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Emoni Bates: Status of Memphis forward for game against Houston on Saturday

We take a look at what it means for the Penny Hardaway and struggling Tigers here.

Emoni Bates of the Memphis Tigers shoots a free throw against the East Carolina Pirates during a game on January 27, 2022 at FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee. Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images

Update: Bates did not travel with the Tigers, so he’s out Saturday against Houston.

The Memphis Tigers have a big road matchup against the No. 6 Houston Cougars on Saturday afternoon, and they could be getting Emoni Bates back on the floor as he recovers from a back injury.

Earlier this week, Penny Hardaway described Bates as a “game-time decision kinda” for Saturday’s game.

Bates missed the last two games and has not been on the court for Memphis since January 27th. In 16 games this season, Bates is the team’s third-leading scorer with 10.4 points per game.

Memphis has been on a streak with four consecutive wins in a row to improve to 13-8 overall and 7-4 in AAC play. Houston has battled through significant injuries of their own, and they had a 12-game winning streak snapped against the SMU Mustangs on Wednesday night. The Cougars are 20-3 overall including 9-1 in the AAC for the top spot in the conference.

Right now at DraftKings Sportsbook, the Tigers are listed as a 9.5-point underdogs. The line opened with Memphis as a 10-point dog. The total sits at 139.