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Men's Basketball Game Notes at UCLA, 2/4/2006
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: February 03, 2006
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Game 22:  Arizona (13-8, 6-4) at No. 14 UCLA (18-4, 8-2)


Date:  Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006

Time:  1 p.m. PST

Location:  Pauley Pavilion (12,800), Los Angeles, Calif.

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



Game Data:  Arizona (13-8, 6-4 Pac-10) plays at No. 14 UCLA (18-4, 8-2 Pac-10) Saturday in Los Angeles trying to stay within striking distance of the Pac-10 leader ... The Wildcats close the most difficult portion of the schedule today (four consecutive road games) in search of a much-needed win ... Arizona is just 1-4 this season against nationally ranked opponents ... Arizona has a 5-7 record away from McKale Center this season ... Following today’s contest, UA will close the regular season with five of its last seven games at home.


The Rankings:  For the third consecutive week, Arizona remained unranked in both the Associated Press Top 25 and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.  The Cats saw its string of 312 consecutive regular-season AP poll appearances end on Dec. 19.


Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . is in his 23rd season at Arizona and his 33rd overall as a college head coach with a career record of 754-264 (.741) and 562-172 (.766) 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 (311) of any coach in league history ... Olson has the second-best conference winning percentage (.774/311-91) 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 21 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 best winning percentage over the past 18 years (479-118/.802) ... In his collegiate career, Olson has produced 49 NBA Draft picks, including 30 at Arizona ?- 21 alone since 1990 ... He’s led UA to 18 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 27 overall in his career, making him one of only four head coaches in NCAA history to record 27 or more 20-win seasons... Under Olson, the Cats are 329-34 (.906) in McKale Center and have won 257 of its last 275 home games ... He is assisted by Jim Rosborough, Josh Pastner and Miles Simon ... Olson is 28-20 against UCLA.


Last Time Out:  USC capitalized on a season-high 22 UA turnovers in rolling to a 77-70 win Thursday.  The Trojans converted those UA miscues into a 24-10 advantage in second-chance points and held a 22-4 advantage in fast break points.  Gabe Pruitt and Nick Young did most of the damage, combining for 46 points, 11 rebounds and seven steals.  The game featured six ties and five lead changes, but USC held the lead for the game’s final 14 minutes.


Scouting UCLA:  The Bruins enter today’s game with an 18-4 record (8-2 Pac-10) following Thursday’s 69-60 home win over Arizona State.  As a team, UCLA shoots 47.8 percent from the field (531-of-1111), including 33.6 percent (130-of-387) from three-point range, while averaging 67.4 points per game.  Opponents shoot at a 42.1 percent clip and are averaging 60.2 points per game.  Three Bruins average in double figures, led by Arron Afflalo’s 17.0 ppg mark.


The Series:  Today’s game is the 71st meeting of the two schools with UCLA holding a 39-31 series advantage. UA has won 11 of the last 15 meetings in the series, which dates back to Feb. 19, 1923, but the Bruins captured the last meeting, 85-79, on Jan. 5 in Tucson.  All-time, Arizona is 18-12 in series games played in Tucson, 12-25 in Los Angeles, and 1-2 in neutral-site games. Please see page 103 in the UA media guide for more series information.


Last Meeting:  UCLA 85, Arizona 79, Jan. 5, 2006:  Arron Afflalo scored a game-high 22 points and led a Bruin charge that kept the Wildcats at bay all evening.  Afflalo scored 14 points in the second half, including several key buckets late, that enabled UCLA to hold the lead for the game’s final 21 minutes.  UA’s Hassan Adams and Marcus Williams combined for 40 points, but UCLA extinguished a late charge by hitting all eight free throws in the final 1:23.


Get it out of the way Early:  The Wildcats enter play today with a 13-8 record, which is the most losses for an Arizona team on this date since 1983-84, Olson’s first season in Tucson.  The 1986-87 Wildcats, the last UA team not to win 20 games, did not lose its eighth games of the season until Feb. 7.  That club finished with an 18-12 record.


What’s At Stake:  A loss today would give Arizona a three-game losing streak, which would be the program’s first such streak since the final three games of the 1991-92 season.  The last time a Lute Olson-coached team lost three consecutive regular-season games came Feb. 4-13, 1984, in Olson’s first season at Arizona.  That team finished with an 11-17 record.  Additionally, Arizona has finished conference play with more than four losses just eight times in the 22 previous seasons since Olson’s arrival in 1983-84.


Tables Turned:  Points off turnovers and fast break points have long been staples of Wildcats success, but that wasn’t the case on Thursday against USC.  The Trojans posted a 24-10 advantage in points off turnovers and a 22-4 advantage in fast break points en route to the seven-point win.


An Equalizer:  Arizona enters today’s game with UCLA averaging 10.1 steals per game and has collected 10 or more pilfers in a contest 13 times in 2005-06.  Interestingly, the Wildcats’ two lowest single-game steal totals of the season have come against USC ?- two Thursday and three on Jan. 7.


Look for the Indicator:  After being tied 30-30 with USC at the break, Arizona’s record slipped to 3-8 this season in games in which the team is tied or trailing at halftime.  The team is 10-0 when leading.  The last time UA won a game in which it trailed at the half was Dec. 31 at Washington.  In that game, Arizona trailed 40-27 at the break, but came back to win 96-95 in double overtime.  Furthermore, the Wildcats are only 2-8 when trailing with five minutes to go in regulation.


