Tennessee State Men’s hoops tips off Emerald Coast Classic Friday

Courtesy of Nick Guerriero, Asst. AD / Communications & Creative Content

OPENING TIP: TSU has secured a 3-0 record in back-to-back seasons, marking the first instance since the 1970-71 and ’71-72 seasons. During those ’70s seasons, TSU advanced to the NCAA DII Tournament and reached the third-place game in 1972. The team now aims to achieve a fourth consecutive victory, a feat not accomplished since the 2016-17 season when they won their first six games.

WHERE TO WATCH & LISTEN: Tune in to WNSR’s flagship network, including 560 AM, 95.9 FM (Nashville), and 107.9 FM (Smyrna), as well as WNSR.com, to catch TSU Basketball. The broadcast is also globally available on Sirius XM. WNSR will provide in-depth pregame coverage 15 minutes before tip-off, along with extensive postgame analysis, exclusive interviews with coaches and players, and behind-the-scenes content for deeper fan engagement. Greg Pogue, “The Voice of the Tigers,” returns for his 12th season, accompanied by Nashville broadcasting legend Albert Dawson. The action can also be streamed on the TSU Tigers app.

SERIES INFORMATION: This marks the first-ever meeting between the two opponents. Friday’s contest will be the sixth time TSU faces a member of the Pac-12 Conference. The Tigers have previously faced Colorado (0-3), Oregon State (0-1), and Utah (0-1). The last encounter with a Pac-12 team was on Dec. 19, 2003, resulting in a 44-71 loss to the Buffalos.

A WIN IN RIP CITY MOVES THE RPI: With a 10-point victory over Portland on Wednesday, TSU climbed 345 spots and is now 13th in RPI as of Nov. 16. The Tigers will face the top team in the RPI rankings, Oregon, on Friday. Currently, the Tigers sit at 280 in NET rankings.


3 — The total number of players in double figures for the Tigers — Christian Brown (24), E.J. Bellinger (18), and Marcus Fitzgerald Jr.(13). Kinyon Hodges added 10 rebounds.

34 — The number of points in the paint for TSU. The Tigers scored all field goals from inside the paint, connecting on 17 field goals.

37 — Total rebounds pulled down by TSU, led by Hodges’ career-best 10.

6 — The number of players that saw over 20 minutes of action. Bellinger and Fitzgerald Jr. led the Tigers with 32 minutes of play, with Brown (24), Jaylen Jones (20), Jason Jitoboh(20), and Hodges (20).

10 — Total number of three-pointers made by TSU, a season-best. Brown led the squad with four triples, one less than Fitzgerald Jr.

5 — The amount of points Fitzgerald Jr. needs to eclipse the 1,000-point mark. In the previous season, Fitzgerald Jr. showcased his skills, achieving a career-high average of 13.6 points (421) while starting in all 31 games. His 13 points were a season-best for the 615 native.

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