Game 5 Notes - BYU Plays at ASU Wednesday

BYU Takes Tough Trip to Arizona State, Creighton

Off to its best start since the 1991-92 season, BYU (4-0) travels to face Arizona State (4-1) Wednesday and Creighton (4-0) Saturday. Wednesday's game in Tempe pits the Cougars against the Sun Devils in a 7 p.m. MST contest that will be aired on Fox Sports Net Arizona and on Fox Sports Net in Utah, Idaho and parts of Wyoming. The radio broadcast can be heard on KSL Newsradio 1160 and the Cougar Sports Network, beginning at 6 p.m. with a one-hour pregame show. KSL's Greg Wrubell will call the play-by-play action with Brian Santiago providing game analysis. A live internet audio link is available on the basketball page of the official BYU athletics website, byucougars.com.

The Cougars are coming off a 95-56 victory over Rice Saturday in its lone home game thus far this year. BYU owns the nation's longest homecourt victory streak at 37 games but also has lost its last 11 straight contests on an opponent's homecourt. BYU's last win in a true away game was last year's season-opening win over San Diego. BYU opened this season with three wins at the Paradise Jam in the U.S. Virgin Islands to claim the 2002 title. The three-game winning streak away from the Marriott Center is the team's longest since winning five straight on the road in March 2001.

Arizona State went 2-1 at the Maui Invitational with wins over Chaminade and Utah and a tournament-opening loss to Kentucky, and has home wins over Morehead State and Lafayette. Creighton enters its game at Northern Iowa on Wednesday with a perfect record after defeating Notre Dame on Nov. 26 to win the Guardians Classic in Kansas City, Mo.

GAME # 5 FAST FACTS

BYU (4-0, 0-0 MWC) @ ARIZONA STATE (4-1, 0-0 PAC-10)

Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2002

Wells Fargo Arena (14,088)

Tempe, Arizona

7 p.m. MST

Coaches:

BYU, Steve Cleveland (89-69 in sixth year; same overall)

ASU, Rob Evans (64-61 in fifth year; 150-142 in 11th year overall)

Series: BYU leads, 25-21

Last Meeting: BYU won 82-70 in Provo last year on Nov. 24, 2001

TV:

Fox Sports Net Arizona

Fox Sports Net (in Utah, Idaho and parts of Wyoming)

Radio:

KSL Newsradio 1160 AM (Cougar Sports Network)

Pregame Air Time: 6 p.m. MST

Play-by-Play: Greg Wrubell

Game Analyst: Brian Santiago

Web: Live audio link available at byucougars.com/basketball_m/ (select 2002-03 schedule above)

BYU's Probable Starters:

Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG

F 3 Mark Bigelow 6-7 195 Jr. 15.0 2.8 2.8 apg

F 52 Jared Jensen 6-9 250 So. 11.3 4.3

C 55 Rafael Araujo 6-11 265 Jr. 5.8 6.8

G 2 Travis Hansen 6-6 210 Sr. 15.5 6.5 3.0 apg

G 24 Kevin Woodberry 6-0 170 Jr. 6.0 3.0 1.0 apg

BYU Reserves:

Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG

G 14 Ricky Bower 6-4 185 Jr. 6.0 3.0 1.0 apg

G 10 Terry Nashif 5-10 165 Fr. 4.5 2.3 2.0 apg

F 15 John Allen 6-7 215 So. 4.3 2.3

C 40 Dan Howard 7-0 225 Jr. 3.8 1.0 1.0 bpg

F 32 Bart Jepsen 6-9 235 Jr. 2.3 0.7

G 4 Luiz Lemes 6-3 180 Jr. 1.8 1.0

F 5 Jake Shoff 6-9 265 Jr. 1.0 2.5

ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS

Arizona State (4-1) has won its last three games since losing its first game at the Maui Invitational to Kentucky, 82-65. The Sun Devils opened at home with a win over Morehead State (59-56). In the last three victories, ASU has defeated Chaminade (101-72) and Utah (83-79 in OT) at the Maui Invitational and is coming off another home win over Lafayette (85-62) on Saturday. The Sun Devils are 2-0 at home. Coach Rob Evans (64-61 in fifth year; 150-142 in 11th year overall) returns three starters and nine lettermen from last year's 14-15 team that qualified for the NIT. Starting guards Jason Braxton (6.1 ppg last year) and Curtis Millage (13.5 ppg, 4.1 rpg last year) return along with forward Tommy Smith (11.7 ppg, 5.3 rpg last year). Millage didn't play in the first three games but has averaged 18.0 ppg since returning in the past two wins. He had a game-high 26 points on 8-14 shooting in his debut against the University of Utah. While he has been hot from the floor, he is shooting just 37.5 percent (9-24) from the line. Four-year lettermen Donnell Knight has taken over as starter at the forward position and is averaging 7.0 points and 7.2 rebounds. He has been active on the offensive glass with a team-leading 3.0 offensive boards per game. The Sun Devils are pulling down 41.8 boards per game, including 15.6 offensive rebounds per contest. They allow 36.4 rebounds per game. Joining Knight on the offensive glass for ASU is Smith and freshman sensation Ike Diogu. All three players have recorded double-digit offensive boards this year. Diogu leads the team at 18.2 points per game while adding 6.0 rebounds per game. Smith is averaging a team-leading 3.6 blocks per game. As a team, ASU is shooting 47.4 percent from the floor but only 27.1 percent on threes, while scoring 78.6 points per game. The Sun Devils are allowing 70.2 points while their opponents are shooting 39.5 percent from the floor and 31.4 percent on threes. Junior Jamal Hill, a 6-foot-5 transfer from San Jose City College, started the three games before Millage's return and has made a team-leading 7 threes (7-14). Millage is the only other Sun Devil who has been effective from behind the arc, going 3-6 in his two starts.

ASU'S PROBABLE STARTERS

POS. # NAME HT. WT. YR. PPG RPG OTHER

F 21 Donnell Knight 6-7 200 Sr. 7.0 7.2 15 off. rebs

F 4 Tommy Smith 6-10 215 Sr. 10.2 6.8 18 blk. shots

F/C 5 Ike Diogu 6-8 250 Fr. 18.2 6.0 .537 FG%

G 1 Jason Braxton 6-2 190 So. 5.8 3.8 3.6 apg

G 14 Curtis Millage 6-2 185 Sr. 18.0 3.5 26 vs. Utah

SERIES TIDBITS

BYU leads the overall series against Arizona State, 25-21. This is the fourth straight year the two former conference rivals have met with the home team winning on each occasion. The two teams have met nine times since they met regularly as members of the WAC, with BYU holding a 6-3 record in those meeting that started in 1986. Arizona State has won the last two meetings in Tempe (2000 and 1993) since BYU last won at ASU with a 65-64 victory on Dec. 5, 1989. Overall, ASU holds a 16-4 advantage on their homecourt while BYU is 20-4 in Provo. BYU is 2-1 vs. ASU under Steve Cleveland. BYU won last year's meeting, 82-70 in Provo, while the Sun Devils cruised to a win in the last outing in Tempe on Dec. 2, 2000, defeating the Cougars 80-52. Last year BYU was 2-0 vs. the Pac-10 with wins over ASU and then No. 13 Stanford.

QUOTING BYU Coach Steve CLEVELAND

"This is going to be a very challenging road trip, playing at Arizona State and then at Creighton. Both are very good teams. ASU is 4-1 and Creighton is 4-0. Arizona State is an athletic team that is picked in the top half of the Pac-10 this year. Everything was falling for us Saturday at home (95-56 win over Rice) but that doesn't usually happen on the road. Last time we were at ASU, they did everything right and we did everything wrong and they beat us by about 30 (28), and we had a good team that year. I like the way our guys are competing right now and with our added depth this year it gives a better chance to be competitive on the road."

