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Washington Notes 2/18/2008
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 02/18/2008
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Game 26:? ? Arizona (16-9, 6-6) at Washington (14-12, 5-8)

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Date: ? Thursday, Feb. 21, 2008

Time: ? 8 p.m. PST

Location: ? Bank of America Arena at Hec Edmundson Pavilion (10,000), Seattle, Wash.

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

TV: ? FSNAZ (Brian Davis/Bob Weiss/Bob Elliott)

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Game Data: ? Arizona (16-9, 6-6 Pac-10) hits the road for a game at Washington (14-12, 5-8 Pac-10) Thursday in Seattle ... Four of the Wildcatsˇ? six remaining regular-season games will be away from home ... Those six opponents have a cumulative 92-58 (.613) record ... In last yearˇ?s game in Seattle, the Huskies and Wildcats combined to score 183 points and shoot 58.6 percent (68-of-116) from the field.

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The Rankings: ? Arizona is unranked in both polls for the sixth consecutive week.? For the season, the Wildcats have been ranked in either or both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Coachesˇ? Top 25 polls in eight of 16 polling periods this season.

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Arizona Head Coach Lute Olson . . . ? will begin his 25th season at Arizona and his 35th overall as a college head coach with a career record of 780-280 (.736) and 589-187 (.759) at Arizona upon his return from a leave of absence, which was announced on Nov. 4 ... 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 775th collegiate victory on Jan. 24, 2007, and became Arizonaˇ?s career victories leader (510) on Jan. 17, 2004 ... He has the most Pac-10 wins (327) of any coach in league history ... Olson has the second-best conference winning percentage (.764/327-101) and second-most league championships won (11) in Pac-10 history (minimum three years), trailing only UCLAˇ?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, ˇ®89, ˇ®90, 2002) and been to the NCAA Tournament for 23 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, ˇ®88, ˇ®89, ˇ®93, ˇ®94, ˇ®98, 2003), the Big Ten Coach of the Year twice (1979 & ˇ®81) and directed the UA program to the nationˇ?s third-best winning percentage over the past 20 years (519-142/.785) ... In his collegiate career, Olson has produced 52 NBA Draft picks, including 31 at Arizona ?C 25 alone since 1990 ... Heˇ?s led UA to 20 consecutive 20-win seasons and has 29 overall in his career, making him one of only three head coaches in NCAA history to record 29 or more 20-win seasons...?Under Olson, the Cats are 344-40 (.896) in McKale Center and have won 272 of its last 296 home games ... He is assisted by Kevin Oˇ?Neill, Josh Pastner and Miles Simon.

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Last Time Out: ? Trailing by eight points with 4:07 remaining, Arizona outscored Stanford 9-0 over the next two minutes to take the lead but could not hold on in the 67-66 setback on Saturday.? Stanfordˇ?s Brook Lopez made two free throws with 18 seconds to go that provided the final margin.? UAˇ?s Chase Budinger had his shot blocked by Brookˇ?s twin brother Robin in the final seconds.? Arizona shot just 37.3 percent for the game and was outrebounded 40-26.? Jerryd Bayless, who scored a game-high 31 points, became the first player in Arizona history to score 30 or more points in three straight games.

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Scouting Washington: ? The Huskies enter play Thursday with a 14-12 record (5-8 Pac-10) following Saturdayˇ?s 97-59 win at Oregon State.? Through 26 games, Washington averages 72.6 points per game, shoots 45.2 percent (713-of-1,578), and posts a +6.6 rebound margin per game.? Opponents shoot 45.0 percent from the floor and are outscored by an average of 3.5 points per game.? Individually, three UW players average in double figures, led by Jon Brockman, who averages 17.8 points? per game.? He also leads the club with an 11.5 rebounds per game average.

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The Series: ? Tonightˇ?s game marks the 63rd meeting of the two schools with Arizona holding a 41-21 series advantage. Arizona has won five of the last eight in the series, including an 84-69 win in Tucson on Jan. 26, in the last get-together. All-time, Arizona is 23-6 in series games played in Tucson, 17-13 in Seattle, Wash., and 1-2 in neutral site games. See page 102 of the UA media guide for more series information.

