Can Memphis run the table?

Can Tigers go undefeated in C-USA play? Plus more burning questions

Updated: October 24, 2012, 1:04 PM ET
By John Gasaway | Basketball Prospectus
Josh PastnerJoe Murphy/Getty ImagesAn undefeated record in C-USA play isn't out of reach for Josh Pastner's Memphis team.

With the start of the 2012-13 college basketball season fast approaching, ESPN Insider is looking at the five "burning" questions facing each of the major conferences. In this edition, John Gasaway examines Conference USA.

1. Can Memphis run the table on its way out the door?
After the 2004-05 season, Louisville, Marquette, Cincinnati, DePaul and Saint Louis all packed up and left Conference USA. And it's not too much to say that ever since, the league has been absolutely dominated by the Memphis Tigers.

In the past seven seasons, the Tigers have won 88 percent of their conference games, compiling a 97-13 record. Of course, John Calipari might hasten to point out that he was responsible for the 61-1 front end of that record. For his part, Josh Pastner has posted a 36-12 record in-conference since taking over as head coach in 2009.

And since Pastner and Memphis are packing their bags and moving to the Big East after this season, this may be the last chance we get to ask the following question for a little while: Can the Tigers run the table in conference play? Will that game they dropped at home to UTEP in February go down in the record books as Memphis' last C-USA loss?

Now, I know what you're saying. The season hasn't even started yet. But the presidential election hasn't happened yet, either, and people seem pretty sure that Ohio will be kind of important. I think it's fair for us to speculate on how many wins Pastner's team will notch on its final tour of C-USA.