Dec. 1, 2003
THIS WEEK'S GAMES
WEDNESDAY, DEC. 3- UC RIVERSIDE at UCLA (Pauley Pavilion, 7:30 p.m., Radio - XTRA Sports 690/1150, with Chris Roberts and Don MacLean).
SATURDAY, DEC. 6 - UCLA VS. No. 10 KENTUCKY (10th Anniversary John Wooden Classic presented by Intel, Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim, 10:30 a.m., TV - CBS, Jim Nance and Billy Packer/Radio- XTRA Sports 690-/1150, with Chris Roberts and Don MacLean). Second Game - Stanford vs. Kansas. Before facing UCLA, Kentucky (2-0) plays Marshall on Monday in Cincinnati.
UCLA HEAD COACH Ben Howland - Begins his first season at UCLA and his 10th year as a head coach (Pittsburgh 2000-03/Northern Arizona 1995-99/1-0 (1.000) at UCLA/169-99 (63.1, 268 games) 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 29-6 overall (school record for wins), advanced to the NCAA "Sweet 16" and the Big East Tournament title game and Howland was the consensus National Coach of the Year.
In school history, eight of UCLA's 12 head coaches won their first game as the new Bruin head mentor (2003-04, Ben Howland, 68-67 vs. Vermont; 1988-89, Jim Harrick, 84-62 vs. Texas Tech in Pauley Pavilion; 1984-85, Walt Hazzard, 87-58 vs. Idaho in Pauley Pavilion; 1979-80, Larry Brown, 82-40 vs. Idaho State in Pauley Pavilion; 1977-78, Gary Cunningham, 75-73 vs. BYU in Pauley Pavilion; 1948-49, John Wooden, 43-37 vs. UC Santa Barbara in Los Angeles; 1921-22, Caddy Works, 30-12 vs. Cal Tech in Los Angeles and 1919-20, Fred W. Cozens, 46-38 vs. Manual Arts HS in Los Angeles).
UCLA STAFF - Joining Howland are assistant coaches - Donny Daniels, for the last three seasons was the head coach at CS Fullerton; Ernie Zeigler, for the last two years served on Howland's Pittsburgh staff and Kerry Keating, 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, in his 12th season on the Bruin basketball staff and Basketball Intern Matt Geniesse, in his third season.
UCLA'S LAST GAME - The Bruins started the Ben Howland era with a victory, beating Vermont 68-67 on Nov. 29 before 7,852 in Pauley Pavilion.
With 1:15 left to play and the score tied at 64, UCLA's Brian Morrsion drew a charge against Vermont's Taylor Coppenrath. Then, with 48 seconds left, Morrison hit a three-pointer to give UCLA a 67-64 advantage. With four seconds left to play and the scored tied at 67 (Coppenrath, who led Vermont with 38 points, drained a three-pointer with 35 seconds left and tied the score at 67), UCLA's Ryan Hollins hit his first free throw attempt (missed his second) and Vermont missed on a last shot as the Bruins held on for the 68-67 victory.
UCLA was led by three players in double figures - Michael Fey's career-high 20 points and career-high eight rebounds (he had two points and two rebounds in the first half); Dijon Thompson's 18 points and game-high nine rebounds and Cedric Bozeman's 12 points and a career-high nine assists.
The Bruins shot 44.8 (26-58) from the field, 46.2 (6-13) from three-point range and 58.8 (10-17) from the foul line, with a game-high 37 rebounds and only eight turnovers.
Vermont, dropping to 0-3, shot 41.4 (24-58) from the field, 44.4 (8-18) from three-point range and 100.00 (11-11) from the foul line, with 32 rebounds and only eight turnovers.
HEAD COACH JOHN MASI - in his 25th year at UC Riverside, Masi entered this season with a mark of 442-233.
