Turnovers have been a problem. Late-game execution on the offensive end has been a problem. Defense has been a severe problem. Put all that together, and the UAB men's basketball team is in the midst of a three-game spiral that very few saw coming.

So what now? What's next for the Blazers? How do they find a way out of the funk?

"We need to win. We need to get our Mojo back," said UAB head coach Andy Kennedy. "It's hard to get your Mojo back when you're losing. Some guys aren't playing to their capabilities. As a result, there's some tentativeness."

After the three-game skid, UAB is 12-5 overall and 3-3 in conference USA play. The next two chances to end the skid come on the road, where the Blazers are 0-3 overall and 0-2 in C-USA. The first stop comes on Saturday at Louisiana Tech. The teams will tip off at 3 p.m. at the Thomas Assembly Center.

Louisiana Tech is 6-1 at home this season. The lone loss was an 80-79 overtime setback to Stephen F. Austin in a non-conference game. It's rare for the Bulldogs to lose at home. Last January, UAB snapped Louisiana Tech's 18-game home winning streak when Jordan' Jelly' Walker hit nine 3-pointers on the way to 36 points in the 83-76 UAB victory.

This year's Louisiana Tech team is accustomed to playing down-to-wire games. Nine of the Bulldogs' 17 games this season have been decided by six points or less, and they are 2-3 in one-possession finishes. They are coming off a 67-65 loss at North Texas in a game that the Bulldogs trailed by 18 points at halftime.

Louisiana Tech (10-7 overall, 3-3 C-USA) is second in the conference in 3-pointers made as a team with 149. The Bulldogs also have three players capable of taking over a game, which has been a weakness of the UAB defense as of late. Cobe Williams, a 6-foot junior, is the team's leading scorer at 17.9 points per game. Isaiah Crawford, a 6-foot-6, 220-pound junior, scored 25 points against North Texas without hitting a 3-pointer. He was 13-of-15 from the free throw line in that game. Six-foot-3 junior Keaston Willis has a team-best 43 3-pointers, tied for fourth in C-USA for most 3-pointers.

The Blazers play again on Monday at Middle Tennessee in another C-USA game.

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email steve.irvine@1819news.com.

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