Nov. 30, 2012
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LOS ANGELES - The No. 24 UCLA men's basketball team will make its 16th appearance playing in the annual John R. Wooden Classic on Saturday night, facing No. 23/21 San Diego State at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The game will be nationally televised on ESPNU at 7 p.m. (PST).
Venue: Honda Center (17,608)
Tip-Off Time: 7:05 p.m. PST
TV Talent: Dave Flemming (play-by-play), Sean Farnham (analyst)
Radio (UCLA Sports Network from IMG College): AM 570
Radio Talent: Chris Roberts (play-by-play), Tracy Murray (analyst)
SIRIUS Satellite Radio: Channel 139
SIRIUS XM Satellite Radio: Channel 194
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AZTECS VERSUS BRUINS
The Bruins (5-2) last faced San Diego State (4-1) on Dec. 14, 1991, securing an 84-64 win at the San Diego Memorial Sports Arena. UCLA leads the all-time series by a 15-5 margin. Saturday's contest, slated for a 7:05 p.m. (PT) tip-off, will be nationally televised by ESPNU, with Dave Flemming and Sean Farnham calling the action. The Bruins have recorded an 11-4 mark in 15 previous appearances at the John R. Wooden Classic, an event that began in Dec. 1994. Head coach Ben Howland has guided the Bruins to a 6-3 mark in nine Wooden Classic games (since Dec. 2003).
MOST RECENT MEETING
UCLA built a 47-30 halftime lead and defeated San Diego State, 84-64, in both schools' last meeting (Dec. 14, 1991). Playing without senior Don MacLean (flu), the Bruins found out after the game that starting point guard and captain Gerald MAdkins had broken his left hand and would miss the team's next five games. The Bruins battled through the adversity, watching their 17-point halftime lead reduced to just four (61-57) with 7:24 to play. UCLA's Shon Tarver stepped up with a game-leading 26 points. The Bruins also received 20 points and 10 rebounds from Tracy Murray and 15 points from Darrick Martin.
UCLA defeated Cal State Northridge, 82-56, on Wednesday night, as Norman Powell led the Bruins with 17 points. Cal State Northridge, which had entered the game with a 6-1 record, was held to 32.9 percent shooting from the field (34-64), making just 5 of 26 three-point attempts (19.2 percent). Kyle Anderson (15 pts), Travis Wear (14 pts) and Shabazz Muhammad (13 pts) rounded out UCLA's list of double-digit scorers.
LEADING THE WAY
Freshmen Jordan Adams (17.0 ppg) and Shabazz Muhammad (16.0 ppg) enter Saturday's game as UCLA's top two scorers, respectively. Adams has scored in double figures in five of his first seven games while Muhammad has scored in double figures in all four games played. Adams opened the season with four consecutive 20-plus point efforts, becoming the first freshman in school history to accomplish that feat. Muhammad has averaged 16.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game, logging a career-high 21 points in UCLA's win over Georgia (Nov. 20).
DISHING IT OUT
Senior Larry Drew II leads the team with 57 assists (having committed nine turnovers). He leads all Pac-12 players with 8.1 assists per game and a 6.3 assist turnover ratio (through games played Nov. 29). Drew II, who spent his first three seasons at North Carolina (2009-11), has already bested his previous career high twice this season. He had 12 assists (and three turnovers) in UCLA's 100-70 win over James Madison (Nov. 15) and eclipsed that effort with 13 assists (and two turnovers) in the Bruins' 82-56 win over Cal State Northridge on Wednesday (Nov. 28).
Through the season's first seven games, Kyle Anderson leads UCLA with 8.1 rebounds per game. The freshman from Fairview, N.J., has grabbed 38 of his team-leading 57 rebounds on the defensive end. Anderson recorded a double-double (10 pts, 10 rbs) in his collegiate debut against Indiana State (Nov. 9). Junior Travis Wear (6.9 rpg) and freshman Shabazz Muhammad (6.0 rpg) are UCLA's second- and third-leading rebounders, respectively. Muhammad registered his first career double-double (15 pts, 10 rbs) in a 70-68 loss to Cal Poly last Sunday (Nov. 25).
Freshman guard Jordan Adams (Atlanta, Ga.) leads UCLA with 17.0 ppg, the second-highest scoring average among any Pac-12 freshman. He has become the first freshman in program history to have scored at least 20 points in each of his first four games (freshmen could not play on the varsity team until 1972-73). Adams is UCLA's first player to score 20-plus points in four straight games since Dijon Thompson (Jan.-Feb. 2005). He is the first Bruin to have opened any season with four straight games of 20+ points since Don MacLean (six consecutive in 1990-91).
IN THE PAC
Through games played Thursday, Jordan Adams ranks sixth in the Pac-12 in scoring (17.0 ppg) and first in free throw percentage (35-36, .972). Kyle Anderson is 11th in the conference in rebounds (8.1 rpg) and tied for seventh in steals (1.7 spg). Larry Drew II ranks first in assists (8.1 apg) and first in assist turnover ratio (6.3). As a team, the Bruins rank third in scoring offense, having averaged 78.0 points per game.
MORE ON ADAMS
Jordan Adams has made 35 of 36 free throw attempts (.972). He has made his last 33 consecutive free throw attempts, just 10 shy of the school record (43, Darren Collison in 2008-09). Adams' streak spans UCLA's first six games (made his first two, missed his third attempt on Nov. 9). His 16-for-16 effort at the line on Nov. 13 (vs. UC Irvine) was one shy of Reggie Miller's Pauley Pavilion-record 17-for-17 FT effort against Arizona State (Jan. 16, 1986).
Freshman Tony Parker has been day-to-day with back spasms and suffered a sprained left ankle during pregame warmups on Wednesday night (Nov. 28). Parker will be a gametime decision for Saturday's game. Sophomore Nick Kazemi remains sidelined with a sprained left MCL (sustained Oct. 26) and is expected to miss 2-3 more weeks.
THROUGH THE YEARS
UCLA will play in the 19th annual John R. Wooden Classic this Saturday, having recorded an 11-4 record in 15 previous meetings. Last season, the Bruins secured a 65-58 win over conference foe Arizona before 9,247 fans at the Honda Center (Jan. 5, 2012). Two years ago, the Bruins' defeated previously-undefeated BYU, 86-79. The Cougars had entered that game ranked No. 16 in the nation with a 10-0 record. In nine seasons as the Bruins' head coach, Ben Howland has led UCLA to a 6-3 record at the John R. Wooden Classic.
BRUINS IN OVERTIME
With an 80-79 overtime victory against UC Irvine on Nov. 13, 2012, UCLA improved its record to 11-7 in overtime games during head coach Ben Howland's tenure (since 2003-04). UCLA did not play any overtime contests last season and has won three of its last four games that have extended to overtime (Bruins went 2-1 in overtime in 2010-11). Against UC Irvine, Jordan Adams scored six of UCLA's 13 overtime points (going 4-for-4 at the free throw line). The Bruins last played a game into double overtime on Nov. 16, 2009 (season opener), dropping a 68-65 decision at home to Cal State Fullerton.
DOWN THE ROAD
The Bruins return to New Pauley Pavilion on Tuesday, Dec. 4, hosting an exhibition game against Cal State San Marcos at 7:30 p.m. The Cougars are led by second-year head coach Jim Saia, who served as an assistant coach at UCLA from 1996-2003. Cal State San Marcos competes as an NAIA independent program and has compiled a 5-3 record (prior to Friday's game against Oklahoma Baptist).
TRAVELING TO TEXAS
After Tuesday's exhibition game, UCLA will hit the road for a neutral-site game on Saturday, Dec. 8, against Texas in Houston (Reliant Stadium, home of the NFL's Houston Texans). UCLA has gone 2-3 in the all-time series versus the Longhorns. The Bruins are winless in their last three meetings against Texas (within the last five seasons). Last year (12/3/11), Texas registered a 69-59 win against UCLA at the L.A. Sports Arena.