No. 24 USC To Face No. 2 Memphis At The Jimmy V Classic
Dec. 3, 2007
NEW YORK, NY -- The No. 24 USC men's basketball team (6-2) will face No. 2 Memphis (6-0) at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY at 9 p.m. on Dec. 4. USC had a six-game winning streak snapped on Saturday with a loss to Kansas. For the second consecutive season, the Trojans have begun with a 6-2 record. The last time USC had a better start was in 2000-01 when it began the season 8-0.
SCOUTING MEMPHIS -- No. 2 Memphis (6-0) is USC's opponent in the Jimmy V Classic on Dec. 4. The Tigers have wins over Tennessee-Martin, Richmond, Oklahoma, Connecticut, Arkansas State and Austin Peay. Memphis has won its games by an average of 18.7 points. Junior guard Chris Douglas-Roberts is averaging a team-leading 21.8 points, followed by freshman guard Derrick Rose, who has scored 17.0 points per game. Memphis returns 10 lettermen and all five starters from a team that went 33-4 in 2006-07.
USC FALLS BY FOUR TO KANSAS -- USC lost 59-55 to then No. 4 Kansas on Saturday in a game that went down to the wire. Kansas' Mario Chalmers nailed a very long three-pointer just before the shot clock expired to give the Jayhawks a 58-53 lead with 20 seconds left to seal the victory. USC led early 16-6 and by two at the half (27-25), but the Jayhawks rallied aided by their 42-30 edge on the boards, which included 14 offensive rebounds. USC committed 19 turnovers and Kansas a season-high 22. O.J. Mayo led USC with 19 points. Kansas had won its first six games by an average of 27.8 points.
EXHIBITION GAME ON DECK -- USC's will play an exhibition game vs. Fresno Pacific at the Galen Center on Dec. 8 at 5 p.m. Fresno Pacific is coached by former USC assistant coach and interim head coach (2004-05) Jim Saia.
GOOD TO GET AWAY -- After playing five of its first six games away from the Galen Center, USC is in the midst of playing five of six at home with the lone exception being the game vs. No. 2 Memphis in New York on Dec. 4. USC is 3-0 in neutral site games, 2-0 in road games and 1-2 at home.
MAYO MAKING HIS MARK -- USC's O.J. Mayo has scored 168 points in his first eight games, the most by a Pac-10 freshman through eight games since the 1996-97 season, according to Stats, Inc. Oregon's Tajuan Porter had the second most with 154 points through his first eight games during his freshman season last year.
FACING THE BEST -- USC's 2007-08 schedule features four games against teams ranked in the top four in the country and 13 potential games against teams ranked in the ESPN/USA Today and AP preseason Top 25. USC's win over SIU on Nov. 25 gives them 11 wins over Top 25 teams in the last 3 seasons, tied for the 6th-most in the country with Ohio St., according to STATS, Inc. USC's 9 wins over ranked teams in the last two seasons are second only to UCLA's 12.
FACING THE BEST -- USC has held five consecutive opponents to under 60 points for the first time since the 1987 season, when they had six straight (Jan. 15-Feb. 5).
A RECORD START FOR FLOYD -- Tim Floyd posted a 42-25 record in his first two seasons as USC's head coach, the most wins by a Trojan coach in his first two seasons. Floyd has an impressive track record in the collegiate ranks along with his NBA experience. He brings 20 years of head coaching experience at the collegiate and NBA levels and owns a 291-157 record (6-2 in 2007-08) in his 15 seasons as a college head coach at Idaho (1987-88), New Orleans (1989-94), Iowa State (1995-98) and USC (2005-07). Nine of his first 14 seasons, Floyd has taken his team into the postseason (6 NCAA, 3 NIT). Floyd has helped the development of his student-athletes at each stop, as 12 players in his 14 years have made it to the NBA, including three players that did not even play high school ball.
KEEP AN EYE ON GIBSON -- USC sophomore forward Taj Gibson was one of 50 men's basketball players selected to the preseason Wooden Award and Naismith Trophy lists, the early front-runners for college basketball's coveted trophies. Gibson is USC's leading returning scorer and rebounder, averaging 12.2 points and 8.7 rebounds last season. He set two school freshman records last season with 321 rebounds and 69 blocked shots.
