C-USA Tournament Preview

Patrick Crush previews this weeks C-USA Tournament. Team Capsules, Schedule and more.

C-USA Tournament Preview

With the end of the 2003 Conference USA Men's Basketball season at hand, this week's article is a full preview of the 2003 Conference USA Men's Basketball Tournament taking place this Wednesday through Saturday at world-famous Freedom Hall in Louisville, Kentucky. On Wednesday, the bottom 8 qualifying teams will battle throughout an afternoon and evening session. Thursday will consist four games between Wednesday's winners and the top 4 teams in C-USA. Friday evening will be the semifinals, and Saturday morning is the championship game broadcast on CBS. 

AMERICAN DIVISION  

CHARLOTTE (8 seed): FINAL RECORD: 13-15, 8-8. RPI: 84. LEADING SCORER: Demon Brown (17.1 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Eddie Basden (6.9 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Curtis Nash (3.3 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 68.7. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 33.2%. COMMENTS: The 49ers will open up their postseason Wednesday night at 7:00 PM against 9th-seeded Alabama-Birmingham. 

CINCINNATI (5 seed): FINAL RECORD: 17-10, 9-7. RPI: 24. LEADING SCORER: Leonard Stokes (16.0 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Jason Maxiell (6.7 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Taron Barker (5.1 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 67.6. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 34.4%. COMMENTS: The Bearcats will play on Wednesday night at 9:30 PM against 12th-seeded Southern Mississippi. 

DEPAUL (7 seed): FINAL RECORD: 16-11, 8-8. RPI: 53. LEADING SCORER: Sam Hoskin (15.2 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Andre Brown (8.6 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Drake Diener (3.2 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 66.8. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 33.7%. COMMENTS: The Blue Demons will help kickoff the C-USA Tournament Wednesday at 1:00 PM when they face 10th-seeded South Florida. 

EAST CAROLINA (Season completed): FINAL RECORD: 12-15, 3-13. RPI: 148. LEADING SCORER: Derrick Wiley (13.8 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Erroyl Bing (8.8 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Travis Holcomb-Faye (4.4 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 65.8. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 28.1%. COMMENTS: Since the Pirates finished the season tied for last place in the conference, they were not invited to the 2003 C-USA Tournament.  

LOUISVILLE (3 seed): FINAL RECORD: 21-6, 11-5. RPI: 15. LEADING SCORER: Reece Gaines (18.4 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Ellis Myles (7.9 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Reece Gaines (5.3 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 81.9. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 36.9%. COMMENTS: Since the Cardinals received the 3rd-seed and thus a bye in the first round in the C-USA Tournament, their run will begin Thursday afternoon at 3:30 PM against the winner of the Tulane-Houston game being played on Wednesday. 

MARQUETTE (1 seed): FINAL RECORD: 23-4, 14-2. RPI: 6. LEADING SCORER: Dwyane Wade (21.9 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Robert Jackson (7.4 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Travis Diener (5.7 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 78.5. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 37.7%. COMMENTS: Since the Golden Eagles won the American Division and C-USA Regular Season Championships, they will receive a 1st round bye and open begin the postseason Thursday evening at 7:00 PM and will face the winner of the Charlotte-UAB match-up on Wednesday.  

SAINT LOUIS (4 seed): FINAL RECORD: 15-12, 9-7. RPI: 47. LEADING SCORER: Marque Perry (17.5 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Kenny Brown (6.3 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Josh Fisher (3.7 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 60.7. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 33.6%. COMMENTS: The Billikens received a 4th-seed spot in the tournament and thus, a first round bye. SLU will play Thursday night at 9:30 PM against Wednesday's winner of the Cincinnati-Southern Mississippi game.  

NATIONAL DIVISION 

ALABAMA-BIRMINGHAM (9 seed): FINAL RECORD: 16-11, 8-8. RPI: 122. LEADING SCORER: Morris Finley (18.3 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Sidney Ball (5.0 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Eric Bush (3.7 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 77.7. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 33.5%. COMMENTS: The Blazers open up tournament play Wednesday evening at 7:00 PM as they take on 8th-seeded Charlotte. 

