After a pair of narrow wins to open Conference USA play, the Tigers had no trouble at all tonight in Houston, earning their sixth straight victory with a blowout over the Cougars. The 34-point margin of victory is the largest for Memphis this season.
Houston entered the game as C-USA's top-scoring team, averaging 76.6 points per game. But for the sixth straight contest, Memphis held its opponent to less than 40 percent from the field (the Cougars shot 34 percent). With UCF's loss earlier today to Marshall, the Tigers are now tied with the Thundering Herd atop the conference, each with a record of 3-0.
Four Tiger sophomores shared the spotlight at Hofheinz Pavilion. With 14 points and 10 rebounds, Will Barton achieved his ninth double-double of the season (the most for a Tiger since Joey Dorsey had 10 in 2007-08). Coming off a five-block performance against Southern Miss last Wednesday, Tarik Black blocked five more shots and scored 10 points tonight. Chris Crawford hit five three-pointers, tying a career high, on his way to 19 points (a new career high). And Joe Jackson came off the bench for his finest game in more than a month (16 points and five assists).
The Tigers played the game without freshman forward Adonis Thomas, who injured an ankle during practice on Friday. His status for the Tigers' next game — Wednesday at UCF — is unclear.
Memphis improved to 12-5 overall with the win.