Men's Hoops Faces Washington At Pac-10 Tourney Wednesday At 8:42 p.m. PT
March 5, 2007
SUN DEVIL DATA: The Arizona State University basketball team (8-21; 2-16 in Pac-10) under first-year coach Herb Sendek travels to the Pac-10 Tournament after matching the school's best defensive outing in its 29-year Pac-10 history on Saturday. The Sun Devils take on hot Washington on Wednesday, March 7, at 8:42 p.m. PT/9:52 MT at Staples Center as FSN's Steve Physioc and Marques Johnson have the call. ASU has won two of its past four, beating #22 USC 68-58 on Feb. 18 in Tempe and then winning 42-41 at California on Saturday, matching the best defensive performance in ASU's 522-game Pac-10 history (ASU beat Washington 53-41 on Jan. 31, 1991), and won its third straight game at Haas Pavilion in the process on freshman Derek Glasser's three-pointer with 13 seconds left.
INTRIGUING SECOND HALF OF PAC-10: In the past nine games (second half of Pac-10) ASU was outscored by just 22 points and its seven losses were by one, three, four (twice), five, six and ten points. It all started with the Washington game on Feb. 1, when ASU fell behind 44-21 at the half but then outscored the Huskies 40-22 in the second half and held UW to just 5-of-21 (.238) from the floor...in those nine games, ASU has outscored its opponents 281-227 (31.2 to 25.7) in the second half and held them to 70-of-203 (.344) from the field and 18-of-76 (.236) from the three-point stripe...ASU has forced 72 second-half turnovers in the nine games and committed just 54...the Sun Devils held Cal on March 3 to just 5-of-18 (.278) shooting and 16 points in the second half...ASU outscored USC 47-32 in the second half on Feb. 18...ASU outscored Oregon 30-22 in the second half and held it to just 6-of-21 (.286) shooting...ASU outscored Wazzu 23-12 on Feb. 3 and held it to 4-of-20 (.200) from the floor...the scoring margin in the second half of the Pac-10 season was less than a three-pointer (-2.5 points per game).
'THIS' CLOSE: ASU has been in 14 games decided by five points or less, the most by an ASU squad in 23 years, since the 1982-83 had 17 of 33 games of five points. Fifteen of ASU's games have been two-possession games (six points or less). ASU has been in 20 games of 10 points or less, which leads the Pac-10 and has been in just nine games of 11+ point final margins, fewest in the loop. After losing five straight games by 20 total points (including three games against ranked teams), ASU posted a 68-58 win over No. 22 USC on Feb. 18, its first win over a ranked team since March 20, 2003. ASU outscored USC 47-32 in the second half as it shot 12-of-21 (.571) from the field and made nine straight free throws late. The win was Herb Sendek's 30th against a ranked team as ASU matched a season-low set just two nights earlier with nine turnovers.
FIRST-YEAR RUN: Herb Sendek's first ACC Tournament in Greensboro, N.C., produced one of the best four-day runs in NCAA conference tournament history. NC State entered the 1997 tournament as the eighth seed and 13-13 overall (4-12 in ACC). NC State beat ninth-seeded Georgia Tech 60-46 on March 6, topped No. 1 seeded and seventh-ranked Duke 66-60 on March 7, beat fifth-seeded and No. 22 Maryland 65-58 on March 9 before falling to third-seeded and fifth-ranked North Carolina in the March 10 championship.
D IS GOOD: The Sun Devils rank third in Pac-10 games in scoring defense at 61.7 points per game, and the other teams in the top six are probably NCAA Tournament bound. And it is not just a result of slowing the game down, as ASU ranks fourth in field goal percentage defense (.437) in league games, despite blocking just 23 shots in the 18 league games (ninth in the loop). ASU is giving up just 61.9 points per game, the fourth-best mark in ASU history and the lowest since the 1949-50 squad gave up 59.8.
