Game 11: No. 9
Date: Thursday, Dec. 28, 2006
Time: 6:30 p.m. MST
Radio: Wildcat Radio Network (Brian Jeffries/Ryan Hansen)
TV: FSNAZ (Dave Sitton/Bob Elliott)
Game Data: For the third time in the last seven seasons, No. 9 Arizona (9-1, 0-0 Pac-10) opens Pac-10 play in McKale Center Thursday against California (8-3, 0-0 Pac-10) ... Since joining the league in 1978-79, Arizona is 20-8 in conference openers, including a 16-6 mark under Lute Olson ... Since then, UA is 10-1 opening Pac-10 play at home, including 6-0 under Olson ... Over the last 23 seasons, Arizona has a Pac-10-best 183-24 (.884) mark in conference home games ... The Cats average 90.7 points per game in six home games this season.
The Rankings: Following a victory on Sunday,
Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . is in his 24th season at Arizona and his 34th overall as a college head coach with a career record of 770-270 (.740) and 578-178 (.765) 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 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, ?'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 339-35 (.906) in
Last Time Out: Trailing by five points at the half,
The Series: Tonight’s game marks the 73rd meeting of the two schools with
It Starts With ?'Staf: In leading Arizona to its ninth consecutive win, Mustafa Shakur equaled a career high with 23 points, six rebounds and five assists in a 79-71 win over 18th-ranked Memphis. Shakur hit 8-of-12 shots from the field (.667) and 5-of-6 free throws in leading the Wildcats in scoring for the second straight games. Shakur’s five assists on Wednesday marked the 10th time in 10 games this season that he’s passed out five or more assists in a game. During his career,
Streaking: UA’s current nine-game win streak eclipses the longest streaks of the last three seasons. The last
Falling Behind: It isn’t often that
Not Even Close: Since blowing a 19-point lead in the season-opener at
Charitable Contributions: Look no further than the free throw line for an indication of success, as the Wildcats have made 81 more free throws than opponents have attempted this season. But here is something a little more interesting. Over the last eight games, UA has outscored the opposition by a 151-35 margin from the stripe ?- or an average of 18.9-4.3 points per game. In that span, opponents have attempted at least 10 free throws only twice, while
Controlling the Boards: Facing a Memphis Tiger team that had outrebounded eight of 10 opponents and carried a +5.7 rebound margin into the Dec. 20 contest, UA used a balanced attack on the glass to outrebound
A Long Time Coming: The Arizona win over No. 18 Memphis came in the squad’s first contest against a nationally ranked opponent this year.
Halftime Adjustments: One could say that
Extending the Defense:
A Late Push: Forward Chase Budinger saved his best for last against
Limited Action: Despite seeing a season-low 22 minutes against
Nice and Efficient: Senior Ivan Radenovic continues to compile numbers with team-leading efficiency. The 6-foot-10 forward connected on 6-of-9 field goals and 6-of-6 free throws en route to 18 points against
In Reserve: In the last two games, the
Scoring 80: Perhaps no statistic is more telling of UA success, as the squad is 156-19 (.891) since the start of the 1997-98 season when scoring at least 80 points.
Always On the Run: Early this season,
25-0 run over 7:45 vs.
34-11 run over 9:00 vs. Northern
28-9 run over 11:22 vs. Samford, Nov. 22 (SU went 3-of-16 with four turnovers during run)
20-2 run over 5:59 vs.
21-4 run over 8:08 vs.
24-8 run over 9:17 at
18-3 run over 4:15 at
23-8 run over 7:11 vs. UNLV, Nov. 28 (UNLV 3-of-7 with six turnovers during run)
Early Signees: Coach Olson and his staff signed five student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent during the November early signing period. Jerryd Bayless (G, 6-3, 193) from Phoenix, Ariz., St. Mary’s High School; Jamelle Horne (F, 6-7, 205) from San Diego, Calif., San Diego High School; Alex Jacobson (C, 7-1, 223) from Santa Ana, Calif., Mater Dei High School; Zane Johnson (F, 6-6, 200) from Phoenix, Ariz.,
Up Next: After tonight’s game,