Nate Hinton Surges As Coogs Win

Nate Hinton slicing through defenders / Photo by Mario Puente


 
#25 Houston struggled out of the gate in both halves but came back with strong efforts to put Tulane away, 75-62. The streaky-shooting Cougars showed up again: after a 4/16 run to start the game, the Coogs made 11 of 16 shots to end the half.

At one point in the first half, the Cougars went on an 18-3 run and Tulane would never get closer than 10 points. In the game, Houston made 10 three-pointers – the first time they’ve hit double-digits since the HBU game just before Thanksgiving.

Nate Hinton had another double-double (12 points, 12 rebounds) while adding 7 assists, coming up just shy of UH’s first triple-double in 27 years (Bo Outlaw, 1993). It was Nate’s eighth double-double of the year; he’s grabbed 10 rebounds or more 10 times this season.

“Nate Hinton came here as a guy who could rebound, and now he’s become a great rebounder,” Kelvin Sampson said of his sophomore. “He’s good at it. He’s really good at it. He’s the best rebounding guard I’ve ever coached.”

Houston shot 50% for the fourth time this season: UH hit 30 of 56 shots (54%) on the night – every single make was in the lane or from outside.

UH buckets: the Cougars dominated inside and out.

Caleb Mills had 18 on 4-of-7 shooting from three-point range. And Quentin Grimes continued to get it back on track. Grimes scored 15 on 6/11 shooting and also added 5 assists – his 5th game of the year with five or more. In his last five games, Grimes has hit 17 of 34 shots (.500) and has scored 49 points.

Hinton, Grimes, and Mills combined for 45 points, 16 rebounds, and 14 assists (on 18/30 shooting). That’s a pretty incredible night from two sophomores and a freshman.

Three Head Coaches On The Floor

It was an odd sight last night: Alvin Brooks, Ray McCallum, and Kelvin Sampson all coaching on the same floor at the same time.

Ray McCallum (hand to face) sitting next to Tulane coach Ron Hunter / Photo by Mario Puente

The three have combined to spend 15 years as the man at Houston. Perhaps no other time in NCAA history has something like that occurred. Can you think of a time when three (former and present) head coaches of a school were coaching in a game at that school?

In addition, the next head coach of the Cougars, HCIW Kellen Sampson, was also on the bench.

Moving Up

Kelvin Sampson now has 134 wins as a Cougar head coach and is now one win away from tying Alden Pasche for third-most all-time. Kelvin is 8 wins from catching Pat Foster (142) for second all-time.

Sampson is the only UH head coach with a winning percentage over 70%:

70.2% – Kelvin Sampson
67.9% – Guy V. Lewis
66.0% – Pat Foster

Akeem: The Triple-Double King

As Nate Hinton was approaching triple-double territory, I looked up UH’s history on it. Obviously, in 40 minutes, it’s a hard metric to hit. In Cougar history, it’s only happened 16 times and 10 of them came from the then-named Akeem Olajuwon.

Hakeem made it a common occurance over his four years but blocks were his specialty. In all 10 games above, Akeem swatted 10 shots. His best blocked shot game? An early-season win (69-51) over Biscayne in 1983. Hakeem had 10 points, 18 rebounds, and 16 blocked shots.
 

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Down A Man, Cougars Come Through