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Men's Basketball Game Notes vs. Manhattan
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 12/21/2004
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Game 10:  No. 14 Arizona (7-2) vs. Manhattan (4-2)

 

Date:  Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2004

Time:  6:30 p.m. MST

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

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

TV:  FSNA (Dave Sitton/Bob Elliott)


 

ALL-ACCESS COVERAGE: Subscribers to All-Access, the Arizona Athletic Department's premium audio/video service, can watch a Webcast of the FSN Arizona broadcast of Arizona vs. Manhattan in its entirety beginning at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 22. ArizonaAthletics.com will also have live and postgame coverage of the Manhattan game on Tuesday, including:

 

Live Game Statistics (free)

Live Courtside Webchat (free)

Live Radio Broadcast (All-Access audio)

 

Postgame Story and Box Score (free)

Postgame Highlights (All-Access video)

Postgame Lute Olson Press Conference (All-Access video)

Postgame Player Interviews (All-Access video)

 

All-Access Subscription Information:

Audio only: $6/month

Audio/Video: $9/month

Learn More About All-Access

Become a Subscriber

 

Game Data:  No. 14 Arizona (7-2, 0-0 Pac-10) returns home to start a four-game homestand Tuesday against Manhattan (4-2, 0-0 MAAC) ... UA has held each of its last three opponents to less than 70 points ... The Wildcats are 118-36 (766) under Lute Olson in December, including a 78-19 (.804) mark since the 1990-91 campaign ... All-time Arizona is 2-4 (.333) against schools that currently make up the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, though five of those games occurred between 1948-54.

 

The Rankings:  After a win last week, Arizona rose to No. 14 in the Associated Press Top 25 and to No. 15 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.  UA has been ranked in 291 consecutive AP polls released during the regular season only.

 

Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . is in his 22nd season at Arizona and his 32nd overall as a college head coach with a career record of 718-251 (.741) and 526-159 (.768) at Arizona ... 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 700th collegiate victory on Jan. 3, 2004, and became Arizona’s career victories leader (510) on Jan. 17, 2004 ... He has the second-most Pac-10 wins (290) in history, trailing UCLA’s John Wooden (304, 1949-75) ... Olson has the second-best conference winning percentage (.775/290-84) and second-most league championships won (10) in Pac-10 history (minimum three years), trailing only Wooden (.810/304-74/16 titles)  ... During his 22-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 10 Pac-10 Conference titles, four Pac-10 Tournament crowns (1988, ?'89, ?'90, 2002) and been to the NCAA Tournament for the past 20 years, 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, ?'88, ?'89, ?'93, ?'94, ?'98, 2003), the Big Ten Coach of the Year twice (1979 & ?'81) and directed the UA program to the nation’s best winning percentage over the past 17 years (449-111/.802) ... In his collegiate career, Olson has produced 47 NBA Draft picks, including 28 at Arizona ?- 21 alone since 1990 ... He’s led UA to 17 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 26 overall in his career, making him one of only five head coaches in NCAA history to record 25 or more 20-win seasons... Under Olson, the Cats are 311-32 (.907) in McKale Center and have won 239 of its last 256 home games ... He is assisted by Jim Rosborough, Rodney Tention and Josh Pastner ... Olson is 0-0 against Manhattan.

 

Last Time Out:  Defense and rebounding proved to be the difference as Arizona out-toughed Marquette and earned a 48-43 win on Saturday.  The Wildcats shot 34.6 percent for the game and posted its lowest point total since 1985, but managed to win by holding Marquette to 30.6 percent shooting, outrebounding them 40-29 and limiting MU to just two field goal attempts  in the last four minutes.  Chris Rodgers scored 11 of his game-high 16 points in the second half.  Hassan Adams added 14 points and five rebounds.

 

Scouting Manhattan:  The Jaspers enter Tuesday’s game with 4-2 record after an 85-70 win over Siena on Dec 9.  Manhattan shoots 44.1 percent from the field (152-of-345), posts a -5.0 rebound margin and outscores the opposition by 3.3 points per game.  Individually, three players average in double figures, led by Peter Mulligan’s 21.7 points per game average.  CJ Anderson chips in with per game averages of 12.8 points and a team-leading 8.7 rebounds.

