Tulane back home to host Tulane Classic

NEW ORLEANS — After a 10-day break for final exams, the Tulane men’s basketball team returns to the court today at Devlin Fieldhouse for day one of the Tulane Classic featuring Texas-Pan American, Pepperdine and Alabama State.

The Green Wave (7-3) will take on UTPA (4-7) at 7 p.m. following Pepperdine vs. Alabama State that gets under way at 4 p.m.

Tulane has not played since falling, 78-72, at San Diego on Dec. 8. Junior forward Josh Davis led the way with 19 points and eight rebounds in the loss that snapped a four-game winning streak.

“This break was beneficial for us because we were able to look at the 10 games and see where we are and what we are doing well and what we are not doing well,” Tulane head coach Ed Conroy said. “Then we were really able to go to work in practice and get back to exactly what we need to do to be successful.”

Overall, Davis leads the Green Wave, who are a perfect 7-0 at home this season, with 17.9 points and 10.5 rebounds per game. Sophomore forward Ricky Tarrant adds 14.1 points and a team-high 2.7 assists per outing.

Tulane, as a team, is scoring 66.3 points per game and holding opponents to just 58.7. The Green Wave shot 40.3 percent from the floor, including 33.5 percent from 3-point range.

UTPA has won back-to-back games, including a 75-70 victory over Lamar this past Saturday. Senior forward Jesus Delgado guided the Broncs to the win with a game-high 18 points.

Senior guard Brandon Provost leads UTPA with 14.7 points per outing, while fellow senior guard Aaron Urbanus is posting 11.6 points and 4.4 assists per contest.

The Broncs score 66.7 points per game, but allow 70.8. They shoot 42.7 percent from the floor and have hit 34.9 percent from 3-point land.

“They do a good job of executing their offense,” Conroy said about UTPA. “They have some guards that we’ve played against several times and they can hurt you in transition. They do a good job of putting offensive pressure on you.”

This will be the fifth meeting between the two schools. Tulane has won the four previous meetings, including one in each of the past two seasons. The Green Wave defeated UTPA, 88-65, at home on Jan. 2, 2011, and won, 53-42, on Dec. 31, 2011, in Edinburg, Texas.

The Tulane Classic continues on Thursday when UTPA will face Alabama State at 4 p.m. followed by Tulane against Pepperdine at 7 p.m.

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