Men's Basketball Hosts Arizona State Saturday

Dec. 21, 2001

Corvallis, Ore. -

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THIS WEEK: Oregon State (5-4, 0-1 Pac-10) concludes this week by hosting the Arizona State (5-3, 0-1) Sun Devils Sat., Dec. 22 at 2:08 p.m. in a game televised nationally by Fox Sports Net.

EARLY START: The renewal of the Pacific-10 Conference postseason tournament has forced league games to begin before Jan. 1 for the first time since the 1990 season -- the last time the conference sponsored a league tournament.

GOOD FOR A HALF: Over the last two games Oregon State has been impressive for 20 minutes from the field, but not the entire game. Here is a closer look:

			1st half	2nd halfDec. 20 vs. Arizona	.400 (12-30)	.538 (14-26)Dec. 15 at Cal Poly	.545 (12-22)	.429 (12-28)

WHO'S THE FOUL ON? Oregon State has been whistled for a staggering 50 personal fouls over the last two games, compared to 35 for the opponents. The last two games combined, OSU's opponents have hit 47 of 63 free throw attempts, compared to 29 of 39 for the Beavers. Arizona was in the bonus situation with 15:07 remaining in the second half Thursday and in the double bonus at 11:22. Cal Poly (Dec. 15) was in the bonus at 13:28 of the second half and in the double bonus at 11:42.

FG PERCENTAGE DEFENSE IMPROVES: Oregon State has allowed its last three opponents to shoot a combined .397 (62-156) from the field. For the season, OSU's opponents are shooting a paltry .411.

STARTERS ON TARGET: Oregon State's typical five starters have opened the year with a combined shooting percentage of .529 (153-289) from the field. Junior guard Jimmie Haywood is the only starter under .500, at .474. The bench has not had similar success, shooting .336 (49-146).

CLOSING IN ON 1,500: Oregon State enters Saturday's game with 1,497 NCAA recognized victories, the 10th-highest figure in Division I basketball. Oregon State has the most victories of any school in the Pac-10 Conference.

NOTICEABLE IMPROVEMENT INSIDE: Oregon State enters game 10 of the season with 25 percent of its field goals coming from three-point range, compared to 34 percent last year, and 29 percent in 2000.

REBOUNDING MARGIN IS NOT THE WHOLE STORY, BUT IT'S CLOSE: Oregon State has a +0.8 rebounding margin average in its five victories, but a minus 8.2 average in its four losses. In the Beavers' loss to Cal Poly it was outboarded 20-8 on the offensive glass and in the loss to St. John's it was 18-5.

HELPING HANDS: Oregon State entered the week averaging an assist for every made field goal 63 percent of the time, tied for first in the Pac-10 with Oregon. California averages 62 percent and Stanford 60.

JUST PLAIN '2': Senior guard Brandon Payton will wear jersey number '2' for the remainder of the season. Payton wore '02' the first six games, but the number has been declared ineligible by the NCAA (Sect. 5, Art. 12).

DOUBLE-DOUBLE CLUB: Junior forward Philip Ricci has already recorded a trio of double-doubles this season. He is the first Beaver to have more than two in one season since Mustapha Hoff achieved seven in 1995.

Philip Ricci, 15 pts, 10 reb. vs. TexasPhilip Ricci, 17 points, 11 reb. vs. San DiegoPhilip Ricci, 23 pts, 10 reb at Cal Poly

A FULL BENCH: Head coach Ritchie McKay has many options this year when he turns to his bench, unlike last season. He has 14 'active' players for Saturday's game. McKay didn't have a game where he had more than nine available players in 2000-2001, and at times during the year had only seven.

STARTING STREAKS: OSU players Adam Masten and Brian Jackson have started 39 consecutive games each entering this Saturday's game. For Jackson, he has started 94 percent (59 of 63) of his career college games.

OSU vs. ASU: Oregon State has a 34-22 edge, but ASU has won five straight. The Sun Devils won 73-58 in Gill Coliseum last season, as OSU shot just .380 from the field. The victory was ASU's first of the conference season, after losing its first seven.

HOOPS RECRUITS ADDED: Ritchie McKay and his staff signed three athletes to national letters of intent during the early signing period. Joining the program for the 2002-2003 season are Kerbrell Brown (6-7, F) from Dodge City Community College in Kansas, Kevin Field (6-10, C) from Wilson High School in Tacoma, Wash., and Justin Holt (6-6, F) from Lincoln High School in Tacoma. The program has one remaining scholarship to offer during the late signing period April 10-May 15. A quick glance at the projected roster for next year (as of Nov. 15) includes four seniors, two juniors, seven sophomores, and two freshmen.

HEAD COACH RITCHIE McKAY: Ritchie McKay is in his second year at Oregon State, and is in his sixth overall as a head coach. McKay's record stands at 76-76, which includes an injury riddled 2001 season at OSU (10-20) and the first year of college basketball in 15 years at Portland State University (9-17). McKay spent two years at PSU and finished with a record of 24-29, then led Colorado State University for two of the program's most successful years ever, leaving with a mark of 37-23.

TOP EIGHT QUALIFY: For the first time since the 1989-90 season, the Pacific-10 Conference will hold a postseason tournament. The top eight teams from regular season play will qualify for the March 7-9 event at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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