NCAA First Round - Cougars to Take on Florida

Jonathan Tavernari and BYU will face Florida on Thursday at 11:20 a.m. CT in Oklahoma City. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

Cougars vs. Florida In NCAA First Round

For the fourth-straight year BYU men’s basketball has received an at-large invitation to the NCAA Tournament and will face Florida on Thursday, March 18, at 11:20 a.m. CT in the West Region at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City. BYU is the No. 7 seed, its best seed since 1993 when the Cougars were also a No. 7 seed. The Cougars were a No. 8 seed the last three seasons. BYU is looking for its first NCAA Tournament victory since 1993. Thursday’s game will be televised live on CBS while the radio broadcast can be heard live on KSL Newsradio 102.7 FM and 1160 AM out of Salt Lake City beginning with the pregame show at 10:20 a.m. CT.

Up Next

The winner of No. 7 BYU and No. 10 Florida will advance to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and face the winner of No. 2 Kansas State and No. 15 North Texas on Saturday, March 20, in the Ford Center.

Cougar Quick Hits

— At 29-5 overall, BYU has set the program record for wins in a season (set previously in 1950-51) and has the best record in program history through 34 games. This also marks the fourth-straight season with 25-plus wins, a program record.

Jimmer Fredette is the first BYU player to record 40-plus points in two games in his career. He set the Coguar single-game scoring record with 49 points at Arizona and had the third-highest single-game total with 45 vs. TCU in the MWC Tournament quarterfinals.

— Fredette is 13th all-time in scoring at BYU with 1,473 career points. He leads the conference in scoring at 21.7 points per game. He is also third at BYU in career threes (168), ninth in assists (347) and 12th in steals (115).

— Junior guard Jackson Emery has 89 steals this season, a BYU record for steals in a season. The previous record was 66, set by Marty Haws in 1989-90. He is fourth in career steals with 146.

— Two-time MWC Coach of the Year Dave Rose has guided BYU to three MWC regular season titles and four-straight trips to the NCAA Tournament. Under Rose, BYU also has five-straight 20-win seasons and five-straight postseason appearances. At 126-39 (.764) overall, he is BYU’s all-time leader in winning percentage.

— Senior forward Jonathan Tavernari is BYU’s all-time leader in made threes 262. He is also climbing the lists for points (12th with 1,506) and steals (3rd with 160).

— With the win vs. TCU in the MWC Tournament, Jonathan Tavernari played in his 102nd BYU victory — first in school history. Tavernari’s teams have won 106 games, the best four-year stretch in program history.

BYU Game #34 Fast Facts

No. 7 BYU (29-5, 13-3 MWC) vs. No. 10 Florida (21-12, 9-7 SEC)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ford Center (18,203)

Oklahoma City

11:20 a.m. CT

Coaches

BYU, Dave Rose (125-39 in fifth season; same overall)

Florida, Billy Donovan (331-138 in 14th season; 366-158 in 16th season overall)

Series

BYU leads 2-0, with the last meeting in 1991

TV

Live on CBS (Kevin Harlan, play-by-play; Dan Bonner, analyst)

Radio

KSL Newsradio (102.7 FM/1160 AM and online at KSL.com) and the Cougar Sports Network (10:20 a.m. CT pregame show — Greg Wrubell, play-by-play; Mark Durrant, game analysis)

Web

Live stats links are available on the basketball schedule page at www.byucougars.com/basketball_m/

COUGARS IN THE NCAA

— This is BYU’s 25th NCAA Tournament appearance. The Cougars advanced to the NCAA Tournament last season as a No. 8 seed, losing 79-66 in the first round to Texas A&M at the Wachovia Center in Philadelphia. BYU is in the tournament for the fourth-straight season. In 2008 BYU, the No. 8 seed, lost 67-62 to Texas A&M in Anaheim, Calif.

— The Cougars have an 11-27 record in the NCAA Tournament.

— This will be BYU’s first NCAA Tournament appearance in Oklahoma City.

— BYU has gone to the NCAA Tournament seven out of the last 10 seasons (2001, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010). BYU has earned a postseason tournament invite in 10 of the last 11 years (NIT in 2000, 2002, 2006).

