Nationally-Ranked Stanford Visits Corvallis Sunday

Feb. 7, 2003

Corvallis, Ore. -

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HOMECOMING: Oregon State's first annual men's basketball Homecoming celebration will commence Feb. 8-9 on the OSU campus. More than 90 ex-players, coaches, and administrators will be in attendance, including past All-Americans Ray Blume, Mel Counts, Cliff Crandall, Dave Gambee, Jim Jarvis, Steve Johnson, Ed Lewis, John Mandic, Wally Palmberg, Red Rocha, Charlie Sitton, and Charlie White. The alumni group, which includes individuals from as early as the 1931 team, will be introduced at halftime of Sunday's game vs. No. 25 Stanford, and will be available for autographs during postgame festivities.

SERIES: Stanford has won the last seven meetings and 11 of the last 12. Oregon State leads overall in a series that dates back to the 1929-30 season, 65-48. The Beavers haven't won in the series since defeating the No. 6 Cardinal in the final game of the 1998-99 season, 59-45. Stanford guard Matt Lottich scored 16 of his game-high 23 points in the final 7:15 to rally the Cardinal from as much as a 15-point second half deficit for a 57-54 win last month at Maples Pavilion. Stanford outscored OSU 40-26 in the second half of last year's game in Corvallis and won going away 67-50. Josh Childress led all scorers with 19 points, while Curtis Borchardt had 17 points and 18 rebounds.

OSU REGAINS PAC-10 LEAD: By virtue of Oregon State's win at UCLA last Saturday, the program is back to leading the Pac-10 (11th in the nation) for overall victories with 1,515. UCLA is second at 1,514.

CURIOUS FOLKS: First-year head coach Jay John has brought back interest in the program. OSU is averaging 7,163 for attendance in five conference home dates, which includes a season best 8,753 last Thursday vs. Cal. Sunday's game vs. Stanford is near a sellout as of mid-day Friday, as is the Feb. 15 contest vs. Oregon. The last time there were two sellouts at Gill Coliseum (10,400) in the same season was in 1992 (USC & Oregon).

BEAVERS LOOK TO END STREAK VS. THE NATIONALLY RANKED: Oregon State enters Sunday's game vs. No. 25 Stanford, looking to end an 18-game losing streak vs. top-25 clubs. OSU's last victory over a nationally-ranked team was March 2, 2000 when Deaundra Tanner hit a baseline three-point field goal at the buzzer in overtime to beat then No. 3 Arizona, and then assistant Jay John, 70-69. Tanner visited the Beaver locker room last week at the Sports Arena, prompting John to say -- 'The last time I saw you Dino, there were 10,000 people on top of you.' For the record, there might have been 100 or so after the fans rushed onto Ralph Miller Court to celebrate.

DONE WITH CALIFORNIA: Oregon State is 0-4 when it allows an opposition to shoot 50 percent or better. California has two of those games, while Idaho and Kansas State account for the other two. In fact those three opponents combined three-point field goal percentage vs. OSU is an astounding .521 (37-71).

SHOOTING TWO: Oregon State has been earning numerous trips to the free throw line of late, attempting 135 (27 avg.) over the last five games, converting 94 (.696). By contrast, OSU's opponents are 55 of 86 (.640) over the same span.

FRESHMEN IN THE PAC-10: Beaver point guard Lamar Hurd entered the week leading the Pac-10 Conference for average minutes played by a freshman at 32.9 per game. Hurd has played at least 30 minutes in every contest this season, except at California where he fouled out after playing 21 minutes. Arizona State's Ike Diogu is second in the conference at 31.3, Richard Midgley of California is third at 24.6, the Huskies' Nate Robinson is fourth (22.0), and teammate Mike Jensen is fifth at 21.9.

RICCI CONTINUES HIS STELLAR PLAY: Beaver senior forward Philip Ricci continues to make a case for being the school's first all-conference selection since Deaundra Tanner in 1999. Ricci is seventh in the conference for scoring (17.2), first for rebounding (8.9), seventh for field goal percentage (.543), and fifth for blocked shots (1.4). He leads the Pac-10 for active players with double-doubles with 14.

RETURN TO SENDER: Oregon State enters this week fourth in the Pac-10 Conference for blocked shots, averaging 3.83 per game. The Beavers are on pace to register 101 rejections this season, which would be the most since the 1992-93 team had 111. Oregon State had nine blocked shots vs. Washington Jan. 23.

PUT THEM IN THE BOOK: Unlike recent seasons, Oregon State has been consistent with its starting lineup. Beaver head coach Jay John has used the same five players to start the game for the last 17 contests (Ricci, Jackson, North, Haywood, Hurd).

LOOK INSIDE FIRST: Oregon State's perimeter players are looking for the big guys inside first for the most part. The Beavers are on pace to attempt 409 three-point field goals for the season, a number that would be the lowest since the 1994-95 team had 343 attempts. OSU is averaging 4.8 made threes per game, only 42 of 325 Division I programs ranked by the NCAA average fewer. OSU's season total of 92 is ninth in the conference and its percentage of .319 is last.

THREE RECRUITS SIGNED: First-year head coach Jay John signed three individuals to national letters of intent during the early signing period in November. Joining the Beavers for the 2003-2004 season will be Liam Hughes (7-2, C) from Modesto Christian High School in California, Kyle Jeffers (6-8, F), from Montgomery High School in Santa Rosa, Cal., and Jeffree Williams (6-9, F) from Roosevelt High School in Portland, Ore. John and his staff have two scholarships remaining to award during the late signing period, April 16-May 15.

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