Memphis vs. ECU Preview

After losing to UTEP 74-47 Saturday in El Paso – the worst loss by a Memphis basketball since the 1999-00 season – Memphis is no longer in control of its own destiny in the regular season C-USA title race.

The Tigers are now in a four-way tie for second after the loss to the Miners and need Tulsa and UAB to each lose one of their remaining two games. And, Memphis has to win its last two against ECU and Tulane, of course.

As the Commercial Appeal’s Jason smith writes, the Tigers are still trying to figure out how to incorporate Wesley Witherspoon back into the lineup. Since returning from a meniscus tear, Memphis is 2-2 with Witherspoon and 5-5 overall with him in the lineup since originally hurting his knee on Dec. 10.

While he has been a positive influence in practice — Witherspoon was slapping teammates on the rear end Monday and encouraging them when they made mistakes — he has been less of a factor on the court, averaging just 7.5 points and 4.3 rebounds in four games since returning to the lineup.

Memphis narrowly defeated ECU in the Tigers’ C-USA opener on Jan. 8 at FedExForum – a game in which both teams committed 20 turnovers. The Tigers lead C-USA at 15.6 TO’s per game, while the Pirates are in third avergaing 14.4 miscues per contest.

NOTES

  • ECU brings a 15-13 record into Wednesday’s game under first-year head coach Jeff Lebo. Lebo had been at Charlotte and Tennessee Tech before, and coached an NIT game against the Tigers as the Tenn. Tech head coach during the 2001-02 season.
  • The Pirates are an even 7-7 in C-USA play this season and have two straight victories over Rice and UTEP – the teams that handed Memphis each of its last two losses.
  • Senior Jontae Sherrod lead the Pirates in scoring averaging 15.3 ppg, while Darrius Morrow (12.0 ppg), Jamar Abrams (10.4 ppg), and Brock Young (10.3 ppg) all average in double figures for ECU.
  • Young also leads the team in assists (4.5 apg) and is fourth in Conference USA.

Also, check out my previous post: Memphis Tiger Basketball, A Year in Pictures.

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About pmccllln

21 years young. Senior PR student at the University of Memphis. Student intern for Memphis Athletic Media Relations. www.prestonmcclellan.weebly.com. Follow me @p_mcclellan.

Posted on March 1, 2011, in C-USA Basketball, ECU Pirates, J4801, Josh Pastner, Media Relations, Memphis Tigers, NCAA Basketball and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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