Junior guard Armoni Brooks is at the center of the Houston Cougars’ return to college basketball prominence.

The 6-foot-3-inch, 195 pound junior speedster sets the tone for an offense that has already surpassed 80 points eight times this season in racing out to a 27-1 start and No. 8 ranking in the most recent AP college basketball poll. Houston is No. 6 in the coaches poll.

Averaging 13.7 points and a team-leading 6.3 rebounds, Brooks already has scored at least 20 points in seven games for the Cougars. His best overall performance was 23 points and eight rebounds in a 63-53 road victory against Oklahoma State.

Overall, the Cougars have won 12 straight games. Their only loss this season was a 73-69 road defeat at Temple on Jan. 9. Since then Houston has outscored its opponents by an average of 16 points per game.

Brooks’ level of improvement is equally obvious. As a freshmen, he averaged 4.4 points, followed by 9.3 during his sophomore season.