Larry Krystkowiak and the Utes embark on their third year in the Pac-12
Dec. 30, 2013
Utah Sports Radio Network
Play-by-Play: Bill Riley
Analyst: Jimmy Soto
Utah Men’s Basketball
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Play-by-Play: Kevin Calabro
Analyst: Matt Muehlebach
Utah vs. Oregon - Quick Hits
• Utah has won 13 in a row at home and 15 of its last 16 at the JHC dating back to last season
• The Utes have now won 10 of their 11 games this season by double figures after a 124-51 win over St. Katherine on Saturday
• This is Utah’s best start to a season since it began the 1997-98 campaign 18-0. That year the Utes went on to play for the NCAA Championship
• Utah was 1-2 last season against the Ducks falling to them in the semifinals of the Pac-12 Tournament after splitting contests during the regular season
• The Utes picked up a victory against Oregon during the last week of the regular season, 72-62. Jordan Loveridge and Brandon Taylor each scored 14 points while the team shot 57 percent from the floor
Loveridge Leading the Way
Utah’s Jordan Loveridge was named Pac-12 Men’s Basketball Player of the Week for play from Dec. 2-8.
The sophomore averaged 24.0 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.0 blocks per game over the course of the week as the Utes recorded wins over Idaho State and BYU, improving to 9-1 in the process.
Loveridge posted a .531 field-goal percentage (17-of-32) and a .438 three-point field-goal percentage (7-of-16) in both contests, as well as hitting 7-of-9 free throws for a .778 percentage from the charity stripe.
In the 74-66 victory over Idaho State, the West Jordan native scored a career-high 27 points and added seven rebounds, four assists and three blocks.
Loveridge followed that performance with 21 points and a career-high five assists in the 81-64 win over in-state rival BYU, which marked Utah’s first win over the Cougars in eight games.
Loveridge currently ranks third in the Pac-12 in rebounding (9.4), ninth in scoring (17.2), 17th in assists (2.9) and 14th in free-throw percentage (79.7).
It marks the first Player of the Week selection for Utah since joining the Pac-12 Conference in 2011.
Utah in the National Rankings
The Utes currently lead the nation in field-goal percentage on two-pointers at 63.6 percent and ranks third in the nation in overall field-goal percentage at 54.2 percent.
Despite placing 113th in three-point field goal percentage offensively, the Utes lead the Pac-12 and sit 10th nationally by limiting foes to 24.4 percent shooting on the defensive end.
Using possession statistics, Utah ranks fifth in the nation in floor percentage, scoring 46.8 percent of the time they have the basketball. That is tempered a little by the Utes ranking 234th in tempo, averaging 68.3 possessions per 40 minutes.
Other areas where the Utes are excelling nationally are assists per game (19.0 - 2nd), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.82 - 1st), and fouls per game (13.0 - 1st).
Wright Having Quite a Debut
The junior transfer has burst on the scene during his first season with the Utes. Delon Wright has scored in double figures during every contest, including a career-high 23 against Fresno State
A few weeks ago, the junior nearly averaged a triple-double against Boise State and Fresno State (19.0 ppg, 9.5 apg, 8.5 rpg and 3.0 spg). He also shot 73.6 percent from the floor and 40 percent from beyond the arc.
Wright ranks 13th nationally with 2.6 steals per contest and is fifth in field-goal percentage, converting 70.7 percent of his attempts.
According to KenPom stats, Wright leads the nation in efficiency at 24.7 and leads D1 in assist percentage (96.4)
Last Time Out
Ahmad Fields tallied 13 points and 10 rebounds for his second double-double of the season, Parker Van Dyke had 11 points and four assists and Dallin Bachynski scored 10 points and grabbed five rebounds as the Utes shot 67 percent from the field.
Delon Wright failed to score in double figures for the first time this season with only six points, but grabbed a personal-best 17 rebounds and six assists against the Firebirds, who fell to 2-13.
This was only Utah’s second largest margin of victory this season. The Utes beat Evergreen State in the opener, 128-44 — the widest margin of any college game this year.
The Firebirds attempted 39 3-pointers, making nine, as the Utes dominated points in the key, 80-14. Utah also had an astounding rebounding edge at 71-12 as the home side grabbed 21 offensive rebounds.
