Feb. 1, 2013
The Arizona State Sun Devils are 6-2 in the Pac-12 for the first time since 1993-94 (when Coach Sendek was in his first year as a head coach at Miami of Ohio) and are 17-4 for the first time since Sun Devils named Byron, Fat and Alton were 19-2 running around in short shorts in 1980-81. They take on the Washington Huskies Saturday at 6 p.m. PT on ESPNU (860 AM radio in Phoenix).
ASU will try and sweep the Washington road trip for the first time since 2002-03. Dave Flemming and Sean Farnham have the call on the U, while Tim Healey and Kyle Dodd have the audio. ASU will try and get to seven Pac-12 wins at the halfway point of the league schedule for just third time in its 35 Pac-12 seasons (started 8-1 in 1979-80 and 1980-81) after reaching six wins for just the sixth time.
TOUGH FOR FRESHMEN TO PLAY AWAY FROM HOME...EH, SO FAR, NO: Jahii Carson in the six games away from home (ASU is 4-2) is averaging 22 points, 4.5 assists, 37.5 minutes and is shooting 51 percent from the field (49-of-96). In the three Pac-12 road games he is averaging 21.7 points, 38.0 minutes, and is shooting .500 (27-of-54) from the field.
WSU RECAP: Jahii Carson and Carrick Felix took the game over in the second half in a 63-59 win at Washington State on Thursday. The duo combined 32 of the team's 37 second half points, as Jahii had 21 in the second half (8-of-11 shooting) and Carrick had a double-double of 11 points and 10 boards--also in the second half alone. ASU had just four turnovