This Week in Pac-10 Men's Basketball
March 31, 2008
The UCLA Bruins have advanced to the Final Four for the third consecutive season, and the school's 18th appearance in the national semifinals. The Pac-10 has now reached the Final Four 33 times, and has captured 15 national titles... The Pac-10 has posted a record of 8-5 in the NCAA Tournament this season, and are now 26-15 over the last three years of NCAA Tournament play... The Pac-10 entered the postseason with a record nine teams extending their season. The previous high was seven on four occasions (1990, 1994, 1997, 2002). The six teams appearing in NCAA Tournament action tied a Pac-10 record (also achieved in 2002 and 2007). For the sixth time in Pac-10 history, at least three teams advanced to the Sweet Sixteen.
NCAA NATIONAL SEMIFINALS
Sat., April 5
San Antonio, Texas
UCLA vs. Memphis, 5:07 p.m. CT
North Carolina vs. Kansas, approx. 7:47 p.m. CT
NCAA CHAMIONSHIP GAME
Mon., April 7
San Antonio, Texas
UCLA/Memphis winner vs. North Carolina/Kansas winner, 8:21 p.m. CT
Game times local to site. All NCAA games broadcast by CBS.
NCAA Tournament Record: 98-34. 42nd appearance. Last appearance - 2007Best NCAA finish: NCAA Champions (1964-65, 1967-73, 1975, 1995)
UCLA set a school record with 35 wins this season. It has posted 30 or more wins for a school-record three consecutive seasons. Over the last three seasons, the Bruins have posted a record of 97-16 (.858).
UCLA's 78 points allowed in the first two NCAA Tournament games is the lowest total for the first two games of a Tournament since 1949, when Oklahoma State allowed just 69 in its first two games. The 29 points it allowed against Mississippi Valley State were the lowest ever for a 1st or 2nd Round game. The last time a team was held under 30 points was March 22, 1946 when Oklahoma State held Baylor to 29 points.
UCLA defense has allowed its NCAA Tournament opposition to shoot just 32.8 percent (81-of-247) from the field through four games.
Freshman C Kevin Love earned West Region Most Outstanding Player after he averaged 21.8 points on 32-of-52 (.615) shooting from the field. He also averaged 11.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 4.5 blocks in four West Region games.
Love was named the Pac-10 Player of the Year - just the second time a Pac-10 freshman earned the honor (California's Shareef Abdur-Rahim won it as a freshman in 1996). He scored in double figures in each game this season and has posted 23 double-doubles.
Love has grabbed 406 rebounds this season. That's more than any Bruin since Bill Walton had 506 in 1973. That ranks No. 7 on the season list, just four behind No. 6 Willie Naulls (410 in 1956). His 669 points scored this season ranks No. 11 on the school's single-season list, just four points behind No. 10 Ed O'Bannon (673 in 1995).
Junior F Josh Shipp (1,245 pts) and G Darren Collison (1,133 pts) each went over 1,000 points for their careers.
Collison earned Pac-10 Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors after averaging 20.0 points, 2.7 assists, 1.7 steals and turned the ball over just twice in 110 minutes of action. Collison's three-point percentage of .530 (53-of-100) is the best in school history for one season.
Sophomore F James Keefe turned in the best performance of his career with 18 points, 12 rebounds and four blocked shots in the West Region semifinal win over Western Kentucky.
The Postseason: With six teams selected for the NCAA Tournament, the Pac-10 has sent four or more teams into the Tournament for the 14th time in 15 years... With Oregon at 9-9 and Arizona at 8-10 in league play, this marks the first time a Pac-10 team with a .500 record or sub-.500 record has made the Tournament field... Eight of the 10 Pac-10 institutions have appeared in the NCAA Tournament over the previous three years... Over the last eight NCAA Tournaments, the Pac-10 has posted a 60-38 (.612) record and has had 18 teams reach the Sweet Sixteen... With 15 national titles, the Pac-10 owns more NCAA basketball titles than any other conference. Five different Pac-10 schools have captured the national title... Three different Pac-10 schools have won NIT titles.
Fabulous Freshmen: Four Pac-10 freshman are among the top seven in the league in scoring - USC's O.J. Mayo (20.7 ppg/2nd), Arizona's Jerryd Bayless (19.7/3rd), Arizona State's James Harden (17.8 ppg/5th) and UCLA's Kevin Love (17.3 ppg/7th). Prior to this year, only seven Pac-10 freshman had averaged 17.0 points or more... Three different freshmen scored 30 or more points in a game 11 times this season (four times each by Mayo and Bayless, once by Arizona State's Ty Abbott). The 39-point effort by Bayless against Arizona State (Feb. 9) ranks as the second best output by a freshman in league history... Mayo hit 88 three-pointers this season for a USC freshman record. That total ranks third on USC's single-season list... Harden led the Pac-10 in steals (2.15 spg). His 73 steals are tied for fourth on ASU's single-season list... A record five different freshmen were tabbed Pac-10 Player of the Week this season.
Super Sophomores: California sophomore F Ryan Anderson leads the Pac-10 in scoring with 21.1 ppg. He's the seventh Cal player over the last 15 seasons to lead the league in scoring. In two seasons, Anderson has amassed 1,246 points. He's the first Cal player to score more than 600 points in a season and pull down more than 300 rebounds... Arizona F Chase Budinger also eclipsed 1,000 points (1,067 points) during his second season... Arizona F Jordan Hill led the league in field goal percentage (.620), while USC F Taj Gibson (2.55 bpg) and Stanford C Robin Lopez (2.31 bpg) ranked 1-2 in blocked shots... Oregon G Tajuan Porter collected 83 three-pointers this season, adding to his impressive total of 193 three-pointers in two seasons.
The Rankings: Seven different Pac-10 teams have appeared in the Associated Press Top 25 this season (highest ranking included) - Arizona (17), Arizona State (22), Oregon (11), Stanford (7), UCLA (2), USC (18), and Washington State (4).
Home Sweet Home: The Pac-10 set an average attendance mark with 8,724 fans this season. The previous season-best average was 8,388 fans set during the 2000 season... In non-conference play, Pac-10 teams combined to go 70-11 (.864) at home. However, it was a different story in league play as the home teams were able to manage a 48-42 (.533) record in league play. It was lowest win total for the home team in Pac-10 history, edging the 49-41 record compiled during the 1980-81 season.