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Southern Miss Hosts Memphis in Battle of Top Two Teams in Conference USA

Jerrold Brooks

Feb. 8, 2013

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HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss opens a two-game homestand this Saturday, Feb. 9, when it hosts Memphis in a battle of the top two teams in Conference USA. Tip-off is scheduled for 3 p.m. CT and will be televised by CBS Sports Network.

The Last Meeting
Southern Miss75
February 1, 2012
Hattiesburg, Miss.
Southern Miss Knocks off Memphis, 75-72; Snap 18-Game Losing Streak to the Tigers
Southern Miss connected on eight straight free throws in the final 2:30 to defeat Memphis 75-72 and snap an 18-game losing streak to the Tigers.

Southern Miss and Memphis will meet for the 89th time in a series that dates back to 1938. The Tigers hold a 64-24 advantage and have won 18 of the last 19 meetings. In Hattiesburg, Memphis holds a 21-14 lead. Last year, the teams split the season series, with UM winning 60-58 in Memphis and Southern Miss taking a 75-72 victory in Hattiesburg. The margin of victory in the last seven games is just 3.4 points.

Southern Miss comes into tonight's game with an 18-5 record, 7-1 in Conference USA. The Golden Eagles had their 10-game winning streak snapped Wednesday night, falling, 60-58, at UCF.

Senior forward Jonathan Mills led Southern Miss with 15 points and nine rebounds. Senior guard Dwayne Davis had 10 points, five rebounds and three assists and junior guard Jerrold Brooks added 10 points and three steals.

Davis is leading the team with 12.9 points while pulling down 4.5 rebounds. He is also sixth in Conference USA in three-point field goal percentage (.423). Brooks is second on the team with 10.7 points. Junior guard Neil Watson is averaging 9.3 points and is second in Conference USA in steals (2.0), third in three-point field goal percentage (.463) and fourth in assists (5.0). Junior forward Michael Craig is adding 9.1 points and 5.3 rebounds. He is also connecting on 58.2-percent from the floor, which is fourth in the league. Mills is scoring 9.0 points and grabbing a team-high 6.7 boards a game, including 3.4 offensive rebounds per game, which is third in C-USA.

Southern Miss is scoring 73.6 points per game but allowing just 58.4, which leads Conference USA. The Golden Eagles are shooting 48.6-percent from the floor and allowing its opponents to just 38.8-percent, both of which are first in the league, respectively. The Golden Eagles lead C-USA in three-point field goal percentage (.390), and are second in three-point field goal percentage defense (.312). Southern Miss is also outrebounding its opponents, 35.3-to-28.8. The Golden Eagles are also leading the league and are second in the country in steals with 11.8.

Head coach Donnie Tyndall is in his first season at the helm of the Southern Miss men's basketball program. Tyndall is 18-5 (.783) as head coach of the Golden Eagles. He has compiled a 132-90 (.595) record in seven years as a head coach.

Memphis enters tonight's game with a 19-3 record, 8-0 in Conference USA. The Tigers are on a 13-game winning streak after defeating SMU, 60-52.

Junior guard Geron Johnson led Memphis with a game-high 19 points while grabbing seven rebounds. Sophomore forward Adonis Thomas had 14 points and a team-high nine rebounds.

Junior guard Joe Jackson leads Memphis with 13.8 points. He is also second in Conference USA in three-point field goal percentage (.500), fifth in assists (4.5) and seventh in field goal percentage (.538). Thomas is scoring 10.6 points. Johnson is scoring 10.0 points per game. Senior forward D.J. Stephens is leading the team with 6.7 rebounds while leading the league in blocked shots (2.4) and junior forward Tarik Black is tops in C-USA in field goal percentage (.614).

As a team, the Tigers are third in Conference USA in scoring with 73.6 points per game while allowing just 63.0. UM is connecting on 47.0% from the field, while the opposition is connecting on just 39.1%, which is third and second in C-USA, respectively. From three-point distance, the Tigers are connecting on 35.5%, and are allowing just 33.6%. Memphis is also outrebounding its opponents, 37.7-to-32.2. The Tigers also lead the league in blocked shots (6.6) and are second in steals (9.3).

Head coach Josh Pastner is in his fourth season at the helm of the Memphis men's basketball program, where he is 94-32 (.746).

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