THE RETURNS ARE IN... -- Last season USC entered the season with the leading returning point production (83.7 percent) and rebounding (86.5 percent) among Pac-10 teams. This season, USC ranks last in the conference in returning scoring (40.2 percent) and eighth in rebounding (63.6 percent). The Trojans also return just 17.4 percent of their three-point scoring, 10th in the Pac-10. Despite being just a sophomore, Taj Gibson entered the season with the eighth-most career blocks (69) among Pac-10 players.
A HISTORY OF WINNING -- The Trojans have compiled a record of 1,422-1,019 in their first 102 years of intercollegiate basketball competition. The Trojans have had a .500 or better record in 72 of the first 101 seasons.
2006-07 SEASON IN REVIEW -- The Trojans were coming off a 17-13 season in 2005-06 and were anchored by veterans Nick Young (Jr.), Gabe Pruitt (Jr.) and Lodrick Stewart (Sr.) each reaching the 1,000 points scored plateau during the season. The Trojans went 10-2 in their first 12 games, with an overtime loss to South Carolina in the season and Galen Center opener and a 10-point loss at Kansas. USC defeated then No. 8 Wichita St. in the LV Classic and followed that up with a double-OT win against No. 14 Washington to begin conference play. USC made it three consecutive wins over a ranked opponent when the won in early January at Oregon, handing the Ducks their first loss of the season. USC did not lose consecutive games all season until the final two regular season games at Washington and Washington State. USC advanced to the Pac-10 finals with wins over Washington State and Stanford, before falling to Oregon in the championship game. USC cruised to victories over Arkansas (77-60) and Texas (87-68) in the NCAA Tournament, before losing to North Carolina in the East Regional semi-finals, 74-64.
TROJAN TIDBITS -- USC does not have a senior on the roster...USC has a preseason Wooden Award and Naismith Award candidate (Taj Gibson) for the first time since 2001 when Sam Clancy and David Bluthenthal were Wooden Award candidates and Clancy was a Naismith candidate...Gibson is also ranked as the No. 10 center in the country by The Sporting News and the No. 7 center by Lindy's...Gibson has been named a preseason third-team All-American by Rivals. O.J. Mayo is on the Bob Cousy Award candidates watch list and is rated the No. 2 point guard by The Sporting News and the No. 7 point guard by Lindy's. He also was named a preseason first-team All-American and picked as the Player of the Year by ESPN's Andy Katz and ESPN's Doug Gottlieb listed Mayo as a first-team preseason All-American. Mayo has also been selected by Collegehoops.next as the preseason Freshman of the Year.
PAC-10 PRESEASON RANKINGS -- The Trojans were picked to finish in sixth place in the Pac-10 conference this season, according to a poll of media members who cover Pac-10 men's basketball. UCLA was picked to win the conference with 339 votes, followed by Washington State (273), Oregon (240), Arizona (238), Stanford (205), USC (184), California (140), Washington (132), Arizona State (81) and Oregon State (38). Last season, USC was a preseason No. 6 pick in the conference and finished tied for third.
INJURY UPDATES -- Freshman forward Mamadou Diarra had surgery on his groin on Nov. 5. He returned to practice last week. Kyle Austin injured his back (spasms) on Nov. 21 and has not practiced since. Marcus Simmons has been battling a high ankle sprain and has been held out of practice. He did not played since the South Carolina game on Nov. 17.
CONSECUTIVE LOSSES -- USC is coming off a loss to Kansas on Dec. 2 and lost consecutive games just once last season, the final two regular season games of 2006-07 (March 1 at Washington and March 3 at Washington State).
HACKETT'S TRIPLE-DOUBLE EARNS HIM TSN'S PLAYER OF THE WEEK -- Guard Daniel Hackett was named The Sporting News National Player of the Week for the week of Nov. 12-18, as he averaged 21.5 points, 6.5 assists and 5.5 rebounds, while making 71.4 percent of his shots. Hackett, who had missed six weeks with a broken jaw which was wired shut until Nov. 9 and returned to full practice for the first time on Nov. 12, scored a career high 21 points in his first game back in the 74-47 win at The Citadel on Nov. 15 and followed that up with a new career best of 22 points in the 85-75 win at South Carolina on Nov. 17. In the South Carolina game, Hackett also had career highs in rebounds (10) and assists (10) for a rare triple-double, the first by a Trojan player in at least 30 seasons.
DYNAMIC DEBUT FOR MAYO -- O.J. Mayo scored 32 points in his collegiate debut on Nov. 10 vs. Mercer, a new USC record for a freshman in his first collegiate game. His 32-point total also are the sixth-most by a Trojan freshman in a single game, with the record being 39 by Cliff Robinson on Feb. 2, 1978 vs. California. The 32 points scored by Mayo were also the most in a game by a player in the two-year history of the Galen Center.
USC Top Single-Game Freshman Scoring Records 39 - Cliff Robinson, Feb. 2, 1978 vs. California 37 - Harold Miner, Dec. 28, 1989 vs. Central Connecticut State 37 - Harold Miner, Jan. 25, 1990 vs. Oregon State 35 - Cliff Robinson, Jan. 20, 1978 vs. Portland State 34 - Harold Miner, Feb. 15, 1990 vs. Stanford 32 - O.J. Mayo, Nov. 10, 2007 vs. Mercer
YOUTH WILL BE SERVED -- On a roster that features no seniors and just three juniors, the Trojans will be relying on the underclassmen to handle much of the scoring. In the first eight games, USC's freshmen scored 298 of the 548 points (54.4 percent) and the freshman and sophomores accounted for 530 of the 548 points (96.7 percent). The 96.7 percent of the team's scoring coming from underclassmen is the highest in the country, followed by Western Carolina at 91.4 percent and Wake Forest at 87.2 percent, according to Stats, Inc.
GIBSON IS DOUBLE TROUBLE -- Sophomore forward Taj Gibson had 20 points and 12 rebounds in the 60-50 win vs. San Diego on Nov. 22, his second double-double of the season. He also had 13 points and 14 rebounds in the game vs. Mercer on Nov. 10. He now has 13 career double-doubles (points and rebounds) in 45 collegiate games (28.8 percent).
LOUISIANA LIGHTNING -- Trojan sophomore guard Dwight Lewis, who grew up in Metairie, La. but was uprooted by hurricane Katrina to Katy, Texas, scored a career-best 18 points in the win at South Carolina on Nov. 17. He has scored in double-figures in five of eight games this season. Lewis reached double-figures in scoring eight times in his freshman season.
NOTHING FREE AT THE LINE -- USC has shot under 60 percent from the free throw line in four of eight games this season. In the last game vs. Kansas, USC made 55.6 percent of its shots from the charity stripe (10-for-18). USC's best game from the line was on Nov. 17 at South Carolina when they made 23 of 27 free throws (85.2 percent). In the first eight games, the Trojans have hit just 65.7 percent of their free throws (117-for-178). Last season as a team USC hit 71.5 percent of its free throws, its best mark since hitting 71.8 percent from the charity stripe in 1984. USC has has out-shot its opponents from the free throw line 178-99 in the first eight games.
NO MERCY FROM MERCER -- USC's first-game opponent Mercer shot 59.4 percent (38-for-64) from the field on Nov. 10 at the Galen Center. It was the highest shooting percentage in a game by a Trojan foe since UCLA made 60.7 percent of its shots on Feb. 24, 2005.
THE DEFENSE RESTS -- The 96 points allowed and 59.4 shooting percentage by Mercer in the first game were quite an aberration for Tim Floyd's teams since he arrived on the USC campus. Last season, USC held 21 of 37 opponents to under 40 percent shooting and 27 of 37 to under 42 percent from the floor. In the first two seasons of the Tim Floyd era, the Trojans held 31 of 67 opponents to 40 percent of less from the floor. The fact that USC was outshot from the floor (59.4 percent to 40 percent) was also out of the ordinary. Last year the Trojans shot better than their opponents in 31 of 37 games. The 96 points was also the most points by an opponent since Tim Floyd became USC's head coach for the 2005-06 season. USC out-shot Kansas 38.5 percent to 37.9 percent on Dec. 2 and held them to 59 points, the 24th opponent in Tim Floyd's first 75 games as USC's head coach held under 60 points. The Trojans have held six of their eight opponents this season to under 37.9 percent shooting or less, making it 37 times in the first 75 games (49.3 percent) under Floyd that USC has held its opponent to under 40 percent shooting.
