S-M-U (2-2) at Oral Roberts (2-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, November 21st, 8:30 p.m. (et).
FACTS & STATS: Site: Mabee Center (10,575) -- Tulsa, Oklahoma. Television: None. Home Record: SMU 2-0, Oral Roberts 1-0. Away Record: SMU 0-0, Oral Roberts 0-1. Neutral Record: SMU 0-2, Oral Roberts 1-1. Conference Record: SMU 0-0, Oral Roberts 0-0. Series Record: SMU leads, 7-1.
GAME NOTES: The Golden Eagles of Oral Roberts shoot for their third straight win tonight as they tangle with the SMU Mustangs in the consolation round of the 2011 NIT Season Tip-Off at the Mabee Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Since losing back-to-back games to kick off the 2011-12 campaign versus West Virginia and Texas-San Antonio, the Golden Eagles have bounced back with victories against Arkansas-Pine Bluff (80-44) and Austin Peay (71-59) in order to even their season record.
As for the Mustangs, they too are 2-2 at the moment although one of those triumphs was a season-opening beat down of McMurry (78-49). More recently, the team snapped a two-game slide by slipping past Florida Gulf Coast in a 65-64 decision on Saturday at home.
With respect to the all-time series between these two schools on the hardwood, the Mustangs have won all but one of the previous eight meetings with Oral Roberts, dating back to the 1991-92 campaign. The Mustangs won the most recent matchup last March during the CollegeInsider.com Tournament by a score of 64-57 in overtime.
Against the Eagles of Florida Gulf Coast, the Mustangs trailed by as many as 17 points in the second half and needed a layup by Ryan Manuel with just 21 seconds remaining in order to complete the comeback bid and snatch the one- point win in Dallas. Manuel finished the meeting a perfect 3-of-3 from the floor for eight points off the bench, while Robert Nyakundi posted a team-high 18 points and eight rebounds for the group. Also scoring in double figures were Jalen Jones and London Giles with 15 and 11 points, respectively, although the latter shot just 3-of-13 from the field and turned the ball over six times. Nyakundi is the top scorer for the team after four games with his 13.3 ppg and is also the leader on the glass with close to six rebounds per game as well. In a bit of a surprise, Nyakundi's eight assists have him tied for the team lead in that department as well.
Against Austin Peay, the Golden Eagles used just two players off the bench as the starting five responded with all but eight of the team's 71 points in the double-digit win at home. Steven Roundtree cranked out 24 points and eight rebounds while Michael Craion posted a double-double with 12 points and 11 boards to go along with his four steals and three assists. Roderick Pearson and Dominique Morrison accounted for 11 and 10 points, respectively, as well. A starter in all four games, Roundtree paces the team with 17.0 ppg, stemming from an impressive 56.1 percent shooting from the floor, his 7.8 rpg placing him second on the unit behind only Craion (12.8 ppg) who is pulling in an even eight rebounds per contest. Morrison (16.8 ppg) has been a steady fixture at the free-throw line where he has made good on all but three of his 27 attempts thus far.
SMU's victories thus far haven't been all that impressive, and there's little reason to think the team will be able to come out with a different approach tonight.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Oral Roberts 69, SMU 58
11/21 10:31:18 ET