No. 23 Men's Hoops Opens Season vs. Bradley
Nov. 14, 2000
LOS ANGELES - The USC men's basketball team (No. 23 AP/No. 24 ESPN/USA Today), which returns all five starters and three other lettermen from last year's 16-14 team that barely missed the postseason, opens the season on Saturday (Nov. 18) against Bradley at the Sports Arena at 7:30 p.m. It is also the season opener for the Braves.
USC (0-0) vs. Bradley (0-0) at the Sports Arena on Saturday (Nov. 18). Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on KMPC-AM (1540). The Braves, under 10th-year coach Jim Molinari, finished 14-16 overall last season and 10-8 in the Missouri Valley Conference, good for fifth. Bradley will be keyed by senior forward Eddie Cage and senior guard Jerome Robinson in 2000-2001. Cage anchors Bradley's frontcourt as the team's top returning scorer (7.4) and rebounder (4.0). Robinson was the last player cut off of the Canadian National Team for the 2000 Olympics. The Braves feature five newcomers, including probable starters Phillip Gilbert and James Gillingham, both freshman guards. Gilbert teamed with Los Angeles Clipper rookie Darius Miles at East St. Louis High last year and Gillingham, one of three Canadians on the Bradley roster, averaged 29.0 points per game last year.
USC is ranked No. 23 in the current AP Top 25 Poll (Nov. 13) and No. 24 by the ESPN/USA Today Top 25 Coaches' Preseason Poll. With USC opening in both preseason polls, it marks the first time since the 1978-79 season that the USC men's basketball team will open a season ranked in the Top 25 in one of the two major polls. The last time USC was ranked in the preseason, the Trojans were tabbed No. 12 in the AP poll at the start of the 1978-79 year. The five ranked teams on USC's schedule are Arizona (No. 1 AP/No. 1 ESPN/USA Today), Stanford (No. 4/3), UCLA (No. 17/19) and Utah (No. 13/16). Iowa State, a possible match-up in the Pearl Harbor Invitational in December, is ranked No. 25 in AP and No. 23 in ESPN/USA Today). Other USC opponents who received votes in the AP poll included California (13), Cal State Northridge (3), Oregon (1) and Pepperdine (1). Possible Pearl Harbor opponent BYU had five. The only other USC opponent that got a mention in the ESPN/USA Today poll was Cal State Northridge, which received one vote.
Behind junior forward Sam Clancy's game-high 29 points and senior forward/center Brian Scalabrine's 12 points and game-high 14 rebounds, USC finished its exhibition schedule with a 102-85 win over the Double Pump California Southwest All-Stars in front of 1,030 at the Lyon Center on Sunday night (Nov. 12).USC played without three of its starters: senior guard Jeff Trepagnier (foot), junior forward David Bluthenthal (knee, precautionary) and junior point guard Brandon Granville (flu). Clancy, who made 13-of-16 shots, led five Trojans who scored in double figures. In addition to Clancy and Scalabrine, freshman guard Desmon Farmer scored 15 points and sophomore center Kostas Charissis and sophomore guard Robert Hutchinson (playing in place of Granville) had 12 points apiece.The Trojans outrebounded their opponent, 47-27, with Clancy getting seven rebounds to go with his game-high scoring effort. Redshirt freshman center Luke Minor had six boards to go with four points. The All-Stars were led by Kris Johnson's 22 points and 15 points from DeAnthony Langston.
Freshman guard Desmon Farmer scored 26 points and senior forward/center Brian Scalabrine had 21 points as the Trojans defeated the Double Pump California West All-Stars, 108-88, to open exhibition play at the Lyon Center on Nov. 4. Farmer, who had a team-high seven rebounds, made 10-of-14 field goals, including five three-pointers, while Scalabrine made 9-of-13 shots, including 3-of-3 on trey attempts. USC made 43-of-70 field goal attempts (61.4%) and 12-of-19 from beyond the arc (63.2%). The California All-Stars were led by Andy Bostik, Chivo Anderson and Kenneth Young, who scored 15 points apiece. They also shot 50.0% from the floor (30-of-60). The Trojans, who led 50-41 at the half, also got 18 points from senior forward Jarvis Turner and 12 points and eight assists from junior guard Brandon Granville. Sophomore guard Robert Hutchinson also had eight assists. USC was playing without two returning starters, senior guard Jeff Trepagnier and junior forward David Bluthenthal. Trepagnier, recovering from a hairline fracture in his left foot, may return as early as next week. Bluthenthal, out while recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery, has already resumed practicing.
