Dec. 16, 2003
WSU HEAD COACH Dick Bennett: Washington State Head Coach Dick Bennett is in his first season at WSU...coached at Wisconsin-Stevens Point (1976-85), Wisconsin-Green Bay (1985-95) and Wisconsin (1995-2000)...owns a .639 career winning percentage (459-259)...career highlights include a 1984 NAIA national runner-up finish at Wisconsin-Stevens Point and a 2000 Final Four appearance at Wisconsin...he is 5-2 this season...with the 64-50 win over Montana, Dec. 13, Bennett tied George Blaney for 77th on the NCAA career wins list...Blaney coached at Stonehill, Dartmouth, Holy Cross and Seton Hall during his 30-year career (1968-97).
BENNETT RECORDS QUICK START: WSU is 5-2, matching its best start since 1997-98...With two wins to open the 2003-04 season, WSU Head Coach Dick Bennett became the first mentor to begin his Cougar career 2-0 since Len Stevens in 1983-84.
IDAHO PREVIEW: The Vandals are 2-5, including a 0-4 mark on the road this season...have lost five of six since season-opening 84-60 win over Elon at Guardians Classic in Columbia, S.C...Tyrone Hayes leads Idaho with 13.9 points and 5.6 rebounds per game.
SERIES WITH THE VANDALS: Cougars lead 152-106...WSU won first meeting 28-11 in Pullman, Jan. 13, 1906...Cougars are 90-35 against Vandals in Pullman and have won seven straight home games in the series...last Idaho win in Pullman was 56-52, Dec. 14, 1989...WSU lost in Moscow 62-58 last season despite a team-high 19 points by Justin Lyman.
FRESNO STATE PREVIEW: The Bulldogs are 2-4, including a 1-2 mark at home...Fresno State hosts USC, Friday...four players average double figure scoring, led by Renaldo Major's 14.5 points per outing.
SERIES WITH THE BULLDOGS: WSU leads 7-2...Cougars won first meeting in series 46-37 in Pullman, Dec. 19, 1935...WSU has won two of three meetings in Fresno...Cougars won 69-66 in Pullman last season as Marcus Moore recorded a double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
WSU WIN STREAK: The Cougars have won three straight for the first time since Dec. 1-7, 2001...only Stanford's five-game winning streak is currently better than WSU's in the Pac-10...last Cougar four-game win streak was Dec. 2-20, 1998...last five-game win streak came at outset of 1996-97 campaign.
DOUBLE FIGURE WINS: WSU has won three straight games by double figures for the first time since Dec. 5-20, 1998...last time Cougars won four consecutive games by double figures was Nov. 26-Dec. 7, 1996.
WINNING IN DECEMBER: Washington State is 3-0 in December for the second time in three seasons...last time Cougars were 4-0 in December was 1998-99...last time WSU won its first five December games was 1991-92 when the Cougars began the season 12-0, including 9-0 in December.
WSU ROAD SUCCESS: With the 57-51 win at Alaska Fairbanks, Nov. 22, WSU broke a 27-game road losing streak...previous win was 58-57 at Arizona State, Feb. 8, 2001...Cougars improved to 2-1 on the road with 64-50 victory at Montana, Dec. 13...first win in Missoula since Dec. 11, 1984 after losing last two trips...WSU 3-46 combined last four years on the road prior to this season...last time Cougars had two road wins this early was 1991-92.
FORTY PERCENT EQUALS PASSING GRADE: WSU is 5-0 this season when shooting 40 percent from the field...Cougars shot season-high 51 percent in 73-52 victory over TCU, Dec. 6...Cougars 4-0 when holding opponent under 40 percent from the floor.
SCORING LIMIT IS FIFTY-FIVE: The Cougars have held six of seven opponents this season to 55 points or less...WSU held six opponents to 55 points or less over the last three seasons combined prior to 2003-04...last time Cougars limited six opponents in a season to 55 or fewer points was 1993-94...WSU has held four straight opponents to 55 points or less for the first time since 1987-88...last time Cougars held five straight to 55 points or less was 1981-82.
NO SECOND CHANCES: The Cougars have allowed just 13 points on second chance opportunities during their five wins this season...five of those came in the first half of the season opener against VMI...WSU has not allowed a second chance point in the first half of its last three games...conversely, the Cougars gave up 25 second chance points in their two losses...on the offensive end, WSU is averaging 9.9 second chance points per game, including 13.7 in the last three games.
