March 19, 2006
NO. 7 (AP)/NO. 8 (ESPN/USA TODAY) UCLA (29-6/14-4, PAC-10 REGULAR SEASO/TOURNAMENT CHAMPIONS) THIS WEEK IS PLAYING IN THE NCAA "SWEET 16" IN THE OAKLAND REGIONAL; NO. 2 SEED UCLA WILL FACE NO.5/NO. 5 AND NO. 3 SEED GONZAGA ON THURSDAY IN OAKLAND; LAST WEEK THE BRUINS DEFEATED NO. 15 SEED BELMONT (78-44) AND NO. 10 SEED ALABAMA (62-59) IN SAN DIEGO TO ADVANCE TO THE "SWEET 16" FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE 2002 AND THE SEVENTH TIME IN 12 YEARS UCLA'S NEXT GAME/2006 NCAA TOURNAMENT
THURSDAY, MARCH 23 - No. 7 (AP)/NO. 8 (ESPN/USA Today) UCLA (29-6, 14-4, Pac-10 Regular Season/Tournament Champions, No. 2 Seed in Oakland Regional) vs. No. 5/No. 5Gonzaga Bulldogs (29-3, 14-0, West Coast Conference Regular Season/Tournament Champions, No. 3 seed in Oakland) in Oakland, CA (SMG Oakland Arena) (Tipoff - approx. 6:55 p.m./TVCBS/ Radio- 570 AM, with Chris Roberts and Don MacLean).
No. 2 SEED UCLA BRUINS TENTATIVE STARTING
(Overall 29-6/Pac-10 14-4, Pac-10 champ)
|23||Luc Richard Mbah a Moute||F||6-7||Fr.||9.0||8.1|
Series History vs. Gonzaga - 0-1, on Dec. 11, 1999 in Pauley Pavilion, No. 24 Gonzaga defeated No. 11 UCLA 59-43.
UCLA IN THE NCAA
This is UCLA's second appearance in the NCAA Tournament under Ben Howland.
The No. 2 seed is UCLA's highest since 1997, when the Bruins were No. 2 in the Midwest. That year, UCLA advanced to the Elite Eight, defeating Charleston Southern and Xavier in Auburn Hills and Iowa State in San Antonio before losing to Minnesota.
Overall, this is UCLA's 40th 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, in NCAA Tournament play, UCLA ranked third in games won (87, Kentucky is No. 1, 99 and North Carolina is No. 2, 89) and second in tournament winning percentage (.731, Duke is No. 1, .761 entering the 2006 Tournament).
UCLA HEAD COACH Ben Howland - In his third season at UCLA and 12th year as a collegiate head coach (in his 25th season of college basketball, as an assistant and head coach).
In the last two years, UCLA is 47-17 (.734) under Howland's direction.
2005-06 - UCLA (29-6, 35 games/.829)
2004-05 - UCLA (18-11, 29 games/.621)
2003-04 - UCLA (11-17, 28 games/.393)
UCLA Totals - 58-34, 92 games/.630
2000-03 - Pittsburgh (89-40, 129 games/69.0)
1995-99 - N. Arizona (79-59, 138 games/57.2)
Overall Totals - (226-133, 359 games/.630)
A prime candidate for National Coach of the Year honors, on March 6 was named the Pac-10 and USBWA Dist. IX Coach of the Year and on March 1, he was named a finalist for the Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year award. Has also been honored by CollegeInsider.com, CBS SportsLine.com and SI. com as the Pac-10 Coach of the Year.
It's Howland's third conference Coach of the Year honor overall (2002-Big East Coach of the Year/at Pittsburgh and 1997- Big Sky Coach of the Year/at Northern Arizona). It's only the fifth time a UCLA coach has won Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors since the award was first handed out in 1976 (Steve Lavin (2001), Jim Harrick (1995), Walt Hazzard (1987) and Gary Cunningham (1978).
He has led a team to the "Sweet 16" for the third time in five years - Pittsburgh in 2002 and 2003 and UCLA in 2006. Howland's overall NCAA record is 6-4 (2-1 UCLA, 4-2 at Pittsburgh and 0-1 at NAU).
Howland recorded his 50th Bruin win against Oregon State and is now 58-34 (.630), including 47-17 (.734) in the last two years as the Bruins' head coach. The USC game on Feb. 19 was his 350th game as a collegiate head coach.
He has led UCLA this season to three Pac-10 road sweeps (at the Oregon schools, first time since 2000-01, at the Arizona schools, first time since 1996-97, at the Bay Area schools, first time since 2000) - not since 1994-95 have the Bruins had three Pac-10 road sweeps (at the Arizona, Washington and Bay Area schools/1995 was the last year UCLA won the NCAA Championship). This season the Bruins have swept (home/away) the Oregon schools (first time since 2001) and the Arizona schools (first time since 1997).
He recorded his 200th career victory on Nov. 19, when UCLA defeated Delaware State 56-37 in Pauley Pavilion. In Howland's second year (2004-05) at UCLA, he joined an elite list of college coaches (28) 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. In 2005, 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 thirdplace 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.
HONORS - Here's a list of the Bruin team and individual player honors. On March 6, Jordan Farmar and Arron Afflalo were named first-team All-Pac-10 (UCLA leads the conference with 104 first-team selections).