THIRD'S A CHARM
The Trojans were picked to finish third in the 2000-2001 Pacific-10 Conference men's basketball race, according to a poll of media members who cover Pac-10 men's basketball. Arizona was chosen first and garnered all 29 first-place votes (290 points). Defending Pac-10 co-champion Stanford was picked second (255) and USC (206) edged UCLA (205) for third. California was picked fifth (160), followed by Oregon (138), Oregon State (133), Arizona State (109), Washington (58) and Washington State (41).
The Trojans, hit hard by serious foot injuries to forwards Sam Clancy and Jarvis Turner last season, have had their share of nicks and cuts in the preseason, but nothing major (find your own wood on which to knock). The most recent casualty was senior guard Jeff Trepagnier, who suffered a hairline fracture in his left foot at the end of October. Fortunately, the injury did not require surgery and he will likely resume practicing today (Nov. 14). Returning starting forward David Bluthenthal underwent arthroscopic knee surgery to remove cartilage in late October, but he has already returned to practice. First-year junior college transfer Robert Hutchinson, a sophomore point guard slated to back-up starter Brandon Granville, was slowed slightly by a fracture on his little finger, but he is back at full strength and did not miss any time while the injury healed. Returning reserve guard Nate Hair suffered a strained tendon in his knee two weeks ago, but the injury does not require surgery and he could be back practicing as early as today (Nov. 14). First-year junior college transfer guard Gennaro Busterna has been slowed by an injured toe, but he is expected to return to practice this week.
TROJANS VS. 1999-2000 TOURNAMENT TEAMS
The Trojans will face more than their share of teams that played in the postseason last year. USC will face six teams that played in last year's NCAA Tournament: Arizona, UCLA, Oregon and Stanford (twice each) and Pepperdine and Utah. A seventh NCAA Tourney team - Iowa State - looms as a possible third-round match-up in the Pearl Harbor Invitational. The Trojans will also face 2000 NIT teams Arizona State and California (twice each), Long Beach State and either Mississippi or Southern Illinois (one of which will face the Trojans in the second round of the Hawai`i tournament). BYU is another NIT team that USC could play in the islands.
The Trojans have received more than their share of hype in the preseason and have been ranked as high as No. 14 in some polls. Both the Trojans' backcourt and frontcourt have been listed among the nation's Top 10 and each of the starting five are rated by numerous sources as first or second team in the Pac-10 or as the most underrated player in the Pac-10. Lindy's ranks Brian Scalabrine as the No. 2 power forward in the country and The Sporting News has him at No. 4. Jeff Trepagnier is listed as the Pac-10's top defender by Lindy's and Preview Sports. The Sporting News lists Brandon Granville as the seventh-best point guard in the country and Lindy's dubbed him the top playmaker in the Pac-10. Athlon Sports called Sam Clancy the most underrated player in the Pac-10 while The Sporting News gave the same distinction to David Bluthenthal.
IT'S ALL SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
Among the 12 non-conference games USC will play before the Pacific-10 Conference season, only the three games at the Pearl Harbor Classic in Laie, Hawai`i (within an hour's drive of Honolulu on the North Shore of Oahu) and the game at Northwestern are beyond 100 miles from campus. The Trojans open the season with four of its first five games at the Sports Arena and the fifth at the Arrowhead Pond in Anaheim, Calif. USC begins by hosting Bradley on Nov. 18 at 7:30 p.m. at the Sports Arena. The Trojans follow the game against the Braves by hosting San Diego on Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. and Loyola Marymount on Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. USC then plays Utah at the Arrowhead Pond in the Wooden Classic. The Trojan-Ute rumble will follow the matinee match-up of UCLA-Georgia Tech, which begins at noon. The USC contest will start 30 minutes after the completion of the first game. The Trojans return to the Sports Arena on Dec. 5 to host Cal State Northridge at 7:30 p.m. USC will play at UC Santa Barbara on Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. but returns home once more to host Pepperdine on Dec. 14 at 7:30 p.m. Then, after the Hawai`i tournament and the game at Northwestern, USC concludes its non-conference slate by hosting Long Beach State at 5:30 p.m.
USC's regular-season opener against Bradley on Nov. 18 at 7:30 p.m. is scheduled on the same day as the USC-UCLA football game at the Rose Bowl, which will kick off at 3:30 p.m. A week later, USC hosts Loyola Marymount on Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. on the same day as the USC-Notre Dame football game at the Coliseum. The football game will start at 12:30 p.m. and fans will be able to use the ticket stub from the football game to receive a $5 admission to the basketball game later that night at the Sports Arena.
