Freshman center Luke Nevill had 14 points and nine rebounds last Saturday against BYU.
Jan. 9, 2006
Radio: Utah Sports Network (Hot Ticket 700/KALL-AM in Salt Lake City and affiliate stations). On the Internet at www.UtahUtes.com. Get Utah All-Access Here Matt Thomas (play-by-play), Mark Rydalch (analyst) and Bill Riley (host).
Utah Head Coach: Ray Giacoletti San Diego St. Head Coach: Steve Fisher Alma Mater: Minot State, 1985 Alma Mater: Illinois State, 1967 Record at Utah: 37-11 (2nd Season) Record at SDSU: 89-103 (7th Season) Overall Record: 154-94 (9th Season) Overall Record: 273-185 (15th Season)
Series Record: Utah leads 48-9 Utah's Record Home/Away/Neutral: 26-1/18-7/4-1 Current Streak: Utah has won 6 in a row. Last Meeting: Utah won 72-60 on March 5, 2005 in Salt Lake City.
Utah Probable Starters No. Pos. Name Ht. Wt. Cl. Statistics 20 F Bryant Markson 6-7 198 Sr. 14.4 ppg, 5.7 rpg 21 F Shaun Green 6-8 208 Fr. 7.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg 30 C Chris Jackson 6-11 245 Sr. 8.1 ppg, 4.3 rpg 1 G Johnnie Bryant 6-0 190 So. 11.5 ppg, 2.2 apg 3 G Chris Grant 6-3 200 So. 1.7 ppg, 1.4 rpg
San Diego State Probable Starters No. Pos. Name Ht. Wt. Cl. Statistics 33 F Kyle Spain 6-6 205 Fr. 10.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg 34 F Mohamed Abukar 6-10 210 Jr. 12.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg 42 F Marcus Slaughter 6-8 223 Jr. 15.7 ppg, 10.2 rpg 1 G Brandon Heath 6-3 183 Jr. 17.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg 3 G Richie Williams 5-9 150 Fr. 5.3 ppg, 3.6 apg
The Runnin' Utes take on Colorado State at Moby Arena in Fort Collins, Colo., on Saturday, Jan, 14 at 2:05 p.m. (MST). The game time was changed from the orginal 7:05 p.m. tip-off. Utah then plays at Air Force on Thursday, Jan. 19 at 7:05 p.m. (MST) on ESPN2.
Quickly On Utah
The Runnin' Utes (8-5, 1-1 MWC) host Mountain West Conference preseason favorite San Diego State (8-6, 1-1 MWC) on Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. (MST) in the Jon M. Huntsman Center. The game will be broadcast on Hot Ticket 700 (KALL-AM) and the Utah Sports Network.
Utah has won four of its last nine games after beginning the season 4-0. The Utes opened their Mountain West Conference schedule with a 68-49 victory over New Mexico at home last Wednesday night, then fell to in-state rival BYU, 72-60, last Saturday afternoon in Provo, Utah.
Senior forward Bryant Markson (6-7, 198), a preseason all-Mountain West Conference pick, leads the Utes in scoring (14.4 ppg), assists (3.1 apg) and steals (21), and is second in rebounds (5.7 rpg). Markson is shooting 74.1 percent at the free throw line. Sophomore guard Johnnie Bryant (6-0, 190), a junior college transfer in his first season with the Utes, is second on the team in scoring (11.5 ppg) and is averaging 3.0 rebounds per game. Bryant is also shooting 40.5 percent (25-of-60) from three-point range and 91.7 percent from the free throw line. Freshman center Luke Nevill (7-1, 250) is third on the team in scoring (9.1 ppg) and leads the way in rebounding (6.1 rpg). Senior center Chris Jackson (6-11, 245) is fourth in scoring (8.1 ppg) while shooting 77.4 percent from the field and ranks third in rebounding (4.3 rpg).
Utah ranked 28th in the NCAA in rebound margin (+6.7), 70th in field goal percentage (46.9) and 82nd in scoring defense (63.5 ppg) as of Jan. 3. Currently, the Utes have a +6.5 rebound margin, are shooting 46.6 percent from the field and allowing 63.1 points per game.
Utah is playing one redshirt freshman and four other newcomers. Through 13 games, 54.6 percent of the Utes' points, 49.0 percent of their rebounds, 54.6 percent of their assists and 55.7 percent of their minutes played have come from the first-year players.
The Utes are 8-0 when holding their opponents to 68 points or less this season and 0-5 when allowing 69 points or more.
The Utes have a -3.8 turnover margin, averaging 16.4 turnovers per game compared to 12.6 for their opponents. Utah also has a 0.9 assist/turnover ratio (183 assists/213 turnovers). The Utes have improved their turnover numbers in Mountain West play, averaging 12.5 in the two league games compared to 17.1 in nonconference games.
The Runnin' Utes have the most league wins in the six-year history of the Mountain West Conference. Utah is 64-22 (.744) in MWC games, including 40-3 at home and 24-19 on the road. UNLV (49-36) is second, followed by BYU (49-37) and Wyoming (49-37) to round out the top four.
From The Training Room
Senior guard Tim Drisdom suffered a bone bruise in his left knee on Jan. 2 and has not been able to fully participate since them. Drisdom has missed the last two games and is doubtful for the San Diego State game on Wednesday.
Scouting The Aztecs
San Diego State is 8-6 overall and 1-5 away from home this season. The Aztecs have won four of their last six games. After downing Loyola Marymount (84-68) at home on Dec. 31 in their final nonconference game, the Aztecs defeated Colorado State (83-75) at home last Wednesday and lost at Air Force (65-62) last Saturday to open MWC action.
