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Thursday, December 1, 2022

Men's Basketball

Last four give UH hope


Wednesday’s 82-53 blowout of Tulane was a nice send-off for senior Darian Thibodeaux.

Thibodeaux, who lead the Cougars in minutes played last season, stayed on the floor for all but one minute in his final game at Hofheinz Pavilion, scoring 12 points to go with a game-high seven assists, four rebounds and two 3-pointers.

The Cougars have looked good of late, winning three of their last four and showing some of the promise that excited Cougar fans coming into the season.

Their recent success doesn’t guarantee anything for next week’s Conference USA Tournament in Memphis, but they look to be in better position to surprise people than they did a week ago and it is encouraging for next season.

Thibodeaux is the Cougars’ only senior and probably their best perimeter defender, but this group looks to be in good shape.

Freshmen Joseph Young and TaShawn Thomas look like keepers.

After getting off to a rough start this season and losing his spot in the starting lineup, Young has bounced back and proven to be more than just a jump shooter for UH.

Over his last four games, Young has averaged 16 points per contest.

Thomas has started every game this season and shaken off a midseason slump to be a force inside. In the Cougars’ last four games, Thomas is scoring 11.3 points, grabbing 10.3 rebounds and blocking two shots a game.

Jonathan Simmons has shown that he can take over a game when he wants to and J.J. Thompson has proven himself as a starter.

Leon Gibson has come on lately, reaching double digits in rebounds in two of the last three games.

There has been a steep learning curve for this Cougars squad this year, but they seem to be peaking at the right time.

While winning the C-USA Tournament is unlikely, this late-season run has given the Cougars a chance to see their young squad put things together for a few games in a row and a glimpse into the program’s future success.

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