TROY ON THE TUBE
The Trojans will play 18 games that will be broadcast live in Los Angeles. Five games will be aired nationally on FOX Sports Net (Fox Net West in Los Angeles). Three games will be aired on FOX Sports Net West (Los Angeles only) and seven will be broadcast on FOX Sports Net West 2 (Los Angeles only). The game against Utah will be shown on KCAL (Channel 9). USC's game at Arizona State will be shown regionally on ABC and the Trojans home game vs. Arizona will air regionally on CBS. Refer to USC's composite schedule at www.usctrojans.com for complete TV listings.
TROY ON THE RADIO
Twenty of USC's 30 games - 18 Pac-10 games plus the Loyola Marymount and Long Beach State games - will be broadcast live on XTRA-AM (690). The game against Utah will be broadcast live on KXTA-AM (1150) while the remaining nine games will be broadcast live on KMPC-AM (1540). Rory Markas returns for his third year as the play-by-play voice of the Trojans while former USC assistant coach Jim Hefner is back for his fifth year providing commentary.
USC has just about all of its firepower back from a year ago. All five starters return in addition to three key reserves. Percentage-wise the numbers are impressive. USC returns 97.2% of its scoring, 86.4% of its rebounding, 97.9% of its three-point production, 99.2% of its blocked shots, 95.8% of its assists and 93.8% of its steals. Overall, USC has eight players coming back who accounted for 94.4% of the minutes played last year.
FIRST RANDOM NOTE OF THE YEAR
USC will open the season with three consecutive home games for the first time since the 1988-89 season when the Trojans hosted their first four games. That year, USC won its first four contests against Delaware, Howard, Portland and U.S. International, but lost 22 of its remaining 28 games.
SECOND RANDOM NOTE OF THE YEAR
Tom Kelly, a longtime voice of the Trojans, was the announcer for Bradley from 1953-1961, and announced the 1954 national semifinal game that saw the Braves oust the Trojans, 74-72.
A (BRIEF) LOOK BACK AT LAST YEAR
USC opened 1999-2000 by splitting its first 10 games, but two of those losses were to powers North Carolina and Duke and another came in a heartbreaking, buzzer-beating loss to Utah State. USC righted the ship by winning its last two non-conference games and then opened the Pac-10 season tied for first place at 6-1. The opening conference stretch included a road sweep of the Washington schools, a convincing win over No. 25 UCLA to snap a 10-game losing streak to the Bruins and then sweeping Arizona State (an OT win) and No. 2 Arizona before splitting two games in Oregon. But foot injuries to forwards Sam Clancy and Jarvis Turner in the Arizona State overtime win eventually took the steam out of the hot start. After the 6-1 beginning, the Trojans dropped eight of nine, most of them close losses as the Trojans' lack of depth began to show. Included in the tight losses were a four-point defeat to California, a 10-point loss to No. 2 Stanford, a five-point loss at UCLA, a seven-point defeat (after leading for much of the game) at No. 4 Arizona and a three-point loss to Oregon. USC finished the season by sweeping, once again, the Washington schools, but it wasn't enough to earn the Trojans a postseason berth.
ALL THINGS ASSISTS
USC junior guard Brandon Granville owns both USC's record for assists in a game (15 vs. Memphis last year) and for a season (248 in 1999-2000, third most ever in the Pac-10). In less than two seasons, Granville already has 388 career assists, good for fourth place on USC's career chart. The career record is 409 by Larry Friend (1983-86). The Pac-10 record is 938 (Gary Payton, Oregon State, 1987-90). Tenth place on the Pac-10 list is 554 (Reggie Geary, Arizona, 1993-96). He had at least 10 assists 13 times as a sophomore last year.
ALL THINGS STEALS
USC junior guard Jeff Trepagnier owns both USC's record for steals in a game (10 vs. Utah State last year) and for a season (94). Trepagnier is working his way up the USC career Top 10 in steals with 172, good for third place. Derrick Dowell is second with 179 and Stais Boseman (1994-97) owns the record with 208. Brandon Granville has quietly followed Trepagnier up the list and is fourth on the career chart with 116. The Pac-10 career record for steals us 321 (Gary Payton, Oregon State, 1986-90). Tenth-place on the list is Boseman at 208.
