Men’s basketball looks to extend conference win streak in midweek matchup with Memphis

The Huskies take on the Orange at MSG as a part of the Jimmy V Classic on Dec. 5, 2017. UConn fell to Syracuse with a final score of 62-73. Coach Kevin Ollie talks to his players during the game. (Olivia Stenger/The Daily Campus)

The UConn men's basketball team will get a chance to further improve its conference play record when UConn take on Memphis tonight on the road.

The Huskies (10-7, 3-2 The American) are currently riding a three-game winning streak, racking up wins over ECU, UCF and Tulane after dropping their first two games in conference play. Coach Kevin Ollie has found a lot more consistency in his lineups as well—the starting five of Jalen Adams, Christian Vital, Terry Larrier, Isaiah Whaley and Josh Carlton has not changed since playing the Pirates.

Both Whaley and Carlton have shown improvements in their play, most notably with their stellar defense against 7-foot-6 Tacko Fall. Ollie said he's impressed with their energy and, with Eric Cobb out indefinitely due to a team matter, will get a chance to see how they play with more minutes.

Meanwhile, the trio of Adams, Larrier and Vital continue to be the main source of points for UConn—they have combined to score 140 of the Huskies' last 199 points over their last three games. Adams had 25 points on 6-for-10 shooting from the floor and 2-for-5 shooting from 3-point range in UConn's most recent win over Tulane on the road.

After not playing well on the road, or really anywhere, the Huskies have noticeably improved over their last two games with fewer turnovers, more assists, better offensive sets and stronger defense.

UConn is 7-4 all-time against Memphis (12-6, 3-2 The American) but the Tigers had their number last season with a 70-61 win at the FedEx Forum. Memphis is also riding a three-game winning streak, beating Tulsa, Tulane and most recently Temple in overtime. Junior Jeremiah Martin leads the Tigers in scoring with 18.5 points per game.

The Huskies had a strong showing from the 3-point line against Tulane, hitting seven of their 14 attempts, and they hopefully won't have to worry about Memphis beyond the arc—the Tigers shoot 29.8 percent there, even worse than UConn's 31 percent.

UConn has a chance to build more momentum before their highly-anticipated matchup with No. 1 Villanova at the XL Center. The two teams will tip-off at 9 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.


Stephanie Sheehan is the managing editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at stephanie.sheehan@uconn.edu. She tweets @steph_sheehan.