Arizona Basketball

Notes and Numbers: Arizona Wildcats at Colorado

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Arizona is 4-0 in games in which Parker Jackson-Cartwright has started this season

Arizona is 4-0 in games in which Parker Jackson-Cartwright has started this season

— With two weeks left in the regular season, Colorado’s Tad Boyle is still tinkering with his starting lineup. Sean Miller recently has done the same thing, inserting Parker Jackson-Cartwright as the starter at point guard in place of Kadeem Allen. Boyle used his seventh different starting lineup when the Buffaloes lost big at UCLA 77-53 last Saturday. Two players who have been mostly reserves in the past three weeks — shooting guard Josh Fortune and wing Tre’Shaun Fletcher — started against the Bruins in addition to freshman guard Thomas Akyazili, who made his first career start in place of Dom Collier. … Miller has utilized eight different starting lineups this season, in part because of injuries to Kaleb Tarczewski and Allonzo Trier and an illness that struck Allen. The current lineup of Jackson-Cartwright, Gabe York, Trier, Ryan Anderson and Tarczewski has yet to lose with a 3-0 record. In Jackson-Cartwright’s four starts this season Arizona has yet to lose. …

— Boyle is one of the best coaches in the Pac-12 and he is known for forcing his methodical, grind-it-out tempo on games to give his team a better chance. That did not work last weekend in Los Angeles, where the Buffaloes were swept against USC and UCLA. They blew a 15-point second-half lead at USC and suffered their worst loss of the season in the 24-point setback to the Bruins. The Buffaloes had only five points in transition in both games — three at USC and two at UCLA. After taking the 15-point lead against the Trojans, the Buffaloes were outscored 111-65 the rest of the weekend against USC and UCLA. Their defense and offense collapsed. UCLA’s 30-for-60 mark from the field was just the fourth time a Colorado opponent has hit the 50 percent mark, with two of those games occurring in the past four games….

— Colorado, which still as a respectable RPI of No. 35, is a different team at home, however. The Buffaloes are 14-1 at the Coors Event Center. The only defeat at home was a 56-54 grinder to a good Utah team on Jan. 8. The Buffaloes’ average attendance in their 15 games at the Coors Event Center to this point is 8,236, which is almost 3,000 below capacity (11,064). Colorado officials expect a packed house tonight. That’s nothing new for Arizona, which is only one of two teams with winning conference records on the road this season (Utah is the other). The attendance at conference venues increases dramatically when Arizona visits. In its seven conference road games to date, Arizona has drawn an average of 8,073 fans. Those arenas combined to average only 5,440 prior to the Wildcats visiting. That’s an average increase of almost 50 percent (48.4) when Arizona visits. …

— Credit Boyle for making the most of the in-state talent in Colorado, which is not a hotbed for recruiting. Three of Colorado’s best players are from that state — center Josh Scott, guard Xavier Talton and forward Wesley Gordon. Eight players on the roster are from Colorado. One outsider, talented wing player George King, hails from Fayetteville, N.C., and prepped at San Antonio. King, a sophomore, is averaging 13.9 points, ranking second on the team. He is shooting 45 percent from 3-point range where he leads the Buffaloes with 57 3-point field goals. With the loquacious Xavier Johnson out this season with a knee injury, King has evolved into one of the most improved players in the league. He hardly played last season as a freshman. “When it comes to leadership, and I’ve talked about this with George, good players make themselves better,” Boyle told the Denver Post. “Great players and leaders make others around them better. He has the ability to do that, but that’s something where he’s still dialed into his game to make sure that he’s ready and he’s playing well. That’s kind of where his mind-set is right now, so that’s going to be a process we certainly would like to foster and accelerate.” …

— Colorado’s RPI is relatively close to Arizona’s — the Wildcats are at No. 26 — because the Buffaloes have three wins against the RPI Top 50 (Oregon State, Oregon and Cal), they ventured out of conference to play Iowa State and SMU, and their worst loss is to No. 70 Washington on the road. They have no bad losses. Colorado is 3-7 against the RPI top 50. Arizona is 2-4. The Wildcats’ worst loss is to No. 68 UCLA on the road, a game in which the Bruins won on a last-second three-pointer by Bryce Alford. The key element for most Pac-12 teams this season is the lack of bad losses, which should weigh heavily when the NCAA tournament selection committee convenes in a couple of weeks. …

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NO. 9 ARIZONA (22-5, 10-4)
AT COLORADO (19-9, 8-7)

Tip Time: 7:05 p.m. MST
TV: ESPN2 (Dave Pasch/Bill Walton)
Radio: Arizona IMG Sports Network (Brian Jeffries/Jeff Dean)

THE SERIES
Overall: Arizona leads 13-11
In Boulder: Colorado leads 7-3
Current Streak: Arizona won 6
Last Meeting: Arizona won, 82-54 in Boulder, Colo. (2-26-15)
Sean Miller vs. Colorado: 10-5

WHAT IS PRODUCTIVITY RATING?:
PP: Productivity Points (Points, assists, rebounds, steals, blocked shots, FGs made, FTs made added together and then subtracted by missed FGs, missed FTs, personal fouls and turnovers)
MIN: Minutes played overall
PR: Productivity rating per minute played (Productivity points divided by minutes played)

SEASON PRODUCTIVITY RATING
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PRODUCTIVITY REPORT
ARIZONA PAC-10/12
PLAYERS OF THE YEAR:
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Previous game:
ARIZONA 99, ASU 61
PRODUCTIVITY RATING

* — STARTERS
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— With their careers winding down, the records watch of Tarczewski and York increases. With a win tonight, Tarczewski will be all alone in second place in the Arizona career charts with 108 victories, trailing Matt Muehlebach’s record mark of 109. Tarczewski is also slated to make his 125th career start tonight. Only four other players have reached that plateau at Arizona — Jason Gardner (135), Sean Elliott (133), Mustafa Shakur (129) and Solomon Hill (129). … With five points tonight, Tarczewski will tie Phil Taylor for No. 40 on the school’s career scoring list at 1,127 points. He will become only the third Arizona player in history to be ranked in the top 40 in scoring and top 10 in rebounding and blocked shots. Anthony Cook and Channing Frye are the others. …

HOW ARE THEY DOING?
Present power ranking of non-conference opponents Arizona has played according to KenPom.com.
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PAC-12 POMEROY RATINGS
Present RPI ranking of Pac-12 teams according to KenPom.com.
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ARIZONA’S 1,000-POINT SCORERS
Overall
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Before Arizona
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1987-88 (by end of that season)
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Before Arizona
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ARIZONA’S TOP SCORING CENTERS
Rank: Overall school ranking.
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MOST CAREER REBOUNDS
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MOST CAREER VICTORIES IN GAMES PLAYED
Note: Gabe York is at 102 wins.
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MOST CAREER STARTS
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THREE-POINT FIELD GOALS CAREER
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THREE-POINT GOALS SEASON
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ARIZONA SCHEDULE/PRODUCTIVITY RESULTS
*-John Wooden Legacy in Fullerton/Anaheim (Calif.)
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.

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