How it Happened
USF gave SMU all it could handle and kept things close until the very end, but the Mustangs prevailed 72-58 to remain undefeated(13-0). The Bulls’ zone defense created a lot of problems for SMU’s offense and the Mustangs were unable to figure it out. Keith Frazier was absent due to personal reasons, and his outside shooting was missed. Still, the sheer determination of SMU and its ability to attack the offensive glass and limit turnovers was just enough to get them past USF.
What it Means
SMU escaped another game in which it was shorthanded and continues rolling. SMU remains one of the final unbeaten teams in the country with South Carolina and Oklahoma also winning.
Player of the Game
?Markus Kennedy didn’t have his best game, but he seemed to make plays when SMU needed it the most. This was one of the few games this season where SMU was really lacking its normal, dominant presence in the paint. Still, Kennedy finished with 13 points and 4 rebounds, but it was his energy and effort when things got dicey that made him the POTG.
SMU finished with a shooting percentage of 41.8—its worst shooting percentage of the season. USF’s zone obviously worked. It will be interesting to see if more teams start to use zone more often against the Mustangs.
SMU continues its homestand against Cincinnati on Thursday, Jan. 7 at 6 pm CT on ESPN/ESPN2