EXAMPLES OF THE DEFENSE: ASU held Oregon, who is averaging 76.3 points per game, to a season-low 55 points on Feb. 8 in Eugene and held Washington State, who is averaging 66.5 points per game, to a then season-low in a 48-47 loss on Feb. 3. On Feb. 25 against Arizona, ASU held the Pac-10's top scoring team (79.4) to a season-low 61 points. The 61 points was the fewest by the Wildcats against ASU since a 53-52 ASU win on Jan. 5, 1995. ASU held Cal (69.5 ppg.) to 41 points on Mar. 3, the fewest by the Golden Bears since a 59-37 loss to Washington State on Jan. 14, 1988.
TOURNEY NOTES: Herb Sendek will enter his 14th year of conference tournament action, as he is 17-13 (.567). He went 13-10 (.565) in his ten years at NC State and 4-3 (.571) in his three years at Miami (Ohio)...in first-round action, he is 11-2 (.846), as he was 8-2 in while at NC State and was 3-0 at Miami...made history when his Wolfpack became the first team to knock off the No. 1 seed in the ACC Tournament in consecutive years when it beat second-ranked Maryland (2002) and ninth-ranked Wake Forest (2003).
NCAA NOTE: Herb Sendek took NC State to the past five NCAA Tournaments (2002-2006). To compare with the Pac-10, only three schools (and one current Pac-10 coach) can match that in the past 29 seasons. Arizona (currently 22), UCLA (14 straight from 1989-2002) and Stanford (11 straight from 1995-2005) have had NCAA Tournaments streaks of more than five, but none of the other seven Pac-10 schools have gone to more than three straight NCAAs since the league expanded to 10 teams in 1978-79.
NO SOPHOMORE JINX: Jeff Pendergraph, a 2006 Pac-10 All-Freshmen selection and 2007 Pac-10 Honorable Mention pick, is averaging 11.2 points and 9.9 boards in the past nine games (12.4 ppg. and 9.4 rpg. in past 23), has eight double-doubles (13 in career) and 11 games of double-digit rebounds. He finished second in the Pac-10 in field goal percentage (.553), rebounding (8.9), offensive rebounding (3.33) and fourth in minutes (35.50) in league games. Currently, he ranks second in overall games in rebounding (9.1) and second in field goal percentage (.555) and leads the league in offensive boards (4.0). He was perfect in eight field goals at Washington St. (Jan. 4) and grabbed 19 boards at Oregon (Feb. 8) and vs. Colgate (Dec. 19), the most by a Sun Devil since Mike Batiste had 20 vs. Wagner on Nov. 19, 1997). In his past 36 games dating to Feb. 4 of 2006, he is averaging 12.8 ppg. and 8.8 rpg.
DEPARTURES: The team Herb Sendek took over in April changed dramatically in the summer when seniors-to-be and starters Kevin Kruger and Bryson Krueger departed. Kevin averaged 15.0 ppg. last year and played as much as anyone in the nation, with an ASU record 39.0 minutes per game. He had played 87 games and scored 912 points in his three-year career, and was the only player ranked in eight Pac-10 categories . Bryson averaged 12.3 points and shot 40.7 percent (88-of-216) from the three-point stripe and started 45 games in two-year career. The other reason ASU's freshmen are having to play so many minutes is the departure of six others in the past three years who would have been on this squad. Wilfried Fameni (now at VCU), Chris Low, Tron Smith (St. Mary's) and Keith Wooden (North Texas) all were freshmen from 2003-2004 who have stransferred while 2004-2005 freshmen Craig Austin and Tim Pierce (San Jose St.) left the program after one year.