— Since seedings were started, BYU has been seeded as high as a No. 3 seed in 1980. BYU was a No. 4 seed in 1988. Other single-digit seeds included being a No. 5 seed in 1979, a No. 6 seed in 1981 (the year the Cougars advanced to the Elite Eight), a No. 7 seed in 1993 and 2010, and No. 8 seeds in 1984, 1995, 2007, 2008 and 2009. BYU has been a No. 12 seed in 2001, 2003 and 2004.

— BYU has lost in the first round in its last seven NCAA appearances. BYU’s last NCAA win was in 1993 as a No. 7 seed in Chicago when the Cougars defeated SMU, 80-71. BYU lost to No. 2-seed Kansas, 90-76, in the second round that year.

— BYU is 7-17 in its opening round games in NCAA Tournament play.

— The last time BYU advanced out of the second round was in 1981 when the Cougars (as a No. 6 seed), defeated Princeton, 60-51 before upsetting No. 3-seed UCLA 78-55. BYU went on to defeat No. 2-seed Notre Dame on Danny Ainge’s last-second, length-of-the-court dash, 51-50, to advance to the Regional Finals before losing to Ralph Sampson and No. 1-seed Virginia, 74-60.

— Current Cougar head coach Dave Rose is 0-3 all-time in NCAA Tournament play with last year’s 79-66 loss to Texas A&M, a 67-62 loss to Texas A&M in 2008 and a 79-77 loss to Xavier in 2007. Legendary BYU coach Stan Watts has the most NCAA Tournament wins with a 4-10 record in seven appearances followed by Frank Arnold (3-3 in three appearances), Ladell Andersen (2-3 in three appearances), Roger Reid (2-5 in five appearances) and Steve Cleveland (0-3 in three appearances).

— BYU head coach Dave Rose played in the NCAA Championship game for Houston’s “Phi Slamma Jamma” team that lost to North Carolina State at the final buzzer in 1983. BYU assistant coach Dave Rice was a

member of UNLV’s 1990 National Championship and 1991 Final Four teams that won a school record 45 consecutive games.

Looking at Florida

No. 10 seed Florida is 21-12 overall and 9-7 in the SEC. The Gators are making their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2007, when Florida won its second-straight NCAA National Championship. The Gators have lost four of five, including three-straight to end the regular season and a loss vs. Mississippi State in the second round of the SEC Tournament. Freshman guard Kenny Boynton averages 13.6 ppg to lead the team while Erving Walker, a 5-8 sophomore guard, adds 12.6 ppg and 4.9 apg. Boynton has hit a team-best 67 threes while shooting .285 from downtown and Walker adds 64 threes while shooting .356 from outside. Chandler Parsons (12.1), Alex Tyus (12.0) and Vernon Macklin (10.4) also average double figures. Parsons and Tyus lead the team in rebounding at 6.8 rpg apiece. As a team the Gators average 71.6 ppg and shoot .444 from the field, .313 from three and .702 from the free throw line. Opponents average 65.4 ppg, shoot .425 from the field, .321 from three and .673 from the free throw line. Billy Donovan is 331-138 in his 14th season at Florida, where he led the Gators to national titles in 2006 and 2007.

Florida’s Last Outing — Gators Fall to Mississippi State in SEC Quarterfinals

Despite a 23-point performance by freshman Kenny Boynton (Pompano Beach, Fla.), the University of Florida men’s basketball team (21-12, 9-7 SEC) was eliminated from the Southeastern Conference tournament in the quarterfinals with a 75-69 loss to Mississippi State (22-10, 9-7).

Boynton also tallied three rebounds, three assists and one steal. The Bulldogs jumped out to a 10-0 lead before the Gators scored their first points off a jumper by sophomore Erving Walker (Brooklyn, N.Y.) 3:44 into the game. Mississippi State would hold onto the lead for entire first half and into the second, as the Bulldogs held a 58-39 lead with 13:29 left when it fell into a 6-minute scoring drought. The Gators took advantage with a 14-0 run. A 3-pointer by Walker and a free throw by junior forward Chandler Parsons (Casselberry, Fla.) cut Mississippi State’s lead to 58-53 with 8:17 left.

Boynton hit a jump shot over Jarvis Varnado’s head to cut Mississippi State’s lead to 71-68 with 27 seconds left, but MSU’s Barry Stewart hit five of six free throw attempts down the stretch to secure the win.

Walker finished second in scoring for Florida with 19 points, while also contributing two rebounds and one assist. He was six-of-12 from the field, four-of-eight from behind the arc. Parsons had 10 points and a team-leading seven rebounds. Sophomore guard Ray Shipman (Miramar, Fla.) tallied six points off the bench, shooting three-for-four from the field.

