Houston (5-2) at TCU (6-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Tuesday, December 4, 9 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Daniel-Meyer Coliseum (7,201) -- Fort Worth, Texas. Television: Fox Sports Southwest. Home Record: Houston 3-1, TCU 5-1. Away Record: Houston 2-1, TCU 0-0. Neutral Record: Houston 0-0, TCU 1-1. Conference Record: Houston 0-0, TCU 0-0. Series Record: Houston leads, 47-25.
GAME NOTES: The TCU Horned Frogs look for their third win in a row as they host the Houston Cougars in a Lone Star State showdown at Daniel-Meyer Coliseum.
The Cougars began the season with five wins in a row before being defeated by Prairie View A&M (77-75) and Texas A&M (70-58) in their last two outings. They were challenged by San Jose State (77-75) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (77-75), in the early season, but managed to rout their other opponents. Houston relies on its offensive production to push past foes. The team is averaging 80.9 ppg on 46.1 percent shooting from the field, while also owning a +4.7 margin on the boards.
TCU improved to 6-2 its last time out with a 61-52 decision over Southern Utah. The victory was the second in a row and third in four games for the Horned Frogs, whose losses both came in games decided by three points against SMU and Northwestern. Coach Trent Johnson has done an excellent job in his first season at the helm of the program. TCU has outshot seven of eight opponents and posted second half comebacks in five of its six wins. The Horned Frogs are leading the Big 12 and No. 3 in the NCAA in scoring defense with an allowed average of only 52.6 ppg.
Houston owns a 47-25 edge in the all-time series with TCU, although the Frogs have won two straight and five of the last seven. Former conference rivals in both the Southwest Conference (1976-96) and Conference USA (2002-05), the teams will play for the fourth time following TCU's departure from C-USA following the 2004-05 campaign. The Frogs own an 18-13 edge in games played in Fort Worth, including wins in three straight meetings and 11 of the last 14.
The Cougars were unable to slow down the Aggies their last time out, as Texas A&M converted 61.3 percent of its field goal in the first half to run out to a 40-26 halftime advantage. Houston fought back but could not overcome the early deficit. J.J. Thompson led the way with 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field. Jherrod Stiggers provided a spark off the bench with 11 points in 22 minutes. TaShawn Thomas paced the team with 16.6 points and 10.7 boards per contest. Joseph Young (13.8), Stiggers (13), and Danuel House are all scoring in double-figures as well.
TCU's stifling defense was on display its last time out, as it held SUU to 32.7 percent shooting from the floor and forced the Thunderbirds into 14 turnovers. Despite losing the rebounding battle 36-29, the Horned Frogs cruised to the nine-point win by converting 48.9 percent of its field goal attempts and 15-of-21 at the free-throw line. Kyan Anderson had a slow start to the season as he entered the team's matchup with UAB on Nov. 24 scoring 8.2 ppg. However, the sophomore guard exploded for 56 points over the team's last two outings. Devonta Abron chipped in 17 points in TCU's win over SUU.
Houston's record indicates it is better than it actually is. The Cougars do not play well against adequate opposition, which TCU will provide. The Horned Frogs will be a very difficult team to tangle with as long as Anderson continues to thrive on the offensive end. However, if Anderson has an off- night, so will TCU.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: TCU 67, Houston 63
12/04 10:53:27 ET