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Texas Southern advances to face top-seeded Kansas Thursday night in Round 1 of NCAA Tournament

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi's Simeon Fryer, back, defends against Texas Southern's AJ Lawson during the first half of a First Four game in the NCAA men's college basketball tournament Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in Dayton, Ohio. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)

Texas Southern University topped Texas A&M; Corpus Christi, 76-67, on Tuesday night in Dayton, Ohio, at the first of four First Four games in this year's NCAA Tournament.

The Tigers now will face top-seeded Kansas (28-6) in the opening round on Thursday night at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas.

Tipoff time is set for 8:57 p.m. Central.

No Texas Southern starter scored more than 7 points in Tuesday's win, but the Tigers saw three reserves reach double figures. 6-foot-3, senior guard Bryson Etienne led the way with 21 points, while 6-9 senior forward John Walker III added 16 points and 5-10 junior PJ Henry scored 14.

Starting forward Brison Greshman, 6-9 from New Orleans, scored 6 points and tallied a game-high 14 rebounds in the Tigers' win.

Here's a primer on KU's first-round opponent. Oddsmakers listed Kansas as a 22.5-point favorite in this matchup.

TEXAS SOUTHERN TIGERS

Located: Houston

Record: 19-12, 13-5 SWAC

Qualification: SWAC champion; as No. 2 seed, beat No. 1 Alcorn State 87-62 in final

Coach: Johnny Jones (Fourth season, 75-51)

Top players: Senior forward John Walker III, 9.9 points per game; senior forward Joirdon Karl Nicholas, 9.2 ppg, 6 rebounds per game; senior forward Brison Gresham, 7.2 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.2 blocks per game; senior guard Bryson Etienne, 8.5 ppg.

NET ranking: 197

KenPom.com ranking: 188

NCAA Tournament appearances: NCAA Tournament appearances: 10th; last in 2021, an 88-62 loss to No. 1 seed Michigan State after a 60-52 win over Mount St. Mary's in a First Four game.

Strengths: Allows 65.5 ppg, 65th in Division I; holds opponents to 39.6% shooting (23rd); holds opponents to 29.1% from 3-point range (18th); grabs 39.5 rebounds per game (19th) and 12.1 offensive rebounds per game (34th); 5 blocks per game (20th).

Weaknesses: Adjusted offensive efficiency of 98.1, according to KenPom.com, 270th out of 350 teams in Division 1; makes 67.1% of its free throws (308th); commits 14.9 turnovers per game (323rd) and has a 0.72 assist-to-turnover ratio (342nd); 10.8 assists per game (320th).

Notable wins: At Florida, 69-54

Notable losses: None

Comments

Dirk Medema

It was tied with 5 to go, but 26 of 35 won it at the FT line. There wasn’t much that deviated from the summary above.

Bring the tourney intensity and we should be able to sub judiciously. Stay rested for the weekend.

2 months ago

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Tony Bandle

TexSo was surprisingly athletic with a lot of speed and length but if we bring even a third of our third ranked ability, the game should be pretty much over. Still, guys, just go 100% to stay on track!!!

2 months ago

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Robert Brock

The Tigers are careless with the ball. They turn it over a lot.

2 months ago

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Jonathan Allison


I didn't watch much more than the final 8 minutes or so, but Corpus applied some good defensive pressure at the end of the game and Southern clearly wasn't ready for it.

That said, Southern looks like a very experienced group with some grown men on that team. Kansas needs to be mentally prepared and not overlook these guys. It shouldn't be close, but that doesn't mean that it won't be

2 months ago

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