COLLEGE BASKETBALL REPORT

NCAA hoops: Big weeks for UH, A&M, TCU

Kelvin Sampson and the Cougars had a nice week. UHCougars.com

TEXAS LONGHORNS (5-2)

Last week (1-0): W-Florida A&M; 82-58

This week: Tuesday @ VCU 

Texas overcame a horrible 3 point shooting effort in the first half and took their game inside against Florida A&M; in the second half en route to a convincing win over the Rattlers. Dylan Osetkowski scored 19 and pulled in 8 rebounds in the effort. Texas plays only once this week, a homecoming for Shaka Smart in a road trip to VCU. 

TEXAS A&M; AGGIES (7-0)

Last week (1-0): W- UT-Rio Grande Valley 78-60

This week: Tuesday vs. Arizona, Saturday vs. Prairie View A&M;

The Aggies looked sluggish in their lone game last week, a 78-60 win over UT-Rio Grande Valley. The game was close until the last few minutes before the Aggies pulled away. DJ Hogg and Admon Gilder scored 17 points each. The Aggies get a good test this week in Arizona, who is still dangerous despite their slow start. They play Prairie View A&M; on Saturday. 

HOUSTON COUGARS (6-1) 

Last week (2-0): W-New Orleans 75-66, Arkansas 91-65

This week: Wednesday vs. Fairfield, Saturday @ Saint Louis

A strong week for the Cougars, opening with a 75-66 win over New Orleans. Rob Gray paced the Coogs with 23 points. More impressive was the crushing of a solid Arkansas team. Devin Davis, who was injured in the Arkansas game last year, had a career-high 28 points in the 91-65 victory. Corey Davis, Jr. had 17 in the win. This week should be a light one for Houston, who starts with Fairfield and finishes the week at Saint Louis, who currently rides a 4 game losing streak. 

RICE OWLS (2-6)

Last week (0-2): L-UT-Arlington 69-49, L-UT-Rio Grande Valley 69-67

This week: Saturday @ Stephen F. Austin

It was another rough week for the Owls. They started out getting drubbed by UT-Arlington, in a game where Rice shot 24.5% from the field. Saturday’s game was closer, but again ended with a loss against UT-Rio Grande Valley. Rice had two attempts from deep for the win, but missed both. Malik Osborne led the Owls with 14. Things won’t get easier for the Owls this week, as they hit the road to take on a stout Stephen F. Austin team on Saturday. 

BAYLOR BEARS (5-2)

Last week (0-2): L- @ Xavier 76-63, W-Wichita State 69-62

This week: Monday vs. Sam Houston State, Saturday vs. Randall

Baylor lost their first game this season at Xavier on Tuesday, and followed it up with their second loss later in the week. Xavier continued it’s home non-conference winning streak with a 76-63 win. Baylor fell behind early and could never recover. Terry Maston led the Bears with 15 in the loss. Baylor fell again on Saturday, this time at home against a very strong Wichita State team. The Shockers beat the Baylor zone-defense with a 10 of 16 shooting performance from 3. The Bears should rebound this week, with home games against Sam Houston and Randall. 

TCU HORNED FROGS (8-0)

Last week (2-0): W-Belmont 87-76, W-Yale 92-66

This week: Tuesday vs. SMU, Friday vs. Nevada

TCU stayed unbeaten with wins over Belmont and Yale last week. The Frogs currently have the longest win streak in the country at 13. Vladimir Brodziansky let TCU with 22 in their 87-76 win over Belmont. The Frogs dominated the boards with a 37-23 rebounding edge and took 19 free throws to the Bruins’ 6. TCU followed that up with a 92-66 drubbing of Yale. Desmond Bane led the Frogs with 18 points and Kenrich Williams had his fourth straight double-double. This week will present a tougher test for the Horned Frogs, as they get SMU and a ranked Nevada team. 

TEXAS TECH RED RAIDERS (6-1)

Last week (0-1): L-Seton Hall 89-79

This week: Tuesday vs. Nevada

The Red Raiders suffered their first loss of the season against Seton Hall in New York. The Red Raiders, who have built their season on defense, played little of it against the Pirates. Seton Hall shot 11-20 from 3 and scored 50 points in the 2nd half. Keenan Evans scored 21 and Jarrett Culver put up 17 in the loss. The Raiders get a solid Nevada team on Tuesday evening. 

SMU MUSTANGS (7-2)

Last week (2-0): W- UT-Rio Grande Valley 95-64, W- USC 72-55

This week: Tuesday @ TCU

SMU’s backcourt torched Rio Grande Valley with Shake Milton, Jimmy Whitt and Jarrey Foster combining for 59 points en route to a blowout win. Milton led the way again against USC later in the week. The Mustangs got revenge for last year’s 1st round tournament exit with a 72-55 win over the Trojans. The Ponies travel across the Metroplex to take on TCU on Tuesday.