GIBSON MOVES UP THE CHARTS -- Sophomore Taj Gibson had six blocks on Nov. 16 at The Citadel, the most since he had a career-high seven blocks on Jan. 4, 2007 at Oregon, which had tied for the fourth most in a game by a Trojan. He thas 84 career blocks which rank him seventh on USC's all-time shot block list. Avondre Jones is sixth with 101 career blocks as a Trojan.
TROJAN TV ALL-ACCESS -- USC is offering live online video streaming of four remainng untelevised games to subscribers of TrojanTV All-Access, while others will be able to access these special online events on a pay-per-view basis. Each game will be available live and on-demand. Current subscribers to TrojanTV All-Access will receive all five broadcasts for FREE as part of their subscription package. Non-subscribers have two options to purchase the games. Each game will be available for a single-game pay-per-view price of $4.99. Fans can also purchase all four broadcasts for a price of $19.99. Annual subscriptions to TrojanTV All-Access are $99.95 for a 12-month subscription, while a monthly renewable subscription is just $9.95. The remaining games to be offered exclusively on Trojan TV All-Access are Dec. 8 vs. Fresno Pacific (Exhibition), Dec. 17 vs. Delaware State, Dec. 22 vs. Cal Poly and Dec. 29 vs. UC Riverside.
DAVON CALLING -- Trojan freshman forward Davon Jefferson, a five-star recruit from Lynwood, Calif., played in his first game on Nov. 22 vs San Diego and scored five points in 19 minutes and hasn't slowed down since. Jefferson had his early season progress slowed due to a left knee injury in the preseason. In his second game on Nov. 23 vs. Miami (OH), he had seven points and a block. He then led USC with 20 points, grabbed five rebounds and had two steals in the Anaheim Classic finals win over Southern Illinois on Nov. 25. On Nov. 29 vs. Oklahoma, Jefferson made his first career start and poured in 23 points, grabbed nine rebounds and had two blocks. Jeffersosn scored 17 points in the loss to Kansas. He is averaging 20.0 points in the last three games.
MAYO NAMED ANAHEIM CLASSIC MVP -- USC's O.J. Mayo was named the MVP of the Anaheim Classic as he averaged 18.0 points and 3.7 rebounds helping lead USC to the title with wins over San Diego, Miami (OH) and Southern Illinois.
TOUGH TERRAIN FOR TROJANS -- USC is in a stretch of playing three of four games against ranked opponents, which began with a 70-45 win over No. 19 Southern Illinois. USC then defeated Big 12 power Oklahoma (66-55) in a Big 12/Pac-10 Hardwood Series Game. Sunday USC lost to No. 4 Kansas (59-55). On Dec. 4 they will play No. 2 Memphis (6-0) in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden. In all, beginning with the first game of the Anaheim Classic on Nov. 22, the Trojans are playing six games in 13 days with four of the opponents being 2006-07 NCAA Tournament teams.
ROAD WARRIORS -- With wins at The Citadel and at South Carolina, USC is 2-0 on the road to start the season for just the second time in the last seven seasons, the other time being 2005-06. The Trojans were 4-6 in their 10 road games last season, 4-5 in conference on the road, with a non-conference loss at Kansas.
GREAT START FOR MAYO -- O.J. Mayo has scored in double figures in all eight games this season. The last Trojan to begin his career with more consecutive double-digit scoring efforts was Tom Lewis in the 1985-86 season, when he reached double figures in scoring in his first nine games as a freshman.
