May 18, 2012
The Sun Devil men's hoops team will be taking part in the 12th annual Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational on Nov. 23-24 at Orleans Arena, along with Creighton, Wisconsin and Arkansas.
Arizona State, which returns four of its starters, will play two of the three teams, with match-ups to be announced later this summer. Each team will play four games overall in the tournament, with the first two at campus sites the week of November 12-18 against other teams to be determined.
Tickets for the final rounds in Las Vegas can be purchased at the participating schools athletic ticket office and beginning Saturday May 19 by calling the Box Office at the Orleans Arena (702) 284-7777, or on the web at www.orleansarena.com.
The Sun Devils return three players in 7-2 junior Jordan Bachynski, 6-7 sophomore Jon Gilling and 6-2 guard Chris Colvin who made dramatic improvements over the course of last season. Bachynski averaged in double digits in the final 13 games, Gilling added a career-high 21 points vs. Arizona in early March and averaged nine points per game in the final 22 contests and Colvin averaged 8.7 points in the final 15 games. Also returning is 6-6 senior wing Carrick Felix (10.5 points per game and a recent graduate of Arizona State), as 2009-10 Pac-10 Coach of the Year Herb Sendek will look to add to his three 20-win seasons at Arizona State, with highly-touted recruit Jahii Carson set to join the team at the point guard position and transfers Evan Gordon (Liberty) and Bo Barnes (Hawaii) also eligible after sitting the 2011-12 season.
SERIES HISTORY WITH THESE TEAMS
Arizona State has met Arkansas once in NCAA Tournament second-round action on March 17, 1991. Top-seeded Arkansas topped the Sun Devils 97-90 in Atlanta. The Sun Devils lead the Creighton series 4-2, but the teams have not met since a 77-64 Sun Devil win on Jan. 19, 1974. ASU and Wisconsin have never met on the hardwood.
SUN DEVILS IN NEUTRAL SITE REGULAR SEASON GAMES
ASU is 8-6 in neutral site non-conference tournaments under Herb Sendek. In 2011-12 the Sun Devils fell to Fairfield, beat Wake Forest and then lost to DePaul in the Orlando Old Spice Classic. ASU beat Weber State and Houston Baptist the 2010 Great Alaska Shootout before falling to St. John's in the title game. In 2009-10 ASU fell to Duke but beat LSU in the Preseason NIT at Madison Square Garden. The 2008-09 season had ASU beating Charlotte, falling to Baylor and then beating UTEP in the Anaheim Classic, while in 2007-08 ASU lost to Illinois but then beat Princeton and LSU.
SUN DEVILS IN LAS VEGAS
The Sun Devils last played in Las Vegas in the 2004 Las Vegas Invitational when it lost to UTEP 66-65 but beat Vanderbilt 87-68. Those games were held at Valley High School.
QUICKLY ON THE OPPONENTS
Wisconsin is coming off a 26-win season and its third Sweet 16 appearance in the last five years. The all-time wins leader at Wisconsin, Bo Ryan will enter his 12th season with the Badgers owning a record of 268-101 (.726)...Creighton finished the 2011-12 campaign ranked 21st in the Associated Press poll after tying a school-record for wins in a 29-6 season. The Bluejays will return nine of their top 10 scorers from that squad including first-team All-American and Naismith Player of the Year finalist Doug McDermott (22.9 ppg., 8.2 rpg.). The Bluejays are coached by Greg McDermott, who will enter his third year on The Hilltop with a 52-22 record...Arkansas is in its second season under Head Coach Mike Anderson and is coming off a successful 2011-12 campaign. The Razorbacks were 18-14 last year with signature wins over three ranked teams including SEC Tournament Champion Vanderbilt, Mississippi State and Big 10 co-champion Michigan. The Razorbacks return 77 percent of their scoring and 73 percent of their rebounding from a year ago.