USC Men's Basketball Hosts Alabama State Thursday
The USC Trojans (0-1) are hosting the Alabama State Hornets (0-1) at the Galen Center on Nov. 10 at 8 p.m. as part of the Pac-12-SWAC Legacy Series. USC has started 0-1 for the first time since the 2014-15 season and is trying to avoid its first 0-2 start since the 2005-06 season. USC has started 0-1 four times since then and won the second game each time (2006-07, 2007-08, 2013-14 and 2014-15). USC has started 1-1 after two games seven times in the last 16 seasons.
THE PAC-12-SWAC LEGACY SERIES -- The Legacy Series provides student-athletes with educational opportunities focused on social justice and anti-racism to encourage civic engagement and leadership. Through the sport of basketball, the work of the EJI is being highlighted to promote justice, reckoning and healing through their Legacy Museum and Memorial. During the Alabama State visit, the teams had a joint dinner at the Galen Center Founders Room on Tuesday, where several Trojan administrators who went to HBCU's spoke to the teams. There will also be a short video about the series which will run on the video board during the game. USC is scheduled for a return visit to Alabama State next season.
THE 2022-23 TROJANS -- Last season USC tied the school single-season wins record by going 26-8, finishing third in the Pac-12 and advancing to the 2022 NCAA Tournament. The 2022-23 Trojans will be led by a strong returning core of guards Boogie Ellis (12.5 ppg), Drew Peterson (12.4 ppg) and Reese Dixon-Waters (4.8 ppg). In addition, USC returns scholarship players Harrison Hornery (F), Kobe Johnson (G), Joshua Morgan (F) and Malik Thomas (G). The 2022-23 Trojans will also feature the No. 7 ranked freshman class of forward Vincent Iwuchukwu, Iaroslav Niagu and Kijani Wright and guards Tre White and Oziyah Sellers.
USC'S STELLAR STRETCH -- USC won a school-record 73 games over the last three seasons (22 in 2020, 25 in 2021 and 26 in 2022). The previous school record for wins in three consecutive seasons was 71 (2016-18). The three consecutive seasons of 20+ wins also equals the school record for most consecutive 20-win seasons set from 2016-18.
WINNING WAYS -- USC's 73 total wins the previous three seasons tied for the third most among all Power 6 basketball programs, trailing only the last two NCAA champions Kansas (83) and Baylor (81). Also, USC's 160 wins the last seven seasons ranks 13th among all Power 6 conference teams.
ENFIELD LEADING THE WAY -- USC head coach Andy Enfield is in his 10th season at USC and has compiled an 183-119 record. His wins total ranks fourth on USC's all-time wins list, trailing only Sam Barry (260), Forrest Twogood (251) and Bob Boyd (216). Including his two seasons as the head coach at FGCU (2012-13), Enfield has compiled a 224-147 record as a head coach.
NO DRAFT DODGERS HERE -- USC is one of three schools along with Duke and Kentucky to have at least one player selected in each of the last five NBA drafts. The Trojans selected in the last five NBA Drafts are: 2018 - De'Anthony Melton (No. 46), Chimezie Metu (No. 49), 2019 - Kevin Porter Jr. (No. 30), 2020 - Onyeka Okongwu (No. 6), 2021 - Evan Mobley (No. 4) and 2022- Isaiah Mobley (No. 49). USC had 11 players on 2022-23 NBA Opening Night rosters, tied for the fourth-most among all schools behind only Kentucky (27), Duke (25) and UCLA (12).
FACING ALABAMA STATE -- USC is facing the Alabama State Hornets for the first time ever. Alabama State opened with a 111-70 loss at UAB on Nov. 7. Transfer guard TJ Madlock led the Hornets with 25 points in the opener. He is the son of the Hornets' first-year coach Tony Madlock. Alabama State went 9-21 last season and its top returning scorer is guard Isaiah Range (9.0 ppg), who scored 7 points against UAB. Alabama State is located in Montgomery, Ala.
VERMONT ON DECK -- USC's next game will be on Nov. 15 at 8 p.m. when it hosts Vermont (1-0). Vermont opened with an 80-65 home win vs. Brown and will play at Saint Mary's (Nov. 10) and at CS Fullerton (Nov. 13) before facing USC. Guard Aaron Deloney, the 2022 American East 6th Man of the Year, led the Catamounts with a career-high 32 points in their opening win. The Trojans defeated Vermont 64-56 on Dec. 30, 2014 in the only other meeting between the schools.
IT STARTS WITH DEFENSE -- Despite allowing Arizona to make 55.6 percent of its field goals on March 1, the highest percentage by a Trojan opponent since 2019, USC held 22 of its 34 opponents during the 2021-22 season to under 40 percent shooting. USC held the opposition to a 39.0 shooting percentage, 14th in the country. USC held its first 12 opponents during the 2021-22 season under 40 percent shooting in each game and to a combined 35.2 shooting percentage, which was second in the country. The Trojans were the first team in the last 15 seasons to hold its first 12 opponents to under 40 percent shooting in each game. USC opened up by holding FGCU to a 37.5 shooting percentage.
PETERSON & ELLIS RECEIVE PRESEASON RECOGNITION -- USC fifth-year guard Drew Peterson was named to The Sporting News 2022-23 Preseason All-America third team. He was also named to the Naismith Trophy Player of the Year Watch List. Both Peterson and senior guard Boogie Ellis were named to the 2022-23 Pac-12 Preseason All-Conference first team.