Tigers Begin NCAA Tournament Thursday against Boise State
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Memphis Tigers are in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2014 and open play Thursday with a first-round matchup against Boise State at Moda Center in Portland, Ore. The West Region game between the ninth-seeded Tigers and the eighth-seeded Broncos is scheduled to tip off at 12:45 p.m. CT on TNT.
After falling to 9-8 on Jan. 20 after a third-straight loss, the Tigers won 12 of their last 14 games to help lock up an at-large bid to the Big Dance. That included two wins over nationally-ranked Houston, with the one on Feb. 12 snapping the Cougars’ 37-game home winning streak.
Memphis is making its 27th NCAA Tournament in school history, and the Tigers have won at least one game in both of its last two NCAA Tournament trips. In Memphis’ last NCAA Tournament appearance in 2014, the Tigers were seeded eighth and defeated George Washington in Raleigh, N.C., 71-66, before losing to number-one seed Virginia, 78-60. The Tigers also advanced to the second round in 2013 as a six seed, before bowing out to third-seeded Michigan State in Auburn Hills, Mich.
Memphis and Boise State are familiar postseason foes, as the two squared off less than a year ago in the quarterfinals of the National Invitation Tournament. Memphis knocked off the Broncos, 59-56, on March 25, 2021 in Denton, Texas, and the Tigers then defeated Colorado State and Mississippi State to capture the 2021 NIT title.
With a win Thursday against Boise State, the Tigers would advance to play the winner of a first-round game between the nation’s overall number-one seed Gonzaga and 16th-seeded Georgia State on Saturday.
No. 9 Memphis Tigers (21-10) vs. No. 8 Boise State Broncos (27-7)
2022 NCAA Tournament West Region First Round
Thursday, March 17, 2022 | 12:45 p.m. CT
Moda Center (19,393); Portland, Ore.
Television: TNT (Andrew Catalon, pxp; Steve Lappas, analysis; Andy Katz, reporter)
Radio: 98.9 THE ROAR OF MEMPHIS (Dave Woloshin, pxp; Matt Dillon, analysis); Westwood One (Ryan Radtke, pxp; Dan Dickau, analysis)
BY THE NUMBERS
- 4-3: Memphis’ record this season against NCAA Tournament teams, with wins over Alabama, Virginia Tech and Houston twice and losses to Murray State, Iowa State and Houston once.
- 1,854: Memphis’ approximate mileage to fly to Portland, which is the seventh-longest of any NCAA Tournament team’s first-round travel; Seton Hall leads the way traveling 2,425 miles to San Francisco.
- 13.6: Jalen Duren‘s points per game over the last five games, along with 11.0 rebounds per contest; he is shooting 61.4 percent from the floor (27-44).
- 16-1: Memphis’ record this season when allowing 69 points or fewer in a game; the Tigers have allowed 75 points or fewer in 13-straight games.
- 23: Consecutive free throws converted by Tyler Harris, whose 85.6 percent career free throw shooting is tops all time by a Tiger.
THE LAST TIME OUT
- (AP) Fabian White Jr. scored 20 points, fellow big man Josh Carlton had 18 and 18th-ranked Houston beat Memphis 71-53 in the American Athletic Conference championship game Sunday.
- Tigers center Jalen Duren, a 6-foot-11 freshman who was a first-team All-AAC pick, had 14 points and 10 rebounds.
- DeAndre Williams had 10 points.
- Taze Moore had 11 points and eight assists for Houston.
- Jamal Shead scored 10 points.
- Kyler Edwards had eight points, 11 rebounds and five assists.
- The Tigers, after trailing by as many as 15 points in the second half, closed to 51-47 on Duren’s emphatic two-handed dunk with 6:55 left.