First, here's a link to the official boxscore and play-by-play if you haven't seen it. 

On the left is a video of Derrick Williams' no-look dunk, after which he said, "I didn't know it went in until the crowd started cheering."

(Germy also has posted a link to this on the previous discussion thread).


Several times during his postgame interview session Sunday, Sean Miller mentioned the Wildcats' next opponent without being prompted

For example, here was how he answered a question about whether the Wildcats could have beaten a team by 48 points a year ago, as they did with Idaho State:

"No, and we could be talking on Thursday in a very different moment," Miller said. "We have a higher starting point in November than we did a year ago. We have a lot of different players who know what it takes. We're more prepared individually for the competition we face.

"But tonight was nothing more than a big win. Thursday is going to be a big challenge. New Mexico State, with what they've done recently, speaks for itself. They've got some great players and certainly will come into McKale with great confidence."

The Aggies, who won the WAC Tournament and played Michigan State tough in the first round of the NCAA tournament last season, opened their season with a win at Louisiana-Lafayette, and they will host Western New Mexico tonight.


Miller said he was happy to see the way Arizona attacked the Bengals' zone defense.

"As the game went on, we really settled in against their zone," he said. "For us to face the zone that's a good thing because there's a lot of teams that mix it in. There were times we had really good ball movement on our end, and took good shots.

Miller later added:

"Although you practice against the zone, you always worry, `Will your players be tentative against the zone?' For the most part, we had good ball movement and attacked the zone the right way. Even some of the shots we missed were good. When we took quick shots it didn't work out for us. If you're going to take a quick shot we want it to a be a great one. It's part of learning curve with MoMo (Jones) and even Kyle (Fogg), we want them to be patient on offense and really play as a team."


Miller said the Wildcats' defense was a product of having 10 active players on hand.

"If you're going to sub and have 10 players when you come to the scorers' table you have to have tremendous energy," Miller said. "Then when you come back in with the players who started the game, you have the intense environment. We're working toward that. I know a year ago we wouldn't have had the same defensive effort even if we played the same team."

But Miller didn't want to jinx himself when talking about the deep bench.

"Everytime you talk about deep bench something happens that doesn't allow you have to have that deep bench," Miller said. "But the one thing about our team, there's not a huge difference between the starting five and the second five.

"Derrick Williams speaks for himself especially on offense, but in given games there will be players coming off the bench who can impact the game as much as somebody who starts. That's not my decision to do that. It's what we watch every day in practice.

An example, he said, was Brendon Lavender, who hit 4 of 5 threes in 11 minutes off the bench.

"Brendon, it's great to see him play with the same confidence he's really had since the start of the year," Miller said. "He's a really important part of this year's team because he gives you that ability to shoot off the bench and he knows what's going on, having played so many games a year ago. That lack of confidence we saw in his first two years, I haven't seen in practice too often. I was really happy for him that he came in. Not only did he shoot the ball and it went in, but just the way he played -- I think it looked the same (as practice). That was one of today's great moments, the way he played."

The soft-spoken Lavender said, "I've always had confidence, it's everything to do with my teammates finding me. So I've gotta thank them."


Miller appeared pleased with MoMo Jones' play in his first game as the Wildcats' starting point guard. Jones had six points on 2-for-5 shooting, had five rebounds, one assist, one turnover and one block.

"It's good to see MoMo take care of the ball," Miller said. "MoMo is under bright lights. The point guard position has been manned by so many great players and the bar is so high. You come to McKale and watch great basketball from that position.

"I want him to be himself. .... I'm confident he'll get better and I also look at Jordin (Mayes) has being able to give us a 1-2 punch at that position. Jordin on offense is really smooth, though we have to continue to work with him on defense."

Miller said he expected Jones would play more than Mayes but probably in less than a 35-5 or 32-8 split in minutes.

"Jordin maybe deserves based on his performance every day to play some and he gives us a different look, because he has a smooth-looking shot," Miller said. "He came make that shot. When you leave high school and you can shoot it, that really helps the transition and you can feel that when Jordin's out there.


Miller also had high praise for Jesse Perry, who had eight points and five rebounds with two steals in just 15 minutes.

"The one flurry we had in the first half when we were at our best, Jesse was in there," Miller said. "You can tell he's pretty skilled player, that that he can handle and pass it. He was everywhere. As we start to define roles, that's what we want from him. We want him to come in the game, play with a lot of energy, know what he's supposed to do on defense and play with great confidence.

"Jesse's someone that a year ago this team didn't have, that other forward off the bench who can come in and do some things. That was his first college game here and he had some good plays. It was good to see."


Solomon Hill equaled his career rebounding high with eight in just 20 minutes. Six of his points and seven of his rebounds came in the first half when UA made its game-changing run to go ahead 41-15 at halftime.

"We're counting on him to do a lot," Miller said. "Rebound, pass, handle the ball under pressure, score -- and he's very versatile in his approach. Solomon Hill, through 28 practices, is our best player every day in practice. The reason is he does everything every day and he really works hard. When he comes to the gym every day he takes it really serious. You just know he's going to continue to develop."

Hill, meanwhile, said he wasn't surprised to see Kyryrl Natyazhko chip in with a three-pointer and Alex Jacobson hit a 19-footer.

"That's things they normally do," Hill said. "Kyryl can shoot the jumper and DWill is sometimes like that in practice. It was just people doing what they normally do. Tree does that too, he shot the best percentage (.833) on the team last season."


Derrick Williams said he "tweaked" an ankle during the game but wasn't worried about it.

"I was going up for an offensive rebound and a guy pivoted on that foot," Williams said. "It's fine now, a little sore."


Other notes:

 The 48-point margin was UA's biggest since UA beat Saint Mary's 101-41 on Dec. 2, 2000. It was also the first game in which the Wildcats had beaten anybody by more than 20 points under Miller.

 The 90 points was the second-most the Wildcats have scored under Miller and the most in a 40-minute game (UA had 91 against Colorado in overtime in last season's Maui Invitational).

 The 42 points Idaho State scored was only five more than the McKale Center record for fewest in a game, set by NAU on Dec. 6, 1989 in an 84-37 UA win.


Nick Johnson enjoyed the game.


Garland Judkins is off to a good start at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.


Jeff Withey is happy being under the radar at Kansas.


Oregon barely reached 3-0 by edging UC Santa Barbara at McArthur Court.



Sportswriter for the Arizona Daily Star covering Arizona Wildcats basketball