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Last Meeting: ??Arizona 84, Washington 69, Jan. 26, 2008: ? For the second consecutive game, the Wildcats displayed a bit of offensive assertiveness as it rolled to a 15-point win.? Arizona shot 62.2 percent from the field, including 59.1 percent from three-point range, in posting 84 points which is its highest total in Pac-10 play this season.? Jerryd Bayless and Chase Budinger combined for 10 three-point field goals and 51 points in helping UA build as much as a 26-point lead.? Jordan Hill tallied 16 points and 11 rebounds.

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In The Coaching Box: ? Prior to the Nov. 4 exhibition game, it was announced that UA head coach Lute Olson would be taking a leave of absence due to a personal matter.? It was announced on Dec. 7 that Olson would not return this season.? During this period, assistant coach Kevin Oˇ?Neill will handle the head coaching responsibilities.? Oˇ?Neill, who was tabbed as Olsonˇ?s successor on Dec. 18, has 11 seasons of experience as an NCAA Division I head coach, where he compiled a 152-165 (.479) record while at Marquette, Tennessee and Northwestern. Oˇ?Neill spent the last seven seasons in NBA circles.? During Olsonˇ?s leave of absence all games will be credited to Oˇ?Neillˇ?s coaching record.

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The Best Around: ? In two games last week, Bayless averaged 32.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists as Arizona split a pair of conference games.? The freshman from Phoenix, Ariz., hit 16-of-36 shots from the floor, including 5-of-13 from three-point range, to go with 26-of-28 from the free throw line and five steals.? He has now scored 30 points in the last three games to become the first player in Arizona history to register three consecutive 30-point games.? He opened the week with 33 points, four assists and a career-high three steals? in a win over California before following that with 31 points, five rebounds and six assists against Stanford.? Against the Cardinal, Bayless set an Arizona record for single game free throw percentage (16-of-16).? All told, it was Baylessˇ? 19th game in double figures and his fourth 30-point game this year.? He was named Pac-10 Player of the Week for his efforts.

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Heˇ?s Done It Again: ? By notching 39, 33 and 31 points in each of his last three games, freshman guard Jerryd Bayless became the first player in Arizona history to register three consecutive 30-point scoring games.? Additionally, his 103 points in those three games is the most for a Wildcat in three straight games since Coniel Norman scored 104 points in three consecutive games (32, 44, 28) from Jan. 19-25, 1974.? Bayless has now scored in double figures in 19 of 21 appearances this season, including 13 games with 20 or more points.

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Getting to the Line: ? Jerryd Bayless also set another Arizona school record Saturday, when he knocked down 16-of-16 free throws to seat a new school record for free throw percentage in a single game.? The 6-foot-3 freshman, who averages 7.6 free throw attempts per game, now holds or shares the Arizona single-game records for free throws made (18), attempted (20) and percentage (16-of-16).? On the season, he is shooting 84.9 percent (135-of-159) from the free throw line.? Better than 30 percent of his total points scored (135 of 444/.304) come from the charity stripe.

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Scoring 80: ? Perhaps no statistic is more telling of UA success, as the squad is 169-19 (.899) since the start of the 1997-98 season when scoring at least 80 points.? Arizona is 7-0 this season when topping the 80-point plateau.

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All or Nothing: ? During Jerryd Baylessˇ? current three-game scoring binge, the Phoenix, Ariz., native has connected on 28-of-54 (.518) field goal attempts, including 12-of-23 (.522) from three-point range.? In that same span, the rest of the squad shot just 33.7 percent (30-of-89) from the field, including 23.1 percent (6-of-26) from behind the arc.? Through 25 games this season, Arizona is 6-9 when shooting less than 50 percent from the field and 10-0 when shooting better than 50 percent from the floor.

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Ball Security : ? In Saturdayˇ?s one-point loss to No. 7 Stanford, Arizona committed just six turnovers in the contest, marking the 10th?time this season that the Cats have turned it over 10 ore fewer times this season (five times with less than 10).? UA forced Stanford into 13 turnovers in Saturdayˇ?s game, which helped the squad post a 15-10 points-off turnovers advantage.? This season, Arizona averages 12.5 miscues per game and forces 13.2 turnovers per game.

