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Men's Basketball Game Notes, 11/4/2006
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 11/03/2006
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Arizona Faces Team Georgia in First Exhibition Game

 

Date:  Saturday, Nov. 4, 2006

Time:  Noon MST

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

Radio:  KTUC AM 1400 in Tucson (Ryan Radtke/Ryan Hansen)

TV:  None

 

Game Data:  No. 10 Arizona (0-0, 0-0 Pac-10) opens the 2006-07 exhibition portion of the schedule with a game against Team Georgia ... It’s the third consecutive year that Team Georgia, a collection of former college players based in Atlanta, has played an exhibition game in McKale Center ... The Wildcats should be chomping at the proverbial bit as this is the squad’s first taste of outside competition.

 

The Rankings:  Arizona will open the 2006-07 campaign ranked 10th in the preseason edition of the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.  It marks the 19th time in the last 20 seasons that the Wildcats have been nationally ranked to start the season.  The Associated Press preseason poll will be released early next week.

 

Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . is set to begin his 24th season at Arizona and his 34th overall as a college head coach with a career record of 761-269 (.739) and 569-177 (.763) 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 750th collegiate victory on Dec. 31, 2005, and became Arizona’s career victories leader (510) on Jan. 17, 2004 ... He has the most Pac-10 wins (316) of any coach in league history ... Olson has the second-best conference winning percentage (.771/316-94) and second-most league championships won (11) in Pac-10 history (minimum three years), trailing only UCLA’s John Wooden (.810/304-74/16 titles)  ... During his 23-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, ?'89, ?'90, 2002) and been to the NCAA Tournament for 22 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, ?'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 second-best winning percentage over the past 19 years (499-131/.792) ... In his collegiate career, Olson has produced 49 NBA Draft picks, including 30 at Arizona ?- 21 alone since 1990 ... He’s led UA to 19 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 28 overall in his career, making him one of only three head coaches in NCAA history to record 28 or more 20-win seasons... Under Olson, the Cats are 333-35 (.905) in McKale Center and have won 261 of its last 280 home games ... He is assisted by Jim Rosborough, Josh Pastner and Miles Simon.

 

Last Time Out:  Ivan Radenovic scored a game-high 35 points to lead the Blue team to a 93-81 victory, Oct. 26, in the annual Pepsi Red-Blue Game.  The 6-foot-10 senior forward connected on 12-of-18 field goals and 9-of-10 free throws to go with 10 rebounds.  He was one of four Blue team members to finish in double figures and his efforts helped that squad shoot 52.9 percent (36-of-68) from the field.  Nic Wise scored 22 to lead the Red, while teammate Chase Budinger added 20.

 

Plenty Of Minutes:  There were plenty of minutes to go around during the Red-Blue Game, as 11 players logged more than 25 minutes.  That will certainly change Saturday against Team Georgia as the minutes get cut in half.  How those 200 minutes are distributed will be a key storyline heading into the Nov. 12 opener at Virginia.

 

Straight Shooting:  After last season’s team field goal percentage of .446 (909-of-2,037), improvement is a definite must.  There was notable improvement during the Red-Blue Game, as the teams combined to shoot 46.8 percent (65-of-139) from the floor.  Bolstered by Ivan Radenovic’s effort (12-of-18 FGs), the Blue squad connected on 36-of-68 attempts (52.9 percent).  In fact, five of the seven players to wear the blue uniform shot 50 percent or better from the floor.

 

Step Back:  Assuming that one game can cement such a claim, the improved shooting the Wildcats displayed during the Red-Blue Game also extended to areas behind the arc.  In that scrimmage, UA shot a combined 39.5 percent (15-of-38) from three-point range, a figure that was 76 percentage points higher than last season’s .319 three-point FG percentage.

 

Preseason Prognostications:  According to media members that regularly cover the Pacific-10 Conference, Arizona was picked to finish second in this year’s Pac-10 race.  Arizona received 13 first-place votes and 280 points overall and trailed only UCLA in the poll.  It is the firs time in five seasons that Arizona has not been selected as the preseason team to beat.  Incidentally, the Cats have been the preseason favorite in 11 of the last 17 seasons.

 

Preseason Kudos:  Mustafa Shakur and Marcus Williams were named to the 2006-07 John R. Wooden Award Preseason All-America team, the award’s national selection committee announced Oct. 17.  Shakur, a 6-foot-3, senior guard from Philadelphia, and Williams, a 6-foot-7 sophomore forward from Philadelphia, are among 50 student-athletes on the list.  Arizona is one of only nine schools nationally to have two or more players on the list.

 

Nice to Have Him Back:  After sitting out much of last season due to academics and a season-ending wrist injury, it was nice to Jawann McClellan back in action.  The 6-foot-4 junior scored 22 points, grabbed six boards and passed out three assists in 29 minutes of action.  McClellan hit 9-of-16 field goal attempts, including 3-of-5 from three-point range.

 

Something to Look Forward to:  Arizona’s freshman class of Chase Budinger, Jordan Hill and Nic Wise put forth a nice effort in the Red-Blue Game, considering it was their first appearance in the Arizona uniform.  The trio combined for 48 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists.  Perhaps it was just first game jitters that caused the guys to shoot 41.9 percent (18-of-43) from the field.  However, all three did log more than 30 minutes of action.

 

Anyone For Exercise?:  UA head coach Lute Olson and the men’s basketball team will participate in CatWalk ?'06 presented by Alliance Bank, which takes place Sunday, Nov. 5.  Registration on the UA Mall begins at 12:30 p.m. and the walk begins at 2 p.m.  The public is welcome to attend.  There is a post-walk expo and entertainment beginning at 3 p.m.  All proceeds from the event benefit the Bobbi OIson Fund for Women’s Cancer Research at the Arizona Cancer Center.

 

Conflicting Media:  The start time of today’s basketball game was moved to noon to avoid a conflict with the scheduled start of the Arizona at Washington State football game in Pullman, Wash., which starts at 2 p.m. PST.  The back-to-back games necessitated an adjustment in the radio broadcast availability.  The men’s basketball game will be carried live on KTUC AM 1400.  That broadcast will feature a one-hour pregame show, which begins at 11 a.m., and a 45-minute postgame show.  Ryan Radtke will handle the play-by-play, while Ryan Hansen will add color commentary.

 

Up Next:  Arizona will next be in action on Wednesday, Nov. 8, as the club closes out the exhibition schedule against the University of Victoria.  Tip-off in McKale Center is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. MST and will be televised by FSN Arizona.  The Wildcats open the regular season on Nov. 12 at Virginia.

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