1999-2000 PAC-10 HONORS
Forward/center Brian Scalabrine earned Pac-10 first team honors last year as a junior, the first Trojan to earn the honor since guard Stais Boseman did so in 1997. Three Trojans also earned All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors last year: guard Jeff Trepagnier guard Brandon Granville and forward David Bluthenthal. The four Trojans selected were the most USC ever had in one season.
USC AT THE SPORTS ARENA
Dating back to 1996-97, the Trojans are 37-16 (.698) in their last 53 games at the Sports Arena and USC is 95-40 (.704) at the Sports Arena since the beginning of the 1991 season, including a 16-game winning streak over a span of the 1992 and 1993 seasons and two nine-game winning streaks that spanned the 1997-98 and 1998-99 seasons and the 1998-99 and 1999-2000 seasons.
With the holiday season just around the corner, the Los Angeles Kings Wives and the USC Athletic Department are teaming up on the Kings Wives annual holiday Toy Drive presented by Pepsi. Kings Wives will be joined by USC student-athletes in collecting toys and distributing raffle tickets on Nov. 7, 9, and 11 before Kings home games at STAPLES Center. Toys will also be collected at USC men's basketball games on Nov. 18 and 21. All proceeds from the toy collection will benefit Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, Shriner's Hospital for Children, USC Women's and Children's Center, and Centinela Hospital Medical Center. Fans who donate a new unwrapped toy will be entered into a drawing to win a team signed hockey stick, a special gift courtesy of Pepsi, or an autographed piece of USC Athletics memorabilia. In December, USC student-athletes will deliver toys collected from the toy drive to USC Women's and Children's Center, while Kings players and their wives will present gifts to pediatric patients during their annual holiday hospital visits. For fans who are unable to drop off their toys at the selected games, USC Athletics will continue to collect toys at Heritage Hall until distribution on Dec. 8.
A FEW OF LAST YEAR'SMORE-INTERESTING NOTES
* Forward David Bluthenthal tied a 22-year-old USC record with 28 rebounds vs. Arizona State on Jan. 20 at the Sports Arena last season. He tied Cliff Robinson, who had 28 boards vs. Portland State on the same date in 1978. It was the most in the conference since Robinson's effort and is tied for fifth-best ever in the Pac-10. Bluthenthal's 28 rebounds is the third-most ever in a Pac-10 game (tied with Washington's Steve Hawes in 1972) and the most in a conference game since Hawes' effort. The Pac-10 record in any game is 36, set by Swede Halbrook of Oregon State (Feb. 15, 1955). For perspective, no one in the Big Ten or the ACC has had at least 28 rebounds in the last 30 years.
* USC set a Pac-10, USC and a Gill Coliseum record for three-pointers made when they connected on 20-of-29 three-point attempts at Oregon State on Jan. 29. The previous conference record was 18 by Washington State vs. Seattle on Dec. 29, 1990.
* USC had three different Pac-10 Players of the Week last year (Brian Scalabrine, David Bluthenthal and Jeff Trepagnier). It was the first time USC had three different players earn the award in one season.
* David Bluthenthal finished one rebound short of averaging a double-double in Pac-10 play.
Henry Bibby, a coach with 18 years of college and professional experience and the only player to ever play for an NCAA, NBA and CBA championship team, will begin his fifth full season in 2000-2001 as the head coach of the USC men's basketball program. With the Trojans on the rise, Bibby was rewarded with a three-year contract extension on Aug. 4, which will take him through the 2004-2005 season. In 1999-2000, Bibby directed the Trojans to a 16-14 overall finish and a 9-9 mark in the Pac-10 (sixth place), but USC fell just short of receiving a postseason berth. The Trojans looked to be headed to the NCAA Tournament after opening the Pac-10 season 6-1, but injuries to starting forward Sam Clancy and top reserve Jarvis Turner early in the conference schedule derailed the Trojans. The previous year, USC 15-13 (7-11 in the Pac-10, tied for seventh) and made a first-round appearance in the NIT. USC went 9-19 in 1997-98, but closed out the year with a stunning 91-90 overtime victory over then-No. 2 Arizona and a 117-71 rout of Arizona State. In his first full season at the helm of the Trojan program, Bibby did not waste any time in moving Troy in the right direction. The 1996-97 campaign saw the Trojans finish second in the Pacific-10 Conference and make their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1992. The previous year, the Trojans went 11-19 and finished ninth in the conference. The seven-game improvement is the third-biggest turnaround in USC history and the seven spot increase in the standings matches a school best. In addition, Bibby's 17-11 mark in 1996-97 is the best by a Trojan coach in his first full year since Forrest Twogood went 21-6 in his debut season in 1951. Bibby was named USC's head coach on March 15, 1996. Bibby joined the Trojan program in May of 1995 as an assistant coach. He was named USC's interim head coach on Feb. 7, 1996, replacing Charlie Parker. Bibby came to USC after coaching a club team in Venezuela in 1995. He was a head coach for eight seasons in the Continental Basketball Association. His teams made it into the CBA playoffs six times and posted a 223-213 regular season record, making him only the fourth CBA coach to post 200 wins.
