Arizona forward Jamelle Horne tangles with Southern California forward Alex Stepheson for a rebound in the second half. Greg Bryan/Arizona Daily Star

Double daggers

With about six minutes left to play in the first half, UA senior forward Jamelle Horne made a layup and was fouled.

Lying on the court, Horne appeared to look up and briefly lock eyes with USC head coach Kevin O'Neill, who was the Wildcats boss when Horne was a freshman.

Asked if Horne pointed at him - some say Horne pointed in O'Neill's direction - the USC coach said he wasn't sure.

"I don't know, and it wouldn't matter to me if he did," O'Neill said.

O'Neill paused for a second, and prepared a zinger for Horne, who talked openly of professional aspirations when arriving in Tucson.

"I'm waiting for the NBA career to take off," O'Neill said.

Say wha?

Nikola Vucevic criticized his team and himself following Saturday night's game.

How he did it will probably anger some - if not his own mom.

"I felt like we played like women today," the Montenegro-born center said.

It should be noted, too, that two of the three people he was speaking to - one reporter and one sports information employee - were women.

"We didn't play hard at all," he said. "Every single one of us played like women. We can't win like that."

Passionate fan

One week from today, UA coach Sean Miller's hometown team will play in the Super Bowl.

Don't think the coach, a native of Beaver Falls, Pa., doesn't care passionately about the outcome.

"I love the Steelers," he said. "I'm pulling for 'em."

Then Miller turned poetic.

"When you grow up in Pittsburgh - right now it's 15 degrees and you can touch the sky, it's gray - you got one thing going for you. The Steelers.

"Once you watch 'em, you stay with it. Like all Steelers fans, you're in it forever."

Good crowd

The Wildcats set a season high with 14,613 fans at McKale Center on Saturday.

For the second straight game, Zona Zoo was jam-packed. Against UCLA on Thursday, the UA drew 14,528 fans.

"I know I talk a lot about it, but it's unprecedented how much they impact the game and how hard they make our home court for the opponent," Miller said of the fans. "We had a great crowd on Thursday, today, and I, our team, really appreciate how they show up. Especially the students. They've been just great the past couple games."

Sneakers for a cause

Both coaching staffs Saturday wore sneakers as part of Coaches vs. Cancer's important but poorly named "Suits and Sneakers Awareness Weekend."

The event, in which coaches wear athletic shoes, is designed to show support for the American Cancer Society.

The sartorial conundrum every year is tie or no tie?

No one on Miller's bench wore a tie. Miller himself donned a navy-blue coat and gray trousers with shiny new white Nikes. His open-collar white dress shirt at times flared out like John Travolta in "Saturday Night Fever."

The shell-toe shoes had a faint silver swoosh. Assistant coach Book Richardson wore a more flashy pair of white Nikes with magenta and electric blue trim.

O'Neill and his staff, however, wore ties with their sneakers. While the USC staff wore shiny white Nikes, O'Neill stuck with a pair of gray Nike cross trainers to match his navy-blue suit.

Coaches vs. Cancer has raised more than $60 million since its inception in 1993.

He said it:

"It's unfortunate that those guys are (at Arizona) instead of our place, but by the time I got there, everyone was already gone. There's no use crying over spilled milk."

O'Neill, on ex-Trojans commits Derrick Williams, MoMo Jones and Solomon Hill

Baseball teams honored

The Wildcats honored three UA baseball teams at halftime - the 1961 squad and the national champions from 1976 and 1986.

Eight players from the 1961 team that went 41-9 were introduced.

Six represented the 1976 squad, which went 56-17 and was the first Wildcats team in any sport to win a national championship.

The 1986 squad introduced Saturday included former major-league pitcher Gil Heredia and current Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long.

Patrick Finley