Tulane vs USF Preview and Prediction
Tulane vs USF Preview
To say the USF Bulls (11-3, 1-1) are exceeding expectations this season would be an understatement. The Bulls reeled off seven consecutive wins to end non-conference play and to start AAC play before falling last game to one of the American’s best, Tulsa 78-75. After trailing by nine points with 1:12 remaining, USF rallied to tie the game 75-75 on a three-pointer by David Collins with 4.4 seconds left. Tulsa answered with a three-pointer at the buzzer from Curran Scott to hand USF its first loss since Nov. 24.
For Tulane (4-10, 0-2) it’s been a difficult start to the season and it doesn’t look like it will be getting any easier during conference play. The team is looking to snap a four-game skid in its third true road game of the season while aiming for its fifth straight win on USF’s home court dating back to 2015.
Tulane has left Tampa with a win in each of its first four trips to USF since joining the American Athletic Conference in 2014-15. The Green Wave have won three of those four contests by double digits and are 9-8 all-time inside the Yuengling Center.
Wednesday is Tulane’s fourth and final game in the state of Florida this season, as the Green Wave played three games in Estero at the Gulf Coast Showcase Nov. 19-21. The Wave went 1-2 in those contests, recording a win over South Dakota State and a pair of setbacks to UC Irvine and UL Lafayette.
USF head coach Brian Gregory on Tulane:
“They are so aggressive, big and strong and they can score in the post, off the dribble and they shoot well from three-point range. We have to do a great job on them by keeping our chest in front of them at all times and not giving them any easy baskets. If we don’t play our style on defense, they are going to be able to take advantage of it.”
The Green Wave feature three scorers in double-digits but are led by sophomore Caleb Daniels who averages 15.7 points per game–he also adds 5.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists per night. At least one Green Wave player has scored at least 20 points in nine of the team’s 14 games this season. Daniels is responsible for five of those performances, while Samir Sehic was the last to turn the trick with 20 points over 15 rebounds against SMU on Jan. 4.
For the Bulls it’s been a team effort in terms of their success–success that was not expected. The team was picked to finish last in the AAC this season and have completely flipped that prediction.
Redshirt freshman forward Alexis Yetna leads the conference with seven double-doubles this season and is averaging 11.9 points and 10.9 rebounds per game this season. Yetna was ruled ineligible to play last season by the NCAA and had to sit out, but his addition is a big reason for the Bulls winning ways.
USF has lost three times this year, all by three points each.
LINE: -9.5 USF
Dan’s Bet: Tulane +10
Score Prediction: South Florida 77 Tulane 69