SCORING IS OVERRATED... -- USC won back-to-back games when they scored 60 or fewer points, first defeating San Diego 60-50 on Nov. 22 and then Miami (OH) 57-53 on Nov. 23. It was the first time the Trojans had won consecutive games when scoring 60 points or less since winning 58-56 in two overtimes at California on Dec. 23, 1987 and 53-47 vs. Western Kentucky on Dec. 28, 1987.
STINGY DEFENSE -- USC has held its last five opponents to 59 points or less and to an average of 52.4 (262 total) points per game. If you add in the 74-47 win at The Citadel, USC has held six of eight teams it has faced to 59 points or less.
WINNING THE CLOSE ONES -- USC lost by four points to Kansas on Dec. 2, but is 3-1 this season in games decided by 10 points or fewer this season, twice winning by 10 points (at South Carolina and vs. San Diego) and by four points (Miami). In head coach Tim Floyd's first two-plus seasons at USC, the Trojans have played 40 games decided by 10 points or less and have won 26 of them (65.0 percent).
TROJANS CAPTURE ANAHEIM CLASSIC TITLE -- USC defeated No. 19 Southern Illinois 70-45 on Nov. 25 to capture the inaugural Anaheim Classic title at the Anaheim Convention Center. USC shot 59.5 percent from the floor, while holding the Salukis to 32.7 percent shooting. Davon Jefferson led the Trojans with 20 points. Southern Illinois had defeated its first three opponents by an average of 18.7 points. USC's 70 points marked just the third time in the last 40 games that SIU had allowed 70 or more points. USC had defeated San Diego (60-50) in the first round and Miami of Ohio (57-53) in the semi-finals. O.J. Mayo was named tournament MVP.
TRIPPED BY THE THREE-POINT LINE -- Dating back to last season, USC is 4-6 in its last 10 games when taking 15 or more three-point shots. Conversely, the Trojans have won their last seven games when taking 14 or fewer three-pointer shots.
0 Kyle Austin (So.) Ht. - 6-7 Wt. - 205 Pasadena, Calif. (Pasadena HS) Injured his back in practice on Nov. 21 (back spasms) and has not practiced since..did not make the trip to New York Has only played in the season-opener vs. Mercer and did not have any shots or rebounds in three minutes of action Averaged 1.4 points and 1.6 rebounds a game as a freshman; Had season highs of 5 points and 5 rebounds in a game Played a season-high 19 mintues vs. GWU at the 2006 Wooden Classic and was instrumental in USC's comeback win Averaged 21 points and seven rebounds in leading Pasadena High to a 25-4 record as a senior Was named Pacific League MVP as a senior and shared the honors as a junior; 2-time Star News Player of the Year Named to the Press-Enterprise Division1-A first team and was a LBPT 2006 Best in the West third-team selection
33 RouSean Cromwell (Jr.) Ht - 6-11 Wt. - 225 Memphis, Tenn. (IMG Academy, Fla) Scored 2 points on 2-for-6 shooting from the free throw line vs. Mercer on Nov. 10 Has come off the bench in 6 of USC's first 8 games and has four points and seven rebounds Played in 33 games (5 starts) last year; averaged 2.4 pts. & 2.2 rebounds; Had a season-high 13 points vs. LBSU on 11/24 Made quite a splash in Trojan debut with 17 points and 12 rebounds vs. CS Northridge on Nov. 20, 2005. It was the most rebounds by a USC freshman in a game since Sam Clancy had 14 on Feb. 6, 1999...since passed by teammate Taj Gibson Averaged 17 points and 11 rebounds a game in 2005 while earning all-district honors as a senior at IMG Academy Ranked the 14th-best center and 31st-best power forward in the country by RivalsHoops as a senior
43 Kasey Cunningham (R-Fr.) Ht. - 6-7 Wt. - 225 Albuquerque, N.M. (Cibola HS) Played in his first game as a Trojan on Nov. 10 vs. Mercer and scored 2 points and grabbed 2 rebounds Had a career-high 10 rebounds and six points on Nov. 15 at The Citadel Had a career-high seven points in the win vs. Miami (OH) on Nov. 23...also had three rebounds and a key steal Started and had six points and a rebound on Nov. 25 vs. SIU; had three points and two rebound vs. Oklahoma on Nov. 29 Redshirted in 2006-07 while recovering from left knee surgery...spent the season working on his outside game and dribbling Averaged 22.0 points and 15.0 rebounds with six blocks per game as a senior at Cibola High Led team to a 13-1 record before suffering a season-ending left knee injury...had ACL surgery, missed the rest of the season Began season widely regarded as the top player in New Mexico; Named to the LBPT Best in the West second team
14 Mamadou Diarra (Fr.) Ht. - 7-0 Wt. - 230 Bamako, Mali. (Stoneridge Prep) Had hernia surgery on Nov. 5 and was expected to miss 3-5 weeks...returned to practice this week, but did not make the trip Averaged 8.1 points and 6.4 rebounds his senior season at Stoneridge Prep in Simi Valley, Calif.; As a junior led them in scoring with an 11.1 average Hoopmasters.com listed him as the No. 4 rated power forward in the 2007 class; Ranked the No. 65 prospect by Rivals.com CNN/SI's rankings of 2007 recruits listed him No. 40; Also Hoopscooponline.com listed him No. 7 among 5th-year players
3 James Dunleavy (Fr.) Ht. - 6-6 Wt. - 190 Los Angeles, Calif. (Harvard-Westlake HS) Is expected to redshirt this season Did not play last season in high school as he had exhausted his eligibility; averaged 2.5 points as a junior Made 21 of 55 three-point shots (38.2 percent) as a junior as Harvard-Westlake went 27-6 Son of L.A. Clippers' coach Mike Dunleavy and brother of Pacers' guard/forward Mike Dunleavey, Jr.
22 Taj Gibson (So.) Ht. - 6-9 Wt. - 225 Brooklyn, N.Y. (Calvary Christian HS, Calif.) Fouled out after nine minutes (career low) vs. Oklahoma...scored 2 points, lowest since going scoreless on Feb. 18, 2007 Scored 2 points and fouled out against Kansas; Has four points and 10 fouls in the last two games Just missed a double-double with 10 points & 9 rebounds off the bench vs. SIU on Nov. 25...1st time at USC he did not start Had six points and six rebounds and played strong defense on Miami's Tim Pollitz in the 2nd half on Nov. 23 Had a season-high 20 points and grabbed 12 rebounds on Nov. 22 vs. San Diego, his 13th career double-double Had 13 points and 14 rebounds on Nov. 10 vs. Mercer USC's top returning scorer (12.2 ppg) and rebounder 8.7 (rpg); A 2006-07 Pac-10 All-Freshman Team selection Set USC freshman records in rebounds (321) and blocks (69); Had 11 double-doubles, one of five freshmen in the country with that many, joing among others Greg Oden and Kevin Durant, the top two selections in the 2007 NBA Draft Has at least eight rebounds in 31 of 45 career games and scored at least eight points in 39 of 45 games Gibson has grabbed 10 or more rebounds in 14 of 45 career games (31.1 percent). Scored 51 points and grabbed 34 rebounds in the three NCAA Tournament games, with two double-doubles
30 Terence Green (Jr.) Ht. - 5-11 Wt. - 180 Aliso Viejo, Calif. (Irvine Valley College) Played the last two minutes vs. SIU on Nov. 25, but did not have a shot Played in three games last season, his first active season for USC, but did not score Transfered to USC for the spring semester of 2006 and practiced as a walk-on, but was ineligible for competition Played high school ball at Aliso Niguel High; Helped lead the team to a 28-4 record his senior year Was second-team all-CIF, All-Sea View League (3 years) and third-team All-Orange County
13 Daniel Hackett (So.) Ht. - 6-5 Wt. - 205 Pesaro, Italy (St. John Bosco HS) Has made 51.0 percent of his shots this season (26-for-51), including 66.7 percent from beyond the arc (8-for-12) Had 11 points, 2 assists and two steals and hit the go-ahead jumper in the 57-53 win vs. Miami (OH) on Nov. 23 Scored a career-high 21 points on Nov. 15 at The Citadel, his first game back after missing six weeks with a broken jaw Had a triple-double (22 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists) with no turnovers in win at South Carolina on Nov. 17...it was the first triple-double by a Trojan in at least 30 seasons; Named TSN's National Player of the Week (Nov. 12-19) Matched a career high with 10 assists in the win vs. SIU on Nov. 25 Started 16 games as a freshman and averaged 5.3 points and 2.9 rebounds...second on the team with 103 assists Scored a season-high 20 points vs. Texas in the NCAA Tournament win on 3/18 Originally a 2007 recruit, he graduated early by finishing high school in the summer of `06 and enrolled at USC for 2006-07
