UCLA Prepares to Face Pepperdine on Friday in San Diego
SAN DIEGO – UCLA returns to the court against Pepperdine this Friday afternoon at San Diego State's Viejas Arena. The Bruins dropped a 73-58 decision to San Diego State on Wednesday in the season-opening contest for both teams.
UCLA has compiled a 19-4 all-time record in the series against Pepperdine. Both programs last faced off on Nov. 19, 2015 (in Pauley Pavilion), with UCLA securing an 81-67 victory. Following Friday's contest, the Bruins are scheduled to return to Los Angeles and face Long Beach State next Monday evening in Pauley Pavilion presented by Wescom (6:30 p.m.).
Venue: Viejas Arena (San Diego)
Tipoff Time: 12:06 p.m. (PT)
Television: Pac-12 Network
TV Talent: J.B. Long (play-by-play), Don MacLean (analyst)
Radio (UCLA Sports Network): AM 570
Radio Talent: Josh Lewin (play-by-play), Tracy Murray (analyst)
SIRIUS / XM Radio Channels: Ch. 133, Ch. 197
SIRIUSXM Internet Channel: Ch. 959
UCLA has won its previous five matchups against Pepperdine (spanning from Dec. 2004 through Nov. 2015). The Waves last defeated the Bruins on Nov. 28, 2001, notching an 85-78 win in UCLA's home-opening game in Pauley Pavilion (after that season's Maui Invitational). Both schools first faced each other in 1944.
VERSUS LONG BEACH STATE
The Bruins have gone 17-1 in the series against Long Beach State. UCLA has registered a six-game win streak against Long Beach State, with the most recent contest taking place last season (the Bruins' season-opener, a 69-65 win for UCLA). Long Beach State defeated the Bruins in Nov. 2009 at the 76 Classic in Anaheim.
WEDNESDAY'S GAME RECAP
Cody Riley finished with 14 points and a career-best 12 rebounds – his third career double-double – on Wednesday in a loss to San Diego State. Riley was 8-for-13 from the free throw line (career high 13 FT attempts). Jaime Jaquez Jr. scored a team-leading 17 points and Chris Smith had 10 points. The Bruins trailed at halftime, 34-28, after having burst ahead by a 6-0 margin and by a 17-11 cushion early in the opening half. Cody Riley's 13 free throw attempts would have been the second highest single-game total by a UCLA player last season (Chris Smith had 15 against Colorado on Jan. 30).
WHO'S BACK AT UCLA?
The Bruins have returned eight of their primary 10 contributors from last season's team. All five starters from the second half of last season have returned (Tyger Campbell, David Singleton, Jaime Jaquez Jr., Chris Smith and Jalen Hill). Also returning for the Bruins are Cody Riley, Jules Bernard and Jake Kyman, as well as Kenneth Nwuba, who took a redshirt year in 2019-20. UCLA has added sophomore Johnny Juzang (transfer from the University of Kentucky) and freshmen Jaylen Clark and Logan Cremonesi. In all, UCLA has returned 88.8% of its total scoring output from last season.
ABOUT CHRIS SMITH
Senior Chris Smith has entered the season as UCLA's most experienced player. He has played in all 98 games for UCLA since the start of the 2017-18 campaign, averaging 7.7 points and 3.6 rebounds per game. Last season, Smith earned first-team All-Pac-12 acclaim, having led the Bruins in scoring (13.1 ppg). He has become the first UCLA player to secure first-team all-league honors in a season (2019-20) and return the next year, since Reeves Nelson in the fall of 2011 (Nelson was a first-team selection in 2010-11, returned in the fall of 2011 and was dismissed from the team in Dec. 2011).
Chris Smith registered career-high percentages across the board last season. He shot 45.8% from the field and saw noticeable increases from the 3-point arc (34.1%) and the free throw line (84.0%). He scored more points last season (406) than he had in his two previous seasons combined (337).
NOTES ON THE BRUINS
- Including the season opener, UCLA is scheduled to play seven games in a 17-day span, through Dec. 11.
- Last season, UCLA went 18-1 when limited the opposition to 73 points or fewer (the loss was at USC on March 7).
- UCLA has returned 86.2% of its total rebounding production and 91.3% of its total assists from last year.
- Jaime Jaquez Jr. has scored in double figures in 15 of the team's last 26 games (since the Chaminade game last season).
- The Bruins won 11 of their final 14 games last season, holding teams to 64.7 points per game in that span.
- Last season, UCLA led all Pac-12 teams in road wins (5) in Pac-12 action (Bruins went 5-4 in nine league road games).
- Including transfer Johnny Juzang, UCLA has nine players who have scored at least 10 points in a college game.
- The Bruins lead the Pac-12 in most returning 3-point production – 87.6% of the team's 3-point shooting returns.
- UCLA brings back six players who have logged at least 19 career starts (Jalen Hill leads that group with 40 starts).
- Nine players on the roster have competed in at least 26 collegiate games (Chris Smith leads that group with 97 games).