KANSAS CITY, Mo. —- How might Memphis not make an extended tournament run?
Maybe if it doesn’t have a point guard.
The Tigers are only up 34-31 in a 2/15 game, and the issue here is Tyreke Evans was kept to nine minutes in the first half against Cal State Northridge. Without him, Memphis is rudderless, regardless of whether Antonio Anderson, Willie Kemp or Doneal Mack handles the ball.
This is a problem, one that should correct itself for today’s purposes now that the second half is about to tip.
Someone, though, will be smart enough to get Evans in foul trouble again down the road. And that will create plenty of problems.
Memphis is fortunate Roburt Sallie dropped 17 points in the first half, surpassing his previous career best of 13 points. Northridge, meanwhile, predictably struggled with Memphis’ pressure and committed nine turnovers.
Anyway, the teams are coming back out on the floor. We’ll find out soon enough whether we’ll see a No. 2 seed go down for the first time since 2001. That was the time Hampton stunned Iowa State. Remember who played the mid-afternoon (Eastern) game that day in Boise? Yep, it was Maryland.
More to come from Sprint Center.
—- Patrick Stevens