#14 UW Begins Three-Game Homestand
Jan. 11, 2005
THURSDAY, JANUARY 13 --
#14 Washington vs. Oregon; 7:00 p.m. PST
Bank of America Arena (10,000); Seattle, Wash. - No TV
Husky Sports Radio Network / KJR (AM 950) in Puget Sound Area
SATURDAY, JANUARY 15 --
#14 Washington vs. Oregon State; 7:00 p.m. PST
Bank of America Arena (10,000); Seattle, Wash. - FSN Northwest TV
Husky Sports Radio Network / KJR (AM 950) in Puget Sound Area
A clash of upper-division Pac-10 teams and Northwest rivals is on the docket this week for the 14th-ranked Washington Huskies (13-2, 3-1) who are still off to their best start in 23 years despite losing at UCLA in their last outing. Six conference teams have only one loss in Pac-10 play and three of them compete this week in Seattle. The Huskies host Oregon (10-2, 2-1) on Thursday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m. in Bank of America Arena. UW and the Ducks split the last six regular-season series. On Saturday, Jan. 15, Washington entertains Oregon State (10-4, 2-1) at 7 p.m. in a game that we be televised locally on FSN Northwest. The Beavers were victorious in four of their last five visits to Seattle. The 13-2 record marks the Huskies' best season start since 1982. Washington drew a split last week in Los Angeles, defeating USC 84-59 before having its nine-game winning streak halted by a 95-86 loss at UCLA.
Volunteers for the organization CARE (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere, Inc) will be at both UW men's basketball games this week collecting donations from fans wishing to support their relief efforts from the recent Asia earthquake and tsunami disaster. Following the devastating tsunami caused by the undersea earthquake in South Asia, CARE is mounting a comprehensive, multi-country emergency response that includes food, water purification tablets, shelter materials and basic medical supplies. Contributions will help rush this lifesaving aid to India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Thailand. CARE has been endorsed by the University of Washington on numerous occasions as a reliable organization.
Thursday's UW-Oregon game airs on the Husky Radio Network. The game will be broadcast on flagship station KJR (AM 950) throughout the Puget Sound area. Bob Rondeau calls the action with color commentary from Jason Hamilton.
Exactly a year ago, Washington was 0-4 in Pac-10 play, the first four of five consecutive conference defeats that left UW in last place on Jan. 16. The Huskies salvaged the season, winning 14 of their next 16 games to place second and earn an NCAA berth.
The Huskies have their best 15-game record since the 1981-82 squad had a similar 13-2 mark. The last UW team with a better record was the 1975-76 unit that was 14-1. Neither of those previous fast starting UW teams encountered the difficult schedule the current unit was confronted with. This year's Huskies were victorious in their opening four games for the first time since the start of the 1998-99 campaign, capped by a 79-76 victory over No. 19 Alabama (Nov. 27) in the championship game of the Great Alaska Shootout. The Huskies, who also defeated Utah and Oklahoma in Anchorage, were declared the national Team of the Week on Nov. 29 by ESPN.com.
UW has gone a calendar year without losing at home, winning its last 15 in Seattle. The last home loss was Jan. 10, 2004 vs. UCLA.
The Huskies rank No. 2 nationally in points per game with an average of 89.0. Their per-game average of 20.0 assists is the fourth-highest figure among NCAA Division I teams.
Seven different players have been the game-high scorer this year for UW, which has six players averaging double-figure points.
Senior point guard Will Conroy has 98 assists. He needs two more to become the first player in Washington history to register three 100-assist seasons. Conroy distributed 142 assists in 2004 and 108 in 2003. His current assist average of 7.0 per game leads the Pac-10 and ranks No. 9 nationally. As a team, the Huskies are averaging 20.0 assists per game, their best mark since the 1976 squad averaged 22.6 en route to a school-record total of 632.
