Men's Hoops Opens Vs. Jackson State Sunday At 2 p.m.
Nov. 20, 2004
ASU PLAYS FIVE IN TEN TO GET STARTED: The Arizona State men'sbasketball team opens with five games in 10 days to start the regularseason. ASU takes on Jackson State on Nov. 21 (2 p.m.) and DelawareState on Nov. 23 (7 p.m.) in Tempe as part of the Las VegasInvitational, then travels to Las Vegas to play UTEP on Friday, Nov.26, at Valley High School at 7:30 p.m. PT/8:30 MST. ASU then takes oneither Vanderbilt or Southern Illinois on Saturday. UTEP, SouthernIllinois and Vanderbilt all made the 2004 NCAA Tournament, and UTEP(24-8 last year) is picked to win the WAC and Southern Illinois(25-5) is picked to win the Missouri Valley Conference. ASU then goesstraight from Las Vegas to Temple, where it takes on Hall of Famecoach John Chaney on Nov. 30. ASU then plays two games the followingweek which means it will play seven regular season games in 16 daysto start the season.
REGARDING OPENING GAMES: ASU beat Arkansas-Little Rock 89-72 on Nov.22, 2003, to win its 14th straight home opener. The last time ASUlost a home opener was on Dec. 5, 1989, when ASU fell to BYU 65-64.Rob Evans is now 10-2 in overall season lid-lifters in his 12 seasons(5-1 at ASU).
DIOGU AMONG TOP SCORERS: Ike Diogu averaged 22.8 points per game in2003-2004, which not only led the Pac-10 but was ninth in the nation.Diogu enters the 2004-2005 season as the nation's third-leadingreturning scorer and is the first Pac-10 scoring leader to be back oncampus the following season since Reggie Miller won the honors in1985-86 and returned in 1986-87.
Points Per Game, Nation's Top Returning Scorers FROM 2003-2004'04 Rk. Name, Team Cl. G FGM 3FG FT PTS PPG1. Keydren Clark, St. Peters So. 29 233 112 197 775 26.74. Taylor Coppenrath, Vermont Jr. 24 203 14 159 579 24.19. Ike Diogu, Arizona State So. 27 179 14 243 615 22.817. Jose Juan Barea, Northeastern So. 26 180 73 105 538 20.718. Ken Tutt, Oral Roberts Fr. 28 193 101 92 579 20.7
ACADEMICALLY: Despite published reports that say 'thestate's three public universities have graduated only two malebasketball players in the past five years' and '...not a single men'sbasketball player graduated from the three institutions last year'ASU has had solid success in the classroom recently. Here's a look atscholarship players already earning degrees who have played for RobEvans: Kenny Crandall (B.I.S., Business and Communications, 2004),Justin Allen (B.S., Justice Studies, 2003), Tyson Johnston (B.A.,Sociology 2003), Chad Prewitt (B.I.S., Business and Communications,2002), Awvee Storey (B.I.S., Sociology, 2001), Okeme Oziwo (B.S.W.,Social Work, 1999) and Bobby Lazor (B.S., Marketing, 1998).
VS. LAS VEGAS INVITATIONAL FIELD: ASU is 1-0 against both JacksonState (an 83-69 win on Dec. 20, 1996) and Delaware State (123-85 onDec. 1, 1997), with the 123 points against Delaware State stillranking as the fourth-highest in school history and the most by a SunDevil team since 1971. ASU is 51-44 against UTEP but has not playedthe Miners since Dec. 3, 1984, when UTEP topped ASU 68-57. ASU is 2-0against Vanderbilt (65-53 in 1981-82 and 67-61 in 1994-95) and is 2-1against Southern Illinois. ASU beat the Salukis 79-78 in 1965-66,lost 62-59 in 1967-68 and won 92-74 in 1979-80.
DIOGU PRODUCES ANOTHER GREAT SEASON: Arizona State (10-17 and 4-14 inthe Pac-10), with seven first-year players in the rotation, was ledin 2003-2004 by preseason All-American Ike Diogu, who averaged aPac-10 best 22.8 points and 36.9 minutes per game and grabbed 8.9rebounds per game (second in the Pac-10). The sophomore has scored indouble digits in all 59 career games, the best active streak in thenation. Diogu averaged 11.03 free throw attempts per game on the yearand broke the 40 year-old Pac-10 season record for free throws madewith 243. He now has five 30-point games, 29 career 20-point games,15 career double-doubles and 10 other games with nine rebounds. TheGarland, Texas, native was third in the league in offensive boards(3.33 per game), second in blocks (1.74) and seventh in free throwpercentage at .815. He averaged 37.5 minutes in the final 17 gamesand led ASU in scoring in 12 of the final 14 contests.
RECRUITS GET HIGH MARKS IN SUMMER: ASU's incoming recruiting class isranked 14th (tied with Indiana) in the nation by Clark Francis ofHoop Scoop. ASU added guard Tyrone Jackson of Fresno City College,wing Bryson Krueger of Yavapai College, wing Tim Pierce of HerculesHigh School in Oakland and forward Craig Austin of El Camino HighSchool in San Diego to its roster. Others ranked in the top 15 fromthe Pac-10 include Oregon (eighth) and USC and UCLA (tied for ninth).The rankings were in the June issue of Basketball Times.
DEVIL DATA: ASU was third in the nation in free throw attempts at27.56 per game, behind only Texas Southern (28.3) and Niagara(28.2)...ASU shot 71.4 percent from three at USC (10-of-14) on Jan.17, the fourth-best mark in school history...the Sun Devils used 13starting lineups on the year...ASU shot 73.5 percent from the freethrow line, the fifth-best mark in school history, second-best in thepast 17 seasons and fourth in the Pac-10...ASU went 19-of-20 (.950)from the free throw line against UCLA on Feb. 12, which set theschool single-game mark for 20 attempts...Kevin Kruger provided aspark in the final nine games, averaging 29.0 minutes, 12.4 pointsand shot 27-of-59 (.448) from the three-point stripe. He was theteam's second-leading scorer in those nine games.
AT WELLS FARGO ARENA: The Sun Devils are 29-16 (.644) in the pastthree seasons and are 62-37 (.626) under Evans in his six years inWells Fargo Arena.