Arizona-UCLA scouting report

2014-03-15T00:00:00Z 2014-03-15T00:32:26Z Arizona-UCLA scouting report Arizona Daily Star
March 15, 2014 12:00 am

UA scouting report: Arizona (30-3) vs UCLA (25-8); TV: Fox Sports 1; radio: 1290-AM

Probably starters

ARIZONA

G T.J. McConnell (6-1 junior)

G Gabe York (6-3 sophomore)

F Nick Johnson (6-3 junior)

F Aaron Gordon (6-9 freshman)

C Kaleb Tarczewski (7-0 sophomore)

UCLA

G Norman Powell (6-4 junior)

G Jordan Adams (6-5 sophomore)

G Kyle Anderson (6-9 sophomore)

F David Wear (6-10 senior)

F Travis Wear (6-10 senior)

How they match up

How they got here: UCLA finished in second place in the Pac-12 with a record of 12-6 and, like the Wildcats, coasted through their first two Pac-12 tournament games. The Bruins beat Oregon 82-63 in the quarterfinals and Stanford 84-59 in the semifinals on Friday.

The season series: Thanks to the Pac-12’s unbalanced schedule, the Bruins and Wildcats met only at Pauley Pavilion during the regular season, and the

UA squeaked out a 79-75 victory on

Jan. 9, going ahead for good after Nick Johnson nailed a floater in the lane with 1:27 left.

What’s new with the Bruins: UCLA lost three of five to finish out the regular season, including a head-scratcher at Washington State on March 8, but one of the losses was at Stanford, and another came against Oregon when leading scorers Anderson and Jordan Adams were suspended. The Bruins avenged that loss to Oregon on Thursday, crushing the Ducks 82-63.

Key players

UCLA

Kyle Anderson

The versatile sophomore point guard, who beat out T.J. McConnell and others to become a finalist for the Bob Cousy point guard of the year award, had 16 points, 11 rebounds and six assists against UA in January. That’s hardly unusual.

Arizona

Nick Johnson

The Wildcats often follow the lead of their junior guard’s intensity, and there’s no doubt Johnson will be fired up today, after having been a part of a disappointing Pac-12 tournament final loss (to Colorado in 2011-12) and semifinal loss (to UCLA last season).

Sidelines

Another chance

Arizona fans weren’t the only ones disappointed that UCLA didn’t come to McKale Center this season because of the Pac-12’s unbalanced schedule.

So were the Bruins.

“We missed going to Arizona, because that’s a really fun environment to play in,” UCLA forward David Wear said. “We’re looking forward to getting another crack at them.”

Then again, the revenge motive can be spun two ways: Although the Wildcats beat UCLA in January this season, it was the Bruins who ousted the Wildcats from the Pac-12 tournament semifinals last season.

And for UCLA guard Jordan Adams,

that semifinal game last year was also

the one in which he broke his foot, which led to UA getting a preferential NCAA

tournament placement over the Bruins, who lost their first NCAA tournament game.

“It was tough, but we feel this year they’re a new team, and we’re a new team,” Adams said. “They’re playing well, and we’re playing well. So we’re excited to see what happens.”

McKale North

In both look and volume, the crowd for Friday’s sold-out semifinal wasn’t a whole lot different than the Arizona Wildcats’ experience at home.

In the 12,916-seat Grand Garden, at least two-third of the fans were rooting for the Wildcats, and UA coach Sean Miller noticed.

His entire team noticed.

“It’s like we’re playing in McKale right now; our fans are so amazing,” Miller said. “They’ve traveled everywhere in this country to watch us this year. We felt them in New York City. We felt them in Michigan. We felt them in San Diego really early on (a Nov. 14 game at San Diego State University), and many of our Pac-12 stops they’ve been there.

“Right now, in Vegas, they’re in full force. I believe we feed off of them.”

Postseason push

Jordin Mayes may have had an up-and-down career at Arizona, but he’s been at his most reliable in the postseason.

He has averaged six points in 11.5 minutes over two Pac-12 tournament games so far, adding two rebounds and an assist to his six points Friday.

“I’m gonna go out there and play my hardest,” Mayes said. “It felt real good. I got a little rhythm and took open shots.”

Numbers game

3 Appearances in the Pac-12 tournament championship game for Arizona in the past four seasons

4 Straight wins by Arizona over

Colorado

27.6 Percent shooting Arizona has given up in two Pac-12 tournament games this season

Compiled by Bruce Pascoe

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Pac-12 basketball standings

  Conference Overall
Team W L T PCT W L T PCT
Arizona 0 0 0 0.000 11 0 0 1.000
Washington 0 0 0 0.000 9 0 0 1.000
California 0 0 0 0.000 9 1 0 0.900
UCLA 0 0 0 0.000 8 3 0 0.727
Oregon 0 0 0 0.000 7 3 0 0.700
Oregon State 0 0 0 0.000 7 2 0 0.778
Utah 0 0 0 0.000 7 2 0 0.778
Arizona State 0 0 0 0.000 6 4 0 0.600
Stanford 0 0 0 0.000 6 2 0 0.750
Colorado 0 0 0 0.000 6 3 0 0.667
USC 0 0 0 0.000 6 4 0 0.600
Washington State 0 0 0 0.000 4 6 0 0.400

AP Top 25


Pac-12 basketball schedule

Teams Date Time
DePaul at
Oregon State
12/18
Eastern Washington at
California
12/19
Arizona at
UTEP
12/19
Delaware State at
Oregon
12/20 1:00 pm
Lehigh at
Arizona State
12/20 7:00 pm
Oklahoma at
Washington
12/20 7:00 pm
DePaul at
Colorado
12/22 2:30 pm
UC-Santa Barbara at
Oregon
12/22 7:00 pm
Tulane at
Washington
12/22 9:00 pm
Detroit at
Arizona State
12/23 1:00 pm
Stanford at
Texas
12/23 5:00 pm
South Dakota State at
Utah
12/23 7:00 pm
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