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Fourth Ranked Cats Return Home, Play BYU on Wednesday
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: November 29, 1999
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Busy Schedule Begins: The Arizona Wildcats (4-0; No. 4 AP/No. 4 USA Today/ESPN) host the Brigham Young Cougars (2-0) this Wednesday, Dec. 1, at 9 p.m. in McKale Center. After winning its third consecutive Preseason NIT title last week in New York City, the game against BYU marks the beginning of a hectic four-game slate that sees the Wildcats play four games in 11 days three of which are contests versus opponents currently ranked among the nation's top-nine teams. The match-up with BYU could be a historic one, as with one more win, Arizona head coach Lute Olson gets win No. 400 in his Arizona head coaching career. The game will be televised nationally by Fox Sports Net with Barry Tompkins and George Raveling on the call. After the BYU game, Arizona has to get ready for a road game against the undefeated Texas Longhorns (4-0; No. 9 AP/No. 11 USA Today/ESPN) on Saturday, Dec. 4. The game is set to tip off in Austin, Texas, at the 16,175-seat Frank Erwin Center at 8 p.m. CST (7 p.m. MST) and it will be televised on ESPN. Following the two games this week, Arizona takes on Connecticut in the Great Eight next Tuesday, Dec. 7, and then hosts Michigan State on Saturday, Dec. 11, at noon.

Tickets Available: About 100 tickets for the BYU game will go on sale Wednesday morning at the McKale Center ticket office, beginning at 10 a.m... They are for seats in the upper level of McKale Center and are $15 each... There is a limit of two per person and the tickets can also be purchase over the phone by calling 621-2287.

Series History: Arizona leads the all-time series with Brigham Young 19-17... The teams used to play on a regular basis when they were members of the Western Athletic Conference... The UA was in the WAC from 1961-78... As a member of the WAC, the Cats went 17-16 versus the Cougars... This will be just the third meeting between the teams during the Lute Olson era... The last meeting was a game last season in Provo, when Arizona won in overtime 78-74... Prior to that, the squads faced off in the 1991 NCAA Tournament at the West Regional in Salt Lake City... In that Sweet 16 game, Arizona won, 76-61... The first game in the all-time series was in 1952... It was staged in Provo and BYU won, 87-86... As for the series with Texas, Arizona owns a 3-2 advantage... This is the fourth straight year the teams have played each other and Arizona has won each of the past three outings... The UA won last year in Tucson, 73-57, and before that in 1997 by a score of 88-81 and in 1996 in Tucson (83-78)... Prior to these four straight contest, the last time UA and UT met was on Dec. 30, 1971... The teams are set to meet again next year in Tucson right now it's set for Dec. 5.

UA's Probable Starting Lineup:  1999-00 Stats
        				Ht.     Wt.     Yr-Exp. PPG     RPG    APG/BPG/SPG
F       21      Michael Wright  	6-7     238     So.-1L  14.5    9.2    1.8 spg
F       44      Richard Jefferson          6-7     222     So.-1L  13.5    6.5    3.0 apg
C        3      Loren Woods     	7-1     230     Jr.-TR  12.2    7.0    3.0 bpg
G        0      Gilbert Arenas  	6-3     191     Fr.-HS  14.8    3.8    3.3 apg/spg
G       22      Jason Gardner   	5-10    178     Fr.-HS  11.0    2.5    5.0 apg

Tues., Nov. 30 - Basketball Press Conference, 12:30 p.m., Media Relations Office

Wed., Dec. 1 - Game vs. BYU; 9 p.m., McKale Center, Fox Sports Net televises nationally.

Fri, Dec. 3 - Teams leaves for Dallas on board American flight #1166 at 4:33 p.m. Arrives in Austin at 9:42 p.m. on American #1933. The team will stay at the Marriott at the Capital (512-478-1111). Brett Hansen will travel with the team.

Sat., Dec. 4 - Game vs. Texas; 8 p.m. CST; ESPN televises.

Sun., Dec. 5 - Team returns to Tucson at 12:24 p.m. on board American flight #899 from Dallas.

Mon., Dec. 6 - Team leaves for Chicago and the Great Eight on board United flight #1152. After a stop in Denver, arrival is set for Chicago at 10:05 p.m. on board United #266. Team will stay at Hilton & Towers (312-922-4400).

Tues., Dec. 7 - Game vs. Connecticut at the Great Eight in the United Center; 8:30 p.m. CST; ESPN televises.