Washington's offense scored 100 points three times this season, including an unprecedented combined total of 224 in back-to-back games against Sacred Heart (Dec. 22) and Houston (Dec. 24). UW ranks second nationally, scoring at an 89.0-point clip. North Carolina opened the week leading the NCAA with 93.9 points per game.
Washington was at full strength the last three games with the return of senior center Hakeem Rollins who missed the previous three outings. He underwent arthroscopic surgery Dec. 14 to clean up the area around his right knee. Junior guard Brandon Roy is not 100 percent, but he has participated in five of the last seven games since returning Dec. 19 against North Carolina State. Roy suffered a meniscus tear in his right knee on Nov. 26 and was sidelined for five consecutive games after undergoing surgery Nov. 30. He is averaging 9.7 points and 18.3 minutes during Pac-10 play.
The Oregon Series
> Washington has a 174-99 lead in the all-time series that began in 1904. The Ducks won four of the last six meetings.
> The Northwest rivals split the season series in 2004 for the sixth straight year. Oregon won the first meeting 84-74 in Eugene and UW won the rematch 83-74 in Seattle.
> The Huskies have a 103-33 series lead against Oregon over games played in Seattle, including victories in the Ducks' last three visits to Bank of America Arena.
> Eighth-year Oregon Coach Ernie Kent has a 7-8 coaching record against UW.
> Third-year Husky coach Lorenzo Romar has a 2-2 record against Oregon.
The Last Meeting
UW 83, Oregon 74 (Feb. 12, 2004/Seattle)
Bobby Jones scored eight of his 18 points during a two-minute stretch of the second half as Washington reeled off 15 unanswered points to rally for an 83-74 victory over Oregon at Bank of America Arena. The Ducks (11-7, 6-5) led 35-29 at halftime and, after UW evened the score at 45-45, tallied 13 straight points. Washington (11-9, 6-6) trailed 65-52 before Jones started the 15-point run with a 3-pointer with 9:11 remaining. He capped the run with a layin at 7:17 that put UW ahead 67-65. The surge was aided by an intentional foul on UO's Jay Anderson who shoved Jones after a UW free throw. Jones converted one free throw and UW retained the ball and scored. The Huskies outscored Oregon 31-9 over the final 9:11, capped by a game-ending dunk by Nate Robinson that drew the ire of the Ducks who had already conceded the defeat. Robinson led all scorers with 20 points while Brandon Roy added 18. UW's Mike Jensen posted a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Andre Joseph paced the Ducks with 19 points. Ian Crosswhite and Mitch Platt each had 15 points for UO which got a season-low 11 points from Luke Jackson who drew two early fouls and played only three minutes in the first half. UW parlayed 26 Oregon turnovers into 29 points.
Six players are averaging double-figure points for Washington. An unprecedented eight Huskies tallied double-figure points in the win over Sacred Heart (Dec. 22). UW boasted a balanced offense last season with five players averaging double-figure points. All five return this season. Previously, the last time five Huskies had finished a season in double figures was the 1975 campaign. Seven different players have led UW in scoring during a game this season and five turned in a 20-point performance.
UW features a bevy of sharpshooters who combine to average 6.9 treys per game. That is an increase from last season's squad that accumulated a school-record 201 treys at a 6.5-per-game clip. Seven Huskies have had multiple 3-point games this season, including Nate Robinson and Tre Simmons who each posted a five-trey performance. UW is shooting 50.4 percent from the field and 43.8 percent on 3-pointers.
Home Sweet Home
The Huskies play all of their home games in Bank of America Arena at Edmundson Pavilion. The pavilion underwent a 19-month renovation from March of 1999 to November of 2000. The interior was completely redesigned while the building's exterior went unchanged. Despite an increased seating capacity from 7,900 to approximately 10,000, the arena features a more intimate, basketball-only configuration. The Huskies have won 784 games in the Pavilion since it opened on Dec. 27, 1927, more victories than any other school in its current arena. They registered an 11-3 home record last season. Washington is 8-0 at home this season. They Huskies' current streak of 15-game home winning streak is the 10th longest in school history. The most recent longer winning stretch was an 18-game streak from Mar. 12, 1983 to Jan. 3, 1985.
