MAVS OPEN CONFERENCE PLAY
Jan. 6, 2004
The Texas-Arlington men's basketball team opens Southland Conference play Thursday when they face Louisiana-Monroe at 7:30 p.m. The game was orginally scheduled for an 8 p.m. tipoff but was rescheduled after the women's games was moved to Wednesday at 7 p.m.
UTA has won seven of the past 10 conference openers, including last season's 71-59 win over Texas-San Antonio.
The game will be broadcast on UTA Radio (Comcast Channel 98). Allan Young will provide the play-by-play.
SCOUTING THE INDIANS: Louisiana-Monroe is 4-10 after a 75-67 setback to Texas A&M on Jan. 3 at Fant-Ewing Coliseum. No Indian is scoring in double figures. The team's top scorer, John Andrews, had a team-high 17 points against A&M and is averaging 9.1 points per game. As a team, ULM is scoring 67.2 points per game, shooting 40.4% from the floor (350 of 867), 36.2% from 3-point range (83 of 229) and 61.7% from the foul line (158 of 256). ULM is 0-7 in road games this season.
THE SERIES: Louisiana-Monroe has dominated this series, leading 43-9. ULM is 15-7 in games played at Arlington, but UTA won both meetings last season, including an 85-84 game at Texas Hall.
A LOOK AHEAD: UTA continues its conference-opening home stand when they host Texas-San Antonio Saturday. Tip-off is slated for 4 p.m.
UTA FAVORED BY COACHES, SIDs: The University of Texas at Arlington edged out Stephen F. Austin in balloting by the Southland Conference's coaches to be the pick in the annual preseason poll, released Oct. 21. SFA received more first-place votes (4) than UT-Arlington (2), but the Mavericks won the consensus. In the poll conducted by the sports information directors, UTA and SFA tied for the top spot with 105 total points. If anything, the polls proved this year's SLC race will be balanced. Five different teams received first-place votes in the coaches poll and four in the SIDs. UTA has never won a men's basketball title since entering the league in 1964, but a 16-13 record in 2002-03 and a third-place finish in the conference with a 13-7 mark has carried over to the upcoming season.
OBASOHAN IS AWESOME:Senior forward Derrick Obasohan (Houston, Texas) became the 16th player to score 1,000 career points with a 25-point effort at Texas on Jan. 2. Obasohan needs 28 more free throws to crack the school's top 10 list.
He was named to the USF Holiday Classic All-Tournament Team after averaging 17.0 points and 5.0 rebounds in losses to New Orleans and South Alabama. He had an eight-game double figure scoring streak snapped with an eight-point outing against Texas-Permian Basin on Dec. 5. Obasohan rebounded with 20 points in a 91-87 win over Ouachita Baptist on Dec. 6 at Texas Hall.
Obasohan is on track to crack the career top 10 list in points, 3-pointers, free throws and rebounds. He will move into the career top 10 scoring list with 48 points.
Senior guard Donny Beacham (Dallas, Texas) returned to action at Texas after missing three previous games. He came off the bench to score four points and grab five rebounds in 20 minutes. Beacham, who missed the New Mexico State game, had a career-night with a 24-point, eight-rebound, three-assist effort against Ouachita Baptist on Dec. 6. shot more free throws (159) than any other Division I team in the nation.