Runnin' Utes Clash with Huskies in Opening Round of Pac-12 Tournament Once Again
SALT LAKE CITY – With the regular-season all wrapped up, the Utah men's basketball team turns its attention towards the sixth-seeded Washington Huskies for its Pac-12 Men's Basketball Tournament opener this Wednesday, March 9, at 9:30 p.m. (MT) / 8:30 p.m. (PT) local inside T-Mobile Arena.
Ted Robinson will have the call alongside NBA and UCLA legend Bill Walton in the third meeting of the year between the Runnin' Utes and Huskies while former Oregon All-American Jordan Kent roams the sidelines.
CRAIG SMITH IN CONFERENCE TOURNAMENTS
Since he started his head coaching career at the Division I level, Craig Smith is 12-5 overall in the Summit League and Mountain West Conference Tournaments. In those 17 games, 2-4 overall when his teams are the lower seeds with two of those losses coming in the title game – once at South Dakota (2018) and once at Utah State (2021).
Summit League (South Dakota): 4-4
2015 (#5-Seed): 1-1 (Semifinals)
2016 (#8-Seed): 0-1
2017 (#1-Seed): 1-1 (Semifinals)
2018 (#2-Seed): 2-1 (Championship) [Lost to #1 South Dakota State]
Mountain West Conference (Utah State): 8-1
2019 (#2-Seed): 3-0*
2020 (#2-Seed): 3-0*
2021 (#2-Seed): 2-1*
*Denotes 1st Round Bye
PAC-12 TOURNAMENT NOTES
Since joining the Pac-12, here are some numbers surrounding the Utes in the conference tournament…
- Overall record in the Pac-12 Tournament: 7-10
- Record since Pac-12 Tournament moved to Las Vegas: 7-9
- Record since Pac-12 Tournament moved to T-Mobile Arena: 1-5
- Overall record inside T-Mobile Arena: 2-5 (vs. #6/6 Kentucky, 69-66 & vs. Washington 98-95)
- Record in the Pac-12 Tournament when Utah is the higher seed: 5-3
- Record in the Pac-12 Tournament when Utah is the lower seed: 2-7
UTAH'S RECORD BY SEED (YEARS)
No. 1: N/A
No. 2: 2-1 (2016)
No. 3: 1-3 (2015, 2018, 2019)
No. 4: 0-1 (2017)
No. 5: N/A
No. 6: N/A
No. 7: 1-1 (2021)
No. 8: 1-1 (2014)
No. 9: 0-1 (2020)
No. 10: 2-1 (2013)
No. 11: 0-1 (2012, 2022)
No. 12: N/A
UTAH'S RECORD VS. THE FIELD
TOURNAMENT ROUND APPEARANCES BY YEAR
Round 1: 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
Round 2: 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021
Semifinals: 2013, 2015, 2016
THIS SEASON AGAINST THE HUSKIES
In the two games this season against Washington, Branden Carlson leads the team in scoring with a 15.0 points average to go with 7.0 boards per game and a .571 shooting clip. Marco Anthony is averaging a double-double against the Huskies posting 11.5 points per game and 11.0 rebounds per game. Meanwhile, the freshmen duo of Lazar Stefanovic and Gabe Madsen are each averaged 10.5 points against UW with Rollie Worster averaging 10.0 points against UW. Madsen also leads the team with a .636 (7-of-11) shooting clip against the Huskies – including 5-of-7 made field goals coming from 3-point range.
On the flip side, Terrell Brown Jr. paced the Huskies with a 22.5 points average in the two games against Utah while Jamal Bey averaged 12.0 points. Cole Bajema shot a team-high .583 (7-of-12) shooting clip the two games versus the Utes while averaging 10.5 points. Daejon Davis rounded things out averaging 10.0 points and 5.0 rebounds.
For the second-straight year, the Utes will open the Pac-12 Tournament against Washington. Last year's opening-round match-up saw Utah fend off a surging Husky team down 19 with 7:36 left to go rally down to the very end before the Utes held on for the 98-95 victory. The 98 points was the most points scored by Utah in the conference tournament since joining the league while the 193 combined points was the highest total in Pac-12 Tournament history.
Timmy Allen led a corps of six Utes that scored in double-figures with 24 points and 11 rebounds on 8-of-13 shooting while Alfonso Plummer added 21 points on 6-of-11 shooting from 3-point range. Branden Carlson added 13 points and five boards behind a perfect night from the floor (5-of-5). Mikael Jantunen and Pelle Larsson each chipped in with 12 points apiece while Riley Battin rounded things out with 11 points.
Both teams were hot from the floor with Utah finishing the game shooting 60.4-percent (32-of-53) from the field and 53.8-percent (14-of-26) from down range while Washington shot a .529 clip (37-of-70) from the field.
Should the Runnin' Utes defeat the Huskies, they will take on the third-seeded USC Trojans in a rematch of last year's quarterfinals on Thursday, March 10, at 9:30 p.m. (MT) / 8:30 p.m. (PT) local on FS1. Joe Davis will have the call in the final quarterfinal game of the night alongside Casey Jacobsen while Kevin Burkhardt roams the sidelines.
For the latest news and information on the Runnin' Utes men's basketball program, fans can stay connected online at www.UtahUtes.com and on social media by following @UtahMBB on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.