SERIES BREAKDOWN

Overall Series Record: BYU leads 25-21

BYU Record in Provo: 20-4

BYU Record in Tempe: 4-16

BYU Record at Neutral Sites: 1-1

BYU Record under Steve Cleveland: 2-1

BYU Record in Overtime Games: 1-1 both in Tempe

Last Overtime Game: 1977, lost at ASU, 86-84

Longest BYU Win Streak: 4 (1964-66)

Longest ASU Win Streak: 4 two times (1961-1974,

1974-76)

Largest BYU Margin of Victory: 19, 52-33 in 1946

Largest ASU Margin of Victory: 40, 94-54 in 1961

Most Points Scored by BYU: 111 two times in 1965,72

Most Points Scored by ASU: 110 two times in 1964, 75

Date Opponent Score W/L

12-5-46 vs. Arizona State 55-58 L

12-6-46 vs. Arizona State 52-33 W

12-15-47 Arizona State 46-45 W

12-16-47 Arizona State 48-45 W

12-30-61 at Arizona State 54-94 L

1-11-63 at Arizona State 84-89 L

2-16-63 Arizona State 87-104 L

2-14-64 at Arizona State 85-110 L

2-29-64 Arizona State 106-90 W

1-16-65 at Arizona State 111-102 W

2-27-65 Arizona State 104-91 W

1-7-66 Arizona State 95-81 W

2-18-66 at Arizona State 94-101 L

1-14-67 at Arizona St. (OT) 78-74 W

3-3-67 Arizona State 110-93 W

1-13-68 Arizona State 94-78 W

3-1-68 at Arizona State 97-99 L

1-25-69 at Arizona State 94-109 L

2-13-69 Arizona St 102-89 W

1-9-70 at Arizona State 88-98 L

2-12-70 Arizona State 97-91 W

1-28-71 at Arizona State 86-87 L

2-27-71 Arizona State 83-74 W

1-7-72 Arizona State 111-102 W

2-12-72 at Arizona State 95-99 L

1-27-73 Arizona State 81-67 W

2-23-73 at Arizona State 90-86 W

1-25-74 Arizona State 89-71 W

2-23-74 at Arizona State 77-100 L

1-10-75 Arizona State 80-110 L

2-15-75 at Arizona State 79-99 L

1-17-76 at Arizona State 68-83 L

2-13-76 Arizona State 93-89 W

1-20-77 at Arizona St. (OT) 84-86 L

2-19-77 Arizona State 65-84 L

1-21-78 Arizona State 96-89 W

2-16-78 at Arizona State 75-76 L

12-12-86 Arizona State' 91-85 W

12-5-89 at Arizona State 65-64 W

12-12-90 Arizona State 74-82 L

12-1-92 Arizona State 108-98 W

11-27-93 at Arizona State 95-106 L

3-17-94 Arizona State (NIT) 74-67 W

12-7-99 Arizona State 78-67 W

12-2-00 at Arizona State 52-80 L

11-24-01 Arizona State 82-70 W

LOOKING BACK AT LAST YEAR'S GAME

? BYU's Jared Jensen had the first start of his career against Arizona State.

? The win over Arizona State gave BYU a 25-21 record in the series. The Cougars have won four straight home games against the Sun Devils and have not lost at home to Arizona State since Dec. 12, 1990.

? Travis Hansen had a then career-high 15 rebounds on the night to lead BYU.

? Hansen had his first career double-double with 18 points and 15 rebounds in the game. ? Senior Eric Nielsen scored 19 points on the night, which at the time was his career high. He set a new career high later last year with 29 points against fellow Pac-10 school Stanford at the Las Vegas Showdown. Nielsen was 8-11 from the floor vs. ASU.

? Mark Bigelow scored a game-high 31 points, which proved to be an individual season high for a Cougar last year. His career high is 33, set at Washington State his freshman season.

? BYU's 42-26 rebounding margin was the third worst rebounding margin in Arizona State head coach Rob Evans coaching career (261 games to that point). The margin was the worst for Evans since he took over at ASU (94 games).

WHAT THE COACHES HAD TO SAY ...

ASU HEAD COACH ROB EVANS:

"I don't remember getting beat off the glass that bad ever. This is not a give-up team and we battled back to within three points. We're not a super mature team. We gave many first-year players heavy minutes."

BYU HEAD COACH STEVE CLEVELAND:

"This was one of the best rebounding games we've had since I've been in this program. We were undersized at various times of the game. One of the things I was proudest of was our ability to get the rebound. Travis Hansen played with so much energy and did the hustle plays. He had 15 rebounds and as a two-guard, that is pretty incredible. It was a great effort on his part. I thought that Bart Jepsen gave us 20 good minutes in the ball game and Jared Jensen did as well."

