N. Texas meets FIU in CUSA tourney
No. 10 seed North Texas (20-11, 8-10) vs. No. 7 seed Florida International (19-12, 10-8)
Conference USA Conference Tourney First Round, Ford Center at The Star, Frisco, Texas; Wednesday, 8:30 p.m. EDT
BOTTOM LINE: North Texas is set to match up against Florida International in the first round of the CUSA tourney. Florida International swept the two-game regular season series. The teams last met on March 9, when the Panthers outshot North Texas 43.9 percent to 32.8 percent and had seven fewer turnovers en route to a 73-58 victory.
SUPER SENIORS: North Texas has benefited heavily from its seniors. Umoja Gibson, Michael Miller, Zachary Simmons and Jorden Duffy have combined to account for 58 percent of the team’s scoring this year and 54 percent of all Mean Green points over the team’s last five games.
FACILITATING THE OFFENSE: Brian Beard Jr. has accounted for 41 percent of all Florida International field goals over the last five games. The senior guard has 29 field goals and 27 assists in those games.
UNBEATEN WHEN: Florida International is a perfect 8-0 when its defense holds opponents to a field goal percentage of 40 percent or less. The Panthers are 11-12 when they allow opponents to shoot any better than that.
ASSIST RATIOS: The Mean Green have recently used assists to create baskets more often than the Panthers. Florida International has 35 assists on 87 field goals (40.2 percent) across its past three contests while North Texas has assists on 34 of 68 field goals (50 percent) during its past three games.
DID YOU KNOW: The sturdy North Texas defense has held opponents to just 63 points per game, the 14th-lowest in Division I. Florida International has given up an average of 80.1 points through 31 games (ranked 303rd, nationally).