THE HIGHLANDERS - are 0-3, losing at LMU (59-53, Nov. 21), at Washington (91-78, Nov. 24) and at Arizona State (77-68, Nov. 29). UC Riverside, eligible for the first time to compete for a spot in the Big West Postseason Tournament, placed two players on the preseason All-Big West team (Vili Morton/Nate Carter) and was selected to place fifth in the media preseason Big West poll. UC Santa Barbara was selected as the conference first-place team and the Gauchos visit UCLA on Dec. 17.
LAST GAME - On Nov. 29, UC Riverside lost at Arizona State 77-68, after leading 37-31 at halftime. UCR had three players in double figures - Vili Morton (19 points), Nate Carter (18 points) and Kevin Butler (11 points). ASU was led by Ike Diogu's 31 points.
SERIES HISTORY -The Bruins lead the series 1-0. UCLA won the only contest against the Highlanders, 65-50, at Pauley Pavilion on Dec. 5, 2001.
UCLA IN SEASON OPENERS - Since 1975-76 (1974-75 was John Wooden's last season as the Bruin head coach), UCLA is 21-8 (29 years) in season openers. Since 1989-90, the Bruins are 10-5 (15 years) and since 1999-00, UCLA is 3-2 (five years). Since 1965-66 (Pauley Pavilion's first year), when UCLA's season opener has been in Pauley, the Bruins are 26-3 (in the last five season openers in Pauley, the Bruins are 3-2 - 2003, beat Vermont, 68-67; 2002, lost to San Diego, 86-81OT; 1999-beat Fairfield, 76-57; 1998-beat Santa Clara, 89-76;1996-lost to Tulsa, 77-76OT).
PAC-10 MEDIA DAY-BRUINS SELECTED SIXTH IN PRESEASON VOTE - 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.
Trevor Ariza - UCLA freshman Trevor Ariza, who started the Bruins' two exhibition games, will miss the next two weeks because of a medical diagnosis of spontaneous pneumothorax (the presence of air within the pleural cavity of the lungs). UCLA released the information on Nov. 28.
Ariza, a 6-7, 194-pounder who in 2003 was a second-team Parade Magazine All-American and led Westchester HS to its second consecutive CIF Div. I State title, is an asthmatic. On Thursday (Thanksgiving Day), he was pulled from practice because of pain (upper back, left side), with activity, while breathing (at the time, it was not considered a serious situation). On Friday, Ariza was examined at the UCLA Medical Center, diagnosed and released.
Ariza will miss at least four games - Saturday in the Bruins' season home opener vs. Vermont (5 p.m.) in Pauley Pavilion; Wednesday, Dec. 3 vs. UC Riverside in Pauley Pavilion; Saturday, Dec. 6 vs. nationally-ranked Kentucky in the Wooden Classic at the Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim and Saturday, Dec. 13 vs. Loyola Marymount in Pauley Pavilion.
"We all feel for Trevor and his family," said Bruin head coach Ben Howland. "We're thankful it was caught early and he'll return to practice in a couple of weeks. Trevor's done a great job for us. In our two exhibition games, he was our most productive player. We will miss Trevor. But the most important issue is his health. We're going to err on the side of caution and make sure Trevor's completely well before he returns to practice."
T. J. CUMMINGS - Cummings, 6-9 senior forward from Homewood, IL (Homewood-Flossmoor HS) 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 (and depending on when that ruling is issued), he could play in some (or all) of UCLA's games between Fall and Winter Quarters (six games). Winter instruction begins Jan. 8.
Matt McKinney - On Nov. 4, UCLA announced that McKinney, 6-8 redshirt freshman forward from Santa Ynez HS, would miss 6-8 weeks because of a fractured bone in his left foot. The foof is casted and no surgery is planned. McKinney originally injured his left foot on June 15 during his first game in the Say-No Summer League at West Los Angeles College.
UCLA REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE - Featuring nine NCAA Tournament teams (14 games), along with two NIT representatives. The teams from last season's NCAA are- "Elite Eight" Kentucky, Michigan State and Arizona; "Sweet 16" Notre Dame and Vermont, along with Oregon, Arizona State, Stanford and California. St. John's won the 2003 NIT title and UC Santa Barbara also played in last year's NIT.
