOUSTON - After posting an impressive record in non-conference play, the University of Houston Men's Basketball team opens Conference USA play at 7 p.m., Wednesday, when it plays host to SMU inside Hofheinz Pavilion.
With their 96-71 home win against Texas-Pan American on Thursday, the Cougars won their sixth straight game and have compiled an 11-2 record. That's the most non-conference wins - prior to postseason play - for the program since the 2007-08 team finished with 11 victories. It also ties as the second-most non-conference wins prior to the postseason, trailing only the 1954-55 team's 12 wins.
Against Texas-Pan American, sophomore guard Joseph Young led all players with 25 points and added a career-high seven 3-pointers. The Houston native and Yates High product posted the fifth-highest 3-pointer total in UH single-game history and set a personal best.
Young was one of five Cougars to reach double digits against the Broncs, joining sophomore point guard J.J. Thompson (12), freshman forward and two-time C-USA Freshman of the Week Danuel House (12), sophomore forward TaShawn Thomas (10) and redshirt freshman guard Jherrod Stiggers (10).
With his impressive numbers, Young moved into the team lead with 17.4 points per game, ahead of Thomas by only .03 points per contest, and now ranks fourth in the league. Houston is the only team in Conference USA with two players among the top-five scoring leaders.
Thomas remains the team leader with 9.9 rebounds per game and is one of only two players in the league to rank among the top-five leaders in both scoring and rebounding.
Thompson ranks eighth in the league with 3.8 assists per game but stands third with a 1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio.
Single-game tickets for all remaining home games and a variety of ticket packs to suit any budget are on sale now. To purchase tickets, fans can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center from 8 a.m., to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or by online at UHCougars.com.
Fans can buy tickets 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by clicking the red and white Tickets tab at UHCougars.com and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
To secure parking spaces and to support student-athlete scholarships through Cougar Pride for the upcoming season, fans should contact Cougar Pride at 713-743-GOUH or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Fans also can visit UHCougars.com and click the Cougar Pride tab for more information or click here.
ON THE AIR
Fans can hear Wednesday's game live on 740 AM KTRH with Tom Franklin calling the play-by-play action and Houston legend and Basketball Hall of Famer Elvin Hayes providing the analysis. The pregame show is slated to begin at 7 p.m., Wednesday.
Fans can hear the audio stream and watch the video stream live at UHCougars.com by clicking the All-Access tab and following the appropriate links to sign up for Cougar All-Access. A charge is required to see and hear games via Cougar All-Access.
Fans can follow live stats by clicking the GameTracker link or by clicking here.
SMU enters Wednesday's game with a 10-6 overall record and is 0-1 in Conference USA.
The Mustangs opened the Conference USA season with a 48-47 loss to Tulsa in Dallas on Sunday night. Trailing by as many as 16 points, the Mustangs rallied and took the lead late before Tulsa's Scottie Haralson drained a 3-pointer with four seconds left for the final margin of victory.
After starting season 8-1, the Mustangs have lost their last two games and five of their last seven. SMU is 3-2 on the road this season.
Against Tulsa, forward Jalen Jones led the Mustangs with 15 points, while center Cannen Cunningham added 12 points and guard Nick Russell added 10 points. Cunningham and Russell tied for the team lead with seven rebounds apiece with Russell adding a team-high five assists.
This season, Jones leads the Mustangs with 14.6 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. Russell stands second with 13.9 points per game but leads the team with 4.3 assists per contest. Ryan Manuel ranks third on the team with 12.1 points per game.
Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Larry Brown is in his first year at SMU and has posted a 10-6 record with the Mustangs during that time. Now, in his eighth year as a collegiate head coach, Brown has compiled an overall record of 187-67.
He previously served as head coach at UCLA (1979-81) and at Kansas (1983-88), leading the Jayhawks to the 1988 NCAA national championship.
Brown, who is a 1963 graduate of North Carolina, has posted a 2-1 all-time record against the Cougars with all previous meetings at Kansas. Wednesday's game will be his first meeting against the Cougars as SMU's head coach.
At the professional level, he assembled a 1,098-904 record in the NBA with the Nuggets (1976-79), Nets (1981-83), Spurs (1988-92), Clippers (1991-93), Pacers (1993-97), 76ers (1997-02), Pistons (2003-05), Knicks (2005-06) and Bobcats (2008-11). He also assembled a 229-107 record in the ABA with Carolina (1972-74) and Denver (1974-76).
With Wednesday's game, the Cougars will wrap up their season-long, six-game homestand. Following the SMU contest, Houston continues its C-USA slate when it travels to Hattiesburg, Miss., to face C-USA rival Southern Miss at 2 p.m., Jan. 12.
From there, the team returns to the friendly confines of Hofheinz Pavilion when it meets league-rival UCF at 5 p.m., Jan. 19. That will be the start of a brief, three-game homestand with Tulsa (Jan. 23) and UAB (Jan. 26) to follow.