UCLA Seeded No. 2 in NCAA West Regional; Will Play Thursday at approx. 4:25 pm

Game Notes vs. Weber State in PDF Format
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UCLA's game against Weber State will tip off at approx. 4:25 pm PT. It will be televised by CBS and radio broadcast on KTLK 1150 AM. If the Bruins advance to face the winner of the Indiana-Gonzaga game on Saturday, that contest will start at either 2:55 pm or 5:25 pm. It will be televised by CBS and radio broadcast on KLAC 570 AM.

March 11, 2007

By BETH HARRIS, AP Sports Writer

Losing consecutive games for the first time this season cost UCLA a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and dropped the Bruins into a bracket that may as well be named for their coach.

Call it the Ben Howland regional.

The second-seeded Bruins (26-5) will open Thursday in Sacramento against No. 15 Weber State, Howland's alma mater.

"That's the only thing I know about Weber State," a grinning Luc Richard Mbah a Moute said.

The West region includes Gonzaga and Pittsburgh, two schools in Howland's coaching past.

"Our focus is solely on Weber State University, formerly Weber State College," Howland said Sunday. "When I went to school there, it was a college."

He played there from 1978-80, leading the Wildcats to two Big Sky championships and two NCAA tournament appearances. He was twice the team's defensive MVP.

"I've got pictures of our team when we won the Big Sky championship my senior year, beat New Mexico State in the first round (of the NCAAs) before losing to Arkansas," Howland said.

Howland's wife, Kim, was a cheerleader at the Utah school, where Howland earned a bachelor's in physical education.

The coach's closest buddies include some of his former teammates, who attended UCLA's overtime loss to California in the Pac-10 tourney and roadtripped to Arizona to see the Bruins in February.

"They'll be there in Sacramento," Howland said. "My greatest memories are just lasting bonds and relationships with my former coach Neil McCarthy, as well as my teammates."

Asked who his buddies will be rooting for, Howland replied, "Their teammate."

McCarthy, the former New Mexico State coach, is retired and living in the Sacramento area, so Howland plans to invite him to Thursday's game.

Just in case anyone was wondering, Howland's loyalties have changed.

"I'm excited for Weber State, but the bottom line is, I'm all about UCLA," he said.

"I expected after our loss against Cal that we would be a 2 seed and play Weber State. Not a lot of surprises in the brackets."

If the Bruins advance in the West, they would face a potential second-round game against 10th-seeded Gonzaga. They beat the Zags 73-71 in last year's regional semifinals after trailing until the final seconds.

Howland's got ties with Gonzaga, too.

It's where he landed his first Division I coaching gig as a graduate assistant in 1981-82. He worked with future Utah Jazz star John Stockton for one season and earned a master's degree before taking an assistant's job at UC Santa Barbara.

Things could really get interesting for the Bruins if they reach the regional semifinals in San Jose. They could play third-seeded Pittsburgh, where Howland coached four years before getting the UCLA job in 2003.

"I don't know if that's coincidence or it was purposely done," said Arron Afflalo, who scored a season-worst three points in the Cal loss.

UCLA lost to Florida in last season's national championship game. The Bruins were ranked No. 1 for six weeks this season, longer than any other team.

But they took a hit by losing at Washington in the regular-season finale and then to Cal on Thursday.

"It would've been nice to be a No. 1 (seed), but in a sense, it's really irrelevant. We're still going to our same region, where we'll have our support system," Afflalo said.

The team rested up Friday, then went through an extra punishing practice Saturday.

"It was real competitive and very intense," Afflalo said. "We pushed each other and that's the way a mature team bounces back."

UCLA Health Sponsor - Event Information
Friday, Nov 13
vs. Monmouth
Los Angeles, CA
L, 81 - 84 (OT)
Sunday, Nov 15
vs. Cal Poly
Los Angeles, CA
W, 88 - 83
Thursday, Nov 19
vs. Pepperdine
Los Angeles, CA
W, 81 - 67
Monday, Nov 23
vs. UNLV
Lahaina, HI
W, 77 - 75
Tuesday, Nov 24
vs. Kansas
Lahaina, HI
L, 73 - 92
Wednesday, Nov 25
vs. Wake Forest
Lahaina, HI
L, 77 - 80
Sunday, Nov 29
vs. CSUN
Los Angeles, CA
W, 77 - 45
Thursday, Dec 03
vs. Kentucky
Los Angeles, CA
W, 87 - 77
Sunday, Dec 06
vs. Long Beach State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 83 - 76
Saturday, Dec 12
at Gonzaga
Spokane, WA
W, 71 - 66
Tuesday, Dec 15
vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
Los Angeles, CA
W, 89 - 80
Saturday, Dec 19
vs. North Carolina
Brooklyn, NY
L, 76 - 89
Tuesday, Dec 22
vs. McNeese State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 67 - 53
Friday, Jan 01
at Washington
Seattle, WA
L, 93 - 96 (2OT)
Sunday, Jan 03
at Washington State
Pullman, WA
L, 78 - 85
Thursday, Jan 07
vs. Arizona
Los Angeles, CA
W, 87 - 84
Saturday, Jan 09
vs. Arizona State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 81 - 74
Wednesday, Jan 13
vs. USC
Los Angeles, CA
L, 75 - 89
Wednesday, Jan 20
at Oregon State
Corvallis, OR
W, 82 - 73
Saturday, Jan 23
at Oregon
Eugene, OR
L, 72 - 86
Thursday, Jan 28
vs. Washington
Los Angeles, CA
L, 84 - 86
Saturday, Jan 30
vs. Washington State
Los Angeles, CA
W, 83 - 50
Thursday, Feb 04
at USC
Los Angeles, CA
L, 61 - 80
Friday, Feb 12 - 6:00 PM PST
at Arizona
Tucson, AZ
Sunday, Feb 14 - 5:30 PM PST
at Arizona State
Tempe, AZ
Thursday, Feb 18 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. Utah
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Feb 20 - 8:00 PM PST
vs. Colorado
Los Angeles, CA
Thursday, Feb 25 - 6:00 PM PST
at California
Berkeley, CA
Saturday, Feb 27 - 1:30 PM PST
at Stanford
Stanford, CA
Wednesday, Mar 02 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. Oregon
Los Angeles, CA
Saturday, Mar 05 - 3:30 PM PST
vs. Oregon State
Los Angeles, CA
Wednesday, Mar 09 - All Day PST
vs. 2016 Pac-12 Men's ...
Las Vegas, NV
Thursday, Mar 10 - All Day PST
vs. 2016 Pac-12 Men's ...
Las Vegas, NV
Friday, Mar 11 - 6:00 PM PST
vs. 2016 Pac-12 Men's ...
Las Vegas, NV
Friday, Mar 11 - 8:30 PM PST
vs. 2016 Pac-12 Men's ...
Las Vegas, NV
Saturday, Mar 12 - 7:00 PM PST
vs. 2016 Pac-12 Men's ...
Las Vegas, NV
Tuesday, Mar 15 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA First Four
Dayton, OH
Thursday, Mar 17 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA First Round
Saturday, Mar 19 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA Second Round
Thursday, Mar 24 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA Regional ...
Saturday, Mar 26 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA Regional ...
Saturday, Apr 02 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA National ...
Houston, TX
Monday, Apr 04 - All Day PST
vs. NCAA National ...
Houston, TX