At least 19 Washington men's basketball games will be televised live this season. The next broadcast is Jan. 15 against Oregon State on FSN Northwest at 7 p.m.
Washington reached the 100-point plateau in three games. The 114-point outburst against Sacred Heart (Dec. 22) tied for the fourth-highest total in school history and was the most points scored by a UW team since 1991. That was followed by a 110-point performance against Houston (Dec. 24), giving UW a school-record for points in consecutive games with 224. Washington netted 100 points at Loyola Marymount (Dec. 12). The Huskies have reached the 100-point mark six times during Coach Lorenzo Romar's three seasons. Romar's six 100-point outings are more than UW accumulated in the previous 26 seasons combined. Only Marv Harshman, who team's posted 14 such efforts from 1972-85, coached more 100-point games for the Huskies than Romar. UW's 100-point NCAA Tournament outburst against UAB (Mar. 19, 2004) was its highest scoring total in a postseason game. The Huskies reached the 100-point plateau three times last season. The 103-99 overtime decision at Oregon State (Jan. 17, 2004) matched the highest total ever for UW in an enemy arena. The last time a Husky team had more than three 100-point games in a season was 1975 when they did it four times.
Washington ranks No. 2 in the nation with an 89.0-point scoring average. The Huskies averaged 82.0 points per game last season, their highest scoring output since the 1972 squad finished with a school record 84.8-point average. UW finished the 2004 season ranked second among Pac-10 teams and No. 6 among NCAA Division I teams in team scoring average. The Huskies reached the 90-point plateau 11 times last season, a figure they reached only once in 2003. That was the most 90-point performances for a Washington team since the 1972 squad registered 12.
Senior point guard Will Conroy ranks ninth nationally and No. 1 among Pac-10 playmakers with an average of 7.0 assists per game. Conroy has distributed 394 career assists, including a career-high 13 twice this season. He had 13 assists against Loyola Marymount (Dec. 12) and Sacred Heart (Dec. 22). That tied for the fourth-best single-game performance in school history. Rafael Stone established the UW record of 16 assists in 1970. Conroy currently ranks No. 2 among all-time Husky playmakers and needs 72 more assists to tie Chester Dorsey's (1974-77) school record of 466. Conroy is the sixth Husky to post back-to-back 100-assist seasons. He registered 142 assists in 2004 and 108 in 2003. Conroy ranked fifth among Pac-10 playmakers with 4.58 assists per game in 2004.
UW's Last Game
UCLA 95, #12 UW 86, (Jan. 8, 2005/Los Angeles)
Dijon Thompson and Brian Morrison each scored 19 second-half points, helping UCLA rally from a 21-point first-half deficit to beat 12th-ranked Washington 95-86 at Pauley Pavilion. The Huskies (13-2, 3-1) burst out to leads of 30-9 and 36-15 before UCLA (9-3, 3-1) drew within 52-42 by halftime. UW led 65-51 with 14:25 remaining before the Bruins staged a 21-7 run to tie the score 72-72 with 8:41 left to play. UCLA took the lead for good on a jumper by Morrison with 2:31 remaining that ignited a 10-1 game-closing run. Thompson finished with 29 points and Morrison tallied all of his points after halftime. Nate Robinson scored 21 points to pace the Huskies who also got 19 from Tre Simmons. UW shot 68 percent (21-31) in the first half and 54 percent for the game. UCLA shot 66 percent in the second half (19-29) and 52 percent for the game (33-63).
Husky fans hoping to catch the Washington men's basketball team in person this year can still purchase tickets for home games. Fans can order tickets online at Husky Basketball Tickets or purchase in person through the Husky Ticket Office, or order by phone at 206-543-2200. For all remaining home games, a limited number of tickets, currently on hold for departmental use, will be released the Monday prior to each home game. Inventory will be available on gohuskies.com as soon as it is released for sale to the public. The Husky Ticket Office is open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Game day sales windows open 90 minutes prior to tipoff.