EIGHT BALLS FROM BEYOND THE ARC: WSU is 4-0 this season when it makes eight or more three-pointers...Cougars made season-high nine in 66-46 win over IPFW, Dec. 1...sophomore Thomas Kelati (Walla Walla), who led the Pacific-10 last season in three-point percentage (.456), leads the Cougars with 19 treys in 2003-04...junior Randy Green (Renton) is shooting a team-best .448 (13-for-29) from beyond the arc.
SLAMMING THE DOOR SHUT: The Cougars are 4-0 this season when leading at halftime...last season, WSU was 6-6 after outscoring its opponent in the first stanza.
COUGARS IN NCAA RANKINGS: Washington State is tied for third nationally in scoring defense, allowing 52.0 points per game...Cougars are tied for 24th in fewest turnovers per game at 12.9.
DEFENSIVE STAT OF THE WEEK: The 18 points given up by WSU in the first half of its 64-50 win at Montana, Dec. 13 were the fewest in any half since Maryland-Eastern Shore scored 17 points in the first half of an 80-54 WSU win, Dec. 9, 2000.
MOORE ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Cougar senior point guard Marcus Moore (Inglewood, Calif.) became 24th player in WSU history to record 1,000 career points at Arizona, Jan. 9, 2003...one of three players in WSU history with 1,000 points, 300 assists and 125 steals...joined Keith Morrison (1983-86) and Bennie Seltzer (1990-93)...currently ranks 15th in WSU career scoring (1,163 points) and needs just seven points to pass Terry Ball (1960-62) for 14th place...fifth all-time at WSU with 345 assists and sixth with 140 steals...named to the BP Top of the World Classic all-tournament team after averaging 16.7 points and 3.7 assists in three games...ranks third in Pac-10 with 2.14 steals per game, sixth in assists (4.29 per game) and 15th in scoring (13.9 points per game).
AYERS EARNS PLAYING TIME: Walk-on Terry Ayers (Pearl City, Hawaii) made his second appearance of the season with three minutes of playing time off the bench at Montana, Dec. 13.
DEN BOER SHOOTING SINKS MONTANA: Freshman Lance Den Boer (Sunnyside) celebrated his 19th birthday with a season-high 11 points in the Cougars' 64-50 win at Montana, Dec. 13...with WSU leading 42-36, Den Boer knocked down back-to-back three-pointers and extended the Cougars' lead to 48-36 with just over six minutes remaining...Montana did not cut its deficit to fewer than eight points the remainder of the game.
SCHLATTER ADJUSTING TO NEW POSITION: Junior Chris Schlatter (Lafayette, Calif.) has moved from a guard to the small forward position this season...he is currently second on the Cougar team with 5.3 rebounds per game...last season he averaged 3.4.
KELATI CONNECTS FROM LONG RANGE: After averaging 2.30 three-pointers per game and leading the Pac-10 with .456 shooting from beyond the arc in 2002-03, junior Thomas Kelati (Walla Walla) is shooting .413 from beyond the arc and is fifth in the conference with 2.71 treys per outing...ranks ninth in Pac-10 with 1.57 steals per game.
GREEN IS HOT: After scoring a season-high 19 points off the bench in the Cougars' 73-52 win over TCU, Dec. 6, sophomore Randy Green (Renton) tallied 18 points as a starter in WSU's 64-50 win at Montana, Dec. 13.
GRANT STRUGGLING FROM THE FLOOR: Sophomore Anthony Grant (Seattle) is off to a slow start in his Cougar career...the guard is 1-for-16 (.063) from the field and 1-for-11 (.091) from three-point range.
GILL CLEANS THE GLASS: Junior Shami Gill (Mission, British Columbia) ranks 10th in the Pac-10 with 7.1 rebounds per game...grabbed 10 boards at Alaska Fairbanks, Nov. 22 and at Southern Utah, Nov. 28...he ranks ninth in the Pac-10...named all-tournament at BP Top of the World Classic.
PATERICK INJURED: Freshman walk-on T.J. Paterick (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) missed WSU's game at Montana, Dec. 13 with a deep right thigh bruise...he has made three starts this season...his status for Idaho is doubtful.
SIMMONS MAKES AN APPEARANCE: Walk-on Isaiah Simmons (Tacoma) played two minutes in the late stages of WSU's 73-52 win over TCU, Dec. 6...he contributed an offensive rebound.
