USC To Play At Washington On Thursday
Feb. 17, 2010
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- The USC Trojans (15-9, 7-5) will face the Washington Huskies (17-8, 7-6) on Feb. 18 in Seattle, Wash. at 7:30 p.m. The game will air live on Prime Ticket with Tom Glasgow and Lenny Wilkens calling the action. It will also be live on USC radio flagship sister stations KLAA 830 AM and KGIL 1260 AM, broadcast by Pete Arbogast and Jim Hefner.
SCOUTING THE HUSKIES -- Washington is coming off a 78-61 win at Stanford on Feb. 13, its first road win of the season. The Huskies, however, are 16-1 at home this season, tops in the Pac-10 and have won five of their last six games overall. Washington is averaging 81.1 points per game, tops among Pac-10 teams and ninth nationally. Leading the way for the Huskies are Quincy Pondexter who averages 20.4 points and 8.1 rebounds per game and Isaiah Thomas, who averages 17.5 points per game. USC defeated Washington 87-61 at the Galen Center on Jan. 23 to take a 66-65 lead in the all-time series. USC is 1-4 in the last five games at Washington.
TROJANS COMPLETE SWEEP OF BRUINS -- Dwight Lewis scored a game-high 23 points and USC swept the season series from UCLA with a 68-64 victory at the Galen Center on Feb. 14. It was the first time since the 2004 season that the Trojans won both regular season meetings. Donte Smith came off the bench to match a career high with 12 points to help USC run its winning streak to three games. USC was outrebouned 46-25 by the Bruins, but had a season-high 11 steals and forced 20 Bruin turnovers. Michael Roll led UCLA with 21 points.
COUGARS ON DECK -- Washington State (15-10, 5-8) will face UCLA on Feb. 18 before hosting USC on Feb. 20 at 2 p.m. Since winning 67-60 vs. USC at the Galen Center on Jan. 21, the Cougars have dropped five of six games. Washington State is led by Klay Thompson who averages 21.4 points per game, second among conference players. USC leads the all-time series 66-42, but are 1-5 in the last six games at Pullman, winning 46-44 last season.
THE DEFENSE NEVER RESTS -- USC enters the game having allowed 1352 points in its first 24 games (56.3 ppg), its fewest through 24 games since allowing 1235 points in the first 24 games of the 1950-51 season. USC is fourth in the country in points allowed per game at 56.3. USC held 9 consecutive opponents to 56 points or less from Dec. 8-Jan. 6 (longest streak since 12 in the 1947-48 season). USC has held 14 opponents to 56 points or less this season and only twice has allowed more than 67 points (69 at Texas and 79 at Georgia Tech).
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARDS -- Nikola Vucevic has led USC in rebounding for 7 consecutive games (11.0 per game) and has grabbed 7 or more boards in all but 2 games this season.
JECKYLL & HYDE VS. JECKYLL & HYDE -- Both Washington and USC have experienced big personality changes when playing at home versus their games on the road. Washington is 16-1 at home and 1-6 on the road, while USC is 11-3 at home and 1-6 on the road. Washington averages 9.1 more rebounds than its opponents in home games, while being outrebounded by 4.7 in road contests. USC outshoots its opponents .455 to .354 in home games, while being outshot on the road, .406 to .436. USC averages 5.5 more points per game at home, while Washington averages 15.8 more points per game at Bank of America Arena.
TAKING NOTE... -- USC is 12-1 when taking more FTs than its opponents...In Pac-10 games, USC is the only team with all losses by 10 points or less...USC has led or been tied in the 2nd half in all 12 Pac-10 games...in USC's five Pac-10 losses, it has committed 102 fouls, while the opponent only 60...USC is 9-1 in games it scores 60 or more points...USC is 6-1 vs. the top six teams in the Pac-10 and 1-4 against the current bottom four in the standings.
VUCEVIC'S SOPHOMORE SURGE -- Sophomore forward Nikola Vucevic is tied for second in the Pac-10 this season with nine double-doubles, his last being an 18-point, 14-rebound effort vs. Stanford on Feb. 6. He collected his eighth with 10 points and 10 rebounds vs. Cal on Feb. 4, had 10-points, 11-rebounds at Oregon on Jan. 30 and 11 points and 13 rebounds vs. Washington on Jan. 23, giving him four double-doubles in his last five games. He matched a career high with 19 points at UCLA on Jan. 16 (9-for-12), scoring 17 points in the second half. Vucevic had 15 points and 10 rebounds vs. Tennessee on Dec. 19 for his fifth double-double. He had 14 points and posted a career-high 15 rebounds on Dec. 8 vs. Sac. State, his first 19-point game and 11 rebounds vs. LMU on Nov. 21, 15 points and 12 rebounds vs. Coppin St. on Nov. 27 and 18 points and 14 rebounds at Texas on Dec. 3. He is averaging 11.6 points and 9.8 rebounds, after averaging 2.6 points and 2.7 rebounds as a freshman last season. His 9.8 rebounds per game leads all Pac-10 players.
