14 Bowl Game Ticket Information
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SDSU Notes
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 12/20/2007
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Date: ? Saturday, Dec. 22, 2007

Time: ? 1 p.m. MST

Location: ? Olson Court, McKale Center (14,545), Tucson, Ariz.

Radio: ? Wildcat Radio Network (Brian Jeffries/Ryan Hansen)

TV: FSNAZ (Dave Sitton/Bob Elliott)

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Game data: ? No. 19 Arizona (8-2, 0-0 Pac-10) heads back to McKale Center to host San Diego State (9-2, 0-0 MWC) on Saturday ... It is also the 23rd edition of the Fiesta Bowl Classic, which is in its second season featuring a single-game format ... This is Arizonaˇ?s second consecutive game against a Mountain West Conference foe and the Wildcats are 183-132 (.581) all-time against teams that currently reside in the MWC.

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The Rankings: ? Following Sundayˇ?s win, Arizona rose in the polls dated Dec. 17, checking in at No. 19 in both the Associated Press Top 25 and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll.

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Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . will begin his 25th season at Arizona and his 35th overall as a college head coach with a career record of 780-280 (.736) and 589-187 (.759) at Arizona upon his return from a leave of absence, which was announced on Nov. 4 ... He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Sept. 27, 2002 ... Olson became the 16th coach in basketball history to tally 1,000 career victories (covering all levels) on Dec. 11, 2004 ... Olson recorded his 775th collegiate victory on Jan. 24, 2007, and became Arizonaˇ?s career victories leader (510) on Jan. 17, 2004 ... He has the most Pac-10 wins (327) of any coach in league history ... Olson has the second-best conference winning percentage (.764/327-101) and second-most league championships won (11) in Pac-10 history (minimum three years), trailing only UCLAˇ?s John Wooden (.810/304-74/16 titles)?... During his 24-year tenure at Arizona, the Wildcats have won one national championship (1997), played in the national championship game (2001), participated in four Final Fours (1988, 1994, 1997, 2001), won 11 Pac-10 Conference titles, four Pac-10 Tournament crowns (1988, ˇ®89, ˇ®90, 2002) and been to the NCAA Tournament for 23 consecutive seasons, which is the longest active and second-longest streak in NCAA history (North Carolina, 27) ... He also led Iowa to the 1980 Final Four ... Olson has been named the Pac-10 Coach of the Year seven times (1986, ˇ®88, ˇ®89, ˇ®93, ˇ®94, ˇ®98, 2003), the Big Ten Coach of the Year twice (1979 & ˇ®81) and directed the UA program to the nationˇ?s third-best winning percentage over the past 20 years (519-142/.785) ... In his collegiate career, Olson has produced 52 NBA Draft picks, including 31 at Arizona ?C 25 alone since 1990 ... Heˇ?s led UA to 20 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 29 overall in his career, making him one of only three head coaches in NCAA history to record 29 or more 20-win seasons...Under Olson, the Cats are 344-40 (.896) in McKale Center and have won 272 of its last 296 home games ... He is assisted by Kevin Oˇ?Neill, Josh Pastner and Miles Simon.

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Last Time out: ? With all else awry, Arizona relied on its defense and rebounding to secure another come-from-behind win in Wednesdayˇ?s 52-49 decision at UNLV.? The Cats forced the Runninˇ? Rebels to miss 14 of its last 16 field game in the game to erase as much as an eight-point, second-half deficit.? UA limited UNLV to just 31 percent shooting and posted a +17 rebound margin in what turned out to be Arizonaˇ?s first-ever win in Las Vegas.? Jordan Hill totaled 16 points and 19 rebounds, while Jawann McClellan buried a trey with 26 seconds to go to secure the win.

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Scouting San Diego State : ? The Aztecs enter play Saturday with a 9-2 record after an 86-76 win over Navy on Dec. 17.? Through 11 games, SDSU averages 72.9 points per game, shoots 47.8 percent (293-of-613), and posts a +3.3 rebound margin per game.? Opponents shoot 43.2 percent from the floor and are outscored by nearly 10 points per game.? Individually, three Aztecs average in double figures, led by Lorenzo Wade, who averages 14.4 points? per game.? Ryan Amoroso leads SDSU with a 5.7 rebounds per game average.