HOUSTON (11 seed): FINAL RECORD: 8-19, 6-10. RPI: 213. LEADING SCORER: Louis Truscott (15.2 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Louis Truscott (11.3 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Andre Owens (3.2 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 58.5. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 30.2%. COMMENTS: The Cougars postseason run will begin on Wednesday afternoon at 3:30 PM when they will face 6th-seeded Tulane. 

MEMPHIS (2 seed): FINAL RECORD: 22-5, 13-3. RPI: 27. LEADING SCORER: Chris Massie (17.3 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Chris Massie (10.9 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Antonio Burks (5.6 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 75.0. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 34.8%. COMMENTS: The Tigers received a first round bye with their National Division Championship and will take on the winner of Wednesday's DePaul-South Florida game on Thursday afternoon at 1:00 PM.  

SOUTH FLORIDA (10 seed): FINAL RECORD: 14-13, 7-9. RPI: 135. LEADING SCORER: Will McDonald (16.0 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Will McDonald (8.2 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Reggie Kohn (6.3 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 69.2. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 34.6%. COMMENTS: The Bulls will start their C-USA Tournament run on Wednesday afternoon at 1:00 PM when they take on 7th-seeded DePaul. 

SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI (12 seed): FINAL RECORD: 12-15, 5-11. RPI: 154. LEADING SCORER: Charles Gaines (14.9 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Charles Gaines (9.7 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Dante Stiggers (4.6 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 67.4. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 28.4%. COMMENTS: The Golden Eagles, who was the last school to earn a trip to Louisville, will start their tournament on Wednesday night at 9:30 PM as they will take on 5th-seeded Cincinnati. 

TEXAS CHRISTIAN (Season completed): FINAL RECORD: 9-19, 3-13. RPI: 197. LEADING SCORER: Junior Blount (17.7 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Jamal Brown (8.6 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Corey Santee (5.0 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 76.6. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 32.3%. COMMENTS: Since the Horned Frogs were tied for last place overall in Conference USA, they will not be participating in this year's tournament. 

TULANE (6 seed): FINAL RECORD: 15-14, 8-8. RPI: 144. LEADING SCORER: Waitari Marsh (14.8 PPG). LEADING REBOUNDER: Brandon Brown (7.5 RPG). ASSISTS LEADER: Waitari Marsh (3.4 APG). POINTS PER GAME: 71.5. 3-POINT PERCENTAGE: 35.3%. COMMENTS: The Green Wave will start their postseason on Wednesday afternoon at 3:30 PM when they will take on 11th-seeded Houston.  

2003 CONFERENCE USA TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE 

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 12, 2003

1:00 PM- (7) DePaul vs. (10) South Florida (ESPN2)

3:30 PM- (6) Tulane vs. (11) Houston (ESPN2)

7:00 PM- (8) Charlotte vs. (9) Alabama-Birmingham (ESPN Plus)

9:00 PM- (5) Cincinnati vs. (12) Southern Mississippi (ESPN Plus) 

THURSDAY, MARCH 13, 2003

1:00 PM- (2) Memphis vs. DePaul/South Florida winner (ESPN Plus)

3:30 PM- (3) Louisville vs. Tulane/Houston winner (ESPN Plus)

7:00 PM- (1) Marquette vs. Charlotte/Alabama-Birmingham winner (ESPN Plus)

9:30 PM- (4) Saint Louis vs. Cincinnati/Southern Mississippi winner (ESPN Plus) 

FRIDAY, MARCH 14, 2003

5:15 PM- First semifinal (ESPN Plus)

7:30 PM- Second semifinal (ESPN Plus)  

SATURDAY, MARCH 15, 2003

11:40 AM- Championship game (CBS) 


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