Memphis Tigers at Wichita State Shockers
No. 21 Memphis Tigers Preview
Memphis went dry shooting from the floor in the final four minutes Jan. 4 against Georgia, and the Tigers saw their 10-game winning streak snapped as a result. Memphis played without D.J. Jeffries, sidelined with a case of flu that caused Damion Baugh to miss the Tigersâ€™ Monday and Tuesday practices ahead of Thursdayâ€™s American Athletic Conference matchup.
The Tigers will likely need all hands on deck, particularly on the offensive end against an outstanding Wichita State defense. Lester Quinones has been effective in three games since returning from a hand injury, scoring 37 combined points. Getting Jeffries back in the lineup will shore up Memphisâ€™ own excellent defense.
No. 23 Wichita State Shockers Preview
Wichita State is coming off a 20-point rout of Ole Miss, the 12th time in 14 games this season in which the Shockers held an opponent under 70 points. Erik Stevenson and Tyson Etienne key an aggressive defense that generates turnovers on almost a quarter of opponent possessions. The Shockers have in turn translated that to quick offense, posting 76.9 points per game.
Wichita State complements its tenacious defense with a balanced offense, featuring six players who average between 8.8 and Stevensonâ€™s team-best 14.1 points per game. Jamarius Burton sets the table with 3.9 assists per game, and he and Etienne both make better than 43 percent from 3-point range.