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Men's hoops takes on California

January 25, 2010

60-29 (.674) Past three seasons
The Arizona State's men's hoops team, in its fourth season under 322-game winner Herb Sendek and coming off back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since 1980-81, plays host to the Bay Area Schools this weekend, with first-place California in town for a 6:30 p.m. tip on FOX Sports Arizona and KMVP 860 AM (also XM 194) on Thursday (Jan. 28). ASU (14-6 and 4-3 in the Pac-10) then hosts Stanford on Saturday, Jan. 30, at 2 p.m. on KTAR 620 AM (no television). ASU is one of six teams within one game of the lead of the Pac-10, as Cal leads the way with a 5-2 mark followed by five teams at 4-3. The Sun Devils have held 13 of their first 20 opponents to under 40 percent field goal shooting, as 30 of its past 55 opponents have shot under 40 percent. At the other end of the floor ASU has the tough-to-defend matchup combination of leading the league in three-pointers made per game (8.4) and is second in percentage (.376). That .376 three-point shooting is currently ASU's second-best three-bomb percentage in the past 20 seasons (1988-89 to present) as the 2005-06 team tossed them in from long-range at a .378 pace. In the 23 seasons since the three-pointer has been used (1986-87), only five teams have led the league in both three-bombs made and percentage (Oregon in 2007-08, 2003-04, 2002-03 and 2001-02 and Stanford in 1999-2000).

Pac-10 Conference overall records (2007-10 past three seasons)
1. UCLA 70-23/.753
2. Arizona State 60-29/.674
3. Stanford 58-31/.652
4. WSU 57-31/.648
5. USC 55-32/.632
6. Washington 54-33/.621
7. California 52-33/.612
8. Arizona 50-38/.568
9. Oregon 36-46/.439
10. Oregon State 32-54/.372

Pac-10 Conference league records (2007-10 past three seasons)
1. UCLA 33-10/.767
2. Arizona State 24-19/.558
2. USC 24-19/.558
4. Washington 24-20/.545
5. Stanford 23-20/.535
6. WSU 23-21/.523
7. California 22-21/.512
8. Arizona 21-22/.488
9. Oregon 13-30/.302
10. Oregon State 9-34/.209
Updated 1/25/10

Best tree in the land
Herb Sendek has eight former assistants who are D-I coaches, the best mark of any coach in the nation, ahead of Mike Montgomery and Rick Pitino (seven each). Twelve-year sidekick Mark Phelps earned the Drake spot in the spring of 2008 after serving for 10 years on the staff at NC State and for two years at ASU. Former NC State sidekick John Groce also earned the Ohio University position in the spring of 2008. The others are Jim Christian at TCU (Miami assistant in 1995-96), Charlie Coles at Miami of Ohio (Miami assistant from 1994-96), Larry Hunter at Western Carolina (NC State assistant from 2001-05), Ron Hunter of IUPUI (Miami assistant from 1993-94), Ohio State's Thad Matta (Miami assistant in 1994-95) and Arizona's Sean Miller (assistant at both Miami from 1993-95 and at NC State from 1996-2000).

Sun Devil data
ASU had a four-game win streak snapped by Arizona on Saturday 77-58, as ASU led 20-10 early and 27-25 at the half, but UA made 18-of-24 (.750) from the field in the second half and ASU was an uncharacteristic 17-of-29 (.586) from the free throw line, including just 8-of-15 (.533) in the first the past five games ASU is scoring 32.8 points in the first half while allowing just 24.0 and is holding its opponents to just 32.8 percent field goal shooting (42-128) in the opening 20 minutes...Rihards Kuksiks is averaging 17.8 points and 4.6 boards and Ty Abbott 16.2 points and 5.8 boards in the past five games. Kuksiks is 16-of-34 (.471) from the three-point stripe and is 17-of-19 (.895) from the foul line.

League leaders
The Sun Devils lead the Pac-10 in three-pointers made per game (8.4 with 167 made in 20 games), scoring margin (+12.3 points per game) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.3). They are second in the Pac-10 in scoring defense (55.8 points per game), field goal percentage defense (.391), turnover margin (+3.2) and three-point percentage (.376). They are third in the Pac-10 in free throw percentage (.721).

ASU quickly
After going 8-22 (.267) in Coach Sendek's first year (2006-2007), the Sun Devils are 60-29 (.674) and giving up just 60.4 points per game in his 119 games. ASU has had to replace two NBAers from last year in first-team consensus All-American James Harden and first-team All-Pac-10 pick Jeff Pendergraph, but returns three starters from last year's team in point guard Derek Glasser (2009 Pac-10 All-Tournament Team), Rihards Kuksiks (third-best returning three-point shooter in the nation according to NCAA minimums) and Ty Abbott (121 career threes and 65 starts entering this year). ASU has had eight players lead or share the team lead in scoring this year and has five players who have had a 20-point game in their career.