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The Series: ? This afternoonˇ?s game is the 24th meeting of the two schools with Arizona holding an 18-5 series advantage.? Arizona won the last five games in the series, which dates back to Dec. 27, 1945, and the last five contests in Tucson.? The Wildcats posted a 69-48 win in San Diego on Dec. 9 of last season in the last meeting.? All-time, Arizona is 12-1 in series games played in Tucson, 6-4 in San Diego, Calif., and 0-0 in neutral-site games.? Please see page 101 in UA media guide for more series information.

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Last Meeting: ? Arizona 69, San Diego State 48, Dec. 9, 2006: ? Marcus Williams scored 21 points and grabbed 16 rebounds to lead Arizona to its seventh straight win.? Williamsˇ? effort nearly overshadowed what may have been the Wildcatsˇ? best defensive effort of the year in which it limited SDSU to 32.8 percent shooting, forced 14 turnovers, posted a 43-34 rebound advantage and held the Aztecs to 31 fewer points than its season scoring average entering the game.

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A Different Look on the Sidelines: ? Prior to the Nov. 4 exhibition game, it was announced that UA head coach Lute Olson would be taking a leave of absence due to a personal matter.? It was announced on Dec. 7 that Olson would not return this season.? During this period, assistant coach Kevin Oˇ?Neill will handle the head coaching responsibilities.? Oˇ?Neill, who was tabbed as Olsonˇ?s successor on Dec. 18, has 11 seasons of experience as an NCAA Division I head coach, where he compiled a 152-165 (.479) record while at Marquette, Tennessee and Northwestern. Oˇ?Neill spent the last seven seasons in NBA circles.? During Olsonˇ?s leave of absence all games will be credited to Oˇ?Neillˇ?s coaching record.

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Grind it Out: ? The UNLV game showcased a different personality for an Arizona squad. Interim head coach Kevin Oˇ?Neill has used the phrase ˇ?grind it outˇ± as a descriptor.? The Wildcats have done a great job grinding down opponents of late as well.? Over the last five games, UA opponents are averaging just 60.6 points per game, and opponents have scored no more than 50 points in either of the last two outings.?

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Worth Noting: ? The last time Arizona scored less than 60 points and won was a 57-56 overtime win on the road at Washington State Feb. 24, 2005.? The last time UA scored less than 55 points and prevailed was Dec. 18, 2004, in a 48-43 win at Marquette.? Incidentally, it marked the first time this season that the Cats have held an opponent to less than 50 points in a game, but it is the sixth time UA has accomplished the feat since that Marquette game three years ago.

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Big Numbers: ? Jordan Hill pulled down a career-high 19 rebounds in Wednesdayˇ?s win at UNLV, which was the highest single-game rebounding total for a Wildcat since Michael Wright grabbed 19 vs. Chaminade on Nov. 20, 2000 (a span of 232 games).? In case you were wondering, Pete Williams was the last UA player to grab 20 rebounds in a game, when he did so on Dec. 4, 1984, in a 82-75 win over Loyola Marymount.

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Doubling Up: ? Forward Jordan Hill notched his second double-double in the last three games with 16 points and 19 rebounds Wednesday at UNLV.? For the 6-foot-10 sophomore from Atlanta, Ga., it was his second double-double of the season (he is the only Wildcat to do so in 2007-08) and the fifth of his career.? Over his last five games, Hill is averaging 15.2 points and 10.0 rebounds per game.

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Playing From Behind: ? Arizona erased an eight-point second-half deficit to post its third come-from-behind win in the last four outings.? Interestingly, the win Wednesday moved Arizona to 2-0 this season when trailing with five minutes remaining in the second half, and both victories have come in road or neutral-site games where such pushes can be difficult.

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Defense Never Rests: ? Despite shooting a season-low 34.6 percent from the field and seeing its two leading scorers combine for 14 points, Arizona managed to pull out a victory wit some staunch defense.? UA limited UNLV to just 31.0 percent (18-of-58) shooting in the game, including only 26.9 percent in the second half.? The Cats forced the Rebels to miss 14 of its last 16 field goal attempts over the gameˇ?s last 11 minutes.

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Board Work: ? Keyed by Jordan Hill (19), Chase Budinger (8) and Nic Wise (4), who each posted season-high rebounding totals Wednesday, Arizona posted a season-high 48 rebounds and a season-high +17 rebound advantage.? Over the last seven games, Arizona has outrebounded six opponents, including four by 10 or more, and has a +9.1 rebound margin in that span.? Hill, Budinger and Wise combined to equal UNLVˇ?s rebound total on Wednesday.

