TCU’s lengthy season-opening homestand continues with a matchup against Alcorn State on Tuesday night in Fort Worth, Texas, as the Horned Frogs put their 4-0 record on the line.
Pace of play has been a key factor in the undefeated start for coach Jamie Dixon’s team, as TCU utilizes its speed and athleticism with the ball in transition. In Friday’s 86-52 win over Mississippi Valley State, the Horned Frogs recorded 43 fastbreak points, a statistic that Dixon noted early in his postgame press conference.
“I was really excited about how we got out and ran in transition,” Dixon said. “We’ve obviously worked on it a lot. It’s what we’ve done well.”
As TCU’s defense has improved over the course of the first month of the season, the Horned Frogs have managed to limit their fouls and keep the opponent off the free-throw line. Against Mississippi Valley State, TCU sent the Delta Devils to the line for just 15 free throws, including only three attempts in the first half. TCU, comparatively, was 20-for-30 at the free-throw line.
“We wanted to foul less,” Dixon said. “One of the big stats we want to have is (our) free throws made are greater than the opponent’s free throws attempted. We did that (Friday), to a degree.”
Alcorn State (1-4) enters Tuesday’s matchup having dropped its last three contests. The Braves’ lone victory, a 70-62 win over NAIA Xavier University of Louisiana, came back in Alcorn State’s second game of the season.
The Braves’ past three games have been played on the road, including Sunday’s 81-49 loss at Michigan State, when things turned sideways in a hurry. Alcorn State led 5-3 2:51 into the first half, but it then surrendered a 13-0 run that included three straight Michigan State 3-pointers.
“We have to have better starts, have to convert,” Braves coach Landon Bussie said. “When you get the looks, and we just didn’t do that early on, we started off too slow.”
Four of TCU’s starters have scoring averages in double figures, led by JaKobe Coles at 15.3 points per game. Jeremiah Kendall is Alcorn State’s lone double-digit scorer, averaging 18.5 points along with 10.0 rebounds per contest.