Feb. 5, 2014
RUSTON - The midpoint of the Conference USA season has been reached and the Louisiana Tech men's basketball team currently sits in third place.
Right behind the Bulldogs is the Tulsa Golden Hurricane who they face on Thursday night at 8 p.m. inside the Thomas Assembly Center.
For the second straight home game, the TAC will be host to a nationally-televised broadcast from CBS Sports Network with John Sadak calling the play by play and Chris Walker providing analysis.
It can also be heard live on the LA Tech Sports Network on KXKZ 107.5 FM and KJVC 92.7 FM. The pregame show will start at 7:30 p.m. with the "Voice of the Bulldogs" Dave Nitz doing play by play and Jack Thigpen doing analysis. Fans can also access live audio of the game via the Internet by subscribing to LA Tech All-Access at www.LATechSports.com.
This game also marks the fourth annual "White Out" where all Bulldog fans are encouraged to wear white attire. The first 500 students will receive a free Coach White Out t-shirt and free Johnny's pizza, courtesy of Campus Evolution Villages, will be free to the first 250 students.
Five hundred more shirts will be available to the first fans in attendance and there will also be 2,000 Coach White hand fans given out.
Head coach Michael White will certainly keep his eyes out of the crowd as much as possible so he does not have to see his face splattered all over the arena.
Instead, he will be focused on the court with LA Tech (18-5, 6-2 C-USA) opening up a three-game home stand in the friendly confines, a place where he has an incredible 34-5 home record.
"We are coming off a road trip in Conference USA that was tough, like we expect all road trips to be, like they were in the WAC," said White. "We had some success, we went 1-1. We would have liked to go 2-0, but we played two very good teams.
Stepping up for the Bulldogs lately has been Chris Anderson. The senior forward has found himself in foul trouble a lot, averaging only 17.6 minutes per game. However, he spent a total of 69 out of 80 minutes on the floor in the two road games and recorded team-highs in points in both.
Versus UTEP, Anderson poured in 17 points. Then against UTSA, he recorded his first career double-double with a career-best 26 points to go along with 11 rebounds.
"We always joke with him that one day he is going to get a double-double and not foul out in the first half," said White. "It is a testament to how hard he plays. He is very, very aggressive. If you look back, the games since he has been here that he has played lengthy minutes, he has always contributed and produced."
Still facilitating all the action is Kenneth Smith who is on pace to break the program record for most assists in a single season. The point guard has dished out at least nine assists in six straight games and currently ranks second in the nation (7.5) in assists per game.
Anderson, Smith and the home crowd will be asked for repeat performances against a Tulsa (10-11, 5-2 C-USA) team that is playing its best basketball of the season, but has only recorded one road victory in seven attempts.
The Golden Hurricane suffered losses to nationally-ranked Wichita State, Creighton and Oklahoma during one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country, but has turned things around since the start of league play.
They are winners of six of their last eight games which included handing Southern Miss its only conference loss thus far.
"Tulsa is really good," said White. "They are kind of good at everything. They are just a solid basketball team and we are going to have to play very well to protect our home floor on Thursday."
Tulsa is only one game back of first place and is led by guard James Woodard who has a team-best 14.6 points per game and 6.1 rebounds per game.
From 2001-05, the Bulldogs and Golden Hurricane battled twice each year as rivals in the WAC.
Twitter users can receive live in-game updates by following @LATechHoops.