How it Happened
After some early back-and-forths and lead changes, SMU found itself trailing 44-34 at the half and it was due in a large part to three-point shooting defense and a hot hand for Temple. Devin Coleman led the way with 12 points in the first half - making all four of his three-point attempts. SMU found itself struggling to close out to Temple's shots from beyond the arc. SMU was doing a good job getting it inside to Markus Kennedy and SMU's bigs, but couldn't hit a lot of high-percentage shots. Couple that with Temple taking advantage of SMU's turnovers with 22 points and it was bad news.
SMU cleaned up a lot of the turnovers early in the second half and cut Temple's lead to four at one point before Temple opened up its lead to 14 with 7:31 to go in the game with Nic Moore on the bench. The story though was still Coleman as he had 23 points on 7-for-7 shooting from beyond the arc. SMU couldn't stop Coleman, went back to their careless ways and couldn't hit much from beyond the arc. Even with scoring not being an issue, SMU couldn't stop anything Temple did. Temple let SMU hang around with 11 of their own turnovers, but it was tough to watch SMU. The undefeated season is over as SMU fell 89-80.
What it Means
The pressure of undefeated is now over. With five days of practice now leading up to Memphis, SMU has a ton of work to do. This team has been careless with the ball and terrible at defending and hitting the three. It's time for the team to clean things up. This loss was coming, but Nic Moore and others were able to will the team to victory in the past. Not today.
Player of the Game
F Jordan Tolbert: Tolbert finished just shy of a double-double with 15 points and eight rebounds. Tolbert shot almost 80 percent from the field and should have gotten the ball more. SMU didn't pound the ball inside early enough like it should have, but still a nice day for Tolbert. Sterling Brown came on strong as well, but
Temple's bench had 42 points to SMU's 20 points with Coleman's big day, but it was the points off turnovers that hurt SMU the most. Temple finished with 22 points off 14 SMU turnovers.
SMU has a week before hosting Memphis on Saturday, Jan. 30 at 7 p.m. CT in Moody Coliseum.