Nov. 6, 2003
Three Upcoming Important Dates for UCLA Men's Basketball
1. Friday, Nov. 7, UCLA Open Practice to the Media (Only) - 3 p.m. in Pauley Pavilion, UCLA men's basketball practice will be open to the media (only). Viewing and filming are permitted, as well as interviews with UCLA head coach Ben Howland, his staff and the Bruin players at the conclusion of practice.
No credentials are necessary. With the exception of television cameras on the floor, all media please sit in the press area (upper middle section/north side) during the practice.
2. Tuesday, Nov. 11, Ben Howland Press Conference - NOTE THE TIME CHANGE, originally scheduled for 1:30 p.m., NOW SCHEDULED FOR 10:30 A. M. The press conference will take place in the UCLA Athletic Department Hall of Fame Press Room. After the press conference, Bruin players will be available for interviews at 11:30 a.m. for 1/2 hour (outside Pauley Pavilion, top of the stairs, NW corner).
3. Wednesday, Nov. 12, EA Sports West All-Stars vs. UCLA (exhibition game) - 7:30 p.m. in Pauley Pavilion. UCLA's first exhibition game of the season. The EA Sports roster will feature three former Bruins - Ray Young, a senior last season who was recently released by the Boston Celtics; Matt Barnes, a senior in 2002, he was recently released by the Seattle Supersonics and played last year with Fayetteville, NC in the NBDL and Ed O'Bannon, who as a senior in 1995 led the Bruins to their 11th NCAA title, was named the Most Outstanding Player at the NCAA Final Four and earned the Wooden Award, as the nation's finest player (O'Bannon has been playing in Poland the last two seasons).
Ben Howland - Begins his first season at UCLA and his 10th year as a head coach (Pittsburgh 2000-03/Northern Arizona 1995-99/168-99 overall). In his last two seasons at Pittsburgh - in 2003, he led the Panthers to a 28-5 overall record, No. 4 national ranking, NCAA "Sweet 16" and the Big East Tournament championship and in 2002, Pittsburgh was 29 (school record for wins)-6 overall, advanced to the NCAA "Sweet 16" and the Big East Tournament title game and Howland was named the consensus National Coach of the Year. (please see attached Howland bio)
Howland Press Conferences - after Pac-10 Media Day, the next will be Tuesday, Nov. 11 at 10:30 a.m. in the UCLA Hall of Fame Press Room (please see attached list of Howland's press conferences).
UCLA Staff - Joining Howland are assistant coaches - Donny Daniels, who for the last three seasons was the head coach at CS Fullerton; Ernie Zeigler, who for the last two years served on Howland's Pittsburgh staff and Kerry Keating, who for the last two seasons was at Tennessee under Buzz Peterson; along with Director of Operations Chris Carlson, who for the last two seasons served in the same capacity for Howland at Pittsburgh. Rounding out the staff are Administrative Assistant Doug Erickson, entering his 12th season on the Bruin basketball staff and Basketball Intern Matt Geniesse, entering his third season.
The Bruins - From last season's team, the Bruins return four performers, all who started at different times in 2002-03 - 6-7 junior guard/forward Dijon Thompson, 6-6 junior guard Cedric Bozeman, 6-11 sophomore center Ryan Hollins, a member of last summer's USA Junior World Team, and 6-9 senior center/forward T. J. Cummings. UCLA returns four other lettermen who saw considerable playing time last year - 6-1 junior guard Ryan Walcott, 6-0 senior guard Jon Crispin, 7-0 sophomore center Michael Fey and 6-8 junior forward Josiah Johnson. The Bruins will also return four other lettermen who had playing minutes in 2002-03, led by 6-3 junior guard Janou Rubin, along with two redshirts from last season, led by 6-8 freshman forward Matt McKinney (out 6-8 weeks with a fractured bone in his left foot). Newcomers to the active Bruin roster will include - 6-2 junior guard Brian Morrison, who sat out last season after transferring to UCLA from North Carolina and incoming 6-8 freshman forward Trevor Ariza, who last season earned second-team Parade Magazine All-American honors and led Westchester HS to its second consecutive Div.1 CA State title. (please see attached outlook and roster)
T. J. Cummings - Cummings is academically ineligible for the first quarter. He will miss at least five games (two exhibition/three regular season), but will be allowed to practice. At the conclusion of Fall Quarter final exams (Dec. 8-12), Cummings' academic status will be re-evaluated. If Cummings is ruled eligible, he could play in some (or all) of UCLA's games between Fall and Winter quarters (depending on when his eligibility is restored/there are six games between quarters). Winter Quarter instruction begins Jan. 8, 2004.