Getting Up Early
The Huskies are jumping on opponents early, outscoring them by a combined 655-492 tally in the first half. Their average halftime score is 44-33. In the second half of games, Washington is outscoring foes by a 680-608 count. The Huskies stifled opposing offenses early in several of their recent games. They held USC scoreless for the opening 5:30, Stanford for 1:59, California for 3:02 and Houston for 6:53. UW trailed just twice at halftime, by one point at Gonzaga and one point against N.C. State.
Coming off an appearance in the 2004 NCAA Tournament, Washington was ranked in the preseason polls for the first time in six years, opening at No. 22 in the Associated Press poll and No. 24 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll. The Huskies fell two spots to No. 14 in this week's AP rankings and remained No. 14 in the ESPN poll. UW was ranked 12th on Dec. 20, the highest UW had been ranked in the AP poll since the last week of December in 1984 when they were 11th. This year marked the Huskies' first mention in the preseason rankings since November of 1998 when they were coming off a berth in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. This was only the second time UW appeared in the preseason national rankings since 1985. The Huskies opened the 1998-99 campaign ranked No. 14 in both the coaches' and Associated Press polls. They remained ranked for four weeks before dropping out of the polls after being ranked No. 22 on Dec. 8, 1998. That was UW's last appearance in the polls until now. That four-week run also marked UW's only national ranking since Jan. 5, 1985. Four opponents on the UW schedule are currently ranked in the Associated Press poll; No. 16 Gonzaga, No. 17 Arizona, No. 23Alabama and No. 25 Oklahoma.
Romar on the Rankings
'I hear coaches ranked No. 1 say that what counts is where you are ranked at the end of the season. I agree with that part, but a lot of times coaches that say that are ranked every year,' Washington coach Lorenzo Romar explains. 'We have not been ranked since we've been here, so that would be a compliment to our program at this point. It shows that things are moving in the right direction.'
Nate the Great
High-flying Nate Robinson leads Washington with a 17.3-point scoring average that ranks fifth among Pac-10 players. Robinson ranks No. 2 among Pac-10 players with 5.3 assists per game and leads UW with 30 steals. He distributed a career-high eight assists in a win over Oklahoma (Nov. 26) and matched that figure at Gonzaga (Dec. 1). Robinson has posted seven 20-point games after reaching the 20-point plateau five times all of last season. He was named the Nov. 29 Pac-10 Player of the Week after being voted the Most Outstanding Player of the Great Alaska Shootout where he led all UW scorers against Utah (29) and Oklahoma (19). Robinson garnered first-team All-Pac-10 accolades in 2004. He should be in line for even more honors in 2005. Robinson is a Wooden Award nominee and received All-America acclaim in several preseason publications. He led UW and ranked 13th among Pac-10 players in 2004 with 13.2 points per game. Robinson was third among the conference leaders in steals (53) and free throw accuracy (85.3%). He amassed a career-high 31 points on 11-of-15 shooting and added five rebounds and five steals during UW's 96-83 home win over No. 9 Arizona on Jan. 29. That effort helped him receive the Feb. 2 Pac-10 Player of the Week award. The 5-9 guard tallied 23 of his 25 points after halftime at Oregon State (Jan. 17), including a 3-pointer inside the final second that forced overtime in UW's 103-99 win. Robinson led all scorers with 27 points in the 2004 NCAA Tournament game against UAB. In his first season, Robinson was named to the 2003 All-Pac-10 Freshman Team after leading the Huskies with a 13.0-point scoring average. He joined the basketball team after competing as a freshman in 2002 on the Husky football team. Robinson played in all 13 football games, including the Sun Bowl, and started the final six at cornerback.