(RS) Senior * forward/center * 6-foot-9 * 250 pounds
* Brian Scalabrine, a 2001 Playboy pre-season All-American and 2001 Wooden and Naismith Award candidate, is one of the Pac-10's top offensive threats and most versatile players who can score equally well from the inside or outside. One of five Trojan returning starters, he is the Pac-10's leading returning scorer.
* He has started all 58 games of his USC career. He enters 2001 ninth on USC's career scoring average chart at 16.2 points per game. His .5314 career shooting percentage is fourth best in school history and his 50 blocked shots are 11th best.
* Scalabrine earned 2000 The Sporting News All-American honorable mention, All-Pac-10 and NABC All-District 15 first team honors as a 2000 junior forward/center, finishing as the Pac-10's second-leading and USC's top scorer at 17.8 points per game.
* Scalabrine scored 21 points in USC's first exhibition game this year and had 12 points and 14 rebounds in the second.
* He led the Trojans in field goal percentage (.531, fifth in the conference), tied for the best three-point percentage (.403), was second in assists (2.83) and was fourth in rebounds (6.0). His 19.4 scoring average in Pac-10 games was second in the league. He scored in double figures in 26 of 30 games, scoring at least 20 points 12 times and at least 25 points six times. Scalabrine's 534 points on the season were the eighth most ever by a Trojan.
* He had a career-high 29 points and 10 rebounds against Oregon, 28 points at Arizona, 27 points at home vs. Arizona and 26 points against both Arizona State and Oregon State.
* (Arizona Coach Lute Olson on Scalabrine): '(Scalabrine) is an all-leaguer. He's the closest thing I've seen to (ex-Washington and NBA star) Detlef Schrempf since Detlef Schrempf. He can bring it on the break. He can pass it and he can shoot it. He's a pro, no question.'
(Former Oregon State Coach Eddie Payne): 'Scalabrine showed us how smart of a player he is. He took our guys to school. He is arguably the best player in the league.'
(Ken Goe of the Oregonian): 'Strong, mobile, able to play inside and out, the 6-foot-9 Scalabrine almost certainly has a professional career waiting for him when he leaves the Trojans.'
Senior * guard * 6-foot-4 * 195 pounds
* Jeff Trepagnier is set to start for his third consecutive season, is a well-rounded swingman and one of the top athletes in the nation, as evidenced by his 40-inch vertical leap and high-jumping performance for the Trojan track team. Trepagnier, USC's second-leading returning scorer and third-leading returning rebounder, looks to continue the improvements that have made him one of the country's most versatile players in 2001. * Trepagnier missed both preseason exhibition games while recovering from a hairline fracture in his left foot. He is expected to return to practice today (Nov. 14) and may play vs. Bradley on Nov. 18. * Trepagnier has started 58 of his 85 games at USC. He enters 2001 third on USC's career chart in steals (178), fourth in blocked shots (84) and tied for 15th in three-pointers (53).
* Trepagnier earned 2000 All-Pac-10 honorable mention and NABC All-District 15 second team honors as a 2000 junior guard.
* He led the Pac-10 in steals (3.2, ninth nationally) and was the only player in the league to finish in the Top 10 in five statistical categories, posting career highs in each: steals, blocked shots (1.4, fourth), scoring (15.9, sixth), rebounding (6.6, 10th) and three-point percentage (.380, 10th).
* He had a USC single-season record 94 steals (third-most ever in the Pac-10), breaking the old mark of 62 (Derrick Dowell). He set a school record with 10 steals vs. Utah State in the Maui Invitational, breaking his old mark of eight.
* Trepagnier earned his first Pac-10 Player of the Week honor the last week of the season when he averaged 24.0 points, 6.5 rebounds and 5.5 steals as USC swept the Washington schools.
* He scored a career-high 28 points on 13-of-18 shooting vs. Washington and 26 points on 11-of-15 shooting plus 10 rebounds vs. UCLA.