"This is a team (ASU) that beat us by 30 points last season, and we lost our scoring leaders from last year so this is a good win for us, but I'm not going to make it anything more than it is. I really like the way we responded. We got off to a good start. Teams like this are going to make runs on us. They are going to make some baskets, but I was most proud by the way we competed. The people that are going to play are the people who play the best in practice. We know that we do not have a lot of depth. That is a pretty obvious thing."

LOOKING BACK AT THE 2000 GAME IN TEMPE

? The Cougars were cold and the Sun Devils were hot in Tempe, Ariz., Saturday afternoon as Arizona State defeated BYU 80-52 at Wells Fargo Arena. BYU shot a season-low 25.4 percent from the floor while Arizona State made a then BYU opponent-high (fifth highest overall that year) 51.8 percent of their attempts. BYU fell to 2-2 with the loss while Arizona State improved to 5-1 on the year.

? After falling behind 15-5, BYU scored 13 straight points to take an 18-15 advantage when Eric Nielsen made a lay-in off a Mekeli Wesley assist. The Cougar edge soon became a distant memory, however, as Arizona State took a 37-22 halftime lead in the middle of an incredible 60-13 scoring run that gave the Sun Devils a margin as high as 44 points with eight minutes to go in the game.

? Four ASU players reached double figures, led by center Chad Prewitt with 20. Wesley and Terrell Lyday led BYU with 11 points apiece while Nielsen added nine points and a season-high nine rebounds. Lyday went 3-17 from the floor and Wesley 3-15 as BYU made only 15 of their 59 field goal attempts.

? The 28-point loss was BYU's fourth-worst scoring deficit suffered during Cleveland's tenure at BYU and the worst loss he has suffered since. The 2000-01 team went on to win the Mountain West and earn an NCAA berth. Cleveland's other large-deficit defeats were during his first two seasons rebuilding after taking over BYU's 1-25 program. BYU lost by 31 at Washington State in only his second game, and lost by 30 at home to Penn State in his fifth game. BYU lost by 31 at Oregon in the sixth game of his second season.

WHAT THE COACHES HAD TO SAY ...

ASU HEAD COACH ROB EVANS:

"I felt like our guys were really ready to play. It's the way they practiced (had one week to prepare for the game). They keep getting better defensively. This is the second-best defensive effort of one of my ball clubs."

BYU HEAD COACH STEVE CLEVELAND:

"Everything that could go wrong went wrong. Arizona State just dominated us in every facet of the game."

BYU'S LAST OUTING

Scoring 95 points against Rice Saturday, BYU improved to 8-0 under Steve Cleveland when the Cougars have scored 90 or more points. BYU defeated Rice 95-56 thanks to an 18-1 first-half run that blew the game open. Saturday's 39 point victory over Rice is the largest win for the Cougars since BYU defeated Fort Lewis College by 49 points on Dec. 12, 2001. The last time BYU outscored its opponent by more than 30 points was against Elon College on Nov. 21, 2000 when the Cougars won by 37 points (100-63). The Cougars posted their best first half performance of the season against Rice Saturday. The Cougars shot 71 percent from the field, their best performance in a half since Dec. 12, 2001 against Fort Lewis College when the Cougars shot 77.9 percent from the field in the second half. BYU was also 85 percent from behind the three-point line in the first half, going 6-7. BYU's 56 points in the first half a season high and the most first half points since BYU scored 50 on its way to a 101-53 win over Fort Lewis last year. BYU shot 62.3 percent for the game, including 53.8 percent on threes while holding Rice to 33.3 percent and 18.8 percent on threes.

BEST START SINCE 1991-92

After starting the season 2-0 for the fourth straight year, BYU was able to win its third contest for the first time since the 1991-92 season. At 4-0, BYU is off to its best start since the 1991-92 team won seven straight out of the gate. That team, like this year's team, was picked to finish fourth in the conference. The 1991-92 team went on to win the Western Athletic Conference title and finish 25-7 after losing to LSU and Shaquille O'Neal in the NCAA tournament.

HANSEN STARTS SENIOR SEASON STRONG

BYU's lone senior, guard Travis Hansen, is off to a strong start in his final campaign. He leads BYU in scoring (15.5 ppg) and assists (3.0 apg) and is second in rebounding (6.5 rpg), despite being ejected with 8:48 to go in BYU's win over Kansas State. Hansen is shooting 48.6 percent (18-37) from the floor, 62.5 percent (5-8) from behind the three-point line (which was extended to the experimental rules distance of 20 feet, 6 inches at the Paradise Jam), and 80.8 percent (21-26) from the free throw line.

