Austin Peay (4-4) at Memphis (5-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, December 8, 1 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: FedExForum (18,119) -- Memphis, Tennessee. Television: SportSouth. Home Record: APSU 3-1, Memphis 4-0. Away Record: APSU 0-2, Memphis 0-0. Neutral Record: APSU 1-1, Memphis 1-2. Conference Record: APSU 0-0, Memphis 0-0. Series Record: Memphis leads, 17-4.
GAME NOTES: Dave Loos will try to coach his team to an upset of the program he played for during his collegiate days as the Austin Peay Governors visit the Memphis Tigers for non-conference action at FedExForum.
Austin Peay improved to 4-4 on Wednesday with an easy 88-63 win over Oakland City of the National Christian College Athletic Association. The Governors' only wins over Division I competition came in their season opener versus Samford (75-64) and against Western Carolina (72-71) in the Cancun Challenge. Loos enters as the all-time winningest coach in Ohio Valley Conference history with a 367-314 record which includes this season and his previous 22 years at the helm of the program.
The Tigers appear to be gaining steam since their back-to-back losses to Virginia Commonwealth and Minnesota in the Battle 4 Atlantic. Memphis finished off the off-shore tourney with a five-point win over Northern Iowa before returning back to Tennessee for a pair of home games versus Tennessee-Martin and Ohio University. Coach Josh Pastner's squad ran past the Skyhawks (93-65) before delivering an impressive 84-58 rout of the Bobcats on Wednesday. The Tigers enter Saturday with a 149-17 record at FedExForum since 2004-05. They are 5-2 overall this season.
This will be the 22nd meeting in history between these schools on the hardwood. The Tigers hold a 17-4 all-time series lead and have won 15 of the 16 games played in Memphis.
The Governors were not challenged by Oakland City their last time out. Austin Peay held a dominant 48-27 edge in the rebounding battle and dished out 20 assists to just nine turnovers. Center Chris Horton had a big-time performance with 21 points, 11 rebounds, and five blocks in 24 minutes of action. Travis Betran got into a rhythm as well with 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the floor. Betran is the teams leading scorer as he is averaging 15.1 of the team's 72.6 ppg. Anthony Campbell is second on the squad with 12.9 ppg while Will Triggs (9.9 ppg) and Horton (9.6 ppg, 6.4 rpg) are netting just under 10 per contest.
Memphis was very balanced when it took down Ohio on Wednesday. Four different players scored in double figures and the team shot 50.8 percent from the field in the contest. Junior guard Geron Johnson led the way with 21 points in 29 minutes off the bench. Forward Shaq Goodwin continued his solid freshman campaign with 29 points and nine rebounds. Sophomore swingman Adonis Thomas finished with only nine points, but he still leads the team with 12 ppg. The Tigers have a very feisty junior backcourt with Joe Jackson (10.4 ppg, 4.0 apg) and Chris Crawford (9.7 ppg, 5.1 rpg) in the starting lineup. Jackson is not only a threat from downtown, he also showed off his defensive abilities by registering five steals against the Bobcats' superstar point guard D.J. Cooper.
The Tigers have rebounded from their slow start since Johnson's NCAA-imposed three-game suspension ended. Goodwin is emerging as a go-to-guy in the post and the Governors will have a hard time keeping him from notching a double- double. Although Loos is more familiar with the Memphis program than most, his team is not equipped to tame the Tigers.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Memphis 80, Austin Peay 52
12/08 10:32:56 ET