Junior guard Brandon Heath (6-3, 183), a pre-season all-MWC pick by the league's media, leads the Aztecs in scoring (17.6 ppg) while shooting 43.5 percent from three-point range (40-for-92) and 87.5 percent from the free throw line. He is also averaging 2.4 assists per game. Junior forward Marcus Slaughter (6-8, 223), voted the top returning player in the Mountain West, is one of only two players in the conference averaging a double-double. He leads SDSU in rebounding (10.2 rpg) and is second in scoring (15.7 ppg). Freshman guard Richie Williams (5-9, 150) leads the Aztecs in assists (3.6 apg) and is averaging 5.3 points per game. Junior center Mohamed Abukar (6-10, 210), a transfer from Florida who became eligible after the fall semester, has averaged 12.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in four games.
Comparing The Numbers
Utah SDSU Record 8-5 8-6 MWC Record 1-1 1-1 Streak Lost 1 Lost 1 Scoring 65.1 70.6 Scoring Defense 63.1 65.8 FG% .466 .461 FG% Defense .424 .428 3-Pt. FG% .356 .395 3-Pt. FG% Def. .335 .360 FT% .629 .672 Rebound Margin +6.5 +5.1 Assists 14.1 12.1 Turnovers 16.4 16.7 Opp. Turnovers 12.6 14.5 Steals 6.2 6.7 Blocked Shots 1.8 4.0
Aztec Head Coach Steve Fisher
Steve Fisher is 89-103 in his seventh season at San Diego State and has a 273-185 career mark in 15 seasons. Before posting a losing record the last two seasons, the Aztecs went 16-14 in 2002-03 and advanced to the second round of the NIT. In 2001-02, Fisher led SDSU to the Mountain West Conference Tournament title and its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1984-85. With a 21-12 record, SDSU also posted its highest single-season wins total since `84-85.
In his previous college head coaching job, Fisher led Michigan to a 184-82 record (.691), three NCAA Final Fours and eight trips to the NCAA Tournament from 1989-97. He was named the 1992 National Coach of the Year by Basketball Times after leading Michigan's "Fab Five" as freshmen to a 25-9 record and the NCAA title game. As the interim head coach in 1989, he led the Wolverines to a 6-0 record and the NCAA title.
Utah vs. San Diego State Series Notes
Utah and San Diego State meet for the 58th time on Wednesday night. The series dates back to a 98-89 Utah win on Dec. 13, 1975 in Salt Lake City. That was the only game played between the two teams before they became members of the WAC and later the Mountain West Conference.
The Utes lead the all-time series 48-9 and have won 28 of the last 30.
Utah has taken the past six meetings in the series, dating back to the second time the teams met during the 2002-03 season.
Utah swept the 2004-05 series. The Utes won 61-41 on Feb. 5 in San Diego, Calif., and 72-60 on March 5 in Salt Lake City.
The Aztecs snapped Utah's 14-game winning streak in the series with a 58-56 win on Jan. 18, 2003 at Cox Arena. Before then, the Aztecs' last win over Utah was 76-73 on Jan. 22, 1994 in San Diego.
In regular-season conference play, the Utes have a 42-8 advantage. Since the formation of the MWC in 1999-2000, Utah is 11-1 in regular season games.
In Salt Lake City, Utah is 26-1 against SDSU. The Aztecs' only win against the Utes in the Huntsman Center was 74-72 on Feb. 25, 1982. Utah has won 22 consecutive home games over San Diego State since then.
Ray Giacoletti is 3-2 against San Diego State. The first three games took place while he was the head coach at Eastern Washington, all in San Diego. After Giacoletti's Eagles lost the first meeting 86-58 on Dec. 20, 2001, they won 75-70 on Nov. 23, 2002. Eastern then lost in Giacoletti's final season 79-66 on Dec. 20, 2003.
Steve Fisher is 3-12 against Utah, including a 1-12 mark while at SDSU.
Johnnie Be Good
Sophomore guard Johnnie Bryant (6-0, 190) is second on the team in scoring (11.5 ppg), third in assists (2.2 apg) and third in steals (12). Bryant is shooting 41.7 percent from three-point range (25-for-60) and 91.7 percent from the free throw line, and leads Utah in three-pointers made and free throw percentage.
He has scored in double figures seven times this season, including the last two games.
Bryant had a career-high 23 points against BYU on Jan. 7. He shot 9-for-17 from the field, 4-for-8 from three-point range and 1-for-1 at the line in 36 minutes.
Bryant has had three 20-point games this season. He scored 21 points against both Texas State in the season opener and Weber State on Nov. 26.
He had career highs of seven rebounds and five assists (just one turnover) to go with 15 points against Rice on Dec. 3.
Bryant joined the Utes last December after earning his associate's degree. As a first team all-conference pick at San Francisco City College in 2003-04, the Oakland native averaged 15 points and four assists per game.
Tough At Home In The Huntsman Center
Utah is 233-20 (.921) in the Huntsman Center over the past 17 seasons and has never lost back-to-back home games. The U. is 7-1 at home this season. The Utes were 16-0 at home in 2004-05 to record one of seven undefeated seasons in the 36-year history of the Huntsman Center.
Utah has captured 39 of its last 41 games at home. Its two losses during that stretch were to Air Force on Feb. 21, 2004 terminating a string of 15 consecutive home wins, and to Arizona on Dec. 17, breaking a 21-game winning streak.
Dating back to the 1993-94 season, the Utes have won 172 of their last 184 games in the Jon M. Huntsman Center.
In conference home games over the last 12 years, Utah is 79-4 (.952). That winning percentage ranks first in the nation over that period, just ahead of Kansas which is 81-5 (.941).