RECORD DEFENSE

BYU set the Paradise Jam tournament record for fewest average points allowed by giving up only 59 points per game in its three tournament wins. The previous record was LaSalle's 62.7 points allowed over three tournament games last year. In the championship game, BYU held St. Bonaventure, who came into the title showdown having scored 91 and 89 points in its first two games, to 57 points and 28 percent shooting. BYU held Toledo to 34.6 percent shooting and 56 points and allowed only 40.4 percent shooting and 64 points by Kansas State. Combined, BYU's Paradise Jam opponents shot 33.9 percent from the floor, including 31.8 percent on threes.

MORE DEFENSE

BYU has held three of its four opponents below 35 percent shooting (Kansas State .404) and last week held St. Bonaventure to 28.1 percent and Rice to 33.3 percent (combined .305). BYU has held all four opponents below 30 percent shooting in the second half this year. BYU has held three of its four opponents this year under 60 points (Kansas State scored 64). BYU is 45-3 under Steve Cleveland when holding its opponents below 60 points. Against Rice Saturday, BYU held 2002 WAC Freshman of the Year forward Michael Harris, who came in averaging 13.7 points and 10.3 rebounds, including a 14-point, 10-rebound night on 7-10 shooting at Stanford, to 11 points and four boards.

PLAYER PERSONNEL

BYU coach Steve Cleveland is expected to play a larger rotation this year with a deeper bench available. With junior forward Jake Shoff seeing his first playing time of the year against Kansas State, all 12 players who are expected to play this year have already received playing time. Shoff hadn't played in any of BYU's exhibtion contests or the opening game with Toledo due to back problems. He has had limited practice time as well since practices started in October. Sophomore guard Marc Roberts has not played to keep a redshirt opportunity available while freshmen guards Austin Ainge and Jermaine Odjegba are using the season to redshirt. Ainge did not make the trip to the Virgin Islands after breaking his thumb during practice the night before the team's departure. He had surgery in Phoenix last week and isn't expected to practice for 6-8 weeks.

FROM BEHIND ARC

BYU has shot 50 percent or better from three-point range in three of four games this year. All eight players to attempt a three have connected, with six players making 50 percent or better. Among those six, Mark Bigelow is 7-13, Travis Hansen 5-8, Ricky Bower 3-4, John Allen 3-5, Luiz Lemes 1-2 and Bart Jepsen 1-1. Kevin Woodberry is 4-16 and Terry Nashif 2-5 from three point range. After going 2-14 on threes at the Paradise Jam, Woodberry connected on both his attempts at home Saturday vs. Rice. BYU played at the experimental three-point distance of 20 feet, six inches during the Paradise Jam. BYU is shooting 48.1 percent (26-54) as a team on threes.

COUGARS BOAST STRONG SCHEDULE

Seventeen games against teams who qualified for postseason play last year and spots in the University of The Virgin Islands Paradise Jam (U.S. Virgin Islands) and Touchstone Energy All-College Classic (Oklahoma City) highlight BYU's 2002-03 men's basketball schedule. BYU's nonconference schedule includes teams from 10 different conferences. Overall, 12 teams earned postseason bids last season, seven advancing to the NCAA tournament and five playing in the NIT. Six teams earned a conference regular season or league tournament title and 12 placed in the top three in their league standings. In all, the schedule includes a total of 29 regular season games and two exhibitions. The Cougars will play 14 regular season games in the Marriott Center, where BYU owns the nation's longest active home-court victory streak at 36 games. Excluding the MWC Tournament, BYU plays 15 road games, including 11 away contests and four neutral site games. The 2003 MWC Tournament takes place March 12-15 at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas. The Pac-10, Big 12, Atlantic 10, Big Sky, Big West, Mid-American, Mid-Continent, Missouri Valley, West Coast and Western Athletic are represented on the non-league schedule. Nine teams -- Arizona State, Creighton, San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Utah State, Southern Utah, Weber State and Pepperdine -- were also on last year's nonconference schedule. BYU earned a 6-3 record in those games, losing at UCSB and dropping overtime games at both Utah State and Pepperdine.

