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USC Men's Basketball To Play Season's First True Road Game At Arizona Thursday

Jan 5, 2021

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The USC Trojans (6-2, 1-1) will play at the Arizona Wildcats (9-1, 3-1) at the McKale Center in Tucson, Ariz. on Jan. 7 at 6:00 p.m. PT. The game will air on the ESPN2 with Dan Shulman and Jay Bilas calling the action.

FACING ARIZONA -- Arizona (9-1, 3-1) is coming off a double-overting 86-82 win at Washington State on Jan. 2.  The Wildcats have won four consecutive games and are 7-0 at home this season.  James Akinjo (14.2 ppg) , Jemarl Baker Jr. (13.7 ppg), Bennedict Mathurin (10.6 ppg) and Jordan Brown (10.2 ppg) all are averaging double figures in scoring.  USC trails in the all-time series with Arizona 44-68*, but has won three of the last four games.  USC has lost its last 10 games at the McKale Center, winning last during the 2008 season, but that game was later vacated due to NCAA penalty.  USC also won at Arizona in the 2007 season which snapped a 21-year losing streak in Tucson.  

   * each team had one win vacated due to NCAA penalty, original record 45-69

USC ROUTS UTES FOR FIRST PAC-12 WIN  -- USC got the new year off to a good start with a 64-46 home win over Utah on Jan. 2.  USC jumped out to a 20-4 lead 7 minutes into the game, only to have the Utes go on a 23-6 run over the next 10 minutes to take a 27-26 lead with 3 minutes remaining before halftime.  USC regrouped to outscored Utah 6-1 before the break to take a 32-28 halftime lead.  The Trojans then clamped down on defense in the second half, holding Utah to 4 of 30 shooting (13.3 percent) and a total of 18 points.  Tahj Eaddy led four Trojans in double figures with 18 points and Drew Peterson had a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds.   

ARIZONA STATE ON DECK -- USC's next game will be at Arizona State (4-3, 1-0) on Jan. 9 in Tempe, Ariz. at 5 p.m. MT.  ASU will host UCLA on Jan. 7 before facing the Trojans.  Freshman Josh Christopher and senior Remy Martin lead the Sun Devils in scoring with a 16.9 points per game average. USC leads the all-time series with ASU, 55*-42.  The teams split the 2019-20 season series with each team winning its home game.  They also have split the last 10 meetings with every game being decided by 10 points or less, six by three points or fewer.  USC has lost its last seven games in Tempe.

    * 2 wins in 2008 later vacated due to NCAA penalty, original record 57-42.

MAGIC MARKER --  With the 64-46 win over Utah on Jan. 2, USC is now 75-4 in its last 79 games when holding the opposition to under 70 points scored dating back to Feb. 28, 2015.

DOING IT WITH DEFENSE -- USC has held its opponents to 35.3 percent shooting this season, fourth-best in the country. The 41.7 shooting percentage by Colorado on Dec. 31 was just the second time all season USC's opponent shot better than 40 percent from the field (California Baptist - 45.1).  

USC HOSTING BLOCK PARTY -- USC has had 46 blocks in its first eight games for an average of 5.8 blocks per game.  That average ranks seventh in the country in that category.  Freshman Evan Mobley is averaging 2.9 blocks per game, 13th in the country and first among freshmen.

EFFICIENT OFFENSE -- USC is fourth among Pac-12 with an 76.4 scoring average and has the third-largest scoring margin among Conference teams (+13.9).  USC also leads all Pac-12 teams with a 48.2 shooting percentage this season.

EVAN MOBLEY NEAR THE TOP OF THE PAC -- USC freshman forward currently ranks among the Pac-12's top players in scoring (11th, 15.0 ppg), rebounds (3rd, 8.0), field goal percentage (3rd, .587) and blocks (1st, 23).

IT'S A TEAM GAME -- Eight Trojans have already had at least one game of 10 points scored or more this season.  Evan Mobley leads the team in scoring and has reached double figures in 7 of 8 games, while Tahj Eaddy is second on the team with six games scoring 10 or more points.

PLAYING PAINT BALL -- USC has outrebounded its opponents 332-277 through the first eight games and has outscored the opposition 280-192 on points scored in the paint.


LIKE NIGHT AND DAY --  In its six wins, USC is shooting 51.7 percent from the floor (183-for-354) and in its two losses is shooting 37.2 percent (42-for-113).  USC has also outrebounded the opposition in all six of the wins (69 total rebounds) and was outrebounded in both of its losses (14 total rebounds).

A NEW DAY HAS DAWNED -- With the turnover to USC's roster since last season and the injury to Ethan Anderson, 79.2 percent (484 points) of USC's 611 points scored this season have come from players who did not suit up for USC during the 2019-20 season.