Nate Robinson applied to be eligible for the 2004 NBA Draft after his sophomore season, but withdrew on June 17 to preserve his collegiate eligibility. Before withdrawing, he attended the pre-draft camp in Chicago from June 8-10 where he was evaluated by NBA scouts and general managers from whom he received feedback. At the pre-draft camp, Robinson had a 22-point performance on the first day. It was the highest single-game output by any of the 59 participants during the three-day playing sessions.
The pivotal point in Washington's 2004 season came Jan. 17 in Corvallis, Ore. The Huskies were 0-5 in Pac-10 play and trailed Oregon State 70-54 with six minutes remaining. They rallied with Nate Robinson hitting a 3-pointer at the end of regulation and won 103-99 in overtime. That ignited a string of five consecutive victories that ended Feb. 7 at UCLA. The five-game winning streak against Pac-10 opponents was the longest for the Huskies since 1999.
Last year marked the Huskies' biggest turnaround in an NCAA Tournament season. They had a 5-8 record before winning 14 of their final 18 games. UW opened 0-5 in Pac-10 play before winning 12 of its final 13 conference games, vaulting from last place to second. Only twice before did a postseason-bound UW team have a losing record at any point in the season. The 1984 and 1986 teams started the season with 1-2 records before maintaining winning ledgers the rest of the way.
Washington is one of just six participants from the 2004 NCAA Tournament that return all five starting players in 2005. Also returning its entire starting lineup from last year are Illinois, Michigan State, North Carolina, Syracuse and Wake Forest.
Washington has started three different lineups. The most recent unit opened the last 12 games, featuring two seniors (Will Conroy, Tre Simmons) and three juniors (Mike Jensen, Bobby Jones, Nate Robinson). Jensen and Robinson are the only players who started every game. The experienced lineup is in stark contrast to the last two seasons when there were no regular senior starters and few juniors. Last year, the Huskies implemented six unique lineups and Mike Jensen and Brandon Roy were the only players to start every game.
The Huskies registered 10 non-conference victories, their highest regular-season total since they won 13 such games in 1975-76. That was when a 14-game Pac-8 Conference schedule was in effect.
There is no 'y' in his first name, but he is known for hitting the trey. Senior Tre Simmons ranks second on the team with 27 treys this season and is No. 3 among Pac-10 players with a 51-percent accuracy. He hit five 3-pointers against San Diego State (Dec. 7) and four at Loyola Marymount (Dec. 12). Simmons led all Washington scorers seven times in 2004, tying Brandon Roy for the team lead. Simmons ranked eighth among Pac-10 players in 3-point percentage in 2004, hitting 40 percent (48-119) of his attempts beyond the arc. He amassed 14 treys in the final five games, including five during a Pac-10 Tournament semifinal win over Arizona. Simmons broke open a one-point game in the second half of the 75-62 win over No. 1 Stanford with three straight 3-pointers. Simmons hit at least one 3-pointer in nine of the final 11 games and had 14 multiple-trey outings last year.
Producing Point Guards
UW point guards Will Conroy (Garfield HS) and Nate Robinson (Rainier Beach HS) both hail from the city of Seattle. The Emerald City has produced some jewels on the hardwood, a legacy of point guards that is highlighted by former Arizona standout Jason Terry and Michigan's Jamal Crawford. Aaron Brooks (Franklin HS) is currently starting at the point at Oregon. Other prominent point guards from the state of Washington include Husky sophomore Ryan Appleby (Stanwood) who will red-shirt after transferring from Florida, Gonzaga's John Stockton (Spokane) and Dan Dickau (Prairie) and Oregon's Luke Ridnour (Blaine).
Junior forward Bobby Jones was named to the Great Alaska Shootout all-tournament team. Against Sacred Heart (Dec. 22), he posted his fourth career double-double with 14 points and a career-high 14 rebounds in just 23 minutes. Jones has dramatically improved his long-distance shooting, hitting 7-of-17 shots from 3-point range this season. Last year, he hit just 1-of-8 treys after making 4-of-20 in 2003. Jones ranks sixth among Pac-10 players with a 53-percent field goal accuracy. He is the league's No. 10 rebounder with 5.7 boards per game. A defensive specialist as a freshman, Jones started the final 15 games in 2003 and ranked No. 7 on the team with 5.7 points per game. He nearly doubled that total to 11.2 points in 2004.