BYU ON TELEVISION

The Cougars will be featured in 15 television broadcasts in 2002-03, including five times as part of the Mountain West Conference television package with ESPN. BYU will appear on ESPN2 vs. Oklahoma State in the Touchstone Energy All-College Classic in Oklahoma City on Jan. 4 and on ESPN "Big Monday" at Utah on Feb. 24. BYU appears three times on ESPN+Plus, hosting Utah Jan. 25 and New Mexico Feb. 1 before facing reigning MWC champion Wyoming in Laramie on Feb. 8. BYU will also be featured in nine SportsWest Production telecasts and on Fox Sports Net Arizona. The Mountain West Conference television agreement with ESPN will provide 32 national and regional television broadcasts on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN+Plus in 2002-03, including 14 appearances on ESPN, two on ESPN2, two on ABC and 12 on ESPN+Plus as the featured "Mountain West Conference Game of the Week". ESPN+Plus games in Utah are aired on KJZZ-TV, channel 14. An additional 20 MWC games are scheduled to be aired on SportsWest as point-to-point broadcasts by local affiliates, while local institutional packages will add a minimum of another 19 games in 2002-03. For the fourth consecutive season every game of the EAS Mountain West Conference Men's Basketball Championship will be televised by ESPN or ESPN+Plus.

HOME WINNING STREAK

BYU has a 37-game home court winning streak. The streak, which is a school record topping the 24 straight won between March 1994 and January 1996, is the longest current streak in the nation. BYU went 16-0 at home last season and was 15-0 the prior year. BYU has had a perfect home record seven times since the Marriott Center opened for the 1971-72 season. The past two years, however, marks the first time it has happened in back-to-back seasons. Last year's team tied the BYU single-season record with 16 home wins and was only the fourth Cougar squad to win more than 14 home games in a season. The 1987-88 Ladell Andersen squad went 16-2 in the Marriott Center. BYU's last home loss was on Feb. 17, 2000 when New Mexico edged the Cougars 78-74. BYU has won 17 straight at home over MWC teams. BYU has defeated 28 straight nonconference opponents in the Marriott Center. The last non-league foe to win in Provo was the California Bears, who edged BYU 71-70 on Dec. 19, 1998.

BREAKING THROUGH ON THE ROAD

While BYU owns the nation's longest active home winning streak at 37 games, the Cougars also finished last season having lost their last 10 games away from the Marriott Center, including two overtime defeats. BYU snapped that streak with its three wins at the Paradise Jam -- BYU's first win streak away from home since the end of the 2001 season. The three wins at the Paradise Jam gave BYU one more victory than all of last year away from home. Last year's road wins were a neutral court 81-76 upset over No. 13 Stanford at the Las Vegas Showdown on Dec. 22, 2001 and a season-opening win at San Diego, 70-59, on Nov. 17. In true away games, BYU has lost its last 11 straight games on an opponents home court since the win at San Diego. BYU gets its first chance to end that streak this year when it faces Arizona State Wednesday in Tempe.

NEUTRAL COURT RECORD

BYU is 12-7 on a neutral court under Steve Cleveland. Last year BYU was 1-1 on a neutral floor. Prior to the Paradise Jam, BYU's last neutral court game was a 62-51 loss to San Diego State at the 2002 MWC Tournament. BYU's prior neutral win was over No. 13 Stanford, 81-76, at the Las Vegas Showdown. The Cougars have won seven of their last nine neutral court contests.

CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF BASKETBALL

BYU is celebrating 100 years of basketball. Since the first season of BYU basketball in 1903, BYU entered this season having achieved a 1428-922 (.608) overall record with 21 different coaches at the helm. The combined efforts of these men have provided the Cougars with 80 winning seasons in 100 years. BYU has won 25 conference titles and made 28 postseason tournament appearances with 19 NCAA bids and nine NIT berths. The Cougars won the 1951 and 1966 NIT titles and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament in 1981, highlighted by Danny Ainge's length-of-the-court dash to defeat Notre Dame at the buzzer. Ainge was named the nation's top player as the John Wooden Award and Eastman Award winner. Twenty-three players have received All-America recognition while NBA teams have selected a Cougar 41 times in its annual draft. BYU has the nation's 11th longest rivalry, dating back to 1909, against the University of Utah. BYU and Utah have the 10th longest rivalry in terms of games played with 232 contests. Amazingly, the series is tied at 116-116. For more information on BYU's 100-year history, please consult the 2002-03 BYU media guide.