5 Davon Jefferson (Fr.) Ht. - 6-8 Wt. - 215 Lynwood, Calif. (Lynwood HS) Scored 17 points on Dec. 2 vs. Kansas; Has averaged 20.0 points in his last three games (60 points total) Played in his first game as a Trojan on Nov. 22 vs. San Diego and had five points, three rebounds, a block and a steal Scored seven points on 3-for-4 shooting, with an assist, block and steal in win vs. Miami (OH) on Nov. 23 Scored 20 points to lead all Trojans on 6-for-7 shooting vs. SIU on Nov. 25...made 8 of 11 free throws Led USC with 23 points and nine rebounds in his first career start on Nov. 29 vs. Oklahoma...made 9 of 11 free throws Averaged 20.0 points & 12.0 rebounds at The Patterson School (N.C.) in 2006; Sat out 2nd half of season to focus on academics In 2005 at Lynwood HS, averaged 26.0 points, 12.9 rebounds and 5.0 assists Was rated by Rivals.com as a 5-star recruit, the 15th prospect in the entire 2006 class and the No. 2 player from California
1 Angelo Johnson (Fr.) Ht. - 5-11 Wt. - 180 Minneapolis, Minn. (Stoneridge Prep, Calif.) Had a strong debut as a starter vs. Mercer on Nov. 10, with 17 points, two assists and two steals Had 5 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists at The Citadel; Started on Nov. 17 at South Carolina and had 6 points and 3 assists Has made 5 of 14 three-point shots this season (35.7 percent) and is third on the team with 16 assists Led Stoneridge Prep (Calif.) in scoring as a senior with a 13.7 average...also dished out 4.1 assists per game As a junior, prepped at Marietta Convent Christian (Ga.) and averaged 19.2 points and 6.3 assists per game Ranked the No. 9 prospect among fifth-year players by Hoopscooponline.com and the No. 114 recruit for 2007 by Rivals Began his high school career at Patrick Henry HS in Minneapolis, Minn.
21 Dwight Lewis (So.) Ht. - 6-5 Wt. - 215 Metairie, La. (James Taylor HS, Tex.) Had 15 points and grabbed three rebounds vs. Mercer on Nov. 10; Scored 10 at The Citadel on Nov. 15 Scored a career-high 18 points and grabbed four rebounds in the win at South Carolina on Nov. 17 Scored three straight second-half baskets and finished with 14 points and three assists in the win vs. SIU on Nov. 25 Is USC's second-leading returning scorer, averaging 5.8 points and 2.1 rebounds as a freshman; Top-returning 3-point shooter with 20 made in 2006-07; Scored a season-high 14 points last season on Feb. 24 vs. California Played his senior season at James Taylor High in Katy, Tex. after being uprooted from Louisiana by hurricane Katrina Scored 21 points per game as a senior in helping lead his team to a 17-10 record; Named first team All-Region As a junior at Archbishop Rummel High in Metairie, La., he averaged 27.5 points, 9.7 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game Was a fourth-team selection to the 2004-05 Parade All-American team
