UABK scouting report

2014-03-02T00:00:00Z UABK scouting reportBy Bruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

stanford (18-9, 9-6) at No. 3 Arizona (26-2, 13-2) • McKale Center • 6 p.m. today • ESPNU

PROBABLE STARTERS

ARIZONA

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

G Jordin Mayes (6-3 senior)

F Nick Johnson (6-3 junior)

F Aaron Gordon (6-9 freshman)

C Kaleb Tarczewski (7-0 sophomore)

STANFORD

G Chasson Randle (6-2 Junior)

G Anthony Brown (6-6 junior)

F Josh Huestis (6-7 senior)

F Dwight Powell (6-10 senior)

C Stefan Nastic (6-11 junior)

HOW THEY MATCH UP

• The last time: Arizona won the last of its school-record 21 straight games to start the season in a 60-57 victory over Stanford at Maples Pavilion on Jan. 29. Stanford out-rebounded UA 38-36 in a game that featured 11 lead changes. Nick Johnson hit a jumper, a three-pointer and two free throws in the final 2:36 to keep the Cats perfect.

• What’s new with the Cardinal: Stanford put itself in position for a top-four finish in the Pac-12, which would give it a bye in the conference tournament, with an 83-74 win over UCLA last weekend. But it suffered a 12-point loss at ASU on Wednesday when Chasson Randle fouled out with 7:11 left and ASU’s Jahii Carson scored 26 points. The Cardinal has pulled off wins in the second game of conference road trips three times after losing the first game this season.

KEY PLAYERS

Stanford — Dwight Powell

Arizona limited Stanford’s skilled, mobile big man to 13 points and six rebounds last month in part because of foul trouble, but he’s always a dangerous threat inside. He’s also recovered from a head injury against USC on Feb. 20 that required three stitches.

Arizona — T.J. McConnell

A major reason UA pulled out a close win at Stanford last month was the nearly flawless play of its point guard, who had 11 points, eight rebounds and four assists — with no turnovers.

HE SAID IT

“They have three guys (Powell, Josh Huestis and Randle) who are all huge for them. Powell, to me, is the best NBA prospect in the league. Randle is the (second-best) scorer in the Pac-12, and Huestis is a prototypical NBA three. They play really well in the open court.”

— UA assistant coach Book Richardson, who scouted the Cardinal

CATS NEED TO STAY CALM

For the second time in the Sean Miller era, the Wildcats will have a chance to snip the nets today and claim an outright Pac-12 championship if they beat Stanford. Oregon’s win over UCLA on Thursday already clinched a share of the conference title for the Wildcats.

“It’s something that every team in our position would covet, and we’re the same,” Miller said Saturday. “We recognize what we have (Sunday). It’s important.”

At the same time, Miller was hesitant to get too far ahead because of the Wildcats’ opponent — and because of themselves.

“It’s so important that we be who we are, that we come out with energy and that we don’t make the game any bigger than it needs to be,” Miller said. “Because when you do that, you have a way of not being yourself.”

STANFORD’S OPPORTUNITY

Stanford also has plenty on the line today.

The Cardinal needs a win to stay with Arizona, UCLA and Arizona State among the top four teams in the Pac-12, which would earn them a first-round bye in the conference tournament.

While Stanford is also likely to be in the NCAA tournament field, a win today could move it firmly away from the dreaded 8-9 bracket, where the first-game winner is likely to face a No. 1 in its second game.

But Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins indicated he isn’t calculating all that.

“We just want to be playing well down the stretch,” he said. “If that leads you to the top three or four, great. We just want to keep getting better. That’s been our thing the whole game long.”

BACK AND FORTH

The Pac-12’s media rights deal continues to prove lucrative for charter airline firms. Because Stanford was scheduled to play at ASU on Wednesday and not at UA until today, the Cardinal flew home directly after Wednesday’s game, attended two days of class and then flew to Tucson on Friday night.

They then practiced at UA on Saturday.

Dawkins wasn’t complaining.

“We got home and landed about 1 a.m. (Thursday) but our kids were able to go to class,” Dawkins said.

“We still got here a day early, and we have all day (Saturday).”

NUMBERS GAME

8 Straight wins by UA over Stanford

13 Pac-10/12 championships Arizona has won or shared. The Wildcats can win the title outright for the 11th time with a win today over the Cardinal.

23.8 Randle’s career shooting percentage against Arizona over three games

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 12 0 0 1.000
California 0 0 0 0.000 10 1 0 0.909
Washington 0 0 0 0.000 9 0 0 1.000
UCLA 0 0 0 0.000 8 4 0 0.667
Oregon 0 0 0 0.000 8 3 0 0.727
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
Eastern Washington at
California
12/19 67-78
Arizona at
UTEP
12/19 60-55
Delaware State at
Oregon
12/20 70-83
Lehigh at
Arizona State
12/20 7:00 pm
Oklahoma at
Washington
12/20 7:00 pm
USC at
Boston College
12/21 2:00 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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