* He was one of only two players shorter than 6-foot-8 to be in the Pac-10's Top 10 in blocks (the other was Washington State's 6-foot-6 Tyrone Evans).
* (Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski): 'Jeff Trepagnier is as good of an athlete as we've played against and he's got courage, too.'
(Gordon Wittenmyer, formerly of the Riverside Press-Enterprise): 'Jeff Trepagnier can be spectacular the way he starts - that quick first step, that where'd-he-come-from vertical leap that dazzles fans and demoralizes opponents.'
(Stacy Clardie of The Sporting News): 'On the basketball court, his quickness and leaping translate into acrobatic moves under the hoop, stunning dunks and steals galore.'
(Trojan teammate Brian Scalabrine, on Trepagnier's athleticism): 'Jeff breaks all basketball rules.'
Junior * forward * 6-foot-7 * 240 pounds
* Sam Clancy returns as a two-year starting forward after missing 10 games last year due to a fracture in his right foot. He is one of the Pac-10's top rebounders and is rounding into one of the league's most consistent scorers from the post or outside. He is also a fine shot blocker.
* Sam Clancy has started 38 of his 47 games at USC. He enters the 2001 season seventh on USC's career blocked shot chart with 66.
* Clancy finished the exhibition season with 29 points on 13-of-16 shooting on Nov. 12. He had nine points in the opener.
* Clancy averaged 15.5 points and 6.9 rebounds as a 2000 sophomore forward, but had what was turning into a monster season derailed by a fractured foot suffered against Arizona State on Jan. 20. At the time of the injury, Clancy was averaging team highs in points (17.6, also second in the Pac-10), rebounds (7.8) and blocks (1.6).
* After missing 10 games, he returned for the Trojans' final four contests and averaged 8.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in only 22.5 minutes per game. Clancy had scored in double figures in 12 consecutive games before the injury
* He scored a career-high 24 points in the season-opener against Cal State Northridge and had 23 points against both then-No. 5 North Carolina and at Washington.
* He had five double-doubles on the season, including three in a row against UC Santa Barbara, St. Bonaventure and Hawai`i.
* (Trojan teammate David Bluthenthal): 'Teams will try to trash-talk him, but you can't really get to Sam. When I guard him in practice, I talk at him and he talks back to me, but it doesn't affect the way he plays. You can't really faze him.'
Junior * guard * 5-foot-9 * 175 pounds
* Brandon Granville returns for his third year as the starting point guard in 2001. Already one of USC's most prolific assist-makers in school history, Granville has established himself as one of the Pac-10's most effective playmakers who has become a reliable scorer as well. * Granville has started 56 of his 58 games at USC. He enters the 2001 season fourth on USC's career charts in both assists (388) and steals (116) and 11th in both three-pointers (98) and free throw percentage (.779). He needs just 22 assists to pass Larry Friend and become the Trojans' all-time leader.
* Granville scored 12 points and had eight assists in USC's first exhibition game on Nov 4, but missedthe second game with flu.
* Granville dished out more assists than any USC guard in school history (and the third most ever in the Pac-10) as a 2000 sophomore when he had 248 en route to 2000 All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors. He led the Pac-10 in assists (8.3, fourth nationally), was fourth in steals (2.1) and 10th in free throw percentage (.786). Granville set a USC single-game record with 15 assists against Memphis in the Maui Invitational (tied for sixth-best in Pac-10 history).
* He finished with a team-best nine double-doubles and 13 double-digit assist efforts.
* He also made a team-best 57 three-pointers, tying him for ninth on USC's single-season chart (Harold Miner, 1992).
* His 62 steals tied him for the second-most ever in a season at USC.
* Granville, who played every minute of six games, including two 45-minute contests, averaged 38.1 minutes per game in the Pac-10. It was the most by a Trojan in the conference since Wayne Carlander averaged 40.0 in 1985.
* He scored at least 20 points seven times, including a career-high 24 points (including five three-pointers) at San Diego State and two 22-point performances against Arizona State.
Junior * forward * 6-foot-7 * 220 pounds
* David Bluthenthal returns as a starting small forward and one of the top all-around performers in the Pac-10 in 2001. Among the best rebounders in the league who also proved he could score on a regular basis, Bluthenthal brings a combination of size, strength and scoring potential to the Trojans' frontcourt.
* Bluthenthal blossomed as a 1999-2000 sophomore, starting 29 of 30 games at small forward en routeto 2000 All-Pac-10 honorable mention honors. He averaged a USC-best 8.3 rebounds per game (third in the Pac-10 and the best USC mark since 1995) and his 250 rebounds were the 14th-most ever by a Trojan.
