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WCC Weekly Men's Basketball Notes: Dec. 21, 2010

Dec. 21, 2010

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Douglas named WCC Player of the Week
Portland freshman G Tim Douglas had a career night in the 78-67 win at rival Portland State on Saturday. Douglas erupted for a season-high 27 points off the bench in the win, finishing 10-for-13 from the field and 6-for-8 from the free throw line. He added an assist and a steal in just 23 minutes of action. The 27 points were the most scored by a Pilot this season and also the most by a UP freshman since Greg Anthony scored 31 against Pepperdine on Jan. 17, 1987. Gonzaga's Robert Sacre, Pepperdine's Mychel Thompson, and Saint Mary's Mitchell Young were also nominated.

WCC Live Returns to the "Airwaves"
The West Coast Conference is proud to announce the return of its weekly internet radio show, WCC Live. The hour-long show is hosted by Jeff Lampe and features interviews with WCC coaches and student-athletes throughout the basketball season. WCC Live premieres every Wednesday at 8 p.m., with an archive available on-demand and for free download. Listeners can call in to the show as it airs live each week, and can also interact with guests through e-mail and Twitter. The show returns on Wednesday, January 5 and can be found at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/WCCsports.

A New Look
The West Coast Conference has teamed with CBSSports.com College Network, its web site host and multimedia partner, to re-launch WCCsports.com. Among the new features on the site are front-and-center video content, larger images and graphics, campus updates, fan polls, and integration with other West Coast Conference social media platforms - such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Visitors to WCCsports.com can also find additional features such as a WCC insider blog, and interactive results.

Rackin' Up the Frequent Flyer Miles
Already this season, WCC teams haven't been afraid to hop on a plane to face the nation's best. West Coast Conference teams have played games in fifteen states this season: California, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington. This week, LMU plays at South Dakota and San Diego competes in Hawaii.

Coaches Tab Gonzaga For Top Spot in Preseason Poll
Gonzaga was selected as the favorite to win the 2010-11 West Coast Conference Championship after receiving six first place votes and 48 of a possible 49 points from conference head coaches in the annual WCC preseason poll. Loyola Marymount, which reached the College Insider.com Tournament last year for its first postseason appearance in 20 years, was picked to finish second. The Lions return 13 players from last year's 18-win team. Saint Mary's, which was picked third, is coming off the first NCAA Sweet 16 appearance in school history and the 2010 Zappos.com WCC Men's Basketball Tournament Championship. Santa Clara was picked to finish fourth by the coaches, followed by Portland, San Francisco, Pepperdine and San Diego.

2010-11 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason Coaches Poll
Team - points (first place votes)
1. Gonzaga - 48 (6)
2. Loyola Marymount - 42 (1)
3. Saint Mary's - 39 (1)
4. Santa Clara - 28
5. Portland - 25
6. San Francisco - 18
7. Pepperdine - 14
8. San Diego - 10

2010-11 WCC Preseason All-Conference Team
The preseason All-WCC team, as selected by the conference's head coaches, features representatives from six of the eight schools. In addition, Gonzaga, Loyola Marymount, Saint Mary's, and Santa Clara each had two preseason all-conference selections apiece.

2010-11 WCC Men's Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team
Keion Bell, PEP
Matthew Dellavedova, SMC
Kevin Foster, SCU
Steven Gray, GON
Elias Harris, GON
Mickey McConnell, SMC
Jared Stohl, POR
Vernon Teel, LMU
Marc Trasolini, SCU
Drew Viney, LMU

What'd He Say?
For the latest scores and news, follow the West Coast Conference on Twitter @WCCSports.

Did you know that WCC Commissioner Jamie Zaninovich is on Twitter, too? See what The Commish has on his mind. Follow him @WCC_Commish.

Four WCC Teams See Postseason Action
For just the second time in conference history, four West Coast Conference men's basketball teams advanced to the postseason following the 2010 WCC campaign. Saint Mary's, the 2010 Zappos.com West Coast Conference Tournament champion, made an appearance in the Sweet 16 after knocking off Richmond and Villanova in the NCAA Tournament.