THE WOODEN CLASSIC - On Saturday, Dec. 6, UCLA will be making its seventh appearance in the Wooden Classic (10:30 a.m/CBS. vs. nationally-ranked Kentucky; second game-Stanford vs. Kansas), held at the Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim. This is the 10th anniversary of the Wooden Classic (UCLA played in the first Wooden Classic, beating Kentucky 82-81 and went on that season to win the school's 11th NCAA Championship). UCLA's last appearance in the Wooden Classic was Dec. 8, 2001, when No. 20 UCLA defeated No. 16 Alabama, 79-57 (it was UCLA's fifth victory (in six games) at the Wooden Classic). The Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim will host a press conference on Friday, Dec. 5 at 10 a.m., featuring Coach Wooden, along with UCLA's Ben Howland, Kentucky's Tubby Smith, Kansas' Bill Self and Stanford's Mike Montgomery.
NELL AND JOHN WOODEN COURT - On Saturday, Dec. 20, when UCLA hosts nationally-ranked Michigan State (3:30 p.m./FSN), 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. There is an invitation-only luncheon before the game and all Bruin men's basketball lettermen alumni who have not received an invitation should call 310-794-2378.
UCLA SIGNS TOP 10 NATIONAL CLASS - ARRON AFFLALO, JORDAN FARMAR, LORENZO MATA AND JOSH SHIPP UCLA head coach Ben Howland on Wednesday (Nov. 12) announced the National Letter of Intent signings of four players, all ranked in the nation's Top 100 among U. S. high school seniors. The four prep standouts, all from southern California are -6-5, 190-pound shooting guard Arron Afflalo from Compton Centennial HS; 6-2, 170-pound point guard Jordan Farmar from Taft HS in Woodland Hills; 6-9, 220-pound center Lorenzo Mata from South Gate HS and 6-5, 200-pound wing Josh Shipp from Los Angles Fairfax HS.
According to national recruiting experts, the Bruin class is ranked - No. 7 by Rob Harrington (prepstars.com), No. 9 by Clark Francis (Hoop Scoop) and No. 10 by Dave Telep (the insidershoops.com).
Here's a biographical breakdown of UCLA's four recruits, all incoming UCLA freshman next fall.
As a junior last season at Compton Centennial HS under coach Rod Palmer (who lettered at UCLA from 1986-87 and concluded his collegiate career at UC Irvine), Afflalo led the Apaches to a 19-11 overall record, to the CIF SS Div. III-A title game, the Div. III regional semifinals and a share of the Bay League title. A prolific scorer, he averaged 26.2 points a game (he scored 30 or more points on seven occasions and had a career-high 42 points vs. Carson at the one-day Pangos Dream Tournament in Pauley Pavilion last January) and also contributed 5.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists. In 2003, Afflalo was the Wooden Award Div. III Player of the Year, All-State Cal-Hi Sports, the CIF-SS Div. III-A co-Player of the Year and the Long Beach Press-Telegram Dream Team Player of the Year.
Howland on Afflalo
"Arron is a classic two guard. I'm excited about his toughness and how he plays the game so hard and aggressive, yet so skillful. He's a good passer and shooter who does a good job of putting the ball to the floor and getting to the basket. He also has a chance to be an excellent defender, but what I like best about Arron is he's a very good competitor."
As a junior last season under coach Derrick Taylor, Farmar led Taft to a 25-6 overall record and to the CIF Los Angeles City section semifinals (the first time in school history). He averaged 28.5 points, 9.0 assists and 8.0 rebounds. At last year's Simi Valley Tournament, Farmar averaged 43 points in four games. He was the 2003 Los Angeles Daily News co-Player of the Year.
