News, Numbers, & Notes Heading Into The SMU Game

UH’s overall scoring defense is 6.77 ppg better than #2 Cincinnati among AAC teams. For context: teams 2-9 are within 6.77 points of each other.

UH’s scoring margin in conference games is +15.89. Other league members with positive scoring margins: Memphis (+5.5), SMU (+4.67), Cincinnati (+4.45), and Tulane (+1.22). If you combine those four, they are +15.84 – still less than UH’s.

To be #2 in scoring margin nationally, which UH is, you need to be great at other things. The Cougars are number:

– 3 in scoring defense;
– 12 in turnover margin;
– 8 in three-point defense;
– 17 in blocked shots;
– 9 in offensive rebounds;
– 1 in field-goal percentage defense.

A little Cougar History that’s not so pleasant: Yesterday, we highlighted the three perfect Januarys that UH has had since beginning SWC conference play in 1976. We did not highlight the other perfect January – 1993-94.

Alvin Brooks’ Cougars went 0-7 that January, coming during the middle of a 13-game losing streak that started his second week as head coach (it is the longest losing streak in school history). Alvin also had a nine- and a ten-game losing streak in the 1997-98 season, which would be his last. He was fired on March 1 that year, the day after the regular season ended.

So here’s me, the dork in suspenders, and Mark Berman, with quite a bit more hair than today, talking to Brooks right after his dismissal was announced. He was a totally stand-up guy.

Alvin became a great assistant after leaving UH, working under James Dickey and Kelvin Sampson at UH (among other stops). He’s having a rough year in his first season as head coach at Lamar, though (2-20, 0-11 WAC).

Compare those 1990s losing streaks to this: despite all the obstacles encountered, in the last two seasons, the Cougars have not been outside the top-8 in the NCAA NET.

Tonight could be two milestones. Obviously, the most important is Fabian White Jr. becoming the all-time winningest player in UH history with 110 wins. The second, less obvious, is that a win gets UH to 132 wins over the last five seasons, tying the most in school history.



I’ll do the math on the best 10-year stretches soon.

Tonight will be the 89th time SMU and UH have played basketball, and the Ponies are UH’s most-played opponent. UH has beaten SMU more than anyone except Rice:


The three opponents in this current three-game stretch are tied for the most wins against UH in school history:



There are seven players nationally out of over 5000 that are in the top-20 in both offensive rebounding and FG%, and Josh Carlton is one of them. He’s shooting 68.8% at the rim and averaging 3.32 offensive boards a game.

Lagniappe: With Auburn’s loss last night, there are just seven teams left in the country that are undefeated in their conference.

Gonzaga and Houston are the only “major” programs left.


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