Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday

Loren Woods
Loren Woods #3
Position: Center     
Class/Experience: Senior/1L 
Height: 7-1      
Weight: 245
Hometown: St. Louis, Mo.
High School: Cardinal Ritter HS

General: After missing the final eight games of the season last year with a back injury, his healthy return for 2000-01 is vital to the Wildcats hopes for success... A National Player of the Year candidate... A member of the 2000-01 Playboy Preseason All-America team... Underwent two surgeries last April to his back... Doctors placed four screws and a plate in his back to stabilize two vertebrae... After sustaining the compression injury to the disc in February, he then contacted Valley Fever, which is believed to have led to the weakening of the bone... Is well ahead of his rehabilitation schedule... Began lifting weights in June and playing basketball in July... Briefly thought about forgoing his senior season to play in the NBA, but announced he would return in late March.

1999-00 (Redshirt Junior): Pacific-10 Conference Newcomer of the Year and All-Pac-10 First Team selection in his first season on the court at Arizona... Led the Wildcats in scoring (15.6 ppg) and recorded eight double-doubles, a triple-double and scored in double figures 23 times... USWBA All-District 9 first team and NABC All-District 15 second team... Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American... Basketball News All-America second team and All-West Region first team... Was the publications West Region Player of the Year... Tied an NCAA record against Oregon on Feb. 3 in Tucson, blocking 14 shots, tying the record set by Navys David Robinson (vs. UNC-Wilmington, 1/4/86), BYUs Shawn Bradley (vs. Eastern Kentucky, 12/7/90) and Alabamas Roy Rogers (vs. Georgia, 2/10/86)... Scored 16 points in the game and had 10 rebounds for the first triple-double by an Arizona player since Damon Stoudamire did it in 1995... Set a single-season school record in blocks with 102, improving the standard of 84 set by Anthony Cook in 1988-89... Second on the team in rebounds, averaging 7.5 a contest... Notched career highs in points (29) and rebounds (13) at Washington... Also set career highs in field goals made (12) and attempted (20) in the UAs 65-56 win over the Huskies... Named Pac-10 Player of the Week twice, Jan. 17 and Feb. 6... Received the first award after his outing against Washington and setting a then-school record with 10 blocks at Washington State... Won the second award after his triple-double against Oregon and then 15 points and nine boards against Oregon State... Blocked seven or more shots in a game five times during the season... Would have set the Pac-10 single-season blocks record, held by Arizona States Mario Bennett (115, 1994-95), if not for the injury... Has some work to do to catch the Pac-10 and UA career record of 278, held by Anthony Cook (1986-89)... MVP of the Bank One Fiesta Bowl Classic... Averaged 16 ppg and 7.5 rpg in the two games... Scored 23 points to go with 11 boards against Delaware in the championship game... Scored 16 points and had nine rebounds against Connecticut... Had 19 points, seven rebounds and seven blocks versus Nebraska... Scored 12 and grabbed 11 boards against the No. 2 pick in the 2000 NBA draft, Louisiana States Stromile Swift.

1998-99 (Junior): Redshirt season... A transfer to the University of Arizona from Wake Forest who sat out the season due to NCAA transfer rules... Played at WFU for two seasons and came to Arizona with two years of eligibility remaining... The Cats' tallest player since Ed Stokes (7-foot)... Shoots well and has great hands... Lute Olson says he should be the best shot blocker the program has ever had... Runs the court extremely well for a player his size... Played in McKale Center before his Wildcat days, as Wake Forest played in first and second round NCAA Tournament action in 1997... Scored seven points against St. Mary's in the Demon Deacon's first round win... Had four points in their second round loss to Stanford... Played for the NIT All Star Team in Austria and Czechoslovakia during the summer of 99.

1997-98 (Sophomore): Averaged 8.8 ppg and a team-high 7.1 rpg at Wake Forest... Led the team with 50 blocks... Started the first 14 games of the season before taking a leave of absence  from the squad for seven contests... Returned to play in the final nine games of the year, but saw his playing time reduced during the latter portions of the schedule... Before his leave, he was second in the Atlantic Coast Conference in blocks and second in rebounding... Averaged 11.6 ppg and 8.5 rpg in the first 14 games... Led the team in scoring twice, scoring 17 points versus Navy and 21 against Richmond... Seven double-digit scoring games and four double-digit rebounding outings.

1996-97 (Freshman): Named a Freshman All-American by Basketball Times and was selected to the ACC All-Rookie team... Primarily served as a frontcourt reserve, but also started in 11 games... When he started, he averaged 8.2 ppg and 6.5 rpg... Played alongside 1997 National Player of the Year Tim Duncan... Overall, averaged 6.8 ppg and 5.2 in 30 games... Rebounding average was second only to Duncan... Was the ACC Rookie of the Week three times in December and January... Scored 22 points to go with eight rebounds and four blocks against Campbell... Finished fourth in the league in blocked shots (1.5 bpg)... Shot 48.3% from the field (71-147) and averaged 17.5 ppg... Led the team in rebounding once, with 11 against Florida State.

High School: A McDonald's All-American at Cardinal Ritter High School in St. Louis, Mo., after averaging 21.1 ppg, 13.2 rpg and 6.5 bpg as a senior...  Graduated in 1996 and played for head coach Preston Thomas... Led the team to back-to-back state 2A championships in 1995 & 1996... Team went 55-6 in those two seasons... Set school records for points (654) and rebounds (408) in a season in 1996... Single game records for points (43) and rebounds (27) as well... Had 501 blocked shots during his career... In one game as a sophomore, he had a quadruple-double, with 20 points, 11 rebounds, 11 assists and 15 blocks... In the McDonald's All-American game, had 12 points, eight rebounds and five blocks... Former UA Wildcat Mike Bibby played in that game as well... An honor roll student who was the editor of the school newspaper as a senior... Played baseball up until the ninth grade before deciding to concentrate on hoops... Was a first baseman and pitcher.

Personal: Loren G. Woods... Born 6-21-78 in St. Louis, Mo... Physical education major... Son of Colleen Woods... Mother graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a degree in computer science... Has one younger brother, Victor, who preps at Ritenour High School... Family studies major... Attended the same high school as former Georgetown Hoya Jahidi White and former Duke player Chris Carrawell, who was the 41st pick of the 2000 NBA Draft by the San Antonio Spurs... A big St. Louis Cardinal fan... Enjoys video games... A member of the 1997 Summer World University Games team that played in Sicily, Italy.

Woods' Career Statistics
(1996-97 and 97-98 at Wake Forest)

Season G-GS Min FG-FGA Pct. 3FG Pct. FT-FTA Pct. OR/DR Tot/Avg Ast St. Blk TO PF-DQ Pts.-Avg.
1999-00 26-25 820 154-286 .538 0-2 .000 97-128 .758 61-133 194/7.5 38 21 102 56 50-0 405-15.6
1998-99 Redshirt
1997-98  22-14 554 63-157 .401  0-0 .000 67-100 .670 52/105 157/7.1 19  8 50 37 50-1 194-8.8
1996-97  30-11 525 71-147 .483  0-0 .000 63-93 .677 48/109 157/5.2 16  7 45 43 34-0 205-6.8
Totals 78-50 1899 288-590 .488 0-2 .000 227-321 .707 161/347 508/6.5 73 36 197 136 134-1 804-10.3