* Bluthenthal missed both exhibition games while recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery. He has returned to practice, though, and is expected to play in USC's opener on Saturday.
* He was the team's fourth-leading scorer, averaging 13.9 points per game, and he also finished as the squad's top free throw shooter, canning 74-of-88 foul shots (.841, fifth best in the Pac-10 and fifth best in USC history). In fact, he finished the season making 33 free throws in a row over the last seven games, four short of tying John Block's school record for consecutive makes (37).
* Bluthenthal was the Pac-10's top rebounder in conference games, finishing with a 9.9 clip, the best ever by a Trojan in the Pac-10. He was also the Trojans' third-leading scorer in conference games at 15.3, finishing one rebound short of averaging a double-double in Pac-10 games. In addition, he led the Pac-10 in free throw percentage in conference games at .890 (65-of-73), becoming the first Pac-10 player ever to lead the league in both free throw percentage and rebounds in Pac-10 games.
* Bluthenthal's season was highlighted by a monster performance against Arizona State at the Sports Arena when he tied a USC record (set by Cliff Robinson) with 28 rebounds (the third highest total ever in the Pac-10) to go with 18 points. He followed that up with a career-high 26 points and seven rebounds against Arizona to earn his first Pac-10 Player of the Week honor.
* What a fan told his dad, Ralph, following Bluthenthal's Dennis Rodman-esque 28 rebounds vs. Arizona State last year: 'He said he was expecting to see a big guy with green hair and they saw me instead.'
Senior * forward * 6-foot-8 * 240 pounds
* Jarvis Turner, a 6-foot-8, 240-pound senior forward, is back for a fifth season after the NCAA granted him a medical hardship for the 2000-2001 season. Turner, who missed most of last season with foot injuries, will provide valuable experience off the bench at either forward spot.
* Turner played in only seven of USC's 30 games during his 2000 senior season because of foot injuries. He missed nine games early in the season (not continuously) with a stress fracture in his left foot which he originally suffered in the preseason. He returned at the start of the Pac-10 season, but played in only four games before suffering a fracture in his left ankle against Arizona State on Jan. 20 which kept him out for the rest of the year. Overall, Turner averaged 1.7 points and 1.6 rebounds in 14.1 minutes per game. He had a season-high five points in 14 minutes at Washington State and had a season-high five rebounds in a season-high 24 minutes in the Trojans' opener against Cal State Northridge.
* Turner scored 18 points in USC's first exhibition game this year and had nine in the second.
* Turner, in an injury-riddled USC career, has scored 482 points, starting 23 times in 74 games played. He has averaged 6.5 points per game and 3.7 rebounds (272 overall), playing 1,210 minutes.
Sophomore * center * 6-foot-11 * 250 pounds
* Kostas Charissis, a native of Greece, is a 2001 sophomore who will be a valuable reserve in the Trojans' frontcourt. His full first name is Konstantinos.
* Charissis played in 26 of 30 games as a 2000 freshman center and started 13 times after injuries depleted USC's frontcourt, including the last 10 games in a row.
* Charissis had 12 points in USC's final exhibition game and had seven rebounds in the first.
* He averaged 1.5 points and 2.1 rebounds in 9.8 minutes per game overall and had seven blocks.
* He had by far his most productive game of the season at No. 4 Arizona, posting career highs in points (nine), rebounds (eight), minutes (33), free throws made and attempted (3 of 4) and assists (four).
* In the last eight games of the season, Charissis' averages rose to 2.9 points and 4.0 rebounds.
Sophomore * guard * 6-foot-4 * 200 pounds
* Nate Hair should continue to provide a perimeter scoring threat off the bench in 2001. An athletic player, Hair can also create off the dribble.
* Hair played in 27 of 30 games, starting three times, as a 2000 freshman guard. In conference games, Hair averaged 5.2 points and 2.0 rebounds in 19.5 minutes per game and his .453 three-point percentage (24-of-53) was best on the team and fifth best in the Pac-10.
* Hair strained a tendon in his knee in the preseason and missed both exhibition games. He's expected to return to practice this week.
* He finished the season as the top reserve off the bench and averaged 4.2 points in 16.7 minutes per game. He made .403 of his three-pointers (29-of-72), tying him with Brian Scalabrine for the best accuracy on the team. It was also good enough for eighth best in the Pac-10.
* He made his first career start at Oregon State and posted season highs in points (14), three-pointers (four), assists (seven), steals (three) and minutes (39).