SO WITH THOSE GUYS LEAVING: Three true freshmen are combining to average 87.2 minutes, all above the 27-minute mark...point guard Derek Glasser averaged 32.2 minutes in conference play, the third-most by a Sun Devil freshman in ASU's 29-year Pac-10 history...Christian Polk, with 64 three-pointers, has a chance to break the ASU freshmen record set by Ron Riley in 1992-93 of 66. Jerren Shipp and Derek Glasser (33 each) are tied for eighth on the list...Polk's 26 starts already is tied for sixth-best among ASU freshmen...Glasser needs 19 assists to match the Sun Devil record for assists by a freshmen of 114 set by Bobby Thompson in 1983-84. Eddie House is second on the list with 108 in 1996-97...Polk's 12.3 points per game mark is currently seventh on the ASU freshmen list...Derek Glasser is now 15-of-28 (.535) from the three-point stripe in the past eight games...here is a list of the top dozen Sun Devil freshmen in Pac-10 minutes per game:
ASU PAC-10 FRESHMEN MINUTES PER GAME (1978-79 to 2006-07)RK. Player, Season MPG Note1. Byron Scott, 1979-80 34.2 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year2. Ike Diogu, 2002-03 33.3 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year3. Derek Glasser, 2006-07 32.2 28-36 (.778) FTs in Pac-10 play4. Jamal Faulkner, 1990-91 32.1 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year5. Steve Beck, 1983-84 31.4 Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team6. Christian Polk, 2006-07 30.2 19-22 (.864) FTs in Pac-10 play7. Bobby Thompson, 1983-84 29.9 ASU career assist leader with 4548. Brian Camper, 1989-90 29.2 Averaged 27.3 minutes overall9. Eddie House, 1996-97 29.1 Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team10. Jerren Shipp, 2006-07 28.9 6.8 points per game in Pac-1011. Jeff Pendergraph, 2005-06 28.6 Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team12. Mario Bennett, 1991-92 28.0 Pac-10 All-Freshmen Team
DEJA VU: As Herb Sendek's staff continues through Pac-10 play with seven teams ranked in the AP poll at some point during a season for the first time and every team posting a winning non-conference mark for just the second time (only time since 1988-89), this was nothing new. In his first year at NC State (1996-1997), the ACC had six of its nine teams ranked at some time during the year and four teams reach the top 10. The highlight of that season for Sendek is his team beat #7 Clemson on Feb. 1, won at #4 Wake Forest on Feb. 17, and then beat #7 Duke (March 7) and #22 Maryland (March 8) in the ACC Tournament. That squad won seven of its final nine games en route to a NIT appearance.
GOOD WASHINGTON NOTE: Herb Sendek, Lorenzo Romar and Jim Calhoun are the only three coaches who have had a NBA first-round draft pick in the past two seasons. Under Coach Sendek, Julius Hodge was the 20th pick of the Denver Nuggets in 2005 while Cedric Simmons was the 15th pick of the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets in 2006.
VS. UW: ASU leads the series 33-29 but the Huskies have won the past nine...in the Feb. 1 66-61 Husky win in Tempe, ASU fell behind 44-21 at the half and was behind 54-38 (12:10) and 61-50 (6:04) before going on a furious rally to cut the lead to 61-58 with just over a minute left...Christian Polk had 18 points as ASU held UW to just 5-of-21 (.238) from the floor in the second half and held UW to just 22 points in the second half, its fewest in the second half this year...ASU and No. 24 Washington played a close game on Jan. 6 in Seattle before Washington pulled away to make it a 64-53 final...Washington led 43-40 at the 10:36 mark but outscored ASU 21-13 the rest of the way...Jeff Pendergraph had 18 points and eight boards to lead ASU in 35 minutes...ASU shot a season-best 14-of-18 (.778) from the free throw line...UW hit 8-of-13 (.615) from the three-point stripe...ASU shot just 7-of-26 (.269) from the field in the second half.
BIGGEST PAC-10 TOURNAMENT UPSET?: ASU pulled arguably the biggest upset in the history of the league tournament. On March 9, 1990, in Tempe, eighth-seeded ASU beat top-seeded and No. 22 Oregon State 83-75 as the Sun Devils shot 30-of-45 (.667) from the field, currently the fifth-best mark in school history. The No. 8 seed is just 2-5 against the No. 1 seed in the eight Pac-10 Tournaments, with the other win coming in 2003 when UCLA topped Arizona 96-89 in overtime. ASU in the first year of the Bill Frieder era, and he will be at the Pac-10 Championship this year, serving as color commentator for CBS Radio/Westwood One.
