Men's Hoops Plays Host To Arizona At 4 p.m. Saturday
March 1, 2005
ASU MEETS UA IN FINAL REGULAR SEASON GAME: The Arizona State University men's basketball team (18-11; 7-10 in the Pac-10 Conference) finishes the regular season against the #11 Arizona Wildcats on Saturday, March 5 (4 p.m. MST) on Fox Sports Net, with Barry Tompkins and Dan Belluomini calling the action. ASU is 13-4 at home, as one more home win will match the building's record for wins in a season, set seven times and most recently in 1999-2000. One more win will give ASU its sixth 19-win season in the past 22 seasons (and third under Rob Evans) while two more wins will mark 20 wins for just the fourth time in 20 years (second time under Evans). ASU enters this week tied for 21st in the nation at 16.5 assists per contest. ASU will honor seniors Jason Braxton, Steve Moore, Jamie Andrisevic and Andrew Ecker before the game.
Ike Diogu PAC-10 NOTES: Ike Diogu leads the Pac-10 in both scoring (22.4 ppg.) and rebounding (9.8 rpg.). Only A.C. Green of Oregon State (1984-85) and Mark McNamara of California (1981-82) have led the Pac-10 in both categories. Diogu also leads the league in blocks at 2.24 per game. Since blocks became an official statistic in 1977-78, no player has led the league in all three categories. He also leads the Pac-10 offensive boards (3.66) and minutes per game (36.17) and is second in field goal percentage (.573). Diogu leads the league in league games-only stats in points (22.1), offensive rebounds (4.06) and minutes (37.88) per game and is tied for the league lead with 9.4 boards per game. He has played 12 40-minute games this year, including the past three contests. Diogu also has made 225 free throws this year, just 18 short of his own Pac-10 record of 243 set last season.
IN THE PAC AND OUT: Ike Diogu's career numbers have been solid both in the league and out. In his three-year career (88 games), Diogu is averaging 21.3 points and 8.8 rebounds. He is averaging 21.1 points and 8.9 rebounds in 53 Pac-10 games and 21.6 points and 8.7 boards in the 35 non-conference games.
CAREER MARKS: With 648 made free throws in his career, Ike Diogu trails only UCLA's Don MacLean (711 from 1988-92) and Stanford's Adam Keefe (652 from 1988-92) in the Pac-10 record book. His 826 attempts is second only to Keefe (886) and MacLean (827) as well.
IKE'S NUMBERS: Ike Diogu's play this year has been among the best in the nation, as he is tied for eighth nationally in points per game at 22.4 (as of March 1) and tied for 14th at 9.8 rebounds per contest. He has posted a Pac-10 leading 13 double-doubles and leads the nation in free throws made (225) and attempted (283). His 225 made free throws is more than all but seven players have attempted, while the next closet player to his 225 makes is Juan Mendez of Niagara with 211. His national-best consecutive games in double-figures scoring streak is up to 88 games (every game of his career). He has 11 30-point games (six this year), 47 20-point games (18 this year), 28 double-doubles (13 this year) and 15 other games with nine rebounds.
THREE-DOT DATA: ASU is shooting 212-of-284 (.746) from the free throw line in the past 13 games...since he started coming off the bench six games ago, Steve Moore is averaging 15.2 points per game...Kevin Kruger has 16 double-digit scoring games on the year and is 64-of-72 (.888) from the foul line in Pac-10 games, second in the league...Jason Braxton will make his 100th career start Saturday against Arizona. Only Eddie House (114), Ron Riley (109) and Alex Austin (100) have started more games as Sun Devils. Braxton has posted double-digit points in seven games and has 102 assists and just 43 turnovers on the year, a 2.37 ratio which leads the league. His 163 steals is fifth on the ASU career charts and his 371 assists is tied for eighth. He posted a season-high 11 points in the Feb. 17 75-73 win over Oregon State.
ACTION JACKSON: Tyrone Jackson is averaging 17.7 minutes in the past 11 games and has 32 assists and just 11 turnovers in that time, including a career-high six on Feb. 5 vs. California. He posted nine points at Washington State on Feb. 26 and had eight points at Oregon (Jan. 22) and vs. Stanford (Feb. 3). A high school teammate of Stanford's Chris Hernandez, he is 19-of-27 (.704) from the free throw line in the past 11 games to go along with 11 steals.
NEED MOORE OF THIS: Senior Steve Moore gave ASU a huge second-half lift in the Feb. 19 66-56 win over Oregon, as he posted 17 second-half points (7-of-10 from the field) en route to a 22-point game, his fourth 20-point game of the season. He posted 50 points on the Los Angeles road trip Feb. 10-12, including a 31-point outing at UCLA when he hit eight three-pointers, the most by a Sun Devil since Stevin Smith tied his own school record with 10 vs. Oregon on Jan. 27, 1994. Moore had 19 vs. USC on Feb. 12, as he was 16-of-29 (.551) from the field and 12-of-18 (.667) from the three-point stripe in those two games. Moore is shooting 19-of-45 (.422) from the three-point stripe and is averaging 15.2 points, second on the team, in the past six games, as he now comes off the bench after starting the first 23 games. Moore is averaging 12.1 points in 56 career games and has made 104 three-pointers, the most by a two-year player in ASU history.