Howland on Farmer
"Jordan is a true point guard. Looking at all the point guards (coming out of high school next year) from summer camps, Jordan was without a doubt among the top three in the country. He's an outstanding playmaker and shooter and I like his leadership qualities and competitive nature. Like all great point guards, he makes everyone else around him a better player."
Mata is the first South Gate HS boys basketball player in the school's history to receive a Div. I scholarship. As a junior last season under coach Sal Serrano, Mata had 25 double-doubles (in 26 contests) and averaged 21.4 points, 14.3 rebounds and 4.5 blocked shots. He earned All-Los Angeles City Section and was a Long Beach Press-Telegram first-team performer. Mata's only been playing basketball for four years and could be a candidate for the Mexican National Team in the future.
Howland on Mata
"I'm extremely pleased with Lorenzo's signing and what he brings to UCLA. He's a very strong, athletic inside player who can block shots and rebound. He's a good defender who has a nice touch around the basket."
As a junior last season at Fairfax HS under coach Harvey Kitani, Shipp helped lead Fairfax to the City finals and averaged 17.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists and earned All-State underclassman and All-City second team honors. His father, Joe, was a USC football player; his older brother, Joe, was a senior forward last season at California and in 2003 he led the Pac-10 in scoring (20.4 points) and his sister, Britteny, attends UCLA.
Howland on Shipp
"Josh is an outstanding wing player. He is very skilled as an outside shooter and passer who comes from a great athletic family. Josh continues to get better and better each and every year and he will be an outstanding player here at UCLA."
WALT HAZZARD NAMED TO 2004 PAC-10 HALL OF HONOR - Hazzard, who led the Bruins to their first NCAA Championship (1964) and coached UCLA from 1985-88, will be UCLA's third inductee into the prestigious Pac-10 Hall of Honor (joining 2002 charter member John Wooden and 2003 inductee Kareem Abdul-Jabbar). 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 in 1964 and first unbeaten season (30-0). As a senior co-captain in 1964, he averaged a career-high 18.6 points, was named the 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, Hazzard's 1,401 points were tops in school history. In 1964 after winning the NCAA crown, 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 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 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 Coach of the Year.
Joining Hazzard in the 2004 class are - 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).
The 2004 Pac-10 Hall of Honor banquet will take place on Wednesday, March 10 in conjunction with the 2004 Pacific Life Pac-10 Tournament, held at The Staples Center in Los Angeles (March 11-13).
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-Pac-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 FG% (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, and he has endowed a UCLA athletic scholarship.
UCLA VS. NO. 1 - UCLA's 96-89OT victory over No. 1 Arizona on Mar. 13, 2003, in the first round of the Pac-10 Tournament, was the fourth over a top-ranked team in as many years. On Jan. 12, 2002, UCLA defeated No. 1 Kansas, 87-77, at Pauley Pavilion. On Feb. 3, 2001, UCLA's 79-73 victory over No. 1 Stanford, the last undefeated team at the time, was its second against the No. 1 team in the nation in less than one year. Its victory over No. 1 Stanford on March 4, 2000 was the school's first over a No. 1 team since Dec. 1, 1986, when the Bruins defeated No. 1 North Carolina, 89-84 at Pauley Pavilion. The last time UCLA defeated a No. 1 team that late in the season was in 1980, when the Bruins upset DePaul in the second round of the NCAA Tournament en route to the title game against Louisville.
UCLA has defeated the nation's No. 1 team on the Associated Press poll on 10 occasions, ranking first on the all-time list. Notre Dame has done it nine times, Duke has done it eight times and North Carolina, Georgia Tech and Ohio State have recorded seven wins vs. a No. 1 team.
In Bruin history, during the regular season, UCLA is 7-11 vs. the No. 1 team, including last season's overtime win over Arizona in the Pac-10 Tournament. In the NCAA Tournament, the Bruins have a record of 3-6 vs. the nation's No. 1 ranked team, including UCLA's 76-63 loss to Duke in the 2001 NCAA East Region "Sweet 16".