Wed., Dec. 8 - Team returns to Tucson at 1:32 p.m. on board United flight 1579 from Denver.

Arizona's Last Action: Arizona ran its record to 4-0 and won the 1999 Preseason NIT by beating 11th ranked Kentucky, 63-51, last Saturday night in Madison Square Garden... After trailing by seven points early on, the UA collected itself and outscored UK 21-10 during the final 8:20 of the first half to take a 29-25 lead at the half. In the second, Arizona used an 11-0 run in the early goings to build a 13-point lead and would maintain a double-digit lead throughout to beat the Wildcats for the third consecutive time. Freshman guard Gilbert Arenas was named the tournament's MVP after scoring a career and game-high 20 points to go with five steals, four rebounds and two assists. Richard Jefferson, who was also named to the Preseason NIT All-Tournament team, completed a fine showing in the Big Apple, scoring 15 points and grabbing eight rebounds... For the two-game set at the Garden, he averaged 14.0 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 4.5 apg, 3.5 apg and 1.5 bpg, while shooting 61.9% from the floor... Arizona's other freshman starter, point guard Jason Gardner was a Preseason NIT All-Tournament team member as well and scored 10 points to go with four steals, three assists and three rebounds in the title game... Arizona held Kentucky to a field goal percentage of just 35.6%, marking the fourth time in as many games that a UA opponent has had a sub-40% field goal percentage.

The Last Arizona-Brigham Young Meeting: The Wildcats ventured to Provo on Nov. 28, 1998, to play BYU and came away with a 78-74 overtime win to up their record to 3-0 on the season. Using a tough brand of defense, the Wildcats allowed the Cougars to hit on just 24-of-65 shots (36.3%), including 8-of-28 from the three-point line. Arizona's offense was led by the senior combo of Jason Terry and A.J. Bramlett, who scored 19 and 17 points respectively. However, the big story was freshman power forward Michael Wright, who came off the bench to score a then-career-high 21 points and pull down seven rebounds. He was 6-of-10 from the floor and 9-of-10 from the free throw line. The game was close throughout, before Arizona built a 60-51 lead with 5:52 to go. From there, BYU fought back to take a 67-64 lead with 1:23 left before Terry hit a huge three-ball with 1:08 remaining to tie the game and eventually send it to overtime (Bramlett missed two FT's with one second left that would have won the game)... In overtime, it was all Terry, Bramlett and Wright, as they combined to score 10 of the UA's 11 points... Terry was 4-of-4 from the free throw line in the final nine seconds to help seal the win... Bramlett had a double-double (17/13) and Terry had five steals.

Lute Olson is within reach of a pair of coaching milestones... He is nine wins away for career win No. 600 and one from win No. 400 at Arizona... Here is a look at his milestone career victories:

Win     Date    Team    Opponent        Score
   1    12-1-73 LBSU    Puget Sound     84-55
 100    2-3-79  Iowa    Minnesota       97-71
 200    2-25-84 Arizona Oregon St.      69-58
 300    3-27-88 Arizona North Carolina  70-52
 400    2-13-93 Arizona Washington St.  94-72
 500    2-11-96 Arizona Cincinnati      79-76
Coach O: Lute Olson (Augsburg '56) is his 17th season as the head coach at Arizona and his 27th overall as a head coach... This season will see him reach of number of milestones in what has become a Hall of Fame type coaching career... He has a career record of 591-212 (.736), while his mark in Tucson stands at 399-120 (.769) and he has made Arizona one the dominant programs in the country... He needs just nine more wins for career win No. 600, which would make him one of just 33 coaches in NCAA history to win 600 or more games... With one more win, he will reach 400 for his Arizona career (these numbers may differ from what the NCAA coaching totals list, because as opposed to the Pac-10 Conference, the NCAA does not count forfeits as wins on head coaching records, as the case is with two UA losses to Cal in 1995 and 1996, which were later changed to wins... the same holds true with a game when Olson was at Iowa, when there was a forfeit by Wisconsin in 1983 that changed a loss into a win)... The season's opener against Kansas State was the 800th of his collegiate Division IA career... He is 3-0 all-time versus BYU and 3-0 against Texas... During his 17-year tenure at Arizona, the Wildcats have won one national championship (1997), gone to three Final Fours (1988, 1994, 1997), won eight Pac-10 Conference titles and been to the NCAA Tournament for the past 15 years in a row, which is the second longest streak in NCAA history (North Carolina, 25)... He also led Iowa to the 1980 Final Four... He has been named the Pac-10 Coach of the Year six times (1986, 88, 89, 93, 94, 98), the Big-10 Coach of the Year twice (1979 & 81) and directed the UA program to the nation's best winning percentage over the past 12 years... His Pac-10 record stands at 223-65 (.774) and he is one of just six coaches in league history to win 200 or more conference games... He has the second-best conference winning percentage in Pac-10 history (minimum three years), trailing only John Wooden (.810/304-74)... Prior to coming to Arizona, he was at Iowa for nine years where he owned a 168-90 mark and before that, he was at Long Beach State for one season (1973-74), where he went 24-2... In his collegiate career, he has produced 35 NBA Draft picks, including 20 at Arizona 15 alone on the 1990s... He has led Arizona to 12 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 21 overall in his career... Under Olson, the Cats are 245-25 (.907) in McKale Center and have won 174 of their last 184 home games.

BYU Notes: The Cougars stand at 2-0 on the season after beating a pair of teams by almost identical scores... They opened the year by downing UC-Riverside 91-62, and then beat Southern Utah, 92-64... Both of those were home games... Six players are averaging double figures for point production, led by 6-foot-9 junior forward Mekeli Wesley, who is averaging 19.0 ppg.. He is 10-of-13 from the floor and 17-of-18 from the free throw line... He had 24 points in the season opener -- and was 7-of-8 from the floor and 9-of-9 from the FT line... Senior forward Silester Rivers is the team's leading rebounder at 5.0 rpg and scores 14.0 ppg... Rivers is from Mesa, Ariz... There is another Arizona product on the roster 6-foot-11 junior center Joe Ellsworth, who hails from Yuma... The Cougars are shooting 59.8% from the floor, while holding their opponents to a mark of 34.7%... The Cougars are coached by Steve Cleveland, who is in his third year as the head coach... He has compiled a mark of 23-37 so far... BYU will host Arizona State on Dec. 7.

Texas Notes: The Longhorns are 4-0 on the season and are ranked No. 9 by the AP and No. 10 by the USA Today/ESPN poll... They opened the season by downing Louisiana-Lafayette, which is coached by former UA assistant, Jessie Evans... They won the Puerto Rico Shootout last week after beating Arizona State (88-71), 18th ranked DePaul (68-64) and third-ranked Michigan State... They beat the Spartans in the title game, 81-74... Junior 7-foot center Chris Mihm is the team's leading scorer and rebounder, averaging 19.8 ppg and 12.8 rpg... He also has 16 blocks in four games and is shooting 53.8% from the floor, including 4-of-5 from the 3PT line... He had 29 points against Arizona State, 23 versus DePaul and has had a double-double in each of the Horns' first four games this year... Six-foot-7 senior forward Gabe Muoneke is the second leading scorer and rebounder, sporting per game marks of 16.8 ppg and 7.5 rpg... Opposing teams have hit on just 16-of-70 three-point attempts this season (22.9%)... Sophomore transfer Chris Owens played for Arizona senior Josh Pastner in the Houston-area AAU league... Owens is averaging 13.0 ppg and 5.8 rpg, marks that are third best on the squad... Texas is coached by second-year head coach Rick Barnes... He has compiled a mark of 23-13 in Austin... Prior to his arrival at UT, he had been the head coach at Clemson from 1994-98, at Providence from 1988-94 and George Mason in 1987-88.

UA Powers in Austin: In addition to the basketball team's appearance at UT on Saturday, the Arizona women's volleyball team takes place in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday and Friday... The 19th-ranked Cats play Virginia in the first round and if they win, could end up playing Texas in round two... 15th-ranked UT plays Houston in round one... The Arizona men's and women's swimming and diving teams, which are ranked fourth and second in the nation, respectively, are also headed to Austin and will compete in the University of Texas Invitational, Dec. 3-5.

Messin' With Texas: Arizona has won its last 11 games against teams from the state of Texas... The last loss was on March 3, 1987, to UTEP in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Tucson.

McKale Magic: Arizona currently has the nation's fourth-longest active home winning streak... The Wildcats have won 34 consecutive home games, trailing only Murray State (44), Duke (38) and Utah (36)... The last loss was a 66-64 defeat to UCLA on Feb. 13, 1997... The streak includes two games this year, all 14 home games last season, 15 in 1997-98 and the final three of the 1996-97 campaign... Further, Arizona has won 45 of its last 46 home games and is 174-10 in McKale Center since the 1987-88 season... During that time, the Cats have lost just two non-conference games (Arkansas, 1992-93 & Syracuse, 1995-96)... Overall, Arizona has won 20 consecutive non-conference home games... Last year was the ninth season in history that Arizona went undefeated at home... Arizona owns an all-time record of 338-64 (.841) in McKale Center... This will be the 12th season Arizona basketball has been sold out in McKale Center on a season-ticket basis... Only 10 pairs of mid-level tickets and 20 pairs of upper level tickets were not renewed for this year.

Pac-10 Team of the Decade???: Arizona has the most wins of any Pac-10 team in the 1990s (260), has won five Pac-10 Conference crowns and tied for one other... UCLA is second with four conference titles this decade... Arizona's winning percentage of .795 (260-67) in the 1990s is the third-best in the country, trailing only Kansas (.829; 290-60) and Kentucky (.817; 285-64)... For conference games only, Arizona's record of 140-40 is the best in the league, with UCLA at No. 2 with a 134-47 mark... The Cats have been to the NCAA Tournament each year this decade and won it all in 1997... There have been 18 All-Pac-10 first team selections from Arizona and four Pac-10 Players of the Year... Arizona has not recorded a double-digit loss total since 1986-87... The Wildcats' seven All-Americans during the 1990s trails only Duke's 10... UA and North Carolina are tied for second-most All-Americans in the 1990s.

Arizona in 1999-00 Polls/Week-by-Week

Date    Record   AP             USA Today/ESPN
Pre.    0-0      #9             #9
11/15   1-0      #10            #9
11/22   2-0      #8             #9
11/29   4-0      #4             #4
Cat Scratches: This week marks the 66th time that Arizona has been ranked in the top-five by the Associated Press... With Arizona ranked No. 4 and Stanford No. 3 this week, it marks the first time since Dec. 16, 1991, that the Pac-10 has had two teams ranked among the nation's top-four... That week, Arizona was No. 2 and UCLA was No. 3... Under Lute Olson, the Wildcats have gone 36-6 in the month of November... Loren Woods' seven blocks versus Notre Dame tied a school record that was set on March 13, 1997, by Anthony Cook against UTEP... Of Arizona's five starters, you have two sophomores (Wright/Jefferson) who have combined for 61 career games, two true freshmen (Gardner/Arenas) and a junior who had never played for the Cats until this season (Woods)... Arizona joins Kansas as the only three-time winners of the Preseason NIT, winning it in 1999, 1995 and 1990... Dating back to the first round loss of the 1986 Big Apple NIT, Arizona has won 65 of its last 70 games that have been played as part of an in-season tournament (i.e. Preseason NIT, Maui Invitational, Great Eight, Great Alaska Shootout, Hall of Fame Tip-Off Classic, Bank One Fiesta Bowl Classic, etc., etc.)... Richard Jefferson -- the starting small forward, leads the team in FG% at 63.9%... Since the start of the 1997 NCAA Tournament, the Wildcats own a record of 62-12... Overall, Arizona has been ranked in the regular season Top-25 rankings for 202 straight weeks... The Cats have outscored their two opponents so far by 17.8 ppg... Dating back to the start of the 1997-98 season, Arizona has been ranked in the top-10 in 35 of the last 41 polling periods... Arizona is 31-0 when Josh Pastner plays, hence the term "A Pastner Game" applies whenever the Wildcats win big... Wildcat sophomore guard Ruben Douglas was granted his request for a release from his scholarship at the University of Arizona by the UA coaching staff on Nov. 14... He will continue his course work at the UA for the rest of the fall semester with the intent to transfer after that period.

Pac-10 Prognostications: The Wildcats were picked to win the 1999-2000 Pac-10 Conference title, according to a poll of media members who regularly cover the league... The poll showed Arizona getting 32 of the possible 36 first-place votes, edging No. 2 UCLA, who received three first place votes and No. 3 Stanford, which garnered one first place vote... Following the top-three were Oregon, Oregon State, California, USC, Arizona State, Washington and Washington State. This poll has correctly picked the Pac-10 Champion for five years in a row and Arizona has now been the preseason No. 1 pick six times since the poll was started back in 1989.

The Wright Stuff: All-American candidate Michael Wright has started the year with three double-doubles in the first four games, bringing his career double-double total to 15... The sophomore power forward has 15 double-doubles in just 33 career games... On the season, he is averaging 14.5 ppg and 9.2 rpg and shooting 55.9% from the floor... He is coming off a Kentucky game that him get into foul trouble early and see him score just one point, which was the lowest point total of his career.. That performance came after a marquee outing against Notre Dame, when he went for 22 points and 11 boards... His 35 rebounds through the first three games of the Preseason NIT were three shy of the three-game tournament record of 38, set by Gary Trent (Miami of Ohio).

Madison Square Gardner Arenas: The freshman guard tandem of Jason Gardner and Gilbert Arenas enjoyed their time in the Madison Square Garden limelight last week... Appearing in their own version of an off-Broadway "CATS" performance, they were both named the Preseason NIT All-Tournament team, while Arenas was the tourney's MVP... Playing in one of the "World's Most Famous Arenas", Gilbert Arenas averaged 17.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 2.0 apg and 3.5 spg, helping Arizona beat Notre Dame and Kentucky... He went for a game and career-high 20 points in the title game versus UK... As for Gardner, he averaged 9.5 ppg, 4.0 apg, 2.0 spg and only turned the ball over once while playing in 72 of a possible 80 minutes... Through four games, Arenas has a team-high 13 steals compare that to the first four games of Arizona's No. 1 and No. 2 all-time steal leaders, Jason Terry and Reggie Geary and you will see that Terry had three and Geary had five.

Captains Elected: Senior Josh Pastner and junior Loren Woods were selected captains for this year's team in voting that was done by their teammates.

Counting Classes: The 1999-2000 Arizona basketball roster is relatively young... From top-to-bottom, it is comprised of just two seniors, of which only one will play, due to Eugene Edgerson's redshirt season (Josh Pastner, who has played just 79 minutes in his four year career is the lone "playing" senior)... After that, there are five juniors two of whom had never played in a game for the Cats before the Kansas State season opener (Wake Forest transfer Loren Woods & junior college transfer Lamont Frazier) and one who can't play this season because he is a transfer (Luke Recker)... Then there are three sophomores, one redshirt freshman and four true freshmen.

Who's Back: Heading the group of two returning starters and seven letterwinners is last year's Freshman All-American and Pac-10 Freshman of the Year, Michael Wright. A 6-foot-7, 238-pound sophomore from Chicago, Ill. (Farragut Academy), he The UA's record of 324-74 over the course of the past 12 years gives it the nation's best winning percentage during that span (.814).has received preseason acclaim as being one the top power forwards in the country for 1999-2000. He is the team's leading returning scorer (13.9 ppg) and rebounder (8.8 rpg) after posting the best rebounding average by a freshman in Pac-10 history last season. The other returning starter from last year is sophomore Richard Jefferson (F, 6-7, 222, Phoenix, Ariz.)... (Ruben Douglas was a third returning starter, but he was granted his request to be released from his scholarship at the UA on Nov. 14). Jefferson was an All-Pac-10 Freshman team performer last season after averaging 11.3 ppg, 4.8 rpg and 2.9 apg. Among the other returning letterwinners are Justin Wessel (F, 6-8 , 225, Jr., Cedar Rapids, Iowa), Rick Anderson (F, 6-8 , 221, So., Long Beach, Calif.), John Ash (G, 5-10, 177, Jr., Tucson, Ariz.) and probably the most valuable player in the country who has averaged 2.6 minutes per game during his career, Josh Pastner (G, 5-11, 182, Kingwood, Texas).

A Redshirt Year: Another face that is returning this season, but will not be playing is Eugene Edgerson... He will redshirt this season so he can complete his degree requirement in his education major... In order to accomplish his goal of getting his degree and teaching certificate from the UA in four years, he will student teach during the 2000 spring semester, while fulfilling other requirements this fall... Depending on his teaching schedule, he will still practice with the team but will miss Wednesday practices during the fall semester.

The (Kind Of) New Faces: There are eight players on this season's roster who had never played in a game for the Wildcats before the season opener, although two of them were with the program last year and sat out either as a transfer or with a redshirt season. The transfer is junior center Loren Woods (7-1, 251, St. Louis, Mo.), who came to Arizona from Wake Forest. The former McDonald's All-American had to sit out last year, but is eligible to play in 1999-00 and will establish his presence right away. He did practice with the Cats in 1998-99, so he has a good knowledge of the system. The redshirt is Luke Walton (F, 6-8, 228, Fr., San Diego, Calif.). He missed last season with a medical redshirt after suffering a stress fracture in his right foot. He was healthy towards the end of last year and was able to practice with the team at the end of February.

