No. 22 Ducks Prepare for Sunday Matinee at USC
Jan. 31, 2003
WHAT'S ON TAP . . . Oregon looks for a weekend sweep in Los Angeles when the Ducks and USC meet in a rare Sunday contest at noon on Feb. 2 at the L.A. Sports Arena. The game will be televised nationally by Fox Sports Net. Last season, the Ducks clinched at least a share of their first conferene title in 57 years by defeating USC at the Sports Arena on a Thursday, before winning the league outright for the first time in 63 years by beating UCLA on the weekend.
DUCKS TOP LAST SEASON'S MARK . . . By defeating UCLA Thursday night, Oregon has improved on last season's record through 19 games. Last year's Pac-10 champions were 14-5 after losing at Washington in game No. 19. The UCLA win upped the 2002-03 team's record to 15-4. That's actually Oregon's best record through 19 games since the 1974-75 squad (Ernie Kent's sophomore year) was 15-4 after 19 game. A win Saturday will give Oregon its best 20-game mark (16-4) since the 1938-39 NCAA Champions picked up 16 wins in their first 20 games.
KENT REACHES 100 AT UO, GOES FOR 200 CAREER . . . By defeating Pepperdine on Dec. 14, Ernie Kent became the sixth coach in Oregon history to reach 100 coaching victories. In six years at Oregon, Kent has a 109-62 record and is 199-142 overall in 12 years. Among Oregon coaches, only William Reinhart (125 games) and Basketball Hall of Famer Howard Hobson (134 games) reached 100 wins faster than Kent (158 games). His next win will be his 200th career victory.
JACKSON UPDATE . . . It was doubtful whether junior wing Luke Jackson, who suffered a severe laceration on his right ring finger (palm side) in a collision with Doug Wrenn during the first half of Oregon's Jan. 23 win over Washington, was going to be available for Thursday's UCLA game. But inspite of the cut, which required 13 stitches, Jackson came off the bench to lead the Ducks to a 96-91 overtime win against the Bruins by scoring 27 points -- or as UO athletic trainer Clay Jamieson pointed out, 'about two points a stitch.' Jackson, Oregon's No. 2 scorer (16.9 ppg), top rebounder (6.3) and the only player ranked among the Pac-10's top 10 in points, rebounds, assists and steals per game, did not play last Saturday against Washington State. He had appeared in all 80 previous games during his Oregon career, and had started 52 straight dating back to the beginning of last season. It was actually the first game Jackson missed since his sophomore year at Creswell High School. The finger is still sore, and he is questionable for the USC game.
TENTATIVE OREGON STARTERS
F 3 Robert Johnson 6-8 250 Sr. 8.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, .641 FG Pct.F 35 Andre Joseph 6-3 185 Jr. 9.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 2.0 apgC 40 Brian Helquist 6-9 260 Sr. 3.7 ppg, 3.2 rpg, .563 FG Pct.G 1 James Davis 5-10 175 Jr. 10.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 55 3 FGG 13 Luke Ridnour 6-2 175 Jr. 19.0 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 6.7 apg