Two Named To Wooden Preseason List
Gonzaga's Steven Gray and Elias Harris are on the John R. Wooden Award Preseason Top 50 list announced by The Los Angeles Athletic Club. The list is comprised of 50 student-athletes who, based on last year's individual performance and team records, are the early frontrunners for college basketball's most prestigious honor. Gray, a senior from Irondale, Wash., and Harris, a sophomore from Speyer, Germany, give the Bulldogs 10 nominees in the history of the award. Gray and Harris each started all 34 games for the Bulldogs last season. They are the top two returning scorers for the Bulldogs, Harris averaging 14.9 ppg and Gray 13.6 ppg last season. Harris was the top field goal shooter last year, shooting 54.7 percent from the field (180-for-329), and also paced the Bulldogs in rebounds at 7.1 rpg. Both Bulldogs were named to the All-West Coast Conference first team, and Harris was tabbed the WCC Newcomer of the Year by the conference coaches.

Zappos.com Named Title Sponsor of the WCC Championships
The West Coast Conference (WCC) and its multi-media rights partner, IMG College, announced Zappos.com as the official title sponsor of the WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships. The deal represents the WCC's first-ever title sponsorship. In addition, the WCC and Zappos.com have partnered with Soles4Souls to challenge each West Coast Conference campus to collect the most shoes from December to the end of the conference basketball season. The gently used shoes will be distributed internationally through Soles4Souls to individuals in need. Last year's shoe drive resulted in over 5,200 shoes being donated to Soles4Souls by West Coast Conference institutions.

WCC Tournament to Remain at the Orleans Arena Through 2012
On July 22, 2009, the WCC and the Orleans Arena announced a three-year contract extension that will keep the WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships in Las Vegas through 2012. The extension comes after the WCC sold out the Orleans Arena for the 2009 WCC Basketball Championships. The 2009 championship, which was the WCC's first-ever at a neutral site, set conference records for both total championship attendance (33,320) and single session championship attendance (7,845). Tickets for the 2010-11 event are available by visiting www.orleansarena.com or calling 1-888-234-2334.

West Coast Conference to Welcome BYU in 2011-12
The West Coast Conference announced that Brigham Young University has formally accepted an invitation to join the WCC with competition to begin in the 2011-12 academic year. BYU has been consistently recognized as one of the top-rated academic institutions in the nation and is home to an athletic program that has enjoyed success at both the conference and national levels. BYU, which will become an independent in FBS football, will compete in the West Coast Conference in baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, men's and women's golf, women's soccer, men's and women's tennis and women's volleyball. This is the first time the West Coast Conference has formally invited an institution as a full member since Gonzaga University and the University of San Diego began competing in the WCC in 1979.

Zappos.com WCC Championships Tickets On-Sale
Tickets for the 2011 Zappos.com WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships are now on-sale. The 2011 West Coast Conference Basketball Championships will once again be held March 4-7. The 2011 Zappos.com WCC Championships will take place at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas for the third consecutive season. The previous two tournaments were sellouts, and tickets for 2011 are going fast. Tickets can be purchased by logging on to www.orleansarena.com or by calling 1-888-234-2334. All-session tickets are $135 - less than $10 per game for the 14-game tournament.

Shining on the National Stage
The West Coast Conference will once again be a major player on the national television scene with a 24-game package on the ESPN family of networks. A total of seven non-conference games involving WCC teams will air on an ESPN property beginning with the Saint Mary's-St. John's game on November 15. There will be a total of 17 conference games on ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPNU in 2010-11, including the Zappos.com WCC Basketball Championship semifinals on ESPN2 on Sunday, March 6 and the championship game on ESPN on Monday, March 7. The West Coast Conference will once again be a centerpiece to ESPN's Thursday night coverage with weekly time slots on both ESPN2 and ESPNU in January and February.

Download the complete release (PDF) above to view the full TV schedule.




Overall Record: 6-5
WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Bulldogs rolled to a 103-61 win over Lewis-Clark State on Thursday in Spokane. Two days later, they earned an impressive 68-64 win over previously-unbeaten #9 Baylor in Dallas.
  • Sophomore forward Kelly Olynyk knocked down the go-ahead three pointer with 1:46 left in the win over Baylor. Olynyk, who averages 7.3 points per game, is now 4-for-8 from beyond the arc this season.
  • Bulldogs freshman forward Mathis Mönninghoff sits atop the West Coast Conference leaderboard in three-point field goal percentage, connecting on 18-of-31 attempts (.518).
  • Gonzaga hosts 7-2 Xavier Wednesday at 8 p.m. (ESPN2). It's the only game of the week for the Bulldogs, who have arguably played the nation's toughest schedule to date.