32 O.J. Mayo (Fr.) Ht. - 6-5 Wt. - 200 Huntington, W.V.. (Huntington HS) Scored 32 points in the opener vs. Mercer to set a school freshman debut record, a Galen Center record for points in a game and the sixth-most points ever in a game by a USC freshman; Also had seven rebounds and hit four 3-pointers Made 6 of 12 shots (3 of 6 3-pointers) and finished with 16 points on Nov. 15 at The Citadel...led USC with five assists Led USC with 29 points, hit three 3-pointers and grabbed four rebounds in the 85-75 win at South Carolina on Nov. 17 Had 20 points in the win vs. San Diego on Nov. 22...also had three rebounds, three assists and three steals Led USC with 21 points in the 57-53 win vs. Miami (OH) on Nov. 23...also had 5 rebounds, 3 assists and a key steal at the end of the game Came off the bench to score 13 points in win vs. SIU on Nov. 25; Named Anaheim Classic MVP as he averaged 18.0 points Led USC with 19 points vs. Kansas with five rebounds and three steals Was the 2006-07 EA Sports National High School Boys Basketball Player of the Year; Was also selected a McDonald's All-American, Parade All-American and USA Today All-USA team selection Named the West Virginia High School Boy's Player of the Year as he led Huntington to a 25-2 record and its first state title Averaged 28.2 points, 7.2 assists and 6.1 rebounds as a senior; Had 41 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists in title game Attended North College Hill his freshman-junior seasons, leading the Trojans to their first two state titles; Mayo left the school as its all-time leading scorer; His high school teams were a combined 99-5 with three state titles (2 OH, 1 WV) Was Ohio's 'Mr. Basketball' as a sophomore & junior, joining LeBron James as the only sophomores to receive the honor Scored 56 points vs. Lockland HS (OH) on Dec. 17, 2004; Averaged 20+ points playing varsity ball in KY in 7th & 8th grade
20 Marcus Simmons (Fr.) Ht. - 6-6 Wt. - 200 Alexandria, La. (Peabody HS) Played in his first game as a Trojan on Nov. 15 at The Citadel...had two rebounds in nine minutes of action Had three rebounds in two minutes of play at South Carolina on Nov. 17 Averaged 18.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 3.0 steals as a senior at Peabody HS in Alexandria, La. Helped lead Peabody to a 37-4 record and the 2006-07 Louisiana state championship; Named to the All-State team Ranked as the No. 47 small forward in 2007 by Rivals.com Slowed in the preseason with a high left ankle sprain which continues to keep him out of the lineup...is with the team in NYC
2 Ryan Wetherell (So.) Ht. - 5-11 Wt. - 175 Calgary, Canada (Sir Winston Churchill HS) Had a rebound, a steal and an assist in seven minutes of action vs. Mercer on Nov. 10 Played in 15 games and logged a total of 49 minutes as a freshman; Had a season-best three points vs. B-CC on 12/14/06 Scored in five of the first eight games he appeared; Had two points and two assists at Oregon State on 1/6/07 Played three years of varsity at Sir Winston Churchill High; Was starting point guard and team MVP as a senior Averged 30 points and eight assists as a senior; Helped lead his Junior Trojans club team to the provincial championship three straight years, earning MVP honors each season (2004-06)
23 Keith Wilkinson (Jr.) Ht. - 6-10 Wt. - 225 Mission Viejo, Calif. (Capistrano Valley HS) Had five rebounds, an assist and a steal vs. Mercer on Nov. 10; Had 3 points and 3 rebounds on Nov. 15 at The Citadel Made his only shot, grabbed a rebound and had a block in the win at South Carolina on Nov. 17 Also made his only shot and had two rebounds in four minutes of action in the 60-50 win vs. San Diego Started on Nov. 25 vs. SIU and had three rebounds and a block in eight minutes of action Played 16 minutes vs. Oklahoma on Nov. 29 and had five points and four rebounds...hit his first three-pointer of the season Played in 33 games (5 starts), averaging 1.5 points & 1.9 rebounds last year as a sophomore; Played in all 3 NCAA games Scored a career-high nine points and dished out a career-best three assists on 3/1/07 at Washington Averaged 16 points and eight rebounds a game for Capistrano Valley HS (Calif.) during his senior season Led his team in rebounding (230) and three-point baskets (55)...was second on the team in points (471) and blocks (37) Averaged 20 points a game to lead CVHS to the CIF Div. IIAA semi-finals, where they lost 57-54 to champion Dominguez His father, Jerry, played four years in the NFL for the Rams and Browns