Texas forward Royce Hamm Jr. (5) leans to gather the ball during an NCAA college basketball game against Providence on Friday, Dec. 21, 2018, in Austin, Texas. [NICK WAGNER/AMERICAN-STATESMAN]

BEVO BEAT Men's Basketball

Men’s preview: Texas at Providence

Posted December 20th, 2019

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Texas at Providence

When: 1 p.m. Saturday

Where: Dunkin’ Donuts Center (capacity 12,400)

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TV/radio: Fox/104.9 The Horn

About the series: The all-time series is tied 3-3. Providence won the last matchup 71-65 last season at the Erwin Center. Alpha Diallo had a game-high 20 points for the Friars while the Horns shot 37.7%. Providence led from start to finish.

TEXAS (9-1)
No.Pos.PlayerClassHt.PPGRPG
2GMatt Coleman IIIJr.6-213.04.9*
3GCourtney RameySoph.6-310.64.3
13GJase FebresJr.6-510.92.4
0FGerald LiddellSoph.6-85.64.0
20FJericho SimsJr.6-98.76.3
Coach: Shaka Smart (80-67, 5th year at Texas; 243-123, 11th year overall)
*-indicates assists per game.

About the Longhorns: Coach Shaka Smart wants to give 6-foot-8 junior Royce Hamm Jr. more playing time, but Hamm’s six turnovers against Central Michigan make it tough. “He played with a real motor,” Smart said. “If we can keep from throwing the ball the other team then we’re really in business because he gave us a real lift and an energy.” The Horns would love if Jase Febres would stay hot. He’s hit 11 3-pointers in the last two games on 21 shots. As a team, Texas has made at least 31% of its 3-point shots the last three games. Single-game tickets for all remaining home games, including LSU (Jan. 25), are now on sale, starting at $15.

PROVIDENCE (6-6)
No.Pos.PlayerClassHt.PPGRPG
12GLuwane PipkinsSr.5-118.84.8*
3GDavid DukeSoph.6-512.64.5
11GAlpha DialloSr.6-714.19.0
1FGreg GanttFr.6-83.42.4
13FKalif YoungSr.6-95.14.7
Coach: Ed Cooley (168-116, 9th year at Providence; 260-185, 14th year overall)
*-indicates assists per game.

About the Friars: It’s been a rough ride this season for Ed Cooley’s club. The Friars started 4-1 and then lost three straight. Providence lost to Florida 83-51 on Tuesday and now sit with a .500 record before another big-name opponent comes to the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. “That was a long game,” Cooley said after falling to the Gators. Providence has been wildly inconsistent from 3-point range, making just 32.2% of its shots. That ranks 223rd nationally. David Duke has shown solid growth this season, averaging 12.6 points this season after getting just 7.1 last year. This game is part of the new Big East/Big 12 Battle, similar to the Big 12/SEC challenge in late January.

Contact Brian Davis at 512-445-3957. Email bdavis@statesman.com.

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