Change is inevitable and there was plenty last week as a few teams were able to take advantage of the home court while road teams made the road their home. Southern Miss was able to cling to a 60-57 victory over a hard-charging Thundering Herd team thanks to a go-ahead 3-pointer by Golden Eagles guard Neil Watson. Marshall led 57-56 when Watson hit the shot with only two seconds remaining.
Therefore, Southern Mississippi, now 21-3 and 8-1 in Conference USA play, remains atop the power rankings. The Golden Eagles defeated Charlotte by a much larger margin on Sunday, 81-64.
2. Louisiana Tech (20-5, 8-2) – Keeping pace with the Golden Eagles are the Bulldogs who defeated Tulsa and North Texas on their home floor. The Bulldogs defeated Tulsa 65-61 on Thursday, while knocking off North Texas, 90-75, on Saturday.
3. UTEP (18-6, 8-1) - The Miners made the road their home. East Carolina fell to the Miners 58-47 on Thursday. Old Dominion fell to UTEP in a 63-49 loss on Saturday.
4. Middle Tennessee (17-7, 7-2) - The Blue Raiders continue to keep pace as they won both games on the road, pushing their consecutive win streak to five. Middle Tennessee defeated Florida Atlantic 67-63. But they needed 25 points from Neiko Hunter to get by FIU on Saturday, 70-68.
5. Charlotte (14-9, 5-5) - The 49ers finished 0-2 last weekend after losses on the road to Tulane on Friday and Southern Miss on Sunday.
6. Tulsa (11-12, 6-3) – The Golden Hurricane fell victim to Louisiana Tech on Thursday night, 66-61, but made up for that loss with a 66-56 win over Rice on Saturday.
7. UAB (14-9, 3-6) – The state of Florida was not very good for the Blazers who fell 78-73 to FIU on Thursday night and 82-71 to FAU on Saturday.
8. Old Dominion (11-13, 5-4) – The Monarchs played to a home split on Thursday and Saturday with a 69-61 win over UTSA and 63-49 home loss to another Texas team, UTEP.
9. Tulane (13-11, 5-4) – Talk about a bounce-back, the Green Wave certainly paved the way. They took advantage of home court with weekend wins over Charlotte and Marshall. They won both by a total of four points.
10. North Texas (11-12, 2-7) – North Texas is now 1-4 in conference road games after losing to Rice on Thursday and Louisiana Tech on Saturday.
11. East Carolina (13-11, 2-7) – The Pirates were pushed to the brink on Thursday by a hot UTEP team, 58-47. However, they retook their home court with an 81-71 victory over UTSA.
12. FIU (12-12, 4-5) - Anthony Evans and crew are looking for any way possible to stay in the hunt. The homestand resulted in a 1-1 finish, a 78-73 win over UAB on Thursday, but a 70-68 loss to Middle Tennessee on Saturday.
13. FAU (9-15, 4-5) – The Owls continue to show fight as they split their weekend home contests. Middle Tennessee was four points better in a 67-63 Thursday win. However, The Owls rediscovered the winning formula against UAB in an 82-71 win.
14. Marshall (8-17, 2-8) – Marshall dropped both road contests to Southern Miss and Tulane.
15. UTSA (7-15, 3-6) – The road got the best of UTSA as the Road Runners dropped both contests at Old Dominion and East Carolina.
16. Rice (7-16, 2-8) – The Owls split their home-and-home with a 75-70 win over North Texas Thursday night. However, they fell 66-56 to Tulsa on Saturday.