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Cats Host Stanford Saturday
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 01/07/2011
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Jan. 7, 2011

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Date: Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011
Time: 4:30 p.m. MST
Location: Olson Court, McKale Center (14,545), Tucson, Ariz.
Radio: IMG College/Wildcat Radio Network (Brian Jeffries/Matt Muehlebach)
TV: KWBA-TV/FOX Sports Arizona (Dave Sitton/Corey Williams) and
Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area (Ted Robinson/Dan Belluomini)

Game Data:  Arizona (13-3, 2-1 Pac-10) quickly returns to action Saturday afternoon by hosting Stanford (9-4, 2-0 Pac-10) in McKale Center ... The Wildcats average 79.8 points per game in nine home games to date ... Thursday’s game was just the third home affair in which UA has failed to score at least 80 points, and two of those contests (Northern Arizona) have been decided by five points or less ... Derrick Williams’ 31 points vs. California was the first 30-point game of his career ... In Pac-10 play, opponents have hoisted 29 more shots than UA, and with turnovers being nearly even (218/224), it falls on free throws and offensive rebounds to give one team an advantage.  In that span, UA has taken more free throws (82-75), but surrendered more offensive rebounds (22-33).

 

The Rankings:  Arizona remains unranked in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls.

 

Arizona Head Coach Sean Miller . . . is in his second season at the University of Arizona and his seventh overall as a college head coach with a record of 149-65 (.696) and 29-18 (.617) at Arizona ... Appointed April 7, 2009, Miller came to Tucson after five successful years at Xavier University, where he amassed four 20-win seasons and four NCAA Tournament appearances ... His clubs won the last three Atlantic 10 regular season championships (2007-09) and the 2006 Atlantic 10 postseason tournament title ... During his time at XU, the Musketeers won better than 71 percent of their conference games, including an .813 winning percentage (39-9) in his last three seasons ... Miller has made 14 trips to the postseason in his 17 seasons as a head, assistant or associate head coach (8 NCAA/6NIT) and has a 6-4 (.600) NCAA Tournament record as a head coach ... He took two Xavier teams to the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 (2008, 2009) with his 2008 club advancing to the West Regional final ... His 2007-08 team set a Xavier record for wins in a season with 30, helping him claim Atlantic 10 and NABC District 10 Coach-of-the-Year honors ... Since becoming a head coach, all 17 players to complete eligibility under Miller have earned their degrees ... A standout guard for the University of Pittsburgh (1987-92), Miller was the Big East Freshman of the Year in 1988, won a gold medal on the 1991 U.S. World University Games team and was a member of his alma mater’s all-centennial team in 2005 ... Miller, 42, earned a degree in communications from Pitt in 1992 ... He is assisted by Archie Miller, Emanuel Richardson and James Whitford ... Miller is 2-0 vs. Stanford as a head coach.

 

Last Time Out:  Derrick Williams scored 19 of his career-high 31 points in the second half and got timely help from his teammates as Arizona erased a nine-point, second-half deficit in the 73-71 win Thursday over California.  Jamelle Horne knocked down two treys midway through the period and Lamont Jones’ bucket with 2:08 to go positioned the Cats to claim victory.  Williams, who set a school record with 22 free throw attempts in the contest, added 12 boards for his fourth double-double of the season.  UA was able to win despite shooting just 40.4 percent from the field.

 

Scouting Stanford:  The Cardinal enters today’s game with a 9-4 record (2-0 Pac-10) following a 55-41 win at Arizona State on Thursday.  On the season, Stanford averages 66.8 points, shoots 44.4 percent from the floor (304-of-685), 37.0 percent (78-of-211) from three-point range and 65.6 percent (183-of-279) from the line.  Opponents average 59.5 points, are outrebounded by 4.8 boards per game and shoot 40.4 percent from the floor (265-of-656).  Individually, two Cardinal players average in double-figures, led by Jeremy Green’s 16.0 points per game figure.  Josh Owens leads Stanford with a 6.6 rebounds per game average.

