Men's Basketball Opens Season vs. Grambling State on Saturday

Redshirt freshman guard Joseph Young

Nov. 11, 2011

 Tickets  Ticket Information
 Time  7 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011
 Location  Hofheinz Pavilion (8,479) • Houston, Texas
 Radio  Live Streaming
 SportsTalk 790 • Houston IMG Sports Network
 Tom Franklin, PxP; Elvin Hayes, analyst
 Broadcast begins at 6:45 p.m.
 Television  Live Streaming
 Live Stats  GameTracker
 Series History  Houston leads 3-0
 Last Time  Houston won 95-53 • Nov. 24, 2007
 Hofheinz Pavilion • Houston, Texas
 Game Notes  Houston Notes Get Acrobat Reader
 Grambling State Notes Get Acrobat Reader
 Conference USA Notebook Get Acrobat Reader
 Social Media   FacebookTwitter

HOUSTON - Fresh off a dominating exhibition win, the University of Houston men's basketball team begins its 67th season of competition at 7 p.m., Saturday, when it plays host to Grambling State inside Hofheinz Pavilion.

In their lone exhibition contest of the season, the Cougars put on an offensive show for the hometown fans earlier this week. Houston connected on 62 percent of its shots from the field and nailed at least 60 percent in each half on the way to a 118-70 win against Concordia.

In a game that featured 10 dunks, including eight in the first half alone, it was three Cougars making their collegiate debuts that led the team. Redshirt freshman guard and nearby Yates High product Joseph Young led all players with 26 points and five 3-pointers.

Junior guard Jonathon Simmons did a little of everything for the Cougars and nearly finished with a quadruple-double. After energizing the Cougar fans with several thunderous dunks, the Houston native finished the night with 21 points, eight rebounds and game highs of nine assists and five steals in only 26 minutes.

Redshirt freshman forward TaShawn Thomas recorded his first double-double with 14 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.

Fans can hear all Cougar Basketball games live on SportsTalk 790 AM with Tom Franklin calling the play-by-play action and Cougar legend Elvin Hayes providing analysis.

Fans also can 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 watch games via Cougar All-Access.

Fans can follow live scoring by clicking the GameTracker link at UHCougars.com.

Season tickets are now available at the Houston Athletics Ticket Office. General admission season tickets begin as low as $135, while reserved seating season tickets start as low as $195

Families also will enjoy the Family Fun Plan. For only $299, families receive two adult and two youth general admission season tickets. Additional youth season tickets in the Family Fun Plan can be purchased for $75 each

In the Satisfaction Guaranteed plan, fans who purchase men's season tickets by Nov. 30 and are not satisfied with their game-day experience can return their remaining tickets by Feb. 1 and receive a full refund.

Fans can order their season tickets by calling 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or by visiting UHCougars.com and clicking the Tickets tab and following the appropriate links or by clicking the Tickets link above.

The Cougars have posted a 47-19 (.712) all-time mark during season openers. Houston also has won six of its last seven season openers, including a 63-62 overtime win against Nicholls State to start off the 2010-11 campaign.

Only a 65-63 setback to Georgia Southern during the first day of the 2K Sports Classic benefitting Coaches vs. Cancer at Duke's Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C., prevents a longer winning streak.

Saturday's game will be the first meeting between the two teams since Nov. 24, 2007. The Cougars have posted a 3-0 all-time record in the series, which began during the 2004-05 season.

Houston has enjoyed tremendous success against the Tigers, scoring at least 95 points in all three games at Hofheinz Pavilion and winning by an average of 40.0 points per contest

Saturday's game will be the season opener for Grambling State. A year ago, the Tigers posted a 12-21 overall record and finished sixth in the Southwestern Athletic Conference with an 8-10 mark.

However, GSU played well at the right time of the season and advanced to the 2011 SWAC Tournament championship game before bowing out to Alabama State.

Senior guard Raschard Boatner is the team's leading returning player, averaging 4.6 points and 1.4 rebounds per game a year ago. Senior guard Derron Hobbs averaged 4.4 points and 2.0 rebounds per game in 2010-11.

Head coach Bobby Washington is in his third season at Grambling State and brings a 19-42 career record into Saturday's opener. He previously served as head coach at Seminole Community College for five years. Prior to that, he was an assistant coach for three years at Florida A&M.

There will be no rest for the weary as the Cougars take the court again at 7 p.m., Monday to meet Utah Valley inside Hofheinz Pavilion. It will be the first meeting between the two schools.

From there, the team will make its lone road trip of the month when it meets Arkansas at 7 p.m., Friday, inside Verizon Arena in N. Little Rock, Ark. That game will be televised on Fox Sports Net, the first of nine Cougar games on television this season.

The team returns to Hofheinz Pavilion to face Oakland at 7:15 p.m., Nov. 22. That contest will be part of a doubleheader with the Houston women's team, which plays host to Oral Roberts at 5 p.m.



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