Jordan Farmar - A member of the All Pac-10 Tournament team, on March 10, named a CollegeInsider.com All-American. On March 7, was named first-team USBWA All. Dist. IX, on March 6, he earned first-team All-Pac-10 and was named to the Wooden Award finalist list (22 players) and on March 1, was named the Pac-10 Most Valuable Player by CollegeInsider.com. On Feb. 18, Farmar was named first-team NABC All-Dist. 15. He was on the mid-season Naismith Trophy (30 players) and Wooden Award (30 players) lists. He is also a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award (nation's top point guard). Farmar is one of just four players, he's the only underclassman, mentioned for all three honors (joining senior guards, Illinois' Dee Brown, Pittsburgh's Carl Krauser and Syracuse's Gerry McNamara).
Arron Afflalo - A member of the All-Pac-10 Tournament team, on March 7, was named a first-team USBWA All-Dist. IX and CollegeInsider.com Defensive All-American, on March 6 was a first-team All-Pac-10 selection and named Pac-10 Player of the Week (for his play in the Bruins' sweep of the Bay Area), and on Feb. 18, Afflalo was named first-team NABC All-Dist. 15. He was named an early-season All-American by scout.com and named to the NIT Season Tip-Off All-Tournament team. Farmar and Afflalo - were named the nation's No. 3 backcourt by SI.com (Jan. 25).
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute - on March 7 was named the CBS SportsLine.com and SI.com Pac-10 Freshman of the Year, on March 6 was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year (and Honorable Mention All-Pac- 10) and a Freshman All-American by CollegeInsider.com. He was named to Seth Davis' SI.com All-Glue team on Feb. 15 (given to players who emphasize team play over individualism). He was named the Rivals.com National Freshman of the Week (Jan. 30) for his efforts in UCLA's two victories at the Oregon schools. Darren Collison - on March 6 was named a Pac-10 Honorable Mention All-Freshman selection.
UCLA'S LAST GAMES
March 18 - No. 7 UCLA 62, Alabama 59 - before 10,687 at Cox Arena in San Diego in a second round NCAA Tournament contest (Oakland Region), No. 2 seed UCLA advanced to the "Sweet 16" for the 15th time in school history (since 1975), defeating No. 10 seed Alabama 62-59. It was UCLA's ninth consecutive victory (UCLA's longest winning streak since 2001-02) and the ninth straight victory the Bruins have held their opponent to 60 points or less.
With 1:05 left to play, Alabama's Ronald Steele made one of two free throws, bringing the Crimson Tide to within one point of UCLA, 57-56. But with 35 seconds remaining, Arron Afflalo hit a three-pointer, giving UCLA a 60-56 lead. Steele brought UA back to within one point again (hitting three free throws), 60-59, 21 seconds left to play. Following one of two free throws by Luc Richard Mbah a Moute (61-59, 19 seconds remaining), Steele missed a three-pointer and Cedric Bozeman was fouled (after getting the rebound). Bozeman connected on one of two free throws to give UCLA the 62-59 victory. The game was tied 30-all at halftime (the first time this season the Bruins have been tied at halftime).
Jordan Farmar led the Bruins with 18 points, including a careerhigh tying five three-pointers. Afflalo scored all of his 13 points in the second half and Ryan Hollins added 12 points, four rebounds and a game-high three blocked shots. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute had nine points and a team-high six rebounds (he's led the Bruins in rebounding in 29 of 35 games, including the last four contests). Bozeman contributed five points, four rebounds, a season-high seven assists and a team-high two steals.
The Bruins (29-6) shot .511 (24-47) from the field (sixth straight game of shooting .500 or better; the Bruins have shot .500 or better eight of the last nine games and outshot the opponent from the field the last nine consecutive contests), .360 (9-25) from three-point range and a season-low .385 (5-13) from the foul line, with a season-low 21 rebounds (going into the game, the Bruins had outrebounded 11 of their last 12 opponents), 17 assists, 11 turnovers, four blocked shots and five steals.
Alabama (18-13) shot .487 (19-39) from the field (including .611 (11-18) in the first half), .182 (2-11) from three-point range and .760 (19-25) from the foul line, with a game-high 30 rebounds, 10 assists, a game-high 15 turnovers, three blocked shots and seven steals. The Crimson Tide was led by Steele's 21 points.
March 16 - No. 7 UCLA 78, Belmont 44 - before 10,068 at Cox Arena in San Diego in a first round NCAA Tournament contest (Oakland Region), No. 2 seed UCLA's defensive effort dominated No. 15 seed Belmont, as the UCLA Bruins defeated the Belmont Bruins 78-44. It was UCLA's eighth consecutive victory. The Bruins' 34-point winning margin was the largest of the season and in UCLA's NCAA Tournament history, it was the biggest winning margin since 2000, when the Bruins defeated Maryland 105-70 (35 points), in a second-round contest.
With 6:44 left in the first half, Belmont led 18-12. In the final six minutes of the first half (UCLA led 35-23 at halftime) and first eight minutes of the second half (UCLA led 47-28, 12:59 remaining), the Bruins outscored Belmont 35-10 (to lead 47-28 with 12:59 left in the game). UCLA's biggest second half lead was 36 points (78-42, 1:12 left to play), on a layup by Ryan Wright.
UCLA was led by Luc Richard Mbah a Moute's season and game-high 17 points (7-9, 0-0, 3-3), game-high eight rebounds (1-7), season and game-high six assists and game-high tying three steals. Also scoring in double figures for UCLA were Ryan Hollins (10 points) and Darren Collison (10 points, and a season-high tying three steals).
The UCLA Bruins (28-6, setting a school record for most games played in a season, 34), shot .536 (30-56) from the field, .308 (4-13) from three-point range and .824 (14-17) from the foul line, with a game and season-high 45 rebounds, 20 assists, 14 turnovers, four blocked shots and a season-high tying 11 steals.
The Belmont Bruins (20-11) shot .288 (17-59, second lowest opponent percentage this season) from the field, .211 (4-19) from three-point range and .462 (6-13) from the foul line, with 27 rebounds, nine assists, 14 turnovers, three blocked shots and eight steals. Belmont was led by Justin Hare's eight points.
The Last Nine - UCLA enters the NCAA Sweet 16 with a nine-game winning streak (tying UCLA's nine-game winning streak in 2001-02). During those nine games, UCLA is averaging 72.3 points while holding opponents to 54.0 points. None of the nine teams have scored more than 60 points in a game. UCLA has outrebounded seven of the nine opponents and has a margin of +5.8 (3220 - 26.4) in that span. UCLA is shooting .515 from the field and .413 from three-point range while holding the nine opponents to .397 from the floor and .342 from the arc.
The Bruins Are - 29-5 when holding the opponent under 80 points, 22-1 when leading at halftime, 17-1 when shooting .500 or better from the field, 14-1 when holding the opponent to under .400, 25-2 when outshooting the opponent from the field, 19-2 when outshooting the opponent from three-point range, 23-3 with a rebound advantage and 27-1 when leading with five minutes to play in regulation.
UCLA has held nine of its last 18 opponents under .400 and three under .300. Only three times in the last 18 games has an opponent shot better than .464. Fifteen of those 18 opponents scored 60 points or less, including each of the last nine. WSU's 30 points was the lowest total by a Bruin opponent since the 1966-67 season, when Oregon scored 25. Last season (all games), the Bruins allowed 71.7 points a game (this season, 58.7, a difference of -13.0 points).
In the final Pac-10 games only statistics, UCLA was first in scoring defense (59.3) and first in scoring margin (+8.4) and rebounding defense (28.1) and third in FG% defense (.427) and fourth in 3PT FG% defense (.338). In league games, the Bruins are also first in offensive FG% (.469).
In the Second Half - In the NCAA first round game against Belmont, UCLA outscored the Bruins 25-5 to start the second half after leading by 12 (35-23) at halftime. Against Alabama, UCLA built an eightpoint second half lead (the game was tied at halftime) and won by three. In the Pac-10 Tournament, UCLA led Oregon State by 11 at halftime and outscored the Beavers by 21 in the second half. It led Arizona by seven at halftime and outscored the Wildcats by five after intermission. It led California by three at halftime and outscored the Golden Bears by 16 in the final 20 minutes.
On the final regular-season trip, UCLA trailed at California by 11 points (31-20) at halftime but rallied to outscore the Golden Bears by 20 (47-27) after halftime (11 in the second half and nine in overtime). UCLA trailed both Oregon schools at halftime (OSU 32-26 and UO 28-23), but came back with big second half rallies (season high for a half 52 vs. OSU and second-highest season high for a second half 47 vs. UO). Vs. Oregon, the Bruins shot their best second-half FG% (.625, 15-24) of the season. Prior to the win at Stanford, the Bruins trailed in five consecutive games at halftime, but came back with strong second-half efforts (averaged 23.6 in first half/44.0 in second half).
20 Wins - It's the 42nd time in school history the Bruins have won 20 games (last time, 2001-02, 21-12). UCLA has won 20 games on 34 occasions in the last 40 years (1967-2006). This is UCLA's fastest to 20 victories since the 1994-95 NCAA Championship season (20-1, went on to a 32-1 overall record, the 32 wins is a school record).
Fast Starts - In three Pac-10 games this season, the Bruins have gotten off to fast starts - in UCLA's 71-54 win over Stanford in Pauley Pavilion, the Bruins led 18-1 (14:25); in UCLA's 66-45 victory over USC in Pauley, the Bruins led 18-2 (13:00) and in UCLA's 50-30 win at Washington State, the Bruins led 18-2 (12:56).
Jordan Farmar - A member of the Pac-10 All- Tournament team, on March 10 was named a CollegeInsider.com All-American. On March 7, was named first-team USBWA All. Dist. IX, on March 6, he earned first-team All-Pac-10 and was named to the Wooden Award finalist list (22 players) and on March 1, was named the Pac-10 Most Valuable Player by CollegeInsider.com. On Feb. 18, Farmar was named first-team NABC All-Dist. 15. He is on the mid-season Naismith Trophy (30 players) and Wooden Award (30 players) lists. He is also a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award (nation's top point guard).
Farmar is one of just four players, he's the only underclassman, mentioned for all three honors (joining senior guards, Illinois' Dee Brown, Pittsburgh's Carl Krauser and Syracuse's Gerry McNamara). He leads UCLA in assists (5.21) and is second in scoring (13.6). He's led the Bruins in assists in 19 of the last 23 games and 26 of his 33 games (vs. Washington in January, Farmar had a career-best 12 assists, also had 10 vs. Coppin State). In the win over Alabama in the NCAA second round, he led the Bruins with 18 points, includinga career-high tying five threepointers, and scored nine of UCLA's first 11 points.
