Men's Basketball Hosts Civil War

Jan. 15, 2002

Corvallis, Ore. -

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THE NEXT GAME: Oregon State (8-8, 1-5 Pac-10) hosts the No. 22 (ESPN/USA Today)/No. 23 (AP) Oregon Ducks (12-4, 5-1) Sat., Jan. 19 at Ralph Miller Court in Gill Coliseum. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:07 p.m. The game is presented by the Northwest Dodge Dealers.

MAKING STRIDES: Oregon State has led in every game this season, including in the second half of 15 of the 16 contests. The last time OSU led in each of its first 17 contests was the 1990 season. Here is a closer look at the games OSU has lost and the last time it had the lead in the game.

Jan. 12 vs. California -- 5:29 (51-50)Jan. 10 vs. Stanford -- 11:16 (38-37)Jan. 6 at Arizona -- 7:41 (72-71)Jan. 4 at Arizona State* -- did not lead in second half*were within two twice midway through the half.Dec. 20 vs. Arizona -- 2:09 (73-72)Dec. 15 at Cal Poly -- 12:17 (50-49)Nov. 23 vs. St. John's -- 3:05 (58-57)Nov. 22 vs. Texas -- 11:30  (47-46)

HEAD COACH RITCHIE McKAY ON THE TEAM: 'Our program is definitely heading in the right direction, I'm encouraged how competitive we have been this season. We are not at the head of the class in this league as of yet, but I fully expect that to happen in the near future. This team is committed to rebuilding this program with a great deal of integrity and pride.'

McKAY ON OREGON: 'Oregon is playing as well as any team in the Pac-10. Coach (Ernie) Kent and his staff have done a great job in instilling confidence in the team and building a solid program. I'm looking forward to playing a team the quality of Oregon. This is an important conference game, as they all are, but becomes even more special with the fact of this being the Civil War.'

SHOOTING PERCENTAGE AMONG LEADERS: Oregon State enters this week third in the Pac-10 for field goal percentage at .474, after its worst back-to-back performances of the season -- shooting .426 vs. Stanford and .341 vs. California. The program has not finished in the top three of the conference for field goal percentage since the 1992 season (3rd/.486).

TOUGH STRETCH: Oregon State is in the midst of one of it's toughest stretches of the season as it plays its third ranked team in four games when No. 22 Oregon comes to Corvallis. UCLA, Washington, and Washington State are also currently experiencing the same schedule vs. nationally ranked clubs. The Beavers are attempting to snap a 10-game losing streak to teams ranked in the top-25 at the date of the game.

INSIDE SCORING IMPROVING: Oregon State enters the game with 26 percent of its field goals coming from three-point range, compared to 34 percent last year, and 29 percent in 2000.

1,500 MILESTONE: Oregon State earned its 1,500 NCAA recognized men's basketball victory in the New Year's Eve Day triumph over Lehigh. UCLA has 1,501 victories entering the week, followed by OSU (1,500), The rest of the conference stands at Washington (1,430), Arizona (1,397), Washington State (1,343), USC (1,327), Oregon (1,278), California (1,258), Stanford (1,180), and Arizona State (1,052).

COSTLY TURNOVERS: Oregon State has committed a combined 70 turnovers in its last five losses compared to 46 for its opponents.

TURNOVERS, OFFENSIVE REBOUNDS LEAD TO OPPORTUNITIES: Oregon State has 182 field goal attempts over the last four games, compared to 240 for its opponents. The previously stated turnover figure is a large part of the reason in the discrepancy, but the team has also allowed 51 offensive rebounds (OSU has 18) in the same span.

FREE THROW PERCENTAGE INCREASES UNDER McKAY: Oregon State enters the week third in the Pac-10 Conference for free throw percentage at .726. The team shot .727 last year in Ritchie McKay's first year, marking the highest percentage since 1992 (.729). Oregon State has shot .720-plus from the line for the season only 10 times since 1954.

LONG RANGE ACCURACY: Oregon State is fourth in the Pac-10 for three-point field goal percentage entering this week at .363. If that percentage holds through the year it would be the highest since the 1989 season (.380).

RETURN TO SENDER: Oregon State has rejected a modest 46 shots (7th in Pac-10) this season, but the number equals all of last season's blocked shots total.

DEFENSIVE DATA: Oregon State enters this week third in the Pac-10 for scoring defense allowing 64.9 points per game, just .6 points behind second place USC. The Beavers are also fourth for field goal percentage defense at .408, Stanford is third at .406.

OSU VS. OREGON: Oregon State has a 176-138 advantage, but Oregon has won five straight and 15 of the last 16. The two teams concluded last season at Gill Coliseum with the Ducks posting a 69-60 victory. UO's Bryan Bracey led all scorers with 19 points, while Jason Heide led OSU with 13. OSU tied a school record with 30 three-point field goal attempts in the contest, converting seven. Oregon won last season's game in Eugene 84-66, with Bracey again leading the way with 28 points.

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 in honor of his brother Gary Payton (#20), but the number has been declared ineligible by the NCAA (Sect. 5, Art. 12).

DOUBLE-DOUBLE CLUB: Junior forward Philip Ricci has recorded four 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 PolyPhilip Ricci, 24 pts, 11 reb vs. IPFW

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 most games. 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 STREAK: OSU senior Adam Masten enters Saturday's game with 46 consecutive starts. Brian Jackson has a streak of 45 starts in games that he has played -- he missed the Jan. 4 game at Arizona State (concussion). For Jackson, he has started 94 percent (65 of 69) of his career college appearances.

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 79-80, 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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