After losses at home to both Arkansas State (Feb. 10) and UALR (Feb. 12)-the Warhawks hit a season-worst eight-game losing skid. Adding insult to injury during the ASU game was the fact that the Warhawks had their best home crowd of the season to witness a 19-point loss.
"I was really embarrassed about our defense in the first 25 minutes of that game-really embarrassed," ULM head coach Keith Richard said. "For the first time in a long time, I thought those guys that have been playing all those minutes surrendered a little bit."
After a dreadful first-half showing against ASU, Richard benched starters Fred Brown, Hugh Mingo and Tommie Sykes to begin the second half.
"It was ugly," Richard said. "I didn't want to watch it anymore. They were scoring so easily. That was butter defense."
• Despite the loss to Arkansas State on Feb. 10, some good came of the situation for the ULM program as coach Keith Richard donated one dollar for all 752 students in attendance to the Kitty Degree Foundation-a breast cancer awareness organization.
"A big thank you to the people who came to game tonight for a great cause," Richard said. "My wife and I will donate based on the numbers. I'm sure the numbers are good. They looked good, and we'll try to get our team to play better next time."
• The "Pink Zone" game against ASU on Feb. 10 drew a total of 2,561 fans at ULM's Fant-Ewing Coliseum.
By The Numbers: 1-Win in 12 Sun Belt games as of Feb. 13 for ULM.
STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
This Week's Games:
• at Denver, Feb. 17
Key Matchup: ULM forward Tommie Sykes could have an interesting matchup with Denver big man Chris Udofia. Neither side is incredibly imposing underneath, but Sykes and Udofia are easily the best post players in this matchup. If one side can take advantage in the paint, it could prove to be the difference.
• at North Texas, Feb. 19
Key Matchup: UNT guard Tristan Thompson leads the Sun Belt in scoring, but his defense this season has been questionable. ULM guard Fred Brown can light it up with the best of them in the Sun Belt, but also struggles to defend as well. Defense could be an interesting part of this high-scoring matchup.
• Senior G Fred Brown was 12th in the Sun Belt with 13.6 points per game as of Feb. 13.
• Senior F Tommie Sykes was 11th in the Sun Belt with 6.3 rebounds per game as of Feb. 13.