High School Reunion
Every time the Huskies take the floor it amounts to a reunion of alums from Seattle's Garfield High School. Three former prep teammates are listed on the UW roster; seniors Will Conroy and Tre Simmons along with junior Brandon Roy. Last year UW had four former Garfield players, including Anthony Washington who transferred to Portland State prior to the 2004-05 season. That quartet of former Bulldogs combined to score 1,204 of UW's 2,543 points, an average of 38.8 points per game. They accounted for 47 percent of the Huskies' total offensive output. A Garfield grad led or tied UW in scoring during 19 games in 2004. Roy (12.9) and Conroy (12.7) were UW's No. 2 and No. 3 scorers. Their Garfield team also featured current USC guard Roydell Smiley and Isaiah Stanback, a quarterback on the Husky football team.
Sophomore Brandon Roy is an all-around talent who was named to the
National Basketball Writer's Association all-district team in 2004. He led all scorers with 23 points in UW's 2005 season opener against Seattle Pacific on Nov. 19 and scored 25 points in Washington's win over Utah (Nov. 25). The 6-6 swingman received the March 1, 2004 Pac-10 Player of the Week award after leading UW to a sweep in the state of Arizona. The last time the Huskies had a road sweep in Arizona was during January of 1984, six months before Roy was born. He led the 2004 Huskies in rebounds (5.3 rpg) and was second in scoring (12.9 ppg). Roy's career-high of 30 points came Feb. 7, 2004 at UCLA. At Houston on Dec. 20 Roy became the first player in UW history to lead the team in the five major statistics during a single game. Roy amassed 19 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and 1 blocked shot. Roy played 13 games with two starts in 2003, averaging 6.1 points per game. Roy applied for the 2002 NBA Draft out of high school, but did not attend any pre-draft camps and withdrew his application prior to the draft.
The Oregon State Series
> Washington has a 141-134 lead in the all-time series that began in 1904.
> The Huskies swept the season series last year after losing seven of the previous eight meetings against OSU. UW won the first meeting, rallying from a 16-point deficit over the final six minutes to win a 103-99 overtime decision in Corvallis.
> Oregon State was victorious in four straight visits to Seattle from 2000-03 before losing 80-79 last season.
> Washington owns a 94-40 advantage in the series during games played in Seattle.
> Second-year Oregon State coach Jay John has a 2-2 record against Washington.
> Second-year Husky coach Lorenzo Romar has a 2-2 record against Oregon State.
The Last Meeting
UW 80, Oregon State 79 (Feb. 14, 2004/Seattle)
Nate Robinson made a three-point play with 12 seconds remaining, lifting Washington to an 80-79 victory over Oregon State at Bank of America Arena. The Huskies (12-9, 7-6) swept the season series from OSU for the first time since 1999. The Beavers (9-13, 3-9) had won their previous four games in Seattle. Washington shot 65 percent (20-31) in the first half to build a 50-41 advantage. The lead was 73-62 before OSU's David Lucas scored seven of his career-high 29 points during a late four-minute stretch to spark a run of 15 unanswered points. Jim Hanchett capped the run with a 3-pointer that put the Beavers ahead 77-73 with 3:28 left. J.S. Nash's jumper at 1:53 gave OSU its final lead at 79-77 and set up Robinson's decisive driving layup and free throw. The Beavers had a game-winning shot attempt, but a free-throw line jumper by Nash missed. Tre Simmons scored 17 points to lead the Huskies who also got 13 from Will Conroy, 12 from Robinson and 11 from Mike Jensen. Chris Stephens finished with 13 for OSU, Nash had 11 and Hanchett 10. OSU posted a 40-29 rebound advantage led by Hanchett's 11. UW shot 53 percent (32-60) for the game.