In the Pac-10 title game vs. California, he led the Bruins with 19 points, including five three-pointers. He led the Bruins with 21 points against Oregon State, including 17 in the second half, connecting on four three-pointers. Playing on two sprained ankles, he led the Bruins with 21 points at USC. The previous week, he scored 20 of UCLA's 50 points at Washington State and added 13 points and five assists at Washington. On Feb. 4 vs. Arizona, he sprained his left ankle (X-rays Saturday night revealed no abnormalities and an MRI on Monday confirmed the ankle sprain). He spent the week in a walking boot but played in both games at Washington.
He has also been playing with a sprained right ankle (first hurt vs. Temple/reinjured vs. Stanford/has missed two games-Delaware State and Albany), but has started every league game. He has scored in double figures in 14 of the last 18 games and in 23 contests this season. Farmar has seven games of 20 or more points, including a career-high 28 vs. Memphis in an NIT Season Tip-Off semifinal. Farmar has led the Bruins in scoring 10 times, including consecutive wins over Nevada (24) at the Wooden Classic and at Michigan (21).
Arron Afflalo - A member of the Pac-10 All- Tournament team, On March 7, was named a firstteam USBWA All-Dist. IX and CollegeInsider.com Defensive All-American, on March 6 was a first-team All-Pac-10 selection and named Pac-10 Player of the Week (for his play in the Bruins' sweep of the Bay Area), and on Feb. 18, Afflalo was named first-team NABC All-Dist. 15. He was named an early-season All-American by scout.com and named to the NIT Season Tip-Off All-Tournament team.
UCLA's leading scorer (16.3), he's started 34 games and scored in double figures in 31 of 35 games. He has 11 games of 20 or more points. In the NCAA win over Alabama, he had 13 points, all in the second half. In the Pac-10 Tourney opener against Oregon State, he had 16 points and he had a career-high seven assists in the title game vs. California. At California, he scored 21 of his game-high 25 points in the second half and overtime and added seven rebounds. At Stanford, he led the Bruins with 16 points. In the two games, he made 13 of 23 shots from the floor, eight for 14 from three-point range and seven of nine from the line (and was named Pac-10 Player of the Week). Against the Oregon schools in Pauley, he scored 34 points, making 11 of 19 shots from the floor (5-10 from three-point range) and all seven free throw attempts. In UCLA's home sweep of the Arizona schools, Afflalo scored a career-high 27 points vs. Arizona (career-best 13-16 from the foul line) with a season-high tying four assists and vs. Arizona State, added 17 points, six rebounds and a season-high tying two steals. His previous scoring high was 23 points twice, vs. Stanford and New Mexico State. He's led UCLA in scoring in 16 games this season. In UCLA's victory at Oregon State, Afflalo led the Bruins in rebounding (career and game-high 10) and recorded his first career double/double (11 points-10 rebounds).
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute - on March 6 was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year (and Honorable Mention All-Pac-10) and a Freshman All-American by CollegeInsider.com. Also earned Conference Freshman of the Year honors from CBS SportsLine.com and SI.com. He was named to Seth Davis' SI.com All-Glue team on Feb. 15 (given to players who emphasize team play over individualism).
He was named the Rivals.com National Freshman of the Week (Jan. 30) for his efforts in UCLA's two victories at the Oregon schools. The Bruins' leading rebounder (8.1/No. 3 in the Pac-10, leading freshman rebounder in the conference and No. 4 freshman scorer/the nation's third-leading freshman rebounder/the highest freshman average in UCLA history, breaking Don MacLean's 7.5, 1989), he's been UCLA's leading rebounder in 29 of 35 games, including the last four games. Entering the NCAA Tournament, he was second in the Pac-10 in offensive rebounding (3.00) and fourth in defensive rebounds (5.12) and led the conference in FG% (.539). Mbah a Moute has streaks of leading the Bruins in rebounding this season of 12 (longest since 1977-78, when David Greenwood led UCLA in rebounding in the final 13 regular season games) and seven games. He has seven double/doubles, the most in Bruin freshman history (breaking Jelani McCoy's mark of six, 1996), including two consecutive on two occasions (the first starting freshman to accomplish that since JaRon Rush (1998-99-final two games that seasonat Arizona-16/10 and Detroit Mercy (NCAA)-10/13).
Mbah a Moute has 10 games of double digit rebounds. In the NCAA win over Belmont, he led the Bruins in scoring (17), rebounding (eight), assists (six) and steals (tied with three) and has made 11 of 13 shots from the floor in two NCAA games. He had 12 points and seven rebounds in the Pac-10 semifinal win over Arizona. At Stanford, he had 12 points and nine rebounds. He led the Bruins with 14 points and 10 rebounds in the home win vs. Oregon. At the sweep of the Oregon schools, Mbah a Moute led the Bruins in scoring both games (Oregonseason and game-high 15 points/game-high 10 rebounds; Oregon State-team-high 14 points/eight rebounds) and for his efforts was named the Rivals.com National Freshman of the Week.