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Bouncing Back: ? Senior guard Jawann McClellan hit the floor hard in the second half following a made basket, left the floor momentarily, but still returned swiftly and was credited with 40 minutes of playing time, his career high.? UA needed him when it mattered, as the 6-foot-4 Houston, Texas, native drained the decisive trey with 26 seconds to go.? McClellan finished with 12 points, four rebounds and three blocked shots in the win.

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More On Hill: ?? Jordan Hillˇ?s 19-rebound game at UNLV kicked his per-game rebound average up from 6.0 to 7.3 per game, a substantial boost only possible in early-season going. But he still has a ways to go to match the 7.6 rpg figure by Ivan Radenovic led the club a year ago. Additionally, Hill missed UAˇ?s single-game rebounding top 10 by a pair of boards, whereupon Al Fleming (at Columbia, 1975) and Albert Johnson (Idaho State, 1963) share the No. 9 spot with 21 apiece.

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Under the Circumstances: ?? One look at UAˇ?s 8-2 start and national ranking and the assumption could be that UA is enjoying some pretty heady stuff. Under the circumstances, it actually is. But by comparison last year the Cats were 12-1 a week into January and Arizona was 9-3 by Dec. 31 of 2005-06.? the 2005 club started 12-2.? In 2004 it was 10-1 by Jan. 8. In 2003, Arizona was 14-1 before a game on Jan. 28. In 2002, UA was 8-3 through December. The current 8-2 mark is pretty normal goods for Wildcat basketball of late, but it hasnˇ?t come without hurdles. Fast starts, however, arenˇ?t a bellwether of success.? UAˇ?s 2001 Final Four team had the worst start of any over the last eight seasons at? 8-5 as of Jan. 6.

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Quick Hits: ? Arizona and UNLV combined to shoot 32.7 percent (36-of-110) from the floor, one reason for the 79 rebounds of which UA grabbed 61 percent of them ... UA had some turnover trouble again, with 15, though nine of those came in the first half. UNLV had only six ... In its last two games UA has committed only 20 personal fouls, 11 of those vs. UNLV ... Jordan Hill took a game-high seven fouls shots, making four on UAˇ?s worst night from the line (9-of-16/.563) of the year ... Hillˇ?s 11 defensive rebounds were two more than UNLVˇ?s team had on that end of the floor (7 offensive boards/2 team) ... That denial of many second-chance points by Runninˇ? Rebel shooters was a big key for the Cats as Arizona held a 12-0 advantage.

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Settling for Jumpers: ?? UA took a season-high 24 three-point shots and needed every one of the seven makes, notably McClellanˇ?s heroics late in the going, but that doesnˇ?t change the fact that a substantial amount of UAˇ?s field goal attempts were from long range.? Entering the game, Arizona was averaging just under 17 three-point attempts per contest and had attempted more than 20 in a game twice this season.

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Down the Stretch: ?? It might not seem like much, but Arizona connected on eight of its last 14 field goal attempts in the second half at UNLV, which was a nice rebound of sorts from the start of the period where UA hit just one of its first 13 shots.? Largely due to defense, the Cats were able to survive because at the time of UAˇ?s second field goal (12:45), the deficit was only five points.? UNLV got a trey about a minute later and tallied just six points thereafter on 2-of-16 shooting to close the game.

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Early Signees: ? The Arizona coaching staff signed four student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent during the November early signing period.? Brandon Jennings (G, 6-0, 170) from Lakewood, Calif., Oak Hill Academy; Brendon Lavender (G, 6-4, 180) from Mesa, Ariz., Mountain View High School;? Emmanuel Negedu (F, 6-7, 230) from Bloomington, Ind., Brewster Academy; Jeff Withey (C, 6-11, 240) from San Diego, Calif., Horizon High School, will join the squad next fall.? According to rivals.com, this class was ranked as the seventh-best nationally.

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Up Next: ? The Cats return to action following the Christmas holiday on Saturday, Dec. 29, when it takes on No. 2 Memphis in Memphis, Tenn.? Tip-off for that contest is scheduled for 9 p.m. CST and will be televised nationally by ESPN2.

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