JOHNSON'S SECOND SENIOR SEASON -- USC senior G/F Marcus Johnson, who played the second semester last season after transferring to USC from UConn, was granted another year of eligibilty by the NCAA following the season, but penalized two games for playing in an exhibition game in the 2007-08 season. USC is 27-12 in games he has been available to play in the two seasons. In his first game this season on Nov. 27 vs. CSU, Johnson had 11 points, three rebounds and a steal. Johnson scored his then USC high of 19 points and had a career-high nine rebounds vs. UNLV on Dec. 25. He set a new career high with 22 points on 9 of 11 shooting vs. Washington on Jan. 23. Johnson leads USC with 34 steals and is third in rebounds with 101 and blocks with 12. He has scored in double figures 11 times this season. Tied a career high with 5 steals vs. UCLA on Feb. 14.
SMITH STEPPING UP -- Junior guard Donte Smith started USC's first eight games at point guard and is second on USC with 15 three-pointers made (17-for-45, 37.8 percent), five more than he made all last season. In the game vs. Nebraska on Nov. 29, Smith was 4-for-4 from the field, including hitting two three-pointers. Smith came off the bench to scored six big points down the stretch in USC's 55-51 win vs. Western Michigan on Dec. 22. He scored 9 points at Oregon on Jan. 30, his most points since scoring 10 vs. Nebraska on Nov. 29. Matched a career high with 12 points vs. UCLA on Feb. 14.
GERRITY PROVIDES CLARITY -- Senior Mike Gerrity has played 16 games and led USC to an 11-5 record. In his first game after sitting out the first semester due to tranfer rules, he led USC to a 77-55 upset of then No. 9 Tennessee on Dec. 19 and then to the championship of the Diamond Head Classic while earning Tournament MVP honors. Gerrity scored 15 of his team-high 17 points after halftime to help USC to a 55-51 comeback victory over Western Michigan on Dec. 22. He followed that up with a team-high 17 points including hitting a key three-pointer late in the game in the semifinals win vs. Saint Mary's on Dec. 23. In the finals vs. UNLV on Dec. 25, he had 13 points and three assists without a turnover against UNLV's tough press. He was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week for the week of Dec. 21-27. Gerrity has averaged 9.4 points, 3.7 assists and 2.8 rebounds in his first 16 games. His 10 assists vs. Tennessee were the most by a Trojan since Daniel Hackett had 13 on Dec. 4, 2008 at Oklahoma. He has 59 assists and 30 turnovers, the only Trojan with a positive assist to turnover ratio. He has had eight games of one turnover or less and has 40 assists and 15 turnovers in the last 11 games. His 2.1-1 turnover-assist ratio in Pac-10 games leads the conference. He hit a career-high 3 three-pointers, two with under 2 minutes left to help USC defeat Cal on Feb. 4.
WASHINGTON FILLS UP THE STAT LINES -- Sophomore forward Leonard Washington played in his first game of the season on Dec. 23 after missing the first semester with academic issues and had an immediate impact. He scored 10 points, had six rebounds, two assists, two blocks and an assist vs. Saint Mary's on Dec. 23. He then scored nine points and had four rebounds and a block vs. UNLV on Dec. 25. In his first 14 games back, Washington has averaged 6.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and has 10 blocks and 17 steals. His 16 steals in Pac-10 games are tied for sixth-best in the conference. Washington was fifth in scoring for USC as a freshman with a 6.1 average in 30 games, 13 starts. He scored in double figures six times last season with a high of 17 vs. North Dakota State on Dec. 20, 2008. His high game this season is 11 points at Oregon State on Jan. 28.
BIG TIME LEWIS RISING UP SCORING LISTS -- Senior Dwight Lewis has scored 1,375 career points, 13th all-time at USC and 48 points behind John Block (1964-66) who is 12th with 1,423. Lewis ranks 10th on USC's all-time three-point baskets list with 141 makes. Stais Boseman (1994-97) ranks 9th on USC's all-time three-point basket list with 145. Lewis led USC with a 14.4 scoring average in 2008-09, as well in three-point baskets (55) and free throw shooting (74.8 percent). He reached double figures in scoring in 27 of his 33 games last season, scoring a career-high 26 twice (vs. San Francisco on Dec. 1 and at Oregon on Jan. 2). He has six 20-point games this season (22 vs. UCR on Nov. 17, 21 vs. Tennesse on Dec. 19, 22 at Stanford on Jan. 6, 20 at California on Jan. 9, 24 at UCLA on Jan. 16 and 23 vs. UCLA on Feb. 14) and has had 15 career 20-point games. Lewis has averaged 15.9 points in his last 10 games (159 points).
DRIVEN BY DEFENSE -- USC has held 67 teams to 60 points or less in the last five seasons (159 games), including 14 this season. The Trojans held 17 of their opponents last season to 39.2 percent shooting or less, and have held 83 teams under 40 percent shooting in the last 159 games. USC was outshot from the field just nine times last season and eight times so far this season (Nebraska, Texas, GT, WMU, Stanford, Cal, WSU, Oregon). USC has had a better shooting percentage that its opponent in 101 of the last 129 games. USC held Sac. State to 23.0 percent shooting on Dec. 8, the lowest percentage by a Trojan opponent since Loyola Marymount shot 22.4 percent from the field on Dec. 9, 1998. USC has held it opponents this season to a 37.6 shooting percentage, best in the Pac-10 and ninth in the country.