UCLA Closes Out 2008 With Four Straight Home Games

Dec. 16, 2008


Coach Howland's Weekly Press Conference

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DATE: Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2008
SITE: Pauley Pavilion (12,819)
TIP-OFF: 8:07 p.m. PT
TALENT: Bill Macdonald (play-by-play) and Don MacLean (analyst)
TALENT: Chris Roberts (play-by-play) and Tracy Murray (analyst)
SERIES: UCLA leads the series 14-2

Junior guard Mustafa Abdul-Hamid tore a ligament in his right wrist in practice earlier in the year and has missed the Bruins' last two games. He will also miss the next game against Loyola Marymount (Dec. 17).

This is the 17th meeting between UCLA and the Loyola Marymount Lions with the Bruins leading the series 14-2. The Bruins have won the last 11 meetings and haven't lost to LMU since dropping a 40-34 decision at home during the 1941-42 season. UCLA is 13-2 against LMU at home and 6-0 all-time in Pauley Pavilion. The last time these two teams met was in Ben Howland's first season, a 69-66 overtime victory in Pauley on Dec. 13, 2003. UCLA blew all of a 14-point lead in the second half, when the Lions closed with a 19-5 run over the final 2:39 to force overtime tied at 60. Cedric Bozeman gave UCLA the lead on a 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds remaining and finished with a double-double of 16 points and 10 rebounds. Dijon Thompson had 15 points and eight rebounds while Trevor Ariza chipped in 14 points and seven boards. Charles Brown led LMU with a game-high 17 points. UCLA won the game, despite shooting 31.7 percent (19-for-60) from the field and 15.0 percent (3-for-20) from three-point range.

UCLA moved up two spots in both polls this week to No. 12 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll and No. 14 in the Associated Press poll, released on Dec. 15, 2008. UCLA has been ranked in the top 25 in the Associated Press poll for 62 straight weeks (since the 2005-06 preseason rankings).

HEAD COACH Ben Howland WINS NO. 300
UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland earned his 300th victory of his career (14th season) with the 72-54 win over DePaul in the 15th Annual John R. Wooden Classic (Dec. 13, 2008). He is currently 300-146 (.673), which ranks 25th on the winningest active coaches list by percentage and 68th on the active list by victories. Howland's first career victory was his first game at Northern Arizona in 1994, a 71-69 victory over New Mexico Highlands. His 100th career victory came in his second season at Pittsburgh with the 77-65 win at home over Seton Hall (Jan. 13, 2001). His 200th win came in his third season at UCLA with the 56-37 home win over Delaware State (Nov. 19, 2005).

UCLA sports an all-time record of 599-89 (.871) in Pauley Pavilion, which is in its 44th season as the home of the Bruins. UCLA has won 30 straight over unranked non-conference foes at home.

The UCLA Bruins posted their 32nd straight home win over an unranked nonconference foe with the 85-67 victory over Cal State Northridge. The last unranked nonconference team to win in Pauley was Notre Dame (75-60) on Feb. 28, 2004.

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