Matt McKinney - A 6-8, 208-pound redshirt freshman forward from Santa Ynez, will miss six-to-eight weeks because of a fractured bone in his left foot, UCLA announced Nov. 4. McKinney is currently in a walking boot (with rehabilitation) and no surgery is planned.
McKinney, who also played last spring on the Bruin men's volleyball team, injured the foot on June 15 during his first game in the Say-No Summer League at West Los Angeles College. Appeared healed, his left foot began giving McKinney discomfort again in late September during the Bruins' individual workouts. After inconclusive X-rays and an MRI, a recent (Oct. 31) CT Scan revealed the fracture.
McKinney redshirted last season as a true freshman. As a senior prepster at Santa Ynez HS in 2001-02, McKinney was a standout basketball player and one of the nation's top high school men's volleyball performers.
Pac-10 Media Day-Bruins Selected Sixth in Preseason Vote - Thursday, Nov. 6 was Pac-10 Media Day at the LAX Hilton. According to a poll of media members who cover Pac-10 men's basketball, Arizona was picked to win the 2004 conference title, the Bruins were selected sixth. Here's the vote total - 1. Arizona (26) 339, 2. Stanford (7) 321, 3. California (1) 238, 4. Oregon 215, 5. USC (1) 207, 6. UCLA 188, 7. Arizona State 185, 8. Washington 108, 9. Washington State 69, 10. Oregon State 55.
Exhibition Games - UCLA will have two - Wednesday, Nov. 12 vs. EA Sports All-Stars (7:30 p.m.). and Tuesday, Nov. 18 vs. Southern CA All Stars (7:30 p.m.).
Regular Season - Featuring nine NCAA Tournament teams (14 games) from a year ago, along with two NIT representatives. UCLA's home and regular season opener is Saturday, Nov. 29, at 5 p.m. vs. Vermont (the Catamounts were in the 2003 NCAA Tournament). (please see attached schedule).
John Wooden Classic - On Saturday, Dec. 6, the Bruins will play in the John Wooden Classic, at The Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim (on Friday, Dec. 5, 10 a.m., the Pond will host a press conference for all four coaches). UCLA will face Kentucky at 10:30 a.m., followed by Stanford vs. Kansas. In 1994, UCLA defeated Kentucky 82-81 and went on that season to win the school's 11th NCAA title. In all, the Bruins have appeared in the Wooden Classic six times, with a 5-1 record.
Nell and John Wooden Court - On Saturday, Dec. 20, when UCLA hosts Michigan State at 3:30 p.m., the floor of Pauley Pavilion will be dedicated - "Nell and John Wooden Court", named after the Bruins' legendary coach John Wooden and his late wife, Nell.
UCLA in the NBA - The Bruins had 11 players on Fall Camp 2003 rosters - Matt Barnes (Seattle Supersonics, waived); Mitchell Butler (Washington Wizards, eighth season in league); Baron Davis (New Orleans Hornets, fifth season); Dan Gadzuric (Milwaukee Bucks, second season); Jason Kapono (Cleveland Cavaliers, rookie); Jelani McCoy (Cleveland Cavaliers, sixth season); Reggie Miller (Indiana Pacers, 17th season); Jerome Moiso (Toronto Raptors, fourth season); Tracy Murray (Portland Trail Blazers, 12th season); Earl Watson (Memphis Grizzlies, third season) and Ray Young (Boston Celtics, rookie, waived). In all the Pac-10 had 41 players on opening day rosters, the second highest conference total (behind the ACC's 50). Darrick Martin (1989-92, who played seven years in the NBA), is a member of the Harlem Globetrotters. On Nov. 1, the Harlem Globetrotters, with Earvin "Magic" Johnson has a member of the team, defeated Michigan State (Magic's alma mater), 97-83, and were led by Martin's 38 points.