Piling Up Points:  Over the course of the season, Arizona has been more of a second half team, outscoring teams by an average of 6.3 points per game after the break (including overtime periods).  That hasn’t been the case in each of the last two ball games as the Wildcats have allowed season-high total of 47 second-half points to both North Carolina and USC.  In those two games, UNC and USC combined to shoot 51.7 percent (31-of-60) from the field in the second stanza.


Not a Good Effort:  Arizona committed a season-high 22 turnovers Thursday against USC (13 in the first half alone), marking only the second time this year that UA has turned it over more than the opposition.  The -10 turnover margin was easily the largest deficit of the season.  Like the statistics mentioned above, it’s probably not coincidental that the opponent’s two lowest turnover totals of the season (12 at USC and 13 at North Carolina) have come in the last two losses.


Earlier is Better:  Through 21 games, UA has a 6-3 record in afternoon games (any game starting after noon and before 6 p.m. local time).


Hard to Do:  While it managed to grab more than a majority of the game’s 75 rebounds (Arizona posted a 45-30 rebound advantage) across town Thursday and yet still managed to let victory slip through its fingers.  Not only was UA’s rebound advantage it’s fourth-largest of the season, but it was just the second time this season that Arizona had outrebounded an opponent and lost.  The Cats are 6-2 this year when outrebounding the opposition.


Hard to Do, Too:  Thursday’s contest also saw the Wildcats outshoot an opponent an lose.  UA shot 46.8 percent from the field (29-of-62), topping the 40.3 percent (25-of-62) effort by the Trojans.  It marked the first time in nine games this season that UA has lost when posting a better field goal percentage than the opponent.


Road Woe-iors:  Arizona is 4-5 this season in true road games and 3-3 in Pac-10 play.  Entering the season, the Wildcats were a Pac-10 best 242-131 (.649) in all road games, and 132-66 (.667) in conference road games, in the Lute Olson era.


Doubling Up:  Forward Ivan Radenovic collected his third double-double of the season Thursday with 12 points and 10 rebounds.  The 6-foot-10 junior leads the team in double-doubles (Mustafa Shakur has the other) and has seven such efforts in his career.  The effort boosted his season averages to 9.8 points and a team-leading 6.5 rebounds.


Pounding the Glass:  Center Kirk Walters has set and equaled a career high with eight rebounds in each of the last two games.  His increased productivity on the glass is a welcome sight to the Wildcats.  Over his last four games, Walters is averaging 6.8 rebounds per game, nearly twice as much as his 3.7 season-long rebounds per game average.


His Development Continues:  Freshman Fendi Onobun notched a season high with nine points to go with three rebounds and his first career assist on Thursday.  The 6-foot-6 Onobun connected on all four field goal attempts, making him the only Wildcat to attempt four or more field goals in a game this season and finish with a perfect field goal percentage.  In five appearances, Onobun is averaging 4.6 points and 2.0 rebounds this year, while shooting 68.8 percent (11-of-16) from the field.


Stepping Up:  Sophomore Daniel Dillon collected his first career blocked shot on Thursday.  The 6-foot-3 guard from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, is the 10th different Wildcat to block a shot this season.


Stopped:  Senior Hassan Adams connected on just 4-of-11 field goal attempts against USC and finished with a season-low nine points.  Prior to Thursday Adams had scored in double figures in all 20 games this season and was riding a streak of 24 consecutive double-figure efforts dating back to last season.  Mustafa Shakur and Marcus Williams now share the team lead with three consecutive double-figure scoring efforts.


Scoring 80:  Perhaps no statistic is more telling of UA success, as the squad is 148-18 (.892) since the start of the 1997-98 season when scoring at least 80 points.  Arizona is 6-0 this season when scoring 80 or more points.


Always On the Run:  Throughout the season, Arizona has shown the ability to post large scoring runs with some regularity:

29-1 run over 10:43 vs. Virginia, Nov. 27 (UVa went 0-of-12 with seven turnovers during the run)

33-15 run over 10:26 vs. Sam Houston State, Dec. 19 (UA 13-of-20 in run)

22-6 run over 8:19 at Oregon State, Jan. 12 (Seven TO and just 7 OSU FG attempts in run)

21-6 run over 7:12 vs. Michigan State, Nov. 23 (no MSU field goals in last 5:44 of regulation)

20-4 run over 9:10 vs. Kansas, Nov. 21 (KU hits 3-of-first-12 FG attempts with nine TO)

21-5 run over 7:57 at Houston, Dec. 3 (two UH FGs in last eight minutes of first half)

21-9 run over 12:23 vs. Connecticut, Nov. 22 (UA hits 7-of-11 FG in run)

25-11 run over 9:27 vs. USC, Jan. 7 (USC 4-of-13 FG, eight turnovers during run)

26-13 run over 13:04 vs. Saint Mary’s, Dec. 10 (nine SMC turnovers during run)

38-27 run over 13:52 at Washington, Dec. 31 (UA makes 10-of-first-14 FG to ignite 2nd half run)


Early Signees:  Coach Olson and his staff signed three student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent during the November early signing period.  Chase Budinger (F, 6-7, 190) from Carlsbad, Calif., LaCosta High School; Jordan Hill (F, 6-8, 210) from Atlanta, Ga., The Patterson (N.C.) School;  and Nic Wise (G, 5-10, 180) from Kingwood, Texas., Kingwood High School, will join the squad next fall.


Up Next:  Arizona will next be in action on Thursday, Feb. 9, when the Wildcats host Oregon.  The contest will tip-off at 6:30 p.m. MST and be televised FSN Arizona.

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