PAC-10 TOURNAMENT: The Sun Devils are 3-8 in the Pac-10 Tournament, as last year it fell 71-68 to Oregon State and the year before lost to 14th-ranked (and eventual tournament champion and No. 1 national seed) Washington 95-90 in overtime on March 10, 2005, in a see-saw game that featured three eventual first-round NBA draft picks in Ike Diogu (9th overall pick in 2005), Nate Robinson (21st in 2005) and Brandon Roy (sixth in 2006). UW led by 18 three times in the first half and made 14 of its first 17 shots from the field and led 52-37 at the half. Current Sun Devils Serge Angounou (16 minutes and two points) and Allen Morill (29 minutes and six points) are the only current Sun Devils on that team, while no current Huskies played in that game. Kevin Kruger and Steve Moore each had 22 points, Ike Diogu had 21 points and 13 rebounds and Bryson Krueger had 15 points in 30 minutes.
WHO IS THE BIG GUY IN THE TIE ON THE BENCH?: Herb Sendek's first recruit at Arizona State was Duke transfer Eric Boateng, a 6-10 former McDonald's All-American who attended high school in Delaware. He is one of 12 McDonald's All-Americans in the Pac-10 this year, but is just the third to come in ASU history, joining Chris Sandle (1984) and Byron Scott (1979). He will have three years of eligibility remaining after this year. Next year ASU will have two McDonald's All-Americans on the team as James Harden, a fall of 2006 signee, recently earned the honor. Harden is ranked as the 11th-best player in the nation according to Rivals.com.
MANY WINS, MANY PLACES: When comes time to play away from Tempe, Herb Sendek has a good map. In his career, Coach Sendek has won 262 games in 21 states, plus two wins in Puerto Rico and one in Washington D.C. North Carolina (153) and Ohio (51) lead the way as he was the head coach in both states, and he also has posted wins in Florida (seven), Michigan and Arizona (seven), South Carolina (five), Virginia (five), Georgia (four), Indiana (four), Massachusetts (three), California (two), Texas (two) and Maryland (two). One-win states are Alabama, Utah, New York, New Jersey, Tennessee, Nevada, Kentucky and Illinois.
OFF THE COURT: The men's hoops team notched a 2.88 grade point average last fall and its team cumulative GPA is 2.83, its highest in the past six years. The four freshmen combined for a 3.33 GPA and 90 percent of the team had at least a 2.5. George Odufuwa led the way with a 3.5, and three current Sun Devils already have their degrees. Serge Angounou (B.A. in Spanish) graduated in May as did Robby Alridge (B.A. in sociology) while Allen Morill earned his B.I.S. degree in December. That trio joins Jonathan Howard (B.S., Management, 2006), Jeremy Veal (B.S.W., Social Work, 2006), Curtis Millage (B.I.S., Education and Family Studies, 2006), Kevin Kruger (B.S., Justice Studies, 2006), Jason Braxton (B.I.S, Business and Psychology, 2005), Jamie Andrisevic (B.S., Finance, 2004) and Kenny Crandall (B.I.S., Business and Communications, 2004) as ASU men's basketball graduates in the past three years.
FREE THROWS: In his 10 seasons at NC State, Coach Sendek's teams led the ACC four times in free throw percentage, including three straight seasons from 2002-2004. In 2004 his NC State squad led the nation and set the ACC record by shooting .799 from the charity stripe. His team last year shot .751 (second in the ACC to Duke) and was 16th in the nation. His poorest free throw shooting team was his first year (1996-97) when they shot 64.9 percent. While at NC State, his Wolfpack squads shot 71.3 percent. ASU is 140-of-198 (.707) from the free throw line in its past 16 games and 96-of-135 (.711) in the past ten games.COACH Herb Sendek: Former NC State and Miami (Ohio) leader Herb Sendek is in his 14th season as a head coach as he led the Wolfpack to five straight NCAA appearances from 2002-06. Coach Sendek is 262-179 (.594) in 14 seasons and was 191-132 (.591) at NC State. The just turned 44-year-old (birthday was Feb. 22) Pittsburgh, Pa., native is the second-youngest coach in the Pac-10 behind only first-year coach Tony Bennett of WSU, yet his 254 career wins and six NCAA Tournament wins entering this year were fourth in the league. In the previous five seasons only Duke posted more ACC wins (regular season and ACC Tournament) than NC State's 53 victories. Coach Sendek also led NC State to five 20-win seasons in the past seven years. Another overlooked note is his 10-year stay at NC State. To compare it to the Pac-10, since the league expanded to 10 teams in 1978-79, only five coaches have coached at their schools for at least 10 years: Lute Olson (Arizona), Mike Montgomery (Stanford), Ralph Miller (Oregon State) and Ben Braun (California), while Ernie Kent (Oregon) is in his 10th season in 2006-2007.