LSU TIGERS (4-2)

Last week (1-0): W-UT-Martin 84-60

This week: Sunday vs. UNC Wilmington

LSU got a good showing from their bench in their lone game this week, a 84-60 win over UT-Martin. Duop Reath and Daryl Edwards combined for 30 points off the bench. Skylar Mays led the Tigers with 18. LSU has another low-volume week with just 1 game in the upcoming week against UNC-Wilmington.

Ed Oliver skips bowl game to prepare for the NFL draft. Houston Cougar Football Facebook

The regular season is over for Houston football, but a lot has occurred since last week. Let’s take a look at what to expect for UH:

The Armed Forces Bowl

Houston (8-4, 5-3 in AAC) will face Army (9-2) at Carter Stadium in Fort Worth, Texas on Dec. 22. The Black Knights are ranked No. 22 in the Top 25 AP Poll, mostly due to their prolific triple option rushing attack which ranks third in the nation. They are on a seven game winning streak since losing to Oklahoma. The Big 12 Conference Champion struggled at home against Army, but would later win in overtime. Army averages 300 yards per game on the ground this year, making them the third team (Navy, Memphis, Army) that Houston will face that is ranked within the top five in rushing. The matchup is not good for a depleted Houston defense. The Black Knights will play Navy this weekend, a conference foe of the Cougars who has had a terrible season. Army vs Navy will be the only college football game this weekend, where you can get a sneak peak of what to expect if you haven’t seen the Black Knights play all season. Plus, the uniforms for this game are always pretty cool.

King vs Milton

Houston comes into this bowl game with their heads hung low after what most consider to be a disappointing season. Injuries, most notably those to D’Eriq King and Ed Oliver, sidetracked the Cougars from heading into the AAC Championship game after Memphis blew them out in Week 13. King and UCF QB McKenzie Milton were both nominated for AAC Offensive Player of the Year, of which Milton took home for a second straight season. Milton humbly gave King an honorable mention by saying, “Shout out to D’Eriq King who is just as, if not, more deserving of this honor. Promise we’ll both be back better than ever!” King played only 11 games, where he reached 50 total touchdowns, 14 of which came from the ground, threw for 2,982 passing yards, and rushed for 674 yards.

Ed Oliver Denies Bowl Game

The All-American defensive tackle Ed Oliver decided to sit out his final bowl game to begin preparing for the NFL draft. He announced his decision via twitter where he thanked the University of Houston, the coaching staff, and his teammates. He finished by saying, “To all the fans, thank you for your relentless support. Forever I will be a Coog!” Oliver’s decision came about a week after he publicly announced that he will be playing in whatever bowl UH was assigned, even after he had to be benched for tweaking his knee in Week 13 vs Memphis. He missed four games this season after suffering from an uncalled chop block against Navy. In his three years in Houston, Oliver accounted for 193 total total tackles, 54 of which were tackles for loss, 13.5 sacks, 14 passes defended, six forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and one blocked kick. He was the first underclassmen to win the Outland Trophy in 2017, which is awarded to the best college interior lineman. This season, Oliver won AAC Defensive Player of the Year honors.

Coaching Changes/Extensions

Houston still doesn’t have a defensive coordinator. Mark D’Onofrio was fired after the Memphis game for managing one of the worst defenses in college football, and also one of the worst defenses in the history of the program. The UH defense allowed a total of 412 points, being the fifth most allowed points in a season in school history, while also allowing 5,862 total yards. It seems like Houston is in no rush in finding a replacement.

Kendal Briles accepted a contract extension from UH after interviewing with Texas State for the head coaching job vacancy. He was also widely considered for a SEC offensive coordinator position of which was not disclosed by sources. The new three-year deal is worth $2.1 million, making Briles one of the highest paid assistants in the nation. Offensive line coach Randy Clements also enjoyed a new three-year extension. Consider both a package deal. The Houston offense averaged 46.4 points per game, rushed for 2991 yards, and passed for 3611 yards, making it one of the best offenses in the nation.

AAC Bowl Matchups

Armed Forces Bowl- Houston vs Army

Military Bowl- Cincinnati vs Virginia Tech

Gasparilla Bowl- USF vs Marshall

Birmingham Bowl- Memphis vs Wake Forest

Independence Bowl- Temple vs Duke

Cure Bowl- Tulane vs Louisiana Lafayette

Most Notable AAC Bowl Matchup

Fiesta Bowl- UCF vs LSU

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome