Haws punches ticket to Russia with USA World University Games Team

(Photo by Steven Maikoski/USA Basketball)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – For the last five days, Tyler Haws has participated in the USA Men's Basketball World University Games training camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. He survived the first cut on Wednesday that sent 10 players home and kept 16 to battle for a coveted spot on the 12-man roster.

Haws has done everything asked of him by the coaching staff. He has defended, gone after loose balls and adapted his offensive game to the role given him by the coaching staff. He’s been the ultimate team guy. That effort and dedication has been rewarded with a ticket to Kazan, Russia, with the 2013 USA Basketball Men’s World University Games Team.

For the official release from USA Basketball, visit usabasketball.com.

Head coach Bob McKillop and USA Basketball today announced the 12-man roster that will depart for Kazan, Russia, on Monday. The roster includes Spencer Dinwiddie (Colorado/Woodland Hills, Calif.); Yogi Ferrell (Indiana/Indianapolis, Ind.); Treveon Graham (Virginia Commonwealth/Temple Hills, Md.); Luke Hancock (Louisville/ Roanoke, Va.); Tyler Haws (BYU/Alpine, Utah); Cory Jefferson (Baylor/ Killeen, Texas); Sean Kilpatrick (Cincinnati/Yonkers, N.Y.); Alex Kirk (New Mexico/Los Alamos, N.M.); Doug McDermott (Creighton/Ames, Iowa); Adreian Payne (Michigan State/Dayton, Ohio); Will Sheehey (Indiana/Stuart, Fla.); and Aaron White (Iowa/Strongsville, Ohio).

"Clearly versatility, we have guys that can play more than one position, that’s one of the great strengths we have," McKillop (Davidson College) said. "I think we shoot the ball particularly well from a number of positions, and we’ve got guys who want to be teammates. Those two things, to me, are the biggest advantages that we have, or the biggest strengths for our team."

In earning the right to don the red, white and blue, Haws becomes the first BYU men’s basketball player to represent the USA in international competition since Devin Durrant played in the World University Games in 1983 in Edmonton, Alberta.

Haws is also the first Cougar to represent his country while a member of the BYU basketball team since Charles Abouo played for the Ivory Coast National Team in the 2010 World Championships.

Assisting McKillop on the USA sideline are John Beilein of the University of Michigan and Frank Martin of the University of South Carolina.

After departing on July 1, the USA will practice on July 3-6 in Kazan, Russia, including scrimmages on July 4 against Russian basketball club UNICS and on July 5 against the Russia World University Games Team before beginning World University Games play on July 7. 

The USA has drawn preliminary round Group C for the 2013 World University Games men’s basketball competition, along with Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Sweden and United Arab Emirates. Playing in Group A are Estonia, Germany, Oman, Russia, Ukraine and South Korea. Playing in Group B are Japan, Mexico, Mongolia, Philippines, Romania and Serbia. Group D includes Brazil, Chile, China, Finland, Lithuania and Norway.

The USA will take on UAE at 6:30 p.m. (times listed are local; Kazan, Russia, is +8 hours from EDT) on July 7; followed by Czech Republic at 1 p.m. on July 8; and Sweden at 9 p.m. on July 10; Australia at 6:30 p.m. on July 11; and Canada at 1 p.m. on July 12.

Following the preliminary round, the first and second-placed teams in each of the four pools advance to the medal quarterfinals on July 14 to compete for first through eighth places; while the remaining teams will play out for ninth to 24th places. The semifinals will be played on July 15, and the finals will be contested on July 16.

The players were selected by the 2013-16 USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team Committee. Chaired by Jim Boeheim (Syracuse University), the committee includes NCAA appointees McKillop, Matt Painter (Purdue University) and Lorenzo Romar (University of Washington), as well as athlete representative Curtis Sumpter, a member of the 2011 USA Pan American Games Team and the 2004 USA U20 National Team.

World University Games

The United States has claimed 19 medals in the World University Games since beginning play in 1965, and has captured a record 13 golds, three silvers and three bronze medals in the 20 WUGs in which a USA Basketball men’s squad has competed. The USA men own a stellar 138-9 record in WUGs play, and the U.S. captured six of the first seven gold medals awarded in the WUGs basketball competition, including six consecutive gold medals from 1989 through 1999. In 2001 the USA fell to host China, which featured half of its 2000 Olympic team, including Yao Ming, Menk Bateer and Wang ZhiZhi, by a single point in the semifinal and finished with the bronze. The USA again captured the gold medal in 2005 and most recently, finished in fifth place with a 7-1 record after falling to Lithuania 76-74 in the 2011 quarterfinals.

Eighteen players who have represented the USA in the WUGs have gone on to compete in the Olympic Games, including Ray Allen (1995), Stacey Augmon (1989), Charles Barkley (1983), Larry Bird (1977), Bill Bradley (1965), Quinn Buckner (1973), Tom Burleson (1973), Ken Davis (1970), Tim Duncan (1995), Phil Hubbard (1977), Allen Iverson (1995), Mitch Kupchak (1973), Karl Malone (1983), Michael Redd (1999), Mitch Richmond (1987), Michael Silliman (1967), Steve Smith (1989) and Jo Jo White (1967).

USA Basketball

Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men's and women's basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the U.S. by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA sponsored international competitions, as well as for some national competitions.

During the 2009-12 quadrennium, 1273 men and women players and 235 coaches participated in USA Basketball, including the USA Basketball 3x3 FIBA championships, USA Basketball trials and USA teams. 

Between 2009-12, USA Basketball men's and women's teams compiled an impressive 264-35 win-loss record in FIBA and FIBA Americas competitions, the Pan American Games, the World University Games, the Nike Hoop Summit and in exhibition games. USA teams are the current men's and women's champions in the Olympics; men's and women's FIBA World Championships; women’s FIBA U19 World Champions; men's and women's FIBA U17 World Champions; and the men's and women's U18 and U16 FIBA Americas Championships.

USA Basketball also currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA's world ranking categories, including combined, men's, women's, boys and girls.

For further information about USA Basketball, go to the official Web site of USA Basketball at usabasketball.com and connect with us on facebook.com/usabasketball, twitter.com/usabasketball and www.youtube.com/therealusabasketball.

The USA World University Games squad will continue preparations with practices Saturday and Sunday. Saturday’s schedule includes a morning practice and a scrimmage at 5:30 p.m. MT that is open to the public in Sports Center 1 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.