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Thursday, April 2, 2020

Men's Basketball

Sampson: Winning on the road is a challenge in NCAA


Head coach Kelvin Sampson, right, holds a weekly radio show every Monday evening at 7 p.m. that airs on KPRC 950 AM. | Kathryn Lenihan/The Cougar

Head coach Kelvin Sampson (right) holds a weekly radio show every Monday at 7 p.m. that airs on KPRC 950 AM. He reiterated Monday how difficult it is to win games on the road in the NCAA. | Kathryn Lenihan/The Cougar

Head coach Kelvin Sampson held his weekly radio show on Monday evening, and he reiterated how difficult it is to win games on the road in the NCAA.

The Cougars remained ranked at No. 25 in the AP poll that was released on Monday morning following a week in which Houston defeated Tulsa at home and lost to Memphis on the road.

“(The reason Houston is still ranked) is because the people that make the polls know how hard it is to win on the road,” Sampson said.

The Cougars are 4-4 against the AAC away from Fertitta Center this season and have only one road game remaining in the regular season, which will be against UConn.

Sampson even went back to last year’s 2018-19 team that went 33-4 and lost only one game on the road and talked about how special that achievement was, but also how even that team had a few fortunate outcomes go there way, which has not necessarily been the case this season.

“It seemed like every game we had close we caught a break (last year),” Sampson said. “But this year we haven’t had many breaks in road games but we’ve still put ourselves in a position to win, and I’m proud of our kids for that.”

All four conference losses that Houston has suffered have come in road contests, and they have also all been decided by a combined six points. 

In the last two road games, the contests have come down to the final shot, in which the Cougars had a chance to win had they converted on a couple of go-ahead baskets.

The head coach reminded fans about how difficult it is to be in the mix for a conference championship and for them to enjoy the position that Houston is in where it has a chance to win another regular-season championship in The American.

“We always want to compete for a conference championship, and I think we are at a point to do that,” he said. “We may not always do that. There are 12 really good teams in (the AAC).”

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