* Hair tied his career-high with four three-pointers (accounting for all 12 points) at then-No. 1 Stanford and he had 13 points in 35 minutes at Oregon off the bench, hitting 3-of-4 three-point attempts.
(RS) Senior * guard * 6-foot-5 * 190 pounds
* Tyler Murphy, a 6-foot-5, 190-pound shooting guard, is a 2001 senior who transferred to USC from Vermont last season as a walk-on. He earned a scholarship both last year and this year and gives the Trojans another quality shooter off the bench.
* Murphy spent the 1999-2000 season as a redshirt while practicing with the Trojans.
* Murphy started in both exhibition games in the preseason, scoring a combined 13 points.
* Murphy averaged 6.6 points and 2.7 rebounds in 20.3 minutes per game as a junior at Vermont in 1998-99, starting four of 27 games. He made 34-of-97 three-point attempts (35.1%) and made 32-of-43 free throw attempts (74.4%). He scored a career-high 17 points against Yale and had 15 points against Towson.
(RS) Freshman * center * 7-foot-3 * 320 pounds
* Luke Minor, a 7-foot-3, 320-pound center, is a 2001 redshirt freshman who will look to earn minutes as a reserve. The tallest player ever at USC, Minor's size gives the Trojans a load of untapped potential in the post.
* Minor redshirted as a 2000 freshman center. He had surgery during the season to correct hammer toes, but resumed practice before the end of the year.
Freshman * guard * 6-foot-4 * 225 pounds
* Desmon Farmer, a 6-foot-4, 225-pound shooting guard, is a 2001 freshman who comes to the Trojans as one of the most highly rated prep shooting guards in the country. One of three first-year Trojans on the squad, he should get a chance to make major contributions off the bench at both guard spots or even at small forward.
* Farmer scored a game-high 26 points in USC's first exhibition game and had 15 points in the second.
* Farmer prepped at Northwestern High in Flint, Mich. As a senior in 2000, he averaged 23 points per game in leading Northwestern to a 23-2 mark and a trip to the state regional playoffs. He earned Detroit News Michigan All-State second team honors and earned All-City first team honors. He injured his left knee in June of 1999 in an AAU game, but still played as a senior.
(RS) Sophomore * guard * 6-foot-1 * 195 pounds
* Robert Hutchinson, a 6-foot-1, 195-pound point guard, is a JUCO transfer who will serve as the back-up point guard as a 2001 sophomore. He is one of three first-year Trojans on the squad.
* Hutchinson had 12 points and five assists in USC's final exhibition game.
* Hutchinson played at Okaloosa-Walton College in Niceville, Fla., as a redshirt freshman in 2000. He was a 2000 All-Panhandle Conference and Region 8 state tournament first team selection. He led his team to a 26-5 overall mark, a first-place finish in the Panhandle Conference (9-3) and an appearance in the Region 8 state finals.
* On a team with six players scoring in double figures, Hutchinson averaged 13.5 points, 7.2 assists and 2.6 rebounds per game. He shot 44.0% from three-point range and 75.0% from the foul line.
Junior * guard * 6-foot-3 * 205 pounds
* Gennaro Busterna, a 6-foot-3, 205-pound shooting guard, is a JUCO transfer who will add potent perimeter shooting off the bench as a 2001 junior. He is one of three first-year Trojans on the squad.
* Busterna spent the last two seasons at McCook (Neb.) College. As a sophomore, Busterna was the 2000 Nebraska Junior College and Nebraska Community College Athletic Conference Player of the Year and earned 2000 All-Region 9 first team honors while leading McCook to a 25-6 record.
* He averaged 20.8 points and 6.0 rebounds per game last year. He shot .505 from the field (202-of-436), .491 from three-point range (113-of-230) and .744 from the foul line (64-of-86). He also had 55 assists.
* Coach Henry Bibby has a stable of able walk-ons from which to choose from in any situation.
* Senior forward Abdullah Elmagbari, from Greeley, Col., played in 10 games last year and saw meaningful minutes in USC's win over No. 2 Arizona and against Stanford in both games.
* Junior Jamie Hooper, a native of San Diego who redshirted with the Trojans last year after transferring from Montana State, is a talented point guard who could see time in the backcourt.
* Junior forward Rob Eres, from Sacramento, Calif., is back for this third year. He saw action twice last year.
* There are two freshman walk-ons as well on this year's squad. They are Anthony Saadey from Canfield, Ohio, and Eze Burts, from Los Angeles.