Utes Upset No. 19 Ducks
Last year, Jason Washburn had 20 points and 13 rebounds, and Jarred DuBois added 15 points and several key baskets down the stretch to propel Utah past No. 19 Oregon, 72-62
Jordan Loveridge and Brandon Taylor chipped in 14 points apiece for the Utes who led from start to finish. The Utes held a 31-28 edge on the boards and a 34-21 advantage on points in the paint. They also forced the Ducks to commit 15 turnovers and scored 21 points off those miscues.
Utah shot 57 percent from the floor and the Ducks, despite going to the line 22 times, missed nine tries.
Season Ends in Pac-12 Tournament Loss to Oregon
An historic run by Utah men’s basketball in the 2013 Pac-12 Tournament came to a close as the Runnin’ Utes succumbed to Oregon, 64-45.
Brandon Taylor led Utah with 13 points and Jason Washburn, playing in his final game, finished with 12 points and nine rebounds. Oregon stifled Jarred DuBois and Jordan Loveridge, Utah’s top two scorers, all night. DuBois missed all eight of his shots and went scoreless, while Loveridge had eight points on 1-of-10 shooting.
Utah shot 29 percent for the game, going 5-of-17 from three-point range, and also committed 17 turnovers. Damyean Dotson and E.J. Singler scored 14 points as the Ducks placed four players in double figures.
Utes Rewrite Huntsman Records
Utah demolished Evergreen State in their season opener, 128-44 as the team broke the century mark for the first time since last year’s opener against Willamette (104-47) and in the process captured their fourth-straight season opener.
Utah set a number of records on the evening including most points ever in the Huntsman Center and largest margin of victory against an opposing college. The 128 points were four shy of the all-time single-game mark of 132 scored against Evansville back in 1960.
Utah Adds Three for 2014-15
Utah men’s basketball head coach Larry Krystkowiak announced the addition of three players, Brekkott Chapman, Kyle Kuzma and Isaiah Wright, for the 2014-15 season.
Kyle Kuzma is originally from Burton, Michigan. Scout.com currently lists Kuzma as the 25th best power forward in the nation for his class and ESPN recently featured him as a four-star commit that could potentially be a centerpiece to a team.
Brekkott Chapman is a local product having attended Roy High School in Roy, Utah. The 6-8 forward is ranked No. 12 in the class of 2014 by ESPN and also plays for the Utah Prospects AAU team.
Isaiah Wright, a 6-2 point guard, attends Borah High School in Boise, Idaho. The 2013 Idaho Gatorade Player of the Year was also named the 5A All-Idaho Player of the Year and MVP of the 5A Idaho State Tournament while leading his squad to a state title.
New Utah Basketball Facility
After years of talk about a new basketball facility at the University of Utah, official fundraising efforts for the new $36 million Jon M. and Karen Huntsman Basketball Center kicked off Nov. 25.
The project will include a new basketball practice and training facility for the men’s and women’s teams, as well as renovations to the main arena and strength and conditioning rooms for several other U. sports.
Construction on the new 80,000-square-foot facility, which will be located immediately northwest of the Huntsman Center arena, will get underway in the spring of 2014. Work is scheduled to be completed prior to the 2015-16 basketball season.
While the whole project will cost $36 million, the basketball center price is $26 million. Like the new Utah football center, Hill said half the money will come from private fundraising and the other half from Pac-12 revenue.
Besides the new basketball practice center, which will include two gymnasiums, a sports medicine center, film rooms, locker rooms and a strength and conditioning center, some $6 million will be used for arena improvements for lighting, sound and draping for other sports, as well as two grand entrances for a hall of fame and legacy hall.
Huntsman Center History
The Runnin’ Utes are 553-145 (.792) all-time in their current home, the Jon M. Huntsman Center. Utah’s benchmark 500th win in the 42-year old facility came on Dec. 6, 2008, as the Utes posted a 91-61 blowout of eventual Southeastern Conference champion LSU.
Utah finished 11-7 at home last season and has finished with a winning record in 28 of the 29 seasons played at the Jon M. Huntsman Center, the largest arena in the Pac-12. This season, the Utes are a perfect 9-0 at home
In conference home games over the last 18 years, Utah is 140-34 (.805). Utah got its first Pac-12 victory in school history at home against Washington State, 62-60, in overtime on Jan. 5, 2012.
Utes to Play 29 Live Televised Regular-Season Games
Utah will play 29 live televised games this year, including every conference contest and each game played in the Pac-12 Tournament.
The Runnin’ Utes will appear on the Pac-12 Network 23 times in the regular season. Utah will also play on Fox Sports 1 three times, ESPNU twice and make one appearance on CBS Sports Network.