April 15, 2005
UCLA HEAD COACH Ben Howland - In his second season at UCLA and 11th year as a collegiate head coach.
In Howland's second year (2004-05) at UCLA, he joined an elite list of college coaches who have led three different teams to the NCAA Tournament (Howland's overall NCAA record is 4-4) - 2005 UCLA, 2003 Pittsburgh ("Sweet 16), 2002 Pittsburgh ("Sweet 16") and 1998 Northern Arizona (after the 2004 NCAA Tournament, there were 26 coaches who had led three teams to the Tournament, plus an additional four who led four teams to the NCAA Tournament). Howland led the Bruins back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2002; he directed the Bruins to a win over nationally-ranked Washington; led UCLA to a third-place tie in the Pac-10 and to a Pac-10 Tournament appearance.
In Howland's first year (2003-04) at UCLA, highlights included a 9-3 start (5-0 in the Pac-10), wins over NCAA Tournament teams Michigan State, Washington (twice) and Vermont and an appearance in the Pac-10 Tournament. In his last two seasons (2002-03) 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.
UCLA STAFF - Howland was joined in this season by assistant coaches, all entering their second season - Donny Daniels, who was head coach at CS Fullerton for three seasons (2000-03); Ernie Zeigler, who for two years (2002-03) served on Howland's Pittsburgh staff and Kerry Keating, in his 14th season in Div. I basketball who has been an assistant coach at four of the six BCS conferences, along with Director of Operations Chris Carlson, who two seasons (2002-03) served in the same capacity for Howland at Pittsburgh.
UCLA IN THE NCAA
This was UCLA's first appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 2002. UCLA had a string of 14 consecutive appearances snapped when it did not make the field in 2003.
Overall, this was UCLA's 39th appearance in the NCAA Tournament. UCLA holds the record for most championships won (11 in 1964-65-67-68-69-70-71-72-73-75-95) and longest winning streak - 38 games between 1964 and 1974.
In addition, UCLA ranks second in NCAA Tournament games won (85, Kentucky is No. 1) and Tournament winning percentage (.726, Duke is No. 1).