THE COACHING FAMILY: Herb Sendek has six former assistants who are currently Division I head coaches. Here's the list: Jim Christian, Kent State, Miami Assistant (1994-96); Charlie Coles, Miami (Ohio), Miami Assistant (1994-96); Larry Hunter, Western Carolina, NC State Assistant (2001-05); Ron Hunter, IUPUI, Miami Assistant (1993-94); Thad Matta, Ohio State, Miami Assistant (1994-95) and Sean Miller, Xavier, Miami (1994-96) and NC State Assistant (1996-2000).
MORE FRESHMEN NUMBERS: ASU's four true freshmen are averaging 92.0 minutes per game (23.0 per player), second-most among a class in ASU history. In 1999-2000, ASU had six freshmen average 96.8 minutes per game (16.1 minutes per freshmen). In 1983-84, six freshmen combined for 88 minutes per game (14.7 per Sun Devil), while in 1990-91 ASU's four freshmen averaged 80.6 minutes (20.2 per player)...when Jerren Shipp (23) and Christian Polk (22) each scored 20 points against NAU on Nov. 13, it marked only the second time in ASU history two freshmen scored 20 points. The other time was last season when Jeff Pendergraph and Sylvester Seay each scored 21 points vs. Oregon on Feb. 11, 2006...against Iowa on Nov. 25, ASU started three freshmen (Shipp, Polk and Derek Glasser) for the first time since Feb. 12, 2000, when Kyle Dodd, Shawn Redhage and Tommy Smith did the trick in an 81-67 win at Washington. It was just the second time in 15 seasons three freshmen started for ASU.
ASU IN MAUI NEXT YEAR: ASU will play in the 2007 EA SPORTS Maui Invitational along with Duke, Illinois, LSU, Marquette, Oklahoma State, Princeton and host Chaminade. It will be played Nov. 19-21 at Maui's Lahaina Civic Center. ASU has played in the tournament four times. The Sun Devils played in November of 1991 (1-2), won the tournament in 1994 with wins over Texas A&M, #13 Michigan and #7 Maryland, went 1-2 in 1998 and was 2-1 in 2002. Only North Carolina (10-2), Duke (9-0), Michigan (8-3), Arizona, Kentucky, and Indiana (all 8-4) have more Maui wins than ASU, as ASU's 7-5 mark also is matched by Kansas and Villanova.
QUICK NOTES: Coach Sendek has 30 wins against ranked teams in his career, including 14 wins over top-10 teams and eight over top-five teams...ASU had 23 offensive rebounds against Oregon State on Jan. 13, its most in a Pac-10 game since it had 24 at Washington on Jan. 11, 2001, in a 70-68 overtime loss...ASU had a season-low nine turnovers in back-to-back games against UCLA (Feb. 15) and USC (Feb. 18)...ASU topped Colgate 52-36 on Dec. 19, the fewest points by an ASU opponent since the University of Washington (St. Louis) fell to ASU 47-34 in the 1949-50 season. ASU held the Red Raiders to just 12 points at the half, the fewest haltime points by an ASU opponent since Jan. 7, 1995, when ASU was leading Old Dominion 36-12...after shooting 6-of-33 (.182) from the three-point stripe in his first three seasons, Serge Angounou is 36-of-98 (.367) from beyond the arc. He has been ASU's leading rebounder in nine games.