HANSEN, BIGELOW EARN PARADISE JAM AWARDS

Leading BYU to the University of the Virgin Islands Paradise Jam title, Travis Hansen and Mark Bigelow were named to the Paradise Jam All Tournament Team. Others selected to the team were Pervis Pasco of Kansas State, Nick Moore of Toledo, Terry Taylor of Virginia Tech and tournament MVP Marques Green of St. Bonaventure.

PARADISE JAM OFFERED OFF COURT MEMORIES

During their week in the Virgin Islands, the Cougars were able to do more than just win three games to claim the Paradise Jam title. While the coaches and players weren't able to fully take advantage of the beautiful beaches and other opportunities available on St. Thomas, the team was able to go on a Catamaran Tour, that included snorkeling, the day before its first game. One of the highlights of the trip was on Sunday. With BYU not practicing or playing that day, the entire team and extended traveling party attended church services at the local branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Cougar contingency helped boost the branch attendance from its usual 20-25 to 138. It was the largest group to ever attend church services in the branch. Later that evening, the entire team returned to participate in a church fireside. During the day, BYU coach Steve Cleveland, Travis Hansen, Mark Bigelow, Dan Howard, Terry Nashif and Ricky Bower all spoke and the entire team mingled and spent time with the local members. Many church members attended BYU's games during the week, giving the Cougars a nice fan base in the 3,000-seat Sports and Fitness Center. BYU, along with the other teams in the Paradise Jam, participated in the Paradise Jam Dockside Jamboree on the evening before the tournament began. The festival, located near the dock were cruise ships come to port, included local bands, steel drum bands, mocko jumbies, local food, arts, crafts and shopping. The players had opportunities to sign autographs and Coach Cleveland was able to talk about the team and university on a live radio program being broadcast remotely from the event.

BYU VS. ITS CONFERENCE PEERS

BYU is picked to finish fourth this year in the Mountain West Conference. BYU has a won 58 percent (418-299) of its games vs. its MWC opponents. As an overall athletic program, BYU has dominated the Mountain West, winning 63 percent of the titles in the league's first three seasons.

COUGARS SIGN COMBO GUARD MICHAEL ROSE

During the early signing period in November, BYU signed Michael Rose, a 6-foot-1 combo guard out of Spring Woods High School in Houston Texas. A four-year starter, Rose averaged 16.3 points, five rebounds and three assists playing shooting guard as a junior. A preseason All Greater Houston First Team selection, Rose will play point guard his senior season. He has earned first-team All-District 21 5A honors the past two seasons and was the team MVP in 2002. He has helped his team to second-place District 21 finishes the past two years. In is first season, he was named District 21 Freshman of the Year. Rose has played four years on the Houston Hoops summer AAU team that also features top-five recruits Ndidi Eby and Kendrick Perkins. As the team's starting shooting guard, Rose averaged 14 points and helped the team earn a No. 1 national rating for much of the summer. The team placed second at two of the nation's larger invitational tournaments, finishing as the runner-up at both the Nike Peach Jam in Augusta, Ga., and Nike Super Showcase in Orlando, Fla. A great shooter, Rose is one of the 16 finalists still alive in Cuttino Mobley's Clutch City Shootout. Sponsored by the Houston Rockets and generating more than 300 participants, the Shootout allows Houston-area 4A and 5A high school basketball players the opportunity to compete in a series of three-point shooting contests. Rose is scheduled to shoot at halftime of the Rockets' Jan. 13 game. Earlier this month, he connected on 14 consecutive three-point shots during a scrimmage while scoring 56 points. Rose possesses a strong academic resume, ranking second in his class of 365 seniors. He was recruited by Houston, St. Louis, Utah State, Colorado State, Texas Christian, Texas A&M, Tennessee and Illinois. With guard Travis Hansen being the only senior on this year's roster, Rose is expected to be the only player to sign with BYU during the early signing period. He is the nephew of BYU Associate Head Coach Dave Rose.

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