Now we’re starting to get into the nitty-gritty at the Conference USA Tournament in El Paso. Game one of four in the men’s quarterfinal features the second-seeded Tulsa Golden Hurricane and the seventh-seeded Tulane Green Wave, with the winner advancing to the semifinals tomorrow.
How they got here: Tulane topped (10) North Texas 66-61 behind a furious second-half comeback that saw them put up 45 points in the second stanza to move past the Mean Green. Tulsa, of course, has been sitting pretty with a double-bye as the two seed, and haven’t played in a week–but C-USA coach of the year Danny Manning has his team on an eight-game winning streak.
Regular season matchup: The regular season matchup was one the Green Wave would rather forget, as the Golden Hurricane blew them out of the Reynolds Center, 97-71, back on January 9 behind 11-23 shooting from three. Shaq Harrison went off for 23 points in that one and D’Andre Wright dropped in 18 as all five Tulsa starters hit double figures.
Who to watch for on Tulsa: James Woodard (14.9), Rashad Smith (12.0) and Harrison (10.1) lead the Golden Hurricane in scoring.
Winner takes on: The Middle Tennessee/Old Dominion winner in the first semifinal, tomorrow afternoon at 4pm–nationally televised on CBS Sports Network.