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The Close Ones : ? Tight games have tripped up the Wildcats often this season, as the squad is just 2-6 in games decided by five points or less.? Included in that figure is a 1-2 record in games decided by three points or less.? Saturdayˇ?s loss to Stanford was UAˇ?s first game decided by one-point in 2007-08.

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Help Wanted: ? Injuries (16 games missed by starters or key reserves) have affected Arizonaˇ?s depth this season and one needed to look no further than bench productivity to see the effect.? In two games last week the UA bench was outscored 40-2, including a 20-0 disadvantage in Saturdayˇ?s loss to Stanford.

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Time to Battle Back on the Boards: ? Arizona was outrebounded by Stanford, 40-26, in Saturdayˇ?s loss to fall to 9-7 this season when outrebounded.? When the Cats manage to win the rebound battle the club is 7-2.? Overall, Arizona posts a +0.6 rebound margin through 25 games, and that figure falls to -5.0 in conference play.? To date, Arizona has been outrebounded in nine of 12 conference games.? Incidentally, UAˇ?s -14 rebound margin Saturday was its largest deficit of the season.

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On Target: ? As mentioned above, most of the Wildcats have struggled with field goal percentage of late, and, obviously, those missed shots hurt UAˇ?s offensive output.? Arizona scored 83 points (.471 FG percentage) in a win over California and managed 66 (.373 FG percentage) in a loss to Stanford.? This season, the Wildcats are 14-3 when scoring 70 or more points and 2-6 when scoring less than 70 points.

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Mr. Everything: ? Heading into Thursdayˇ?s game Jawann McClellan has proven himself to be a pillar of stability for the youthful 2007-08 Cats.? Through 25 games, the 6-foot-4 guard from Houston, Texas, is averaging 35.6 minutes per game (third-most in the Pac-10) and already played more minutes this season than any other in his career.? Additionally, his 4.0 rebounds per game average, 76 assists, 20 blocked shots and a 1.7 assist:turnover ratio are all career bests.? McClellan ranks second on the squad in blocked shots, third in rebounds, and fourth in assists and steals (15).

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Bottoming Out: ? While he ranks sixth among Pac-10 players with his 17.5 points per game average, Arizonaˇ?s Chase Budinger is in the midst of a shooting slump.? Over the last four games, the 6-foot-7 forward from Encinitas, Calif., has connected on just 31.4 percent (16-of-51) of his field goal attempts, 22.7 percent (5-of-22) of his three-point shots, and 63.0 percent (17-of-27) of his free throws.? In that span, Budinger is averaging 13.5 points per game, four points less than his season scoring average.? Arizona needs Budingerˇ?s (17.5 ppg) offensive contributions, as he and Jerryd Bayless (21.0 ppg) rank as the 10th-highest scoring duo in NCAA Division I basketball.

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Finding Points: ? Through 25 games, Arizona has three players averaging in double figures, which would be just the second time since 1994-95 that Arizona didnˇ?t have four or more double-figure scorers.? Interestingly, UAˇ?s 2004-05 team had just three such scorers (Salim Stoudamire 18.4 ppg/Channing Frye 15.8/Hassan Adams 12.7), but managed to average 79.7 points per game.? That season, UAˇ?s non-starters contributed an average of 20.4 points per game.? This year, the figure is 11.7 ppg.

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Early Signees: ? The Arizona coaching staff signed four student-athletes to National-Letters-of-Intent during the November early signing period.? Brandon Jennings (G, 6-0, 170) from Lakewood, Calif., Oak Hill Academy; Brendon Lavender (G, 6-4, 180) from Mesa, Ariz., Mountain View High School;? Emmanuel Negedu (F, 6-7, 230) from Bloomington, Ind., Brewster Academy; Jeff Withey (C, 6-11, 240) from San Diego, Calif., Horizon High School, will join the squad next fall.? According to rivals.com, this class was ranked as the seventh-best nationally.

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Up Next: ? Following tonightˇ?s game, Arizona travels across the state for a Saturday night game at Washington State.? Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. PST and will be shown nationally on Fox Sports Net.

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