MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Memphis didn't let its season get off to a
The Tigers (No. 23 ESPN/USA Today, No. 24 AP) built an early lead, continued to put on
the pressure and coasted to a 102-40 victory over Savannah State on
Thursday night in the opening round of the Coaches vs. Cancer
"Overall, it was a pretty good effort," Memphis coach John
Calipari said. "I loved the way we swung the ball and moved the
ball. We rebounded offensively."
Rodney Carney scored 21 points and Memphis had six players
finish in double figures. Carney was 7-of-12 from the field,
including 3-of-5 from 3-point range, for the Tigers, who will play
George Mason in the second round on Saturday night. The Patriots
(1-0) beat Ind.-Pur.-Fort Wayne 69-51 Thursday night.
Anthony Rice scored 17 points for Memphis, while Sean Banks
finished with 15 and Jeremy Hunt added 14. Freshman forward Joey
Dorsey finished with 10 points and 16 rebounds, while freshman
point guard Darius Washington had 10 points and eight assists.
"We're deep enough now so that if anybody doesn't bring it
defensively, I'm taking them out," Calipari said. "The best
friend I have is that bench."
Savannah State coach Edward L. Daniels Jr. said his young team
includes six freshmen "who thought they knew what this was about
and really didn't." The reality that they were in for a long night
hit early, and his players were drained by the end.
"I think the latter part of the game we didn't cover the floor
like we should have," Daniels said. "I think our guys kind of
looked up at the score and threw in the towel a little early."
Memphis steadily built the lead through the first half, leading
by as many as 34 points before taking a 55-22 halftime lead.
The advantage was built around solid shooting, particularly from
3-point range, control of the boards and a defense that limited
Savannah State to 29 percent shooting and 11 turnovers in the first
"It probably looked worse from our end," Daniels said. "I
knew (Memphis) had a lot of guys that could shoot the basketball,
but I didn't know all of them could shoot it that well."
The turnovers and a 28-17 advantage on the boards let Memphis
get its fast break going. And to complement that, Memphis shot
7-of-13 from 3-point range.
Memphis forced 22 turnovers in the game and controlled the
boards 58-36. Savannah State managed just 18 points in the second
half on 21 percent shooting.
Calipari said Dorsey's rebounds were the result of learning the
game and taking workouts more seriously, even pre-game
"Sixteen rebounds is a pretty big number for a freshman,"
Calipari said, "and the biggest thing was he got rebounds that we
haven't (been getting), and it was good to see that."