  • Overall Record: 6-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Loyola Marymount had its three-game winning streak snapped on Saturday night, falling to Florida State, 74-63, at Gersten Pavilion.
  • Redshirt junior forward Drew Viney is the only player in the West Coast Conference to be ranked in the top five conference-wide in both scoring (15.4 pts./game) and rebounding (7.6 rpg).
  • Loyola Marymount is averaging 41.2 rebounds per game, tops in the West Coast Conference. The Lions are averaging almost four rebounds more per game than any other WCC team.
  • The Lions visit DakotaDome to take on South Dakota on Wednesday night in the back end of a home-and-home series. In the previous meeting, LMU pulled out a 72-67 win in Los Angeles on Dec. 11.

  • Overall Record: 5-8
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Pepperdine held off UC Irvine for a 76-69 victory on Saturday, marking the Waves' second straight win at home.
  • Junior guard Keion Bell scored a game-high 19 in the win over Irvine on Saturday, almost four points below his per-game average. Bell's 22.7 points-per-game clip leads the West Coast Conference.
  • Pepperdine ranks second in the WCC on the offensive glass, averaging 12.7 offensive rebounds per game. Individually, junior forward Taylor Darby leads the Waves with 5.8 boards per game.
  • Pepperdine hosts Cal Poly on Tuesday night in its only action this week. The game marks the Waves' final home appearance in 2010.

  • Overall Record: 9-3
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Portland won its only game last week. knocking off cross-town rival Portland State, 78-67, on the road Saturday night.
  • Freshman point guard Tim Douglas scored a career-high 27 off the bench (10-of-13 shooting) in the Pilots' win at Portland State. Douglas was named the WCC Player of the Week for his efforts.
  • Senior forward Luke Sikma ranks eighth nationally in rebounding, averaging 11.3 boards per game.
  • Two home games grace the slate for the Pilots this week, as they will entertain both Boise State (Wednesday) and Nevada (Monday).

  • Overall Record: 9-2
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Saint Mary's earned a 75-56 win over UC Riverside on Tuesday, and then downed Long Beach State, 82-74, at the Wooden Classic in Anaheim.
  • Sophomore forward Mitchell Young had a breakout game against Long Beach State. He scored a personal-best 28 points off the bench over 29 minutes, including an impressive alley-oop that wowed the crowd at Honda Center.
  • The Gaels are tenth in the country, averaging 83.7 points per game. The Saint Mary's offense is out-scoring its opposition by an average of 22.5 per game, placing SMC sixth nationally.
  • The Gaels head to Las Cruces to take on New Mexico State on Thursday evening. It's their only game this week.

  • Overall Record: 2-8
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • San Diego was the only West Coast Conference team not to see any game action last week.
  • Last time out, five Toreros scored in double figures in a win over La Verne on Dec. 13. Ken Rancifer, Chris Gabriel, and Darian Norris all dropped 14 in the victory. Jordan Mackie poured in 13, and Matt Dorr added 12.
  • Junior guard Darian Norris leads San Diego in assists (2.8 per game) and steals (16). Norris also leads the squad in scoring by two points over Ken Rancifer.
  • The Toreros are in Honolulu to take part in the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic this week. USD faces No. 15 Baylor on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. PT (ESPNU) and either Mississippi State or Washington State on Thursday. The event concludes with a game on Saturday.

  • Overall Record: 4-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  •  The Dons dropped an 80-52 decision at Washington on Saturday night in their only game of the week.
  • Sophomore guard Michael Williams scored 19 points and pulled down seven rebounds against the Huskies. Williams leads USF and ranks third in the WCC, averaging 16.2 points per game.
  • Sophomore forward Perris Blackwell is the Dons' leading rebounder and ranks third in the conference, averaging 7.1 boards per game.
  • San Francisco takes on No. 7 San Diego State on Tuesday and IUPUI on Thursday in the Jerry Tarkanian Las Vegas Classic. The games will be played at South Point Arena.

  • Overall Record: 6-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Santa Clara was the busiest WCC team last week, falling at Pacific on Tuesday, beating Houston Baptist on Friday, and coming up just short against Washington State in overtime on Sunday.
  • Santa Clara scored 90 points in the win over Houston Baptist, marking the first time the Broncos have reached the 90-point plateau since January of 2008.
  • Redshirt sophomore guard Kevin Foster scored 29 points against Washington State on Sunday, including 4-of-8 from three-point range. Foster's 3.4 three's per game is fourth best nationally.
  • Santa Clara has a lighter week planned this week, as the Broncos will visit Cal State Northridge on Wednesday night.