Senior forward Justin Jackson was all over the place for the Bearcats scoring the basketball and playing aggressive defense. Jackson finished the game with 13 points, eight rebounds, seven blocks and two assists.
They always play good defense. But 33% from Memphis on their floor. 2-11 from deep. And if you need it…held Memphis 30 points under their season average. 30! Can’t ask for much more.
The freshmen were huge off the bench. Troy Caupain and Kevin Johnson both had 7 points. Caupain had 5 assists against 1 turnover and 3 steals. Johnson had 3 rebounds. They answered the bell against a fantastic Memphis back court.
HOW THE BEARCATS WON: Cincinnati has quietly picked up two really nice wins to start its inaugural season in the American Athletic Conference (AAC): a home win vs. Southern Methodist, and now a 69-53 road win at No. 18 Memphis. After flying under the radar much of the first two months of the seasons (due, in large part to a rather “blah” schedule), the Bearcats seem to have emerged as a tough out and potentially an AAC contender.
The defense and Kilpatrick’s scoring surge provided enough of a buffer to extend Cincinnati’s winning streak to six straight, while Memphis saw an end to a three-game winning streak.
And if you didn’t know that before, you should know it now — after the Bearcats held No. 18 Memphis to 33.3 percent shooting from the field and 11.8 percent shooting from 3-point range in Saturday’s 69-53 win here at FedExForum that doubled as one of the best true road victories any college basketball team has recorded this season. Sure, North Carolina’s win at Michigan State is better, and Arizona’s wins at San Diego State and Michigan are comparable; we can rank the best true road victories later, if you want. But, either way, know this: UC’s win over Memphis in Memphis before a rowdy crowd of 17,191 belongs on any such list.
The Bearcats frequently had stagnant offensive possessions — riddled with isolations, minimal movement and bad shots — but they crashed the offensive glass and cleaned up misses like crazy for second-chance points and the Bearcats never, ever stopped playing hard.