Mississippi’s Stewart tallied a team-leading 17 points.

Series Notes

BYU and Florida will meet for just the third time with the Cougars leading 2-0. BYU won 74-65 in 1959 and 79-73 in 1991.

Most Wins in a Season

At 29-5 on the season, the 2009-10 BYU men’s basketball squad has set the Cougar record for regular season wins and the overall record for wins. The 2007-08 team set the previous regular season record with 25 regular season victories and finished 27-8 after the postseason. The 1950-51 team was 24-7 in the regular season and finished with what was a program record 28 wins to go with nine losses.

New Record for Thievery

With a steal at Colorado State, Jackson Emery broke the BYU record for steals in a single season. The record was previously held by Marty Haws, who had 66 steals in 1989-90. Emery now has 89 steals this season after collecting two vs. UNLV in the MWC Tournament. He is three from breaking the MWC single-season record.

33-Point Games

Jimmer Fredette’s 45 points vs. TCU in the MWC Tournament was his sixth game with 33-plus points this season. He is fifth all-time in BYU history for career 33-point games and his six this season are the most by a BYU junior in a single season and tied for the second-most in any BYU season. Devin Durrant had 11 33-point games as a senior in 1983-84 and Dick Nemelka had six as a senior in 1965-66. Fredette has seven 30-point games this season after posting 30 vs. UNLV in the MWC Tournament.

Best Record Through 34 Games

At 29-5 overall, BYU men’s basketball has the best record in program history through 34 games. The 1950-51 and 2007-08 teams held the previous best record in program history through 34 games at 27-7.

In the Rankings

BYU men’s basketball entered the top-25 rankings for the first time this season on Jan. 4 at No. 25 in the AP Poll and No. 23 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll. The Cougars are currently ranked No. 14 in the AP Poll and No. 15 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll (as of the March 8 polls). BYU has been ranked as high as No. 12 in the AP Poll and No. 10 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll. Rose has led his teams to the rankings in each of the last four seasons to become the first Cougar coach to lead BYU into the rankings in four-straight seasons.

BYU as a Ranked Team

BYU owns a 152-62 record as a ranked team, including 15-4 this season. The Cougars are 86-13 at home, 43-30 on the road and 23-19 at neutral sites when nationally ranked. BYU is 24-10 as a ranked team under Dave Rose.

Consecutive Weeks Ranked

BYU entered the rankings on Jan. 4 and has been ranked ever since, a streak of 11-consecutive weeks — the third longest Cougar streak in a single season since the 1980-81 and 1971-72 teams that were ranked for 15-straight weeks and the 1979-80 team that was ranked for 14-straight weeks. The Cougars were ranked for 30-consecutive weeks (not including preseason polls) over three seasons from the first week of the 1979-80 season to the first week of the 1981-82 season.

1,000-Point Scorers

With four points vs. UNLV in the MWC semifinals, Jonathan Tavernari has 1,506 career points and is 12th all-time in scoring at BYU. He is seven points from passing Kresimir Cosic for 11th all-time. After scoring 30 points vs. UNLV in the MWC semifinals, Jimmer Fredette has 1,473 career points, good for 13th all-time in program history.

Downtown Record Watch

Jonathan Tavernari is BYU’s all-time leader in career threes and attempts. Tavernari also owns the record for threes in a season with 88 in 2007-08. He now has 262 makes and 689 attempts. Jimmer Fredette is third with 164 makes and third with 416 attempts. Jackson Emery is seventh in makes (133) and eighth in attempts (335).

Top-10 Pick Pockets

Senior forward Jonathan Tavernari had two steal vs. UNLV in the MWC semis to give him 160 for his career. He is third all-time in BYU history. Jackson Emery is fourth with 146 while Jimmer Fredette is 12th with 115.

When Jimmer Scores 20...

Jimmer Fredette had 30 points vs. UNLV in the MWC semifinals, his 20th 20-point game this season and 28th of his career. He has reached 30-plus points seven times this season. BYU is 23-5 when Fredette scores 20 or more points and 6-1 when he scores 30-plus.

BYU Freshman Scoring Leaders

With 373 points this season, Tyler Haws is on pace to become one of the highest scoring freshmen in BYU history. He is currently sixth and 22 points from passing Trent Plaisted.

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