UKEAGU COMES OFF THE BENCH: Senior center Ezenwa Ukeagu (Coral Springs, Fla.) is averaging 6.3 points and 4.0 rebounds off the bench this season.
GARCIA SCORES: Junior transfer center Justin Garcia (Mira Loma, Calif.) has appeared in three games and scored his first points as a Cougar in WSU's 73-52 victory over TCU, Dec. 6.
BELLEGARDE SEES LIMITED PLAYING TIME: Senior center Justin Bellegarde (Ukiah, Calif.) has logged just 45 minutes in seven games this season, including one start...scored season-high six points versus IPFW, Dec. 1.
STARTING LINEUPS: The Cougars have used four different starting lineups in their seven games this season...senior Marcus Moore (Inglewood, Calif.), juniors Thomas Kelati (Walla Walla), Shami Gill (Mission, British Columbia) and Chris Schlatter (Lafayette, Calif.) each started all seven games... invited walk-on freshman T.J. Paterick (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) has three starts...sophomore Randy Green (Renton) has two starts...sophomore Anthony Grant (Seattle), and senior Justin Bellegarde (Ukiah, Calif.) each started one game.
COUGARS PICKED NINTH IN PRESEASON PAC-10 POLL: Arizona is the preseason selection to win the 2003-04 Pacific-10 men's basketball title according to poll of 35 media members who cover the conference...Wildcats garnered 26 first place votes...Arizona is followed by Stanford (seven first place votes), California (one first place vote), Oregon, USC (one first place vote), UCLA, Arizona State, Washington, Washington State and Oregon State.
WSU A TRAVELING TEAM: The Cougars have played in Fairbanks, Alaska, Cedar City, Utah and Missoula, Mont., this season...during its road trips, WSU has traveled over 7,000 miles by plane and bus combined.
GET TO KNOW THE WSU ASSISTANT COACHES: Tony Bennett is the son of WSU Head Coach Dick Bennett...played for his father at Wisconsin-Green Bay...finished collegiate career as Mid-Continent Conference's all-time leader in points (2,285) and assists (601)...ranks as NCAA's all-time leader in three-point percentage (.497)...three seasons with NBA's Charlotte Hornets...selected 35th by Hornets in 1995 NBA Draft...Mike Burns helped Eastern Washington earn NIT bid last season...coordinated Eagles' defense that ranked top three in Big Sky Conference scoring defense during each of his three seasons at EWU...Mike Heideman served as an assistant to Dick Bennett at Wisconsin-Green Bay for all 10 seasons the latter was the mentor of the Phoenix...succeeded Bennett as head coach at UWGB...led Phoenix to 110-95 mark during seven seasons...named 1996 Midwestern Collegiate Conference Coach of the Year.
RADIO: All Washington State men's basketball games will be broadcast over the Cougar Basketball Radio Network...Bud Nameck is in his 11th season calling all the action...games can be heard on KCLK 1430 AM (Clarkston), KCLX 1450 AM (Colfax), KCVL 1240 AM (Colville), KRKO 1380 AM (Everett), KBAM 1270 AM (Longview), KZFN 106.1 FM (Moscow, Idaho), KBSN 1470 AM (Moses Lake), KZXR 1310 AM (Prosser), KYCW 1090 AM (Seattle), KXLY 920 AM (Spokane), KHHO 850 AM (Tacoma), KALE 960 AM (Tri-Cities), KGDC 1320 AM (Walla Walla) and KUSA 980 AM (Yakima).
INTERNET: Cougar men's basketball games can also be accessed via the Washington State athletic department web site at www.wsucougars.com or at broadcast.yahoo.com.
UPCOMING PROMOTIONS: The Washington State football team will be signing autographs from 1:30-2 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 20 on the Beasley Coliseum concourse...first 300 fans in line receive a free bowl commemorative autograph card...admission to the WSU-Idaho game is free to high school students with a valid ASB card...after the game, Cougar men's basketball players Anthony Grant, Lance Den Boer and T.J. Paterick will be signing autographs at Friel Court...the WSU cheer team will hold a cheerleading clinic for boys and girls K-5, from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 20...children attending the clinic receive a Cougar game face tattoo, lunch and a ticket to the WSU-Idaho game at 2 p.m...participants should wear crimson and gray athletic clothing for the game...attendees of the clinic will perform at halftime.