Another solid D note
Seven of ASU's opponents have had season-lows in points against ASU...Duke is averaging 82.8 but had 64 on Nov. 25. Duke had a season-low 60 in its Jan. 23 win over Clemson...San Diego State is at 71.1 ppg. but had just 52...UW is at 78.6 but and had 51, while WSU is at 76.7 and had 46...UCSB is averaging 66.6 ppg. but ASU held the Gauchos to 42...others with season-low in against ASU are USC (47), Delaware State (34) and Western Illinois (35)...six players have had a 20-point game against the Sun Devils this year...Jimmer Fredette of BYU, who had 49 at Arizona and is averaging 20.2 points, was 1-of-13 from the field against ASU and missed all his three-point attempts on Dec. 8 in Provo...WSU's Klay Thompson, averaging 22.3 points, was 3-of-11 from the floor and posted nine points on Jan. 10.

60 in three is noteworthy
ASU has produced 60 wins in the past two-plus seasons, just the seventh-time in school history a three-year period has produced 60 wins.
1960-61 TO 1962-63 (73-13/.849)
1961-62 TO 1963-64 (66-18/.892)
1959-60 TO 1961-62 (63-17/.788)
1972-73 TO 1974-75 (62-22/.738)
1978-79 TO 1980-81 (62-25/.712)
1973-74 TO 1975-76 (60-23/.723)
2007-08 TO 2009-10 (60-29/.674)

Against California
ASU leads the series with Cal 35-32, including a 21-10 (.677) mark in Tempe in Pac-10 play that is its best against any current Pac-10 team...Herb Sendek is 4-4 vs. California and 3-3 at ASU, as he also faced the Golden Bears twice in NCAA Tournament action...Herb Sendek's last win at NC State was a 58-52 NCAA Tournament win over California on March 17, 2006 in Dallas... the visiting team has won eight of previous 10 in the series...ASU jumped out to a 42-26 halftime lead in its March 7 83-66 win over California in Tempe in the last meeting...Cal shot an ASU opponent's season-best 58 percent from the field (29-of-50) in its 81-71 win vs. ASU on January 4...its 29 field goals and its 52.9 percent from the three-point stripe (9-of-17) also were ASU opponent season highs.

At home
ASU is 38-10 (.792) at home in the past three seasons, including a 15-5 mark in 2007-08 that set the ASU mark for total home wins. ASU is 23-5 (.821) the past two seasons at home, including 11-2 (.846) this season. Ten of ASU's 27 home wins in the two seasons prior to this year (2007-2008 and 2008-2009) were against teams that would play in the NCAA Tournament that same season.

Hey Abbott
Ty Abbott missed just one game after having arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in mid-October and earned Pac-10 Player of the Week honors after the sweep of the Washington schools Jan. 8-10. He scored 17 points in each win...grabbed 11 defensive rebounds vs. Washington State on Jan. 10, the most defensive boards by a Sun Devil since Jeff Pendergraph had 11 vs. USC on Feb. 18, 2007, a span of the past 93 the past 10 games he is averaging 13.5 points while shooting 20-of-26 (.769) from the free throw line and is averaging five boards...has played in 88 games in his three-year career and started in 77...when Abbott scores in double digits, ASU is 32-8 (.800), including 20-4 (.833) the past two seasons.

Jamelle all over the stat sheet
Junior Jamelle McMillan has been all over the stat sheet in his past eight games, although he missed the Oregon State game on Jan. 16 game and the Arizona game (Jan. 23) due to a left foot injury. In that time he is averaging 32.8 minutes, 9.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.3 assists and has 12 steals and just 11 turnovers. He is shooting 26-of-62 (.419) from the floor in that time and 13-of-37 (.351) from the three-point stripe.

The point guard
Senior Derek Glasser is averaging 10.4 points and is shooting 90.5 percent from the free throw line (67-of-74) this year, second-best in the league...also second in the league in assists per game (5.1) and is second in assist-to-turnover ratio at 2.2 (101 assists and 44 turnovers)...already is the ASU career assist record holder with 494, topping the mark held by the late Bobby Thompson, who had 454 from 1983-87, and his 249-of-295 (.844) shooting from the free throw line currently is the best in school history...posted a career-high 24 points in the Nov. 27 win over LSU...has played 19 turnover free games in his 118-game career...has four 20-point games in his career.

ASU set the school record for three-pointers made (288) and attempted (778) in 2008-2009. ASU's top three returning scorers entering this year had combined to make 392 three-pointers in their careers and all three are in the ASU career top-10 list, as Rik Kuksiks has 184 (fifth), Ty Abbott 159 (seventh) and Derek Glasser 131 (tenth). ASU is shooting 167-of-444 (.376) from the arc, with nine Sun Devils hitting three pointers, including four who have made at least 24.

Eric Boateng already has his degree in Global Studies, speaks a little bit of Chinese and an African dialect called ³Twi² and is taking advantage of the 24-hour access for ASU¹s new practice facility (Weatherup Center). He is averaging 7.4 points and 6.3 boards while shooting 63.3 percent from the field (57-of-90), as he has scored 147 points after scoring 57 all of last year. He posted his first double-digit scoring game since Nov. 30 with 11 points vs. Washington State on Jan. 10 and also grabbed nine boards. He also had nine boards vs. No. 24 Washington on Jan. 8. He is 16-of-26 (.615) from the field in Pac-10 play.