Kevin Kruger: Sophomore Kevin Kruger is one of three Sun Devils who is averaging double-digit scoring in ASU's Pac-10 contests (12.1 ppg.) and has 16 double-digit scoring games overall. He is averaging 12.1 points in the past 10 games, has made 124-of-151 (.821) free throws in his 56-game career and is 64-of-72 (.889) from the foul line in Pac-10 games this year, second in the loop. Kruger provided a spark in the final nine games last year, averaging 29.0 minutes, 12.4 points (the team's second-leading scorer) and shooting 27-of-59 (.448) from the three-point stripe. He posted a season-high 18 points vs. UCLA on Jan. 13 and had a career-high 22 at Arizona last year.
ANOTHER KRUEGER: Sophomore newcomer Bryson Krueger, who played for assistant coach Brooks Thompson at Yavapai C.C. last year, is 30-of-60 (.500) from the three-point stripe in his past 22 games and 22-of-44 (.500) in the past 15 contests. He has eight double-digit scoring games on the year and posted his Pac-10 high with 21 points against Oregon State on Feb. 17, including five three-pointers. He ranks third in the Pac-10 in three-point percentage at 46.3 percent (38-of-82).
MORE DIOGU: Ike Diogu's national-best double figure scoring streak of 88 games still has a ways to go until it reaches Pac-10 and NCAA-record levels. The NCAA record is 115 set by La Salle's Lionel Simmons from 1987-90, while Sean Elliott of Arizona (1985-89) scored in double digits in the final 108 games of his career. Diogu's lowest point total in his career was 10 against Morehead State the first game of his career on Nov. 22, 2003, and then he hit two free throws with 21 seconds left to reach 10 points at Oregon on Jan. 22, 2005. Two Pac-10 notables never reached 70 games, as Lew Alcindor posted double digits in 69 straight games while Don MacLean, the Pac-10's career scoring leader, had his streak stopped at 68.
AT #14 ARIZONA (JAN. 2): A close first half turned into an 18-point Arizona win as the Wildcats topped Arizona State 97-79 in the Pac-10 opener. ASU led 27-18 at the 10:59 mark of the first half and led 36-30 at the 5:31 mark before Arizona went on a 16-5 run to close the half. ASU placed five players in double figures, led by Ike Diogu with 23 points and 11 boards. The Sun Devils outrebounded Arizona (38-37) and shot 50.9 percent (29-of-57) from the field, but the Wildcats have ASU opponent highs in assists (21) and first half points (46) as it was 11-of-20 from the three-point stripe. Arizona also committed just 10 turnovers.
TOUGH SCHEDULING: If Arizona wins or shares the Pac-10 title, this year will mark the fourth time in the past six years that ASU opened the season with an eventual Pac-10 champion. ASU opened with Stanford in 1999-2000 and 2000-2001 and then opened with Oregon in 2001-2002. It is scheduled to open at Pac-10 co-leader Washington next year.
NEED MOORE AT THE LINE: In its past five wins, ASU is 74-of-96 (.771) from the free throw line in the second half as it has sealed all five games (@Oregon, WSU, Stanford, Oregon State and Oregon) with solid efforts at the line. At Oregon on Jan. 22, ASU made 13-of-17 (.764) in the final three minutes, it made 13-of-16 (.813) against Washington State on Jan. 27 (including four straight in the final 50 seconds) and was 18-of-20 (.900) in the second half against Stanford on Feb. 3. ASU's 20-of-22 (.909) mark for the game against Stanford is tied for the third-best mark in school history for a minimum of 20 attempts. Against Oregon State on Feb. 17, ASU led 71-68 with 33 seconds left but hit 5-of-6 to put the game away. Then on Feb. 19 against Oregon, ASU led 61-56 with with 30 seconds left but hit six straight to finish the game.Three times this season Steve Moore has iced a close game with his late-game free throw shooting. On Nov. 30 at Temple, ASU led 61-60 when Moore made two free throws to make it 63-60 with 30 seconds left, and then hit two more to make it 65-62 with seven seconds left as ASU topped Temple. Against Cal State Northridge on Dec. 4, Moore was fouled while shooting a three-pointer with 14 seconds left and ASU down 66-64, but he sank all three to give ASU a 67-66 win. At California on Jan. 8, Moore hit two free throws with 46 seconds left and ASU leading 75-70 to give ASU a seven-point cushion as it would win 79-70.
Rob Evans: Rob Evans (194-181/.517) is in his seventh season at Arizona State (13th overall) after being hired on April 7, 1998. The 1997 SEC Coach of the Year spent six seasons at Ole Miss, compiling an 86-81 (.515) record. He led the Rebels to a 42-16 record in his final two seasons after going 44-65 (.403) in his first four, winning two SEC West titles, and led Ole Miss to back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since 1937-38. The 58-year old Evans is a 1968 graduate of New Mexico State, where he captained two NCAA Tournament teams and is a 1989 inductee of the Athletic Hall of Fame. He is 108-100 (.519) at ASU and has led the Sun Devils to three postseason appearances, including a 2003 NCAA appearance that was the school's first since 1995. He is 151-112 (.574) in the past nine seasons. He reached his 100th win at ASU against Long Island on Dec. 28, becoming just the third coach in ASU history to top the century mark, joining Ned Wulk (406-272 from 1957-82) and Bill Frieder (132-108 from 1989-97).