2000 NCAA West Region First/Second Rounds in McKale Center The University of Arizona will host the first and second rounds of the 2000 NCAA Tournament West Region this March 16 & 18 in McKale Center. Tickets are currently on sale for each of the three sessions and cost $90. Ticket orders can be made at the McKale Center ticket office or by calling 520-621-CATS (2287). Media credential applications will be ready in January. Contact media coordinator Tom Duddleston with any questions (520-621-4163).

The New Guys: The six fresh faces on the team are a talented group... There are two transfers and four true freshmen... Junior college guard Lamont Frazier (6-3, 182, Jr.) comes to Tucson from Lon Morris Junior College in Jacksonville, Texas and is originally from Los Angeles... His has missed some practices so far due to a recurrent medical condition, but returned to practice on Oct. 28 -- his first time on the floor with the team since Oct. 17... The second high-profile transfer in two years to come to Arizona is Indiana transfer Luke Recker (G/F, 6-6, 190, Jr., Auburn, Ind.)... Just as the case was with Loren Woods last season, he must sit out this season as a result of NCAA transfer rules, but will be allowed to practice with the team... As a result of the broken left wrist he suffered in a car wreck back in early July, he was held out of some drills in practice to avoid contact, but received full clearance to practice last week... The four true freshmen on the squad include McDonald's All-American and starting point guard Jason Gardner (G, 5-10, 178, Indianapolis, Ind.), starting two-guard Gilbert Arenas (G, 6-3, 191, North Hollywood, Calif.), Robertas Javtokas it's pronounced YAHV-toe-kus (C, 6-10, 229, Siauliai, Lithuania) and walk-on Michael Schwertley (F, 6-5, 214, Phoenix, Ariz.).

Where Are You From?: California is the state that can claim the most members of this year's Wildcats, as four players are from "The Golden State " (Rick Anderson, Gilbert Arenas, Lamont Frazier and Luke Walton)... There are three from Arizona (John Ash, Richard Jefferson & Michael Schwertley) and two from Indiana (Jason Gardner, Luke Recker)... The rest of the roster contains six players from different states and countries, as the case is with Robertas Javtokas, who is from Siauliai, Lithuania... His city is pronounced SHAW-lay.

The Golden Arches: This season's roster has four former McDonald's All-Americans Jason Gardner, Richard Jefferson, Luke Recker and Loren Woods.

Then There Were Four: Just four players on this year's roster remain from Arizona's 1997 NCAA Championship team Eugene Edgerson, Justin Wessel, John Ash and Josh Pastner.

Who's Gone From 1998-99: Leading the losses from last season are 1998-99 seniors Jason Terry and A.J. Bramlett... Terry was named the National Player of the Year in three circles last year and was the Pac-10 Player of the Year after becoming the first player to lead the league in scoring (21.9 ppg), assists (5.5) and steals (2.8) in the same season since Gary Payton of Oregon State did it in 1989-90... He was No. 10 in the NBA Draft and went to the Atlanta Hawks... Bramlett was an All-Pac-10 selection last season after averaging 14.2 ppg, 9.4 rpg... He was drafted in the second round of the NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers... Both Terry and Bramlett were members of four Arizona teams that went 103-28 (55-4 at home), winning a national title (1997), a Pac-10 crown and they were 11-3 in the NCAA Tournament... Jason Stewart was the third senior last year, while freshman guard Traves Wilson transferred in the off-season, and so did Ruben Douglas, who made his decision Nov. 14.

Arizona's NCAA Tournament History: Last year marked the 18th time Arizona has made an appearance in the NCAA Tournament and it was the 15th invite under head coach Lute Olson... UA's current string of 15 consecutive appearances in the NCAAs is the second longest streak in NCAA history, trailing only North Carolina's 25 straight invites (UNC's is a current streak as well)... Last season was the 20th time in the last 21 years that Olson has taken a team to the NCAAs... He has directed Arizona to 15 tourneys and a 24-14 record -- and when he was the coach at Iowa, he coached five Hawkeye squads to the NCAAs... With 20 career appearances in the NCAA Tournament, he is tied for fourth on the NCAA's all-time tournament appearance list for head coaches with Adolph Rupp and John Thompson... Over the course of their last 20 NCAA games, the Wildcats own a record of 15-5... In the last five years, Arizona has played in 21 tournament games... Arizona's all-time record in the NCAA Tournament is now 26-17... The Wildcats have been to three Final Fours -- 1988, 1994 & 1997... Arizona has advanced to the Sweet 16 seven times in the last 12 years.