Impressive Frosh
Freshman Trent Lockett, a native of Golden Valley, Minn., comes from one of the top high school programs in the country (Hopkins High School in Minnetonka, Minn.) and has made a solid first impression. He is averaging 7.4 points, 3.5 boards and is shooting 51-of-100 (.510) from the field. He also has a tendency to make "splash" plays as his leaping ability has allowed him to grab 23 offensive rebounds. In the past five games he has taken 23 free throws (making 16 for .696). He has six double-figure scoring games on the year with a high of 19 vs. San Francisco on Nov. 20.

Rememeber this about the defense
Just how good has the Sun Devil defense been since Herb Sendek took over? ASU has given up less than 62 points per game in each of the past three seasons . In the 18 Pac-10 games last year, no team defended shooters better than ASU, as it led the league in field goal percentage defense (.421) and three-point defense (.310). Those that followed Coach Sendek's career won't find it a big shocker. In his 10 seasons in Raleigh, NC State led the ACC in scoring defense four times and held opponents to just 54.7 points per game in 1996-97, an ACC record. Last year's 60.5 points per game allowed was the lowest by ASU since the 1949-50 team gave up 59.8. ASU is currently giving up 55.8 points per contest.

Glasser making run at ASU freebies
Derek Glasser not only set ASU'S career assist mark, he also is making a run at the school free throw record. Glasser is at 84.4 percent (249-of-295), a shade better than Alex Austin¹s .815 from 1986-90. He also has a chance to become the first Sun Devil with 1,000 points (902) and 500 assists (494).

ASU career free throw percentage
1. Derek Glasser, 2006-10, 84.4 (249-of-295)
2. Alex Austin, 1986-90, 81.5 (255-of-313)
3. Rick Taylor, 1974-78, 81.4 (253-of-311)

The shooter
Junior Rihards Kuksiks is the third-best returning three-point shooter in the nation according to official NCAA statistics. Kuksiks was 93-of-210 from the arc, eighth in the nation. Only Jared Stohl of Portland (89-of-195 for .456) and Brandon Hazzard of Troy (83-of-185 for .449) were returners with better net swishing digits than the Latvian native. He shot .420 from the three-point stripe in the 16 games against NCAA Tournament teams last year and is 22-of-45 (.489) in the past seven games against ranked opponents. He was clutch in close games last year, as ASU played four games of two points or less (and went 3-1), and Rik was 14-of-30 (.467) from three. He averaged 10.3 points (third-best on the team) and his 93 three-pointers is the third-best in school history, while the 44.3 percent shooting is tied for the fourth-best. He has made 184-of-449 (.410) three-pointers in his career and matched career-highs in points (27) and rebounds (nine) in the Jan. 8 win over No. 24 Washington. He has four 20-point games on the year with 27 vs. USF, 24 vs. UCSB, 27 vs. Washington and 25 at Oregon.

The head coach
Herb Sendek, 68-51 (.571) at ASU, is in his 17th season as a head coach in 2009-2010 and has averaged 19.2 wins per season. He led the NC State Wolfpack to five straight NCAA appearances from 2002-06 and is now 322-208 (.608) in 17 seasons and was 191-132 (.591) at NC State. The 46-year-old (born Feb. 22, 1963) Pittsburgh, Pa., native remains the third-youngest coach in the Pac-10. Only Duke posted more ACC wins (regular season and ACC Tournament) than NC State's 53 victories from 2002-2006. Another overlooked note is his 10-year stay at NC State. To compare it to the Pac-10, since the league expanded to 10 teams in 1978-79, only five coaches have coached at their schools for at least 10 years: Lute Olson (24/Arizona), Ralph Miller (19/Oregon State), Mike Montgomery (18/Stanford), Ernie Kent (in his 13th at Oregon) and Ben Braun (12/California).

Minute man
Derek Glasser continues to climb up the ASU career minutes list. Eddie House has the career mark, playing in 124 games from 1996-2000 while notching 4,164 minutes (33.6 minutes per game).

ASU career minutes
1. Eddie House-4,164/124 games/33.6
2. Jeremy Veal-3,980/122 games/32.5
3. Jeff Pendergraph-3,801/126 games/30.2
4. Stevin Smith, 3,657/115 games/31.8
5. Derek Glasser-3,517/118 games/29.8
6. Ron Riley-3,501/116 games/30.2
7. Alex Austin-3,409/113 games/30.2
8. Dwayne Fontana-3,220/110 games/29.3
9. Mark Becker-2,862/104 games/27.5
10. Jason Braxton-2,851/120 games/23.8

ASU career starts
1. Jeff Pendergraph, 2005-09, 120
2. Eddie House, 1996-2000, 114
3. Ron Riley, 1992-96, 109
4. Jason Braxton, 2001-2005, 102
5. Alex Austin, 1986-90, 100
6. Steve Beck, 1983-87, 96
7. Derek Glasser, 2006-present, 93