Walt Hazzard is 2004 Pac-10 Hall of Honor Inductee - Walt Hazzard, who led the Bruins to their first NCAA Championship in 1964 and coached UCLA from 1985-88, will be UCLA's third inductee into Pac-10 Hall of Honor (joining charter member John Wooden and 2003 inductee Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Lew Alcindor). Hazzard's name is synonymous with the tradition that is UCLA men's basketball. A three-year starter and two-time All-American (1963-64) for the Bruins as a 6-2 guard under Wooden, Hazzard was the keystone to UCLA's first NCAA Championship title in 1964 and first unbeaten season (30-0). As a senior co-captain in '64, he averaged a career-high 18.6 points, was named the Most Outstanding Player at the NCAA Final Four and earned national Player of the Year honors from the USBWA and the Helms Athletic Foundation. At the conclusion of his Bruin career, his 1,401 points were tops in school history. In 1964 after winning the NCAA title, Hazzard also won a gold medal representing the U. S. team at the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo. A first-round draft choice of the LA Lakers, he played 10 years in the NBA, including one appearance in the NBA All-Star game. From 1985-88, Hazzard returned to UCLA as the Bruins' head men's basketball coach. In four winning seasons (his overall record was 77-47, 62.1), he led UCLA to two 20+ win campaigns, the 1987 Pac-10 regular and postseason tournament championships, a 1987 NCAA second round advancement and two NIT bids, including the 1985 NIT Championship, in his first season as the Bruins' head coach. In 1987, Hazzard was the Pac-10 Conference Coach of the Year. Joining Hazzard at the March 10, 2004 gala dinner at the Los Angeles Downtown Marriott will be - Khalid Reeves (Arizona), Lafayette "Fat" Lever (Arizona State), Jason Kidd (California), Ron Lee (Oregon), Mel Counts (Oregon State), Howard "Howie" Dallmar (Stanford), Bob Boyd (USC), James Edwards (Washington) and George Raveling (Washington State).
Jerome "Pooh" Richardson Inducted into UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame - UCLA's standout point guard from 1986-89, Richardson was inducted into the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame on Oct. 3. During his four years (1986-89) as the Bruins' point guard, Richardson earned All-Pacific-10 honors for three consecutive seasons (1987-89) and ended his career as the school's all-time leader in assists (833), steals (189, now No. 4), three-point field goal percentage (46.4, 52-112) and games played (122, now No. 15). Following his collegiate career, Richardson had a 10-year career in the NBA, last playing with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Chris Roberts, UCLA Radio Play-by-Play Announcer - Was nationally recognized on Oct. 27 by ESPN's Dick Vitale when Vitale placed Roberts on his "All-Radio Voices Team". Calling it his "All-Cawood Ledford Team", in honor of the legendary Kentucky broadcaster, Roberts, in his 12th season as the voice of the Bruins, was a member of Vitale's "Sweet 16" broadcast team that also included - Joe D'Ambrosio (Uconn), Bob Davis (Kansas), Gen Deckerhoff (Florida State), Wes Durham (North Carolina), Max Falkenstien (Kansas), Don Fischer (Indiana), Ralph Hacker (Kentucky), Bob Harris (Duke), Johnny Holiday (Maryland), Mick Hubert (Florida), Bob Kesling (Tennessee), Bob Murphy (Stanford) and Jim Turpin (Illinois).
Preseason Notes - Preseason magazines have hit the newsstands and here's what the magazines are saying about the Bruins: