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Tigers Football Insider: Beating SMU could put Memphis at its preseason conference ranking
University of Memphis quarterback Seth Henigan (5) rushes the ball during a Nov. 19, 2022 game against North Alabama. (Patrick Lantrip/Daily Memphian)

University of Memphis quarterback Seth Henigan (5) rushes the ball during a Nov. 19, 2022 game against North Alabama. (Patrick Lantrip/Daily Memphian)

Welcome back to the Tigers Football Insider, where we bring you the latest news and analysis from The Daily Memphian’s Frank Bonner II, Geoff Calkins and John Martin each week.

Memphis was voted to finish fifth in the preseason AAC rankings and the Tigers have a chance to tie for the fifth-best conference record with a win at SMU this week.


Teams: Tigers (6-5, 3-4 in AAC) vs. SMU (6-5, 4-3)

Time: 2:30 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 26

Place: Gerald J. Ford Stadium, Dallas


Radio: 98.9 The Roar of Memphis

Memphis is currently tied with ECU for the seventh-best conference record at 3-4. The Pirates beat Memphis with a 47-45 win in overtime earlier this year.


Tulane, Cincinnati, UCF and Houston are jockeying for the top four spots heading into the final week. There could also be movement for spots 5-9 depending on how this week pans out. SMU is currently in fifth place with a 4-3 record.

Both teams would end the season with a 4-4 conference record if Memphis beats SMU on the road. Navy is locked in with a 4-4 conference record and ECU could be the fourth team in the league with a 4-4 league record if it beats Temple.

An ECU loss and a Memphis win would give the Tigers a tied conference record with only SMU and Navy. Memphis would have wins over both of those teams.

There is no denying the season hasn’t gone the way Memphis has wanted and a fifth-place finish isn’t anything to be excited about. The standard for the program has risen to a higher expectation than the middle of the pack.

Fifth place, however, is better than finishing the year with the eighth-best league record. An SMU loss would put the Tigers near the bottom of the league with Tulsa, Temple and South Florida. ECU could also finish with a 3-5 conference record with an unlikely loss to Temple.


The Tigers have already qualified for their ninth straight bowl game but there is still some pride to play for when they travel to Dallas. An eight-win season is still in reach while they try to prevent from being one of the bottom four teams in the league.

More from your Insider:

Tiger freshman’s ‘unique skillset’ promises bright future

The coaching staff spoke highly of freshman Sutton Smith during fall camp, and he’s already shown flashes of why the Tigers love him so much. 

NFL Week 11: Notable performances from former Tigers

Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard has scored six of his eight touchdowns in the last three games and it’s the second time this season that he’s had multiple scores in a single game.

Tigers bowl projections: Top location and opponent predictions

Memphis is bowl-eligible and prognosticators are all over the board on where and which opponent the Tigers might play.

Coach Silverfield supports Memphis AD’s athlete funding efforts

The Tigers football coach applauds Laird Veatch’s plea to big-money donors for help with the Name, Image and Likeness program.

An 8-win season for Tigers? ‘It’s achievable.’

Memphis is two games away from an 8-5 record, but losing the final two games would give the team its first losing season since 2013.

Tigers seniors’ final home game is one to remember

Veterans contribute to big victory over North Alabama in their last season game together at Simmons Bank Liberty Stadium.

Box Score: Memphis 59, North Alabama 0

NCAA college football box score for the Saturday, Nov. 19, 2022, game between the Memphis Tigers and the North Alabama Lions played at Simmons Bank Liberty Stadium in Memphis.

Tigers force first shutout since 2015 in win over North Alabama

Memphis scored a season-high in the 59-0 win over North Alabama. The Tigers had 38 points by halftime.

Key stats and numbers for Tigers’ final home game

Memphis’ football team is 8-0 against FCS opponents since 2013. The Tigers host North Alabama at 1 p.m. Saturday.

U of M asks boosters to pay NIL money — or players will be lost

Tigers ask highest-level donors to contribute big bucks to the University of Memphis’ Name, Image and Likeness program.

Seniors take pride in defending bowl game streak

The seniors have an extra edge heading into Saturday’s game against North Alabama, with the chance for the Tigers to qualify for their ninth consecutive bowl game. 

‘Memphis made me a man:’ Tiger football seniors say goodbye

As they head into their final home game on Saturday, Nov. 19, Quindell Johnson and Asa Martin prepare their goodbyes to Memphis. 

Tigers lose commitment from Smyrna standout Arion Carter

Arion Carter was a 3-star recruit when he committed to the Tigers over the summer. He’s now a 4-star athlete who has garnered a lot of attention from other schools. 

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