Tulsa (16-11) at Tulane (15-12)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 25th, 8:00 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Fogelman Arena (3,600) -- New Orleans, Louisiana. Television: Cox Sports TV. Home Record: Tulsa 10-4, Tulane 12-3. Away Record: Tulsa 5-5, Tulane 2-9. Neutral Record: Tulsa 1-2, Tulane 1-0. Conference Record: Tulsa 9-4, Tulane 3-10. Series Record: Tulsa leads, 8-4.
GAME NOTES: The Tulsa Golden Hurricane look to keep pace in the Conference USA standings tonight as they visit Fogelman Arena to tangle with the Tulane Green Wave.
Tulsa notched a 60-56 home win in the first meeting on Jan. 18, its fourth straight victory in the head-to-head series.
With three games to play in the regular season, Tulsa sits one game back of Memphis for the top spot in the C-USA standings. Those two will square off against one another in the regular season finale next weekend. But until then, Tulsa must first take care of business on the road tonight and then at UAB on Wednesday. The Golden Hurricane have been idle since last Saturday's 69-50 rout over Rice, as they have split their last four contests after a season- long seven-game win streak.
Meanwhile, Tulane has dropped four in a row and six of its last seven contests. The Green Wave played only two home games in that stretch as they have won only twice on the road this season. Coming off Wednesday's 64-50 setback at SMU, the Green Wave will wrap up the regular season by playing two of their final three games at Fogelman Arena.
Hoping to avoid a third loss in a span of four games, Tulsa closed out Saturday's win over Rice with a 20-3 run. That late run could prove to be a key turning point if this last week of the regular season shakes out in Tulsa's favor. First-place Memphis and second-place Southern Miss both lost last weekend, and USM also lost this past Wednesday to enter the weekend in a second-place tie with Tulsa. Sophomore guard Jordan Clarkson tallied a career- high 23 points against Rice, marking his 24th consecutive game in double figures. Senior reserve center Steven Idlet played just 18 minutes but managed to score 18 points as he went a perfect 8-of-8 at the free-throw line. The Golden Hurricane made 21-of-26 foul shots (.808) as a team and also knocked down 8-of-16 three-pointers. Defensively, they held Rice to 33.3-percent shooting from the floor, including a 7-of-28 effort (.250) in the second half. On the season, Clarkson paces the squad with 16.4 ppg and has picked up his game in conference play. A 39.4-percent shooter from beyond the arc this season, Clarkson has buried 49.1 percent of his three-point attempts against C-USA foes. Scottie Haralson (11.4 ppg) and Idlet (10.0 ppg) round out the team's double-digit scorers.
Tulane has struggled offensively ever since top scorer Kendall Timmons (13.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg) suffered a season-ending Achilles injury against Southern Miss on Jan. 7. One player who has benefited in his absence with a larger role is Ricky Tarrant (15.5 ppg), who is averaging 19.5 points in conference play. Tarrant has knocked down 30-of-73 threes (.411) against league foes, while Jordan Callahan (11.9 ppg) can also hit from outside (49-of-135). Down low, Josh Davis is scoring 10.6 ppg and leads the team with 9.4 rebounds per tilt. Against SMU, Tarrant led all scorers with 21 points as he played all 40 minutes. However, he also shot just 5-of-15 from the floor (1-of-7 three- pointers) and committed eight turnovers. He was also the only player in double figures for the Green Wave, who shot a brutal 28.9 percent from the floor as a team, including a 2-of-22 effort from the perimeter and finished with only 13 buckets for the game. Tulane also turned the ball over 20 times to go along with just seven assists, as SMU capitalized with a 21-6 advantage in points off turnovers. The Green Wave never led in the contest.
With a shot at the C-USA regular-season crown still up for grabs, don't expect Tulsa to take its foot off the gas pedal here.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Tulsa 69, Tulane 67
02/25 10:39:13 ET