Nov. 3, 2011
COUGARS HOST WARRIORS IN EXHIBITION CONTEST:
Washington State University men's basketball is set to host Lewis-Clark State College in an exhibition game, Saturday, Nov. 5 at 6 p.m. at Pullman's Beasley Coliseum. This marks the fifth-consecutive year the Cougars have faced Lewis-Clark State in an exhibition game.
WSU REACHES NIT SEMIFINALS IN NEW YORK:
For the 11th time in school history, the Cougars made a postseason appearance as they claimed a second-seed berth in the 2011 National Invitation Tournament. The NIT appearance marked the fifth in school history and the second in the past three seasons. WSU defeated Long Beach State, Oklahoma State, and Northwestern to advance to the semifinals of the NIT at Madison Square Garden in New York City, but fell to Wichita State, 75-44, in the semifinals. The Cougars set a school record with three postseason victories (3-1), while going the furthest in NIT in school history. WSU also became just the sixth Pac-10 team to advance to the semifinals and the first since Oregon went to New York in 2004.
Ken Bone MAKING COUGAR HISTORY, ENTERING THIRD SEASON:
WSU head coach Ken Bone holds a 38-28 record entering his third season in 2011-12, and already has more wins than eight previous Cougar men's basketball coaches, six of which coached at least two seasons. Last season Bone led WSU to an NIT postseason appearance, making him the third-fastest Cougar coach to reach a post-season tournament. He also has more wins than two of the last three head coaches, two more than Dick Bennett (2003-06, 36-49) and seven more than four-year head coach Paul Graham (2000-03, 31-79).
BEASLEY COLISEUM GETS NEW SCOREBOARD:
The addition of the center-hung scoreboard in Beasley Coliseum, home of WSU men's and women's basketball teams, has been completed and is ready for use in the 2011-12 season. Washington State completed the project in conjunction with Daktronics, Inc. of Brookings, S.D. The new center-hung display features four LED video displays, each measuring 11 feet high by 15 feet wide. With 10 millimeter line spacing, these displays will incorporate clarity and contrast of video images with the capability to present live and recorded video. The displays are also capable of showing custom animations, vivid graphics, up-to-the minute statistics, player highlights and in-game advertising from sponsors. A digital ring display is also part of the center-hung structure and will be able to show a variety of graphics, animations and statistical information.
THOMPSON AND CASTO LEAVE EARLY TO PURSUE PROFESSIONAL CAREERS:
DeAngelo Casto and Klay Thompson both opted out of their senior seasons at Washington State to play basketball at the professional level. Thompson was drafted as the 11th overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft to the Golden State Warriors (the highest NBA Draft pick in WSU history), while Casto signed a one-year contract to play with Antalya BSB in the Turkish Basketball League. Casto ranked eighth in the Pac-10 with 6.8 rebounds per game during 2010-11. Thompson led the Cougars and the Pac-10 and ranked 11th in the country with 21.6 points per game while setting the school record with 733 points during his junior season.
COUGARS RETURN THREE STARTERS; FIVE OF TOP SEVEN SCORERS:
WSU welcomes back three starters and seven letterwinners from the Cougars' 2010-11 team. Marcus Capers, Abe Lodwick, and Reggie Moore appeared in the starting lineup during the majority of last season, en route to a 22-13 finish and a semifinal appearance in the NIT. Senior Faisal Aden, who started nine games as a junior, is the team's returning scorer after averaging 12.7 points per game in his first year with the squad. Moore was fourth on the team with 9.1 points per game, including 10.1 in conference play.
WASHINGTON STATE ATHLETICS' REBRANDING:
Updates to the basketball practice facility were completed this summer as part of WSU Athletics' branding master plan. The gym, located in the P.E. Building between Bohler Gym and Smith Gym, is now easily recognizable with the WSU logo painted on one set of doors and Cougars on the other. Paint, including the WSU fight song, and photos were also added, along with changes to reflect the newly formed Pac-12.
WSU IN THE FIELD OF THE 2011 76 CLASSIC:
The Cougars will compete at the 2011 76 Classic at Anaheim, Calif., Nov. 24-27. WSU will play Oklahoma in the opening game, televised on ESPN2, and will face either New Mexico or Santa Clara depending on the outcome of the game against Oklahoma. WSU is 78-73 in in-season tournaments and has appeared in the championship game of its last six tournaments, winning the John Thompson Foundation Challenge (2006-07), the Cougar Hispanic College Fund Challenge (2007-08) and the Great Alaska Shootout (2009-10). Last year WSU fell to national runner-up Butler in the championship game of the Diamond Head Classic in Honolulu, Hawaii.
MOORE ON PACE TO REACH 1,000 POINTS:
Junior Reggie Moore has 649 career points, just 351 shy of the 1,000-point plateau. He's averaged 11.0 points per game in 59 games over the last two seasons, and given he plays all of the 2011-12 season and the Cougars play at an extra Pac-12 Tournament game, or in the postseason, he is on pace to reach 1,000 points in the Cougars' 32nd game of the season (either the second round of the Pac-12 Tournament or a postseason game). He would become the 32nd Cougar to score 1,000 points in his WSU career.
CAPERS ON PACE FOR GAMES PLAYED RECORD:
Senior Marcus Capers has played 98 games in his WSU career, while the school record is 127 games played set by George Hamilton in 1945 and 47-49. Given Capers plays in all the team's games this season, he will play in his 127th game March 1 at UCLA and his record-setting 128th game in WSU's regular season finale, March 3 at USC.
WASHINGTON STATE APPROACHING 1,500 WINS:
In Washington State's 109 years of basketball, it has compiled 1,495 wins, needing just five wins in the 2011-12 season to reach the 1,500-win plateau. Entering the season the Cougars are 1,495-1,369 all-time for a .522 win percentage.
COUGARS PICKED TIED FOR 10TH IN PRESEASON PAC-12 POLL:
Washington State was picked to tie with Colorado for 10th place (119 points) in the inaugural Pac-12 preseason media poll released by the league at the conference's media day in Los Angeles, Friday, Oct. 28. The poll had UCLA finishing first with 14 of the 38 first-place votes and 421 points. California was chosen second with 13 first-place votes and 405 points, followed closely by Arizona with 11 first-place votes and 404 overall points. Washington (fourth, 355), Oregon (fifth, 282), Stanford (sixth, 255), USC (seventh, 194), Oregon State (eighth, 188), Arizona State (ninth, 148), Colorado (t-10th, 119 points) and Utah (12th, 74) rounded out the poll.
BASKETBALL GIVING BACK TO THE COMMUNITY:
The Cougars spent the majority of the summer of 2011 giving back to the community, participating in various community service activities. In June the team held three camps, including a day camp for kids ages 8-14. In July members of the Cougar basketball team participated in Palouse Habitat for Humanity and Pullman Learning Center's sports week and in August the team made appearances at the Lentil Festival's street fair and parade. The entire team spent time before the Cougars' Sept. 10 football game, signing autographs as part of `family day.' Members of the team visited the senior center Sept. 16., the team held a free Kids' Clinic Oct. 1, members of the team helped with the YMCA's Keys to Success event and several Cougars have visited Jefferson Elementary, helping out in a second-grade classroom.