Tulane and Grambling State share Louisiana as a home state but are separated by about 300 miles, so perhaps that explains why the schools have rarely opposed each other.
The intrastate schools get together Saturday afternoon for only the second time when Tulane hosts Grambling State in New Orleans.
Tulane (4-1) is hoping this meeting goes as well as the previous one, when the Green Wave forced 23 turnovers in a 72-37 win on Dec. 29, 2008.
The Green Wave won their first four games this season but started off slowly and fell short in the second half of an 80-74 loss to Memphis on Wednesday. Tulane trailed by 17 in the first half but could not keep pace and trailed by 13 in the waning minutes before making the deficit respectable.
"I love the fight and I love the grit in this team," Tulane coach Ron Hunter said. "Maybe a year ago, we might have folded in this game, but I learned a lot about my team in this game."
Tulane scored its most points of the season and placed four in double figures. Reserve Gabe Watson led the Green Wave with a season-high 18 points after getting nine points in his first four games while leading scorers Jordan Walker and Jaylen Forbes added 16 and 15 respectively.
Grambling State (2-3) was picked for sixth in the preseason poll in the 10-team Southwestern Athletic Conference after losing its top two scorers from last season in Ivy Smith Jr. and DeVante Jackson.
"Since I've been here, we've been one of the top four teams in the league," Tigers coach Donte' Jackson said. "This year, we've got to go out and try to show we're better than sixth."
The Tigers are coming off their highest point total of the season. The Tigers rebounded nicely from a 41-point loss at Texas Tech on Dec. 6 by posting a 78-61 win at Louisiana Monroe on Wednesday.
Grambling State played a strong all-around game, shooting 52 percent and allowing 30 percent shooting. The Tigers got 26 points from reserves, 30 points in the paint, 16 points off turnovers and 11 fast break points.
The Tigers are led by Cam Christon (12.2 points) and Cameron Woodall (10.6 points). Both players performed well Wednesday by getting 17 points apiece.
--Field Level Media