Ryan Hollins - came back from his groin injury (missed six games, including UCLA's first five Pac-10 contests), to play in the last 19 games and start 15 of the last 16. He is averaging 11.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in two NCAA games while shooting 1.000 (8-8) from the floor. In the Pac-10 Tournament, he averaged 12.0 points, including a season-high 17 points vs. Oregon State and 6.3 rebounds (leading or tying for the team rebound lead in all three games) and made 13 of 18 shots (.722) from the floor. At Stanford, he had a then season-high 13 points (5-7, 3-4) and eight rebounds. On the road trip to Washington, he had six rebounds vs. WSU and a season-high nine boards (seven points) at Washington. Vs. the Arizona schools in Pauley, he scored a then season-best 12 points vs.
Arizona with three rebounds and vs. Arizona State, added six points and four rebounds. As a starter at the Oregon schools, in a season-best 35 minutes at Oregon State, Hollins had a then-season-high tying 11 points, with seven rebounds and at Oregon, although in foul trouble, he contributed five points, three rebounds and a season-best four blocked shots.
Cedric Bozeman - After missing eight games with a left shoulder injury (cartilage/he started the first 11 games before the injury), Bozeman has returned to play in the last 16 games and started the last 15 contests. With Bozeman in the lineup, the Bruins are 24-3 (23-3 as a starter). In the NCAA Tournament, he had nine points against Belmont and five points and a season-high seven assists vs. Alabama. Despite playing with a sprained left ankle suffered in the Pac-10 Tournament opener vs. Oregon State, he averaged 9.3 points, 2.3 assists and 1.7 steals while shooting .526 (10-19) from the floor, .500 (3-6) from three-point range and 1.000 (5-5) from the line.
INJURY UPDATE (every scholarship player has been injured this season/seven players have missed a total of 85 games).
Sophomore forward Josh Shipp (missed 31 games/out for season) - on Sept. 28, had an arthroscopic right hip procedure. During his initial rehabilitation, he was on crutches for almost a month (came off of crutches on Oct. 26). Shipp returned to the starting to start the Pac-10 season (he missed the first 11 games) and started the first four league contests, scoring in double figures (11.3ppg/4.8rpg/29.8mpg) in every game. On Jan. 10, because of constant and increasing pain in the right hip, Shipp announced he would not practice or play for the remainder of the season (UCLA will petition for a medical hardship waiver at the conclusion of the season).
Sophomore center Lorenzo Mata (missed 16 games/returned March 9) - suffered a concussion in practice on Dec. 1 and did not play on Dec. 4 vs. Coppin State and vs. Nevada on Dec. 10. Since then, he started seven of eight games (played with a bloody nose/slight fracture at Arizona State, suffered in the first half). Vs. Washington State, suffered a nondisplaced right tibial plateau fracture (he missed 14 games before returning on March 9).
Senior center Michael Fey (missed 16 games) - before the start of practice (Oct. 14), was diagnosed with a severe groin strain. On Tuesday (Nov. 8), Fey was cleared for a one hour workout (once a day, starting Nov. 9). Fey participated in team practice on Saturday (Nov. 12). He played 17 minutes vs. New Mexico State (seven points/two rebounds) and 15 minutes vs. Temple (0 points/two rebounds), but sprained his left shoulder. He did not play vs. Delaware State and his status was "day-to-day". In New York, Fey played a season-high 21 minutes vs. Memphis (season-high 13 points/four rebounds) and five minutes vs. Drexel. On Thursday (Dec. 1), suffered a right ankle sprain in practice and did not play vs. Coppin State on Dec. 4 and Nevada on Dec. 10. He did play two minutes at Michigan. Fey did not play vs. Wagner, came in for nine minutes (two points/three rebounds) vs. Sacramento State. Fey missed the Bruins' first five Pac-10 contests. He did play one minute vs. Washington and Arizona State, but did not play vs. USC, WVU, Oregon, OSU and Arizona. He played two minutes at WSU, but did not play at Washington or at USC.
He started against Oregon State and Oregon and played at California and Stanford. He's appeared in three of the last five games, including four minutes vs. Belmont in the NCAA Tournament.
Cedric Bozeman (missed eight games) - The senior forward who had started every game before Stanford, on Dec. 27 injured his left shoulder in practice (an MRI revealed torn cartilage). At the time of the injury, Bozeman was averaging 31.2 minutes, 10.3 points and 4.0 rebounds. He missed eight games. Bozeman was cleared the week of the USC and WVU games to resume shooting and dribbling, but did not play. He returned to action at the Oregon schools, has played in the last 16 games and started the last 15. He suffered a sprained left ankle on the first day of the Pac-10 Tournament but did not miss any games.
Freshman forward Alfred Aboya (missed six games) - had a right knee arthroscopic procedure on July 11 and had a left knee arthroscopic procedure on Oct. 12. Aboya was re-evaluated on Nov. 2 and he did not have any basketball activity for the next two weeks. His first game was Coppin State (Dec. 4 -16 minutes, two rebounds and assists) and he's appeared in every game since (24). Vs. Washington, Aboya suffered a right knee injury, but an MRI revealed no new articular cartilage damage and he started both the USC and West Virginia games. Suffered a left hip flexor strain in practice on Thursday before the USC game, but played 16 minutes at the Sports Arena. Reinjured (left hip flexor strain) in practice on Feb. 21 and was questionable for the Oregon schools in Pauley, but played against the Beavers and Oregon.
Senior center Ryan Hollins (missed six games) - strained his groin during warm-ups vs. Sacramento State (did not play) and missed six consecutive games. He has now played in the last 19 games and started 15 of the last 16 contests.
Sophomore point guard Jordan Farmar (missed two games) - suffered a right groin strain in practice on Thursday (Oct. 27) and was held out of practice for five days (Thursday-Tuesday, the Bruins did not practice on Sunday, Oct. 30). After a Nov. 1 examination, Farmar, who had shown significant improvement, continued to strengthen and receive treatment. He did not practice or play the rest of the week and did not play in UCLA's exhibition game vs. Carleton (Friday, Nov. 4). Farmar was cleared to resume practice on Monday (Nov. 7) and started vs. CS Monterey Bay. Farmar started the first two NIT Season Tip-Off encounters, but sprained his right ankle vs. Temple and did not play vs. Delaware State. He started vs. Memphis and Drexel. Following an inconclusive early MRI on Tuesday (Nov. 29), another MRI was taken later that day which showed Farmar did not have a right foot stress fracture. He did not play vs. Albany (Nov. 29), but came back to start vs. Coppin State (Dec. 4) and responded with his first career double/double (16 points-then career-high 10 assists) and has started every game since Coppin State.
Farmar sprained his right ankle in the second half vs. Stanford (played only four minutes), but came back to start vs. California (36 minutes). Started vs. the Arizona schools - had the ankle retaped in the first half of the Arizona game (hit four consecutive free throws late in the game to preserve UCLA's win) and at ASU, hit two baskets at the end of the contest to win the game for UCLA. Led the Bruins in scoring vs. USC (15) and WVU (22) and led the Bruins to two wins in Oregon for the first time since 2001. Vs. Arizona in Pauley Pavilion, he sprained his left ankle in the second half, got retaped, and played 31 minutes (X-rays on Saturday night revealed no abnormalities and an MRI on Monday confirmed the sprained ankle). He was in a walking boot during the week leading up to the WSU game. He is UCLA's second-leading scorer (13.6) and leads the Pac-10 in assists (5.21/had a career-high 12 assists vs. Washington).
Freshman forward Michael Roll - jammed his right thumb in practice on Jan. 31 (before Arizona State game) and Feb. 1 X-rays revealed a sprain. He played 15 minutes vs. ASU and 14 vs. Arizona.
Freshman guard Darren Collison - suffered a sprained left ankle in the West Virginia game. The X-rays were negative, he did not practice Monday or Tuesday (before the Oregon games), but played at both Oregon (17 minutes) and Oregon State (13 minutes).
Freshman center Ryan Wright - sprained his right ankle in the Stanford game (Pauley Pavilion), but continued to play in the Cardinal contest (22 minutes, five points, four rebounds) and vs. California (15 minutes, three points). He has played in every Pac-10 game and started vs. Washington.
Sophomore guard Arron Afflalo - suffered a left quadricep contusion on Oct. 29. He was listed as day-today, resumed practice on Nov. 3 and has started every game. He leads the Bruins in points (17.1/No. 7 in the Pac- 10) and minutes (34.3, No. 4 in the Pac-10). At Arizona State, fell heavily to the floor at the end of the game, suffering a left hip pointer and right backside bruised soft tissue. But came back to start vs. the Washington schools in Pauley Pavilion
Freshman forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute - before the start of practice (Oct. 14) was diagnosed with a sprained right shoulder. He returned to full-time practice status on Oct. 22 and has started every game and leads the Bruins in rebounding (8.4, No. 3 in the Pac-10/No. 3 freshman rebounder in the U. S.).
Redshirt Freshman Walkon Joey Ellis - On Oct. 7, had a left knee arthroscopic procedure and has not appeared in a game.
NATIONAL POLLS - Entering the NCAA Tournament, UCLA was ranked No. 7 by AP and No. 8 by ESPN/USA Today. Entering the Pac-10 Tournament, the Bruins were ranked No. 13 by AP and No. 12 by ESPN/USA Today. Prior to the Bay Area trip, the Bruins were ranked No. 15 by AP and No. 13 by ESPN/USA Today. Prior to the Oregon games in Pauley Pavilion, UCLA was rated No. 19 by AP and No. 17 by ESPN/USA Today. Prior to the USC game at the Sports Arena, UCLA was rated No. 15 by AP and No. 14 by ESPN/USA Today. Prior to traveling to Washington, the Bruins were rated No. 13 by AP and No. 12 by ESPN/USA Today. Prior to hosting the Arizona schools in Pauley Pavilion, UCLA was rated No. 14 by AP and No. 13 by ESPN/USA Today. Before going to the Oregon schools, the Bruins were No. 17 by AP and ESPN/USA Today. Prior to USC and WVU, the Bruins were ranked No. 18 by AP and No. 16 by ESPN/USA Today. Before facing the Washington schools in Pauley, UCLA for the second time this season was No. 11 (AP) and No. 12 (ESPN/USA Today). Traveling to the Arizona schools, the Bruins were No. 17 in both polls. UCLA was No. 11 in both polls (before facing Stanford/California in Pauley Pavilion/UCLA's highest regular season ranking since 2001-02/No. 10-the Bruins that season had a preseason ranking of No. 3). UCLA was No. 12 in both polls (before facing Wagner and Sacramento State). The Bruins were No. 14 in both polls going into Michigan.
Prior to facing Nevada (Dec. 10) in the Wooden Classic, the Bruins were No. 16 (AP) and No. 18 (USA Today/ESPN). The week of Nov. 28, UCLA was No. 16 (AP) and No. 17 (USA Today/ESPN). The week of the NIT Season Tip-Off Final Four (Nov. 21), the Bruins were No. 16 in both polls (UCLA's highest ranking since the start of the 2002-03 season/No. 14). UCLA was preseason rated No. 19 by AP and tied for No. 18 by USA Today/ESPN (it was the Bruins' first preseason rating since 2002-03/No. 14).
IN THE RECORD BOOK
Career - 3PT FG% - Arron Afflalo, 11th (.376, 115-306); 3PT FGs - Arron Afflalo, 9th, 115, Jordan Farmar, 13th, 90; 3PT FGs ATT - Arron Afflalo, 7th, 306, Jordan Farmar, 11th, 266; ASSTS - Cedric Bozeman, 10th, 378;
THE WOODEN CLASSIC - On Dec. 10 in the 12th annual Wooden Classic at the Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim, No. 16 UCLA defeated No. 17 Nevada, 67-56. It was UCLA's third consecutive Wooden Classic appearance, snapped a two-game Bruin losing streak at the Classic, and overall, UCLA is 6-3 in the Wooden Classic. It was announced that UCLA and USC will appear in the 2006 Wooden Classic (Dec. 9-opponents to be announced at a later date).
UCLA in the John R. Wooden Classic (6-3)
2005-06(W) -No. 16 UCLA 67, No. 17 Nevada 56.
2004-05(L)-Boston College 74, UCLA 64
2003-04(L)-No. 9 Kentucky 52, UCLA 50
2001-02(W)-No. 20 UCLA 79, No. 16 Alabama 57
2000-01(L)-Georgia Tech 72, UCLA 67
1998-99(W)-No. 18 UCLA 69,No. 11 Okla. St. 66
1997-98(W)-No. 15 UCLA 69,No. 8 New Mex. 58
1995-96(W)-UCLA 73, No. 20 Maryland 63
1994-95(W)-No. 2 UCLA 82, No. 7 Kentucky 81
On Nov. 30, 2002 in Indianapolis, No. 14 UCLA's 84-73 loss to No. 4 Duke was the Bruins' only appearance in the then third-annual Wooden Tradition.
2005 NIT SEASON TIP-OFF TOURNAMENT - For the first time since 1996 and for the fourth time in school history (2005-1996-1992-1987), the Bruins played in the NIT Season Tip-Off and for the second time in school history, placed third.
At the NIT Season Tip-Off at New York City's Madison Square Garden, on Nov. 25 Duke defeated Memphis 70- 67 for the championship and in the third-place game, the Bruins beat Drexel 57-56. In the semis on Nov. 23, Duke defeated Drexel 78-68 and Memphis beat UCLA 88-80.
The first-round NIT matchups were - Nov. 14 - Boston U. at Duke (D 64-57), Manhattan at Seton Hall (SH 66- 52), Sam Houston State at Missouri (SHS 80-77) and Drexel at Princeton (D 54-41); Nov. 15- Miami (Ohio) at Alabama (A 64-58), Wisconsin-Milwaukee at Memphis (M 79-52), Army at Temple (T 69-37) and New Mexico State at UCLA (U 83-70). Second Round results - Nov. 16- at Duke 93-Seton Hall 40; Nov. 17 - at Drexel 72- Sam Houston State 61, Memphis 87-at Alabama 76 and at UCLA 54-Temple 47.
In UCLA's preseason NIT history, the Bruins - in 1996, lost in the first round to Tulsa in Pauley Pavilion (77-76, OT); in 1992, lost a semifinal game to Seton Hall 73-64 and defeated Florida State 86-83 for third-place and in 1987, lost a second round contest at New Mexico 77-66.
UCLA REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE - In the Preseason AP poll, the Bruins will face five teams on this year's schedule - No. 9 Arizona, No. 12 Memphis, No. 13 Stanford, No. 15 West Virginia and No. 25 Nevada.
UCLA's 2005-06 men's basketball schedule will feature nine teams that advanced to postseason play last season (NCAA/NIT) and the Bruins will also participate in the NIT Season Tip-Off and Wooden Classic. Teams from last year's NCAA include - Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Delaware State (Saturday, Nov. 19 in Pauley Pavilion, 7:30 p.m.), Western Athletic Conference Nevada in the Wooden Classic (Saturday, Dec. 10 in Anaheim, 2:30 p.m./KCAL), Big East West Virginia (Saturday, Jan. 12 in Pauley Pavilion, 12:45 p.m., CBS/the Mountaineers in the 2005 NCAA advanced to the Albuquerque Regional final, losing to Louisville 93- 85OT) and Pac-10 foes Washington, Arizona and Stanford. Also in 2005, conference opponents Oregon State and Arizona State participated in the NIT, as did Memphis. For the fourth consecutive season, UCLA will play Big 10 Michigan (Dec. 17 in Ann Arbor, 9 a.m. PT/ESPN) -UCLA leads the series 9-3 and has won the last two games, 68-61 on Dec. 17 and last season, defeating the Wolverines in Pauley 81-79.
PAC-10 MEDIA DAY-BRUINS SELECTED THIRD IN PRESEASON VOTE - Nov. 3 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 2006 conference title.
Here's the vote total -1. Arizona (23) 325, 2. Stanford (9) 294, 3. UCLA 263 (2), 4. Washington 238, 5. California 212, 6. Oregon 183, 7. Oregon State 132, 8. USC 87, 9. Washington State 86, 10. Arizona State 50.
PRESEASON HONORS- Here's a list of the Bruin preseason team and individual honors.
-Athlon - Team - Postseason Prediction, NCAA "Sweet 16"/3rd in Pac-10; No. 2 recruiting class in Pac-10. Individual -Jordan Farmar - Honorable Mention All- America/1st-team All-Pac-10; Arron Afflalo - 3rd-team All- Pac-10.
-Blue Ribbon - Team - No. 21 in the U. S./3rd in the Pac- 10; No. 2 Top Backcourt in Pac-10. Individual - Jordan Farmar- All-Conference Team.
-CollegeHoops.net - Team - No. 16 in the U. S./3rd in the Pac-10. Individual - Jordan Farmar - 1st-team All-Pac- 10.
-Lindy's - Team - No. 25 in U. S./3rd in Pac-10; No. 6 backcourt in the nation; No. 18 recruiting class in the nation. Individual - Jordan Farmar - No. 11 point guard in the U. S. /second-team All-Pac-10.
-Slam Magazine - Team - No. 18 in U. S.
-Sports Illustrated - Team - No. 15 in the U. S.
-Street & Smith's - Team - No. 16 in the U. S. /3rd in Pac- 10; No. 3 recruiting class in Pac-10. Individual - Alfred Aboya - Top 100 college freshmen, Ryan Wright - Impact Rookie.
-The Sporting News - Team - No. 17 in U. S. /3rd in Pac- 10; No. 5 backcourt in U. S.; No. 3 recruiting class in Pac-10. Individual - Jordan Farmar - No. 4 point guard in U. S. /first-team All-Pac-10; Arron Afflalo - No. 13 shooting guard in the U .S./second-team All-Pac-10; Ryan Wright - No. 5 Pac-10 recruit; Alfred Aboya - No. 8 Pac-10 recruit; Darren Collison -No. 12 Pac-10 recruit. -Dick Vitale's Top 25 - Team - No. 20 in the U. S.
UCLA'S NATIONAL-LETTERS-OF-INTENT James Keefe, a 6-8, 220-pound forward from Santa Margarita Catholic HS (Rancho Santa Margarita), on Feb. 23 was named a McDonald's All-American. The McDonald's game will be March 29 at San Diego State's Cox Arena. He's the 26th McDonald's All- American to attend UCLA and the third recruited to the Bruins under UCLA head coach Ben Howland (joining 2004 McDonald's All-Americans - Jordan Farmar and Arron Afflalo).
Considered one of the nation's top-rated power forwards entering his senior high school season, Keefe has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend UCLA, Bruin head coach Ben Howland announced Nov. 9. Wednesday is the first day of the early signing period that extends until Nov. 16.
Under head coach Jerry DeBusk, Keefe led the Eagles in March to a second consecutive CIF Southern Section Div. III-AA Championship (28-5 overall), averaging 17.0 points, 12.3 rebounds and 3.7 blocked shots. Santa Margarita Catholic HS advanced to the second round of the CIF Southern California Regionals (Div. III) as Keefe earned State Junior Player of the Year honors and was first-team All-Serra League.
"I'm elated that James is joining our program," said Howland. "He's an outstanding player, a great person and an excellent student. James plays hard, is an outstanding rebounder, a good defender and plays very intelligently. His attitude and work ethic are going to help him improve and get better and better year-in and year-out"
A recent first-team Long Beach Press-Telegram Best in the West Selection, Keefe is rated the No. 27 high school player in the nation by Bob Gibbons' All-Star Sports Top 100.
Entering 2005-06, his other preseason prep honors include - Street & Smith All-American (second team), The Sporting News' No. 36 player in the U. S., Scout.com No. 37 player in the U. S. (No. 11 power forward in the U. S.) and Athlon Sports No. 38 player in the U. S.
Last summer, Keefe participated in the Gibbons' Memorial Weekend Tournament, playing for the titlewinning Southern California All-Stars. He also played in the adidas All-America Camp in Suwanee, GA and with his high school team in the Reebok Las Vegas Big Time Tournament (an all-tourney choice) in July.
"Keefe puts as much energy and focus into his performance while screening for teammates and playing defense, as he does when the ball is in his possession," said Frank Burlison, national basketball columnist for Scout.com, long-time sportswriter for the Long Beach Press-Telegram and a member of the USBWA Hall of Fame. "He'll need to make fewer adjustments, especially on defense, than almost any other player in the class to be an immediate contributor in college. Keefe has been extremely well-coached by Jerry DeBusk and should make an immediate impact with the Bruins, perhaps even as a starter at some point during his freshman season." Marko Spica, a 6-9, 225-pound post player from Belgrade, Serbia and Montenegro, has signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball at UCLA, Bruin head coach Ben Howland announced Tuesday. Spica will be an incoming freshman for the 2006-07 school year.
From the High School of Sport in Belgrade and considered one of the top young post players in Europe, Spica, since the age of 13, has been a member of the Beovuk Club. Within his club team, Spica for two years has been playing on his country's Junior squad, averaging 11.0 points and 7.0 rebounds. Prior to that, for three seasons on the Youth team, he averaged 17.0 points and 9.0 rebounds. "Marko is a skilled post player," Howland said. "He can score down low. He can step out and shoot. He rebounds, he blocks out and he plays physical. Marko and James Keefe give us two talented inside players for next season."