How it happened: The story of the game was the second half. SMU turned it over five times in less than five minutes and continued to play sloppy basketball throughout the half. But despite the turnovers, the Mustangs kept in close in the 65-57 loss. SMU played pretty good defense and limited Cincinnati star Sean Kilpatrick. Cincinnati shot just 36.5 percent from the floor but had one-third of its points come from the free throw line. Markus Kennedy led the way with 12 points and nine rebounds for SMU and Nic Moore and Ben Moore chipped in with nine points apiece. In the end, however, the turnovers were too much to overcome, as Cincinnati never trailed in the second half.
What it means: SMU fell in its first ever American Athletic Conference game and is now 11-3 overall. The Mustangs need to do a better job limiting turnovers as they continue to face tougher competition. This was, as expected, an ugly game that could have gone either way so need to be to down on SMU. There is still a long season left to be played.
Side note: Larry Brown said he was going to cut down his rotation once conference play started, but that didn't happen tonight. The Mustangs still used a 10-man rotation. But they did shake up the starting lineup a little bit. Freshman Sterling Brown made his first start since SMU was on the road at Illinois-Chicago in place of Ryan Manuel. Brown finished with four points and three rebounds while Manuel had zero points coming off the bench.
Up next: It's the game everybody has been waiting for. SMU will host UConn in the first game in renovated Moody Coliseum. UConn is 11-2 and ranked No. 17, but the Huskies are coming off a surprising 75-71 loss to Houston.
Rapid Reaction: SMU Falls In AAC Opener
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