 

The Series:  Today’s game marks the 81st meeting of the two schools with Arizona holding a 51-29 series advantage. Arizona has won nine of the last 13 in the series, including the last, a 71-69 triumph in Palo Alto on Feb. 27, 2010. All-time, Arizona is 27-8 in series games played in Tucson, 20-18 in Palo Alto, Calif., and 4-3 in neutral site games.  For more series information, please see page 44 in the UA media guide.

 

Last Meeting:  Arizona 71, Stanford 69, Feb. 27, 2010:  Lamont Jones’ runner at the buzzer lifted Arizona to an impressive road victory.  His heroics were set up following Derrick Williams’ block of a dunk attempt with five ticks remaining.  The Cats erased an 11-point second half deficit, including a four-point hole with 2:26 to go, by outshooting (.536-.414) and outrebounding (20-18) the Cardinal in the period.  Jones scored 11 of his season-high 16 points in that second half, while Williams added 24 points and six rebounds.

 

A Sesquicentennial of Sorts: A victory today would be win No. 150 for Sean Miller as a college head coach.  Now in his seventh season as a head coach, Miller has a 149-65 (.696) career record.  It would also be his 30th win at Arizona.

 

Cranking it up: Presently, Arizona is averaging 78.2 points per game, a figure that ranks second in the Pac-10.  Counting Thursday’s game, the Wildcats have scored 70 or more points in 14 of 16 starts.  By comparison, UA averaged 71.8 ppg and scored 70 or more in 20 of 31 games played.  Twenty-seven of Sean Miller’s 29 wins as the Wildcat head coach have come when the club scores 70 or more points.  As mentioned above, UA averages 79.8 points per game in nine home games this season.

 

Off the Mark:  Thursday vs. California, Arizona connected on just 40.4 percent of its field goal attempts (21-of-52), which was the second-lowest field goal percentage in any game this year (BYU).  All told, it was the second-lowest FG percentage the Cats have posted and still won during the Sean Miller era.  The only effort that submarined Thursday’s was Jan. 28, 2010, when UA connected on 32.8 percent of its shots (21-of-64) vs. Stanford in a 76-68 win in McKale Center.

 

Coming From Behind:  After falling behind by nine points with 17:12 remaining (41-32), Arizona responded by doing something it hadn’t done all season:  battle back and win a game when it trailed with five minutes remaining in the second half (0-3 previously).  By that point, UA had cut the deficit to two points and outscored the Golden Bears by four down the stretch. It was the second-biggest deficit the Cats have erased in a win this season, topped only by a 12-point first-half comeback Dec. 16 vs. Northern Arizona.  Additionally, it was Arizona’s second win of the season when trailing at the half.  UA is 11-0 when holding a halftime lead and 2-3 when tied or trailing.

 

Modest Gains:  A game after surrendering a 12-5 offensive rebound advantage last Sunday – and a resulting 17-2 advantage in second-chance points – in a one-point loss at Oregon State, Arizona managed to win the battle of the offensive boards Thursday, 10-9, over California.  In what was a two-point decision, Arizona held a 14-10 second-chance point advantage.  Overall, Arizona outrebounded Cal, 31-30, to improve to 10-1 this season when outrebounding the opposition.

 

Take Care:  Through 16 games, it’s been point guard by committee, as Lamont Jones (24 min./game) and Jordin Mayes (15 m/g) have mostly split the minutes.  Perhaps what is most impressive in Thursday’s effort was the fact that the UA duo did not commit a turnover in a combined 40 minutes of action.  While the three total assists were a modest number, the effort did help Arizona win the turnover margin (11-12) and improve to 11-0 this season when committing fewer turnovers than the opponent.

 

Record-Setting Effort:  On the strength of Derrick Williams’ single-game record of 22 free throw attempts Thursday, Arizona sank 25-of-32 free throws (.781) en route to victory.  It marked the fourth time this season that Arizona has attempted 30 or more charity tosses in a single game and the third time the team has connected on 25 or more.  Arizona leads all Pac-10 teams in free throws made (301), attempted (394) and percentage (.764).  On average, the Wildcats outscore opponents by an average of 5.8 points per game from the free throw line.

 

The First of a Slew of Derrick Williams Notes:  Sophomore Derrick Williams notched a new career high with 31 points Thursday vs. California, which was also the third-highest total for a Pac-10 player this season.  The 6-foot-8 forward from La Mirada, Calif., hit 7-of-12 field goals, including 1-of-2 treys, and 16-of-22 free throws on the way to his 25th consecutive game in double figures.  In 16 games to date, Williams is averaging 19.4 points per game while shooting 64.5 percent (89-of-138) from the field and 68.2 (15-of-22) from three-point range.  Williams has been in double figures in 44 of 47 career appearances. 

 

Another Record in the Books:  As mentioned above, Derrick Williams established a new Arizona single-game record with 22 free throw attempts Thursday, topping the record of 21 he set Nov. 23, 2009, vs. Wisconsin (made 13).  Getting to the line is nothing new for Williams, who has made (117) and attempted (152) more free throws than any player in the country.  Furthermore, Williams is averaging an impressive 9.5 free throws per game in 2010-11, and his average of 8.2 free throw attempts per game for his career is the best in Arizona history.

 

College Boards:  Derrick Williams also took care of things at the other end of the floor, as he pulled down a season-high nine defensive rebounds en route to a game-high total of 12.  It was the fourth time this season that Williams has reached double figures in the rebounding category.  Eight of those 12 rebounds came in the second half.  On the year, the 6-foot-8 Williams averages 7.0 rebounds per game.

 

Doubling Up:  His 31-point, 12-rebound effort Thursday gave Derrick Williams his fourth double-double of the season and the eighth of his career.  Arizona is 8-0 in Williams’ career when he notches a double-double.  Only three other Pac-10 players have more double-doubles than Williams:  Nikola Vucevic, USC, 9; Reeves Nelson, UCLA, 6; and Alex Stepheson, USC, 5.

 

Off the Bench:  Senior Jamelle Horne provided quite a bit of productivity off the bench Thursday, as the forward from San Diego, Calif., tallied 10 points, three rebounds (two offensive), an assist and a steal in 21 minutes.  Horne, who made all three field goal attempts, including two key second-half treys, to notch his fifth game in double figures this year and first since Dec. 1 (nine games).  On the season, Horne is averaging 7.3 points and 3.9 rebounds per game, while shooting 49.4 percent (39-of-79) from the floor.

 

Making an Impact:  Lamont Jones tallied six points in Thursday’s win, but he picked the right time to do it, as all those points came in the last four minutes.  The 6-foot guard sank two free throws each at the 3:29 and 00:31 marks of the half, and dropped in a bucket at 2:08, which gave UA a four-point lead and positioned the Cats to win the game.  As Sean Miller said after the game, “He made only one field goal and it was probably the biggest field goal of the game.”

 

Progressing:  Kyle Fogg registered his seventh double-figure scoring game of the season with 10 points on Thursday to accomplish the feat in consecutive games for just the second time this season.  The 6-foot-3 junior guard might be starting to warm up a bit, as he has shot 48.3 percent (14-of-29) from the floor over his last four games.  Mired in a season-long slump, Fogg is shooting 37.1 percent (43-of-116) from the floor through 16 games, including 31.3 percent (20-of-64) from three-point range.  Interestingly, Fogg has taken five or more shots in 14 of 16 appearances to date, and shot 50 percent or better just five times.

 

Early Signees:  The Arizona coaching staff signed three student-athletes to National-Letter-of-Intent in the November early signing period.  Nick Johnson (G, 6-2, 180) from Gilbert, Ariz., who preps at Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nev.; Sidiki Johnson (F, 6-8, 220) from the Bronx, N.Y, who preps at Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va.; and Josiah Turner (G, 6-3, 185) from Sacramento, Calif., Sacramento High School; make up a class that was ranked in the top-10 nationally by both espn.com and rivals.com.

 

Up Next:  Following this afternoon’s game, Arizona gets a bit of a respite in the form of a seven-day break.  UA will next be in action on Saturday, Jan. 15, when the Cats host Arizona State.  Tip-off in McKale Center is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. MST and can be seen nationally on FSN.

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