20-Win Campaigns: With its record of 22-7 last season, it marked the 12th consecutive season that Arizona won 20 or games... Further, it was the 14th time in Lute Olson's 16 years as UA head coach that the Cats have reached the 20-win plateau... It marked the 21st time in Olson's career that he has directed a team to 20 or more victories, making him just the eighth head coach in NCAA history to reach 20 wins in 21 or more seasons (Dean Smith-30; Jerry Tarkanian-26; Adolph Rupp-23; Bobby Knight-22; Denny Crum-21; Jim Boeheim-21; John Chaney-21).

Former Cats in the NBA: This season, there are 10 former Arizona players on NBA rosters... They are Mike Bibby (Vancouver), A.J. Bramlett (Cleveland/injured list), Jud Buechler (Detroit), Michael Dickerson (Vancouver), Sean Elliott (San Antonio/injured list), Steve Kerr (San Antonio), Chris Mills (Golden State), Sean Rooks (Dallas), Damon Stoudamire (Portland) and Jason Terry (Atlanta).

Shooting Sets the Tone: Since the 1996-97 season, Arizona is 64-4 in games when it has a better shooting percentage than its opponent... The Wildcats are 4-0 this year, 19-1 last season, 23-2 the year before and 18-1 in 1996-97 campaign.

80s Preservation Society: In the past four years, the UA is 77-8 when it scores 80 or more points in a game... Further, since the 1992-93 season, Arizona is 139-15 when it scores 80 or more... The Cats are 2-0 this year, were 15-2 in 1998-99, 26-3 in 1997-98 and 19-2 in 1996-97.

The Century Club: The UA has not given up 100 points in regulation since Jan. 27, 1990, at Pittsburgh, a span of 306 games. UA lost that game 100-92.

Some Notes on Last Season: The Wildcats led the Pac-10 in rebounding (41.6 rpg), scoring (82.2 ppg), free throw shooting (.710) and rebounding margin (+8.1 rpg)... The Cats completed its home schedule with a 14-0 mark... It was the ninth time in history the UA has completed its home schedule undefeated... Last year was the first time since 1989-90 that Arizona didn't score 100 points or more in at least one game... Arizona started three freshmen in 22 of its 29 games and used 10 different starting lineups... Only three teams shot 50% or better against the Wildcats -- UCLA (50%), at Cal (51.6%) and at Stanford (54.0%)... Arizona suffered its worst shooting performance of the season against Oklahoma in the first round of the NCAA Tournament (19-of-57/33%)... One offshoot of the UA's rebounding dominance was the amount of times it went to the free throw line... The Wildcats attempted 252 more free throws than the opposition... The three-point field goal percentage of .350 was the lowest in team history... Arizona's 30 turnovers against Washington State on Jan. 7, were the most for the program since Dec. 4, 1982, when the Ben Lindsey-coached Cats had 36 at New Mexico... The University of Arizona retired Steve Kerr's jersey in a ceremony following the Washington game... He joined Sean Elliott as the only former Wildcats to have their jersey hung from the McKale Center rafters.

Arizona Basketball On TV This Year: Each of Arizona's 32 regular season games will be televised on either Fox Sports Net, ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, CBS or KWBA. The Wildcats appear on Fox Sports Net 20 times, ESPN four times, ESPN2 four times, CBS once, ABC once and on Tucson's KWBA five times.

The Coach's Show: Once again this season, KNST will air the Lute Olson Coach's Show, hosted by Brian Jeffries... Due to Arizona travel conflicts during the non-conference season, the show will air just once prior to Pac-10 play... The first show is on Monday, Nov. 29, at 6 p.m. It is broadcast live from Bob's at 6350 East Tanque Verde Road... The show will then be aired for the television portion of the Lute Olson Show, showing on Tuesday, Nov. 30, at 10:30 p.m. on UPN channel 18... The next Lute Olson Show after this will be Tuesday, Jan. 4, at 6 p.m. and the TV show will be shown Wednesday, Jan. 5 at 10:30 p.m.

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