 

The Series:  Tuesday’s game marks the first meeting of the two schools.  Incidentally, both teams were at the 2004 NCAA Tournament site in Raleigh, N.C.  The Jaspers advanced to the second round with a 75-60 win over Florida.

 

Roster Moves:  Head coach Lute Olson announced Monday that sophomore guard Beau Muhlbach has decided to transfer to Texas A&M.  The 6-foot-3, 200-pound, native of Lufkin, Texas, had opted to redshirt this season.  He averaged 0.9 points and 0.3 rebounds in eight appearances last season.  “It was a situation where Beau wanted to be a little closer to home and get a better opportunity to play,” said Olson.  “We’ve enjoyed having him in the program for the last year and a half.”

 

Bouncing Back:  Salim Stoudamire was held to a career-low one field goal attempt in going scoreless, Dec. 11 vs. Utah, for just the third time in his 101-game career.  If past performance is any indication, expect a big game from the 6-foot-1 guard as he has rebounded from those 0-fers to average 22.5 points per game.  In those two games, Stoudamire has connected on 15-of-23 field goal attempts (.652), including 8-of-12 (.667) from three-point range, to go with seven assists.

 

Answering the Call:  Chris Rodgers led Arizona to a 48-43 win at No. 25 Marquette Saturday by posting season-high totals of 16 points and six rebounds to with a pair of steals.  The 6-foot-4 junior hit 6-of-12 shots from the floor, including 3-of-4 from three-point range, passed out one assists and committed zero turnovers in a season-high 35 minutes played.  Rodgers scored 11 of those 16 points in the second half by hitting 4-of-7 FG attempts, including a driving layup with 57 seconds remaining that put the Cats up by three.  At one point of the second half separated by 93 seconds, Rodgers nailed consecutive three-point field goals that turned a three-point deficit into a three-point UA lead.  On the season, Rodgers is averaging 5.1 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game.

 

Low-Water Mark:  Arizona’s 48 points in the win over Marquette was its lowest point total since a 50-41 loss to Alabama on March 15, 1985, in the first round of the 1985 NCAA Tournament, a span of 531 games.  It was the fewest points scored in a UA win in the Lute Olson era and just the sixth time in 685 games under Olson that UA failed to score at least 50 points.  Incidentally, the last time Arizona scored fewer than 50 points and won came on Dec. 23, 1982, in a 46-44 win over San Diego State.

 

Some Good, Some Bad:  Arizona continues to struggle offensively, averaging just 69.4 points per game.  To date, Arizona has scored less than 70 points six times (4-2 record).  The last time Arizona averaged less than 70 points per game for a season came in 1985-86, when the Cats averaged 68.8 points per game.  However, UA opponents are averaging just 63.9 points per game, the lowest such figure since 1985-86 as well.  Arizona has held the opponent to less than 70 points in seven of nine games this year.  1985-86 was the last season played without the three-point arc.

 

Anemic:  One thing that continues to plague the Wildcats this season is its shooting percentage.  Through nine games, Arizona is shooting just 39.9 percent (232-of-581) from the field.  Against Marquette, the Wildcats connected on 18-of-52 field goal attempts (.346), but managed to out-shoot the Golden Eagles (34.6 percent-30.6 percent).  On the season, Arizona is 4-0 when outshooting the opposition.  To illustrate UA’s shooting woes, Arizona would have to make its next 98 consecutive field goals to match last season’s 48.6 field goal percentage.

 

Winning the Close ones:  The Wildcats have displayed enough toughness to win close ballgames.  On the year, Arizona is 4-1 in games decided by five points or less.  Last year, UA was 4-6 in such contests.  Five of Arizona’s last six games have been decided by five points or less.

 

Hold Them Down:  Despite its offensive woes, Arizona has been able to post a 7-2 record due to defense and rebounding.  To date, the Wildcats are holding the opposition to just 42.4 percent shooting from the field (216-of-509), including just 29.1 percent (48-of-165) from three-point range, posts a +4.5 rebound margin and forces 2.0 more turnovers per game.  Against Marquette, Arizona held the Golden Eagles to season-low totals of 43 points, 15 field goals, a .306 field goal percentage, and a .292 three-point field goal percentage.  Arizona also snapped Marquette’s nine-game win streak this year and its 34-game homecourt win streak against non-conference opponents, which dated back to the 2001 campaign.

 

Controlling the Boards:  As mentioned earlier, Arizona is 6-0 this season when outrebounding the opposition, and four times the squad has posted at least a +10 rebound margin.  UA posted a +11 rebound margin (40-29) against a Marquette club that entered the game with a +11.9 rebound margin and had outrebounded eight of nine opponents in 2004-05.

 

Taking a Stand:  As a testament to its defensive effort Saturday, Arizona held Marquette scoreless over the last 4:15 of the second half.  In that span, Marquette mustered just two field goal attempts.  Over the final 10 minutes of the game, MU went just 1-of-6 from the field.  Additionally, the Wildcats limited Marquette’s top three scorers in Travis Diener, Steve Novak and Dameon Mason, who were averaging a combined 50.3 points per game and shooting a combined 47.8 percent from the field to just 35 points and 33.3 percent (13-of-39) shooting.

 

Yeoman:  In addition to Chris Rodgers’ heroics, Arizona received a strong effort from junior Hassan Adams.  The 6-foot-4 Los Angeles product collected 14 points, five rebounds and a season-best three assists.  Three of his five boards were of the offensive variety, including his most important one with four seconds to go of which the resulting two free throws pushed the winning margin to five points.  On the day, Adams went a season-best 6-of-7 from the free throw line.

 

Keep It Close:  Even though Arizona shot just 34.6 percent (18-of-52) from the field, the Wildcats didn’t settle for perimeter shots as the club enjoyed a 22-8 advantage on points in the paint.  All told, 11 of Arizona’s 18 field goals were scored within eight feet of the basket.

 

Spreading Christmas Cheer:  Some would call it the nightmare before Christmas.  Others might say the Wildcats are just a generous bunch.  Whatever the perspective, Arizona is just 7-14 in the final game before Christmas under Lute Olson, including a 5-4 mark in McKale Center.  After losing seven consecutive games from December 1991-97 (against the likes of Arkansas, Providence, Kentucky, Syracuse twice, Michigan and Florida State), Arizona is 3-3 in its last six Christmas preludes.

 

Doing His Job:  Senior center Channing Frye posted his fifth double-figure rebound game of the season (28th career) Saturday with 11 against Marquette. The effort raised his season rebound average to 8.9 rebounds per game, a figure that ranks second in the Pac-10 Conference.  Frye, the league’s active rebound leader with 773, currently ranks ninth on the UA career rebounds chart.  In his 105-game career, Frye averages 7.4 rebounds per game.

 

Tops in the Pac-10:  In the annual poll of media members who regularly cover the Pac-10 Conference, Arizona was selected as the team to beat for the league title.  The Cats received 19 of a possible 26 first-place votes and 253 points overall.  Washington (237), Stanford (194) and Oregon (167) rounded out the top four places.  It is the 10th time since 1989-90 that UA has been the predicted winner in the preseason poll.

 

Scoring 80:  Perhaps no statistic is more telling of UA success, as the squad is 127-16 (.888) since the start of the 1997-98 season when scoring at least 80 points.  The Cats are 3-0 this season when topping the 80-point plateau.

 

Early Signees:  Coach Olson and his staff signed three student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent during the November early signing period.  Fendi Onobun (F, 6-7, 215) from Houston, Texas, Alief Taylor High School; J.P. Prince (G, 6-6, 183) from Memphis, Tenn., White Station High School;  and Marcus Williams (F, 6-6, 190) from Seattle, Wash., Roosevelt High School, will join the squad next fall.

 

Up Next:  Arizona will break for the Christmas holiday before returning to action when the squad hosts the 20th annual Fiesta Bowl Classic presented by Bank One, Dec. 28 and 30.  Butler takes on Richmond on Tuesday, Dec. 28, at 4 p.m. MST, while Arizona meets Eastern Washington at 6:30 p.m.  The UA game will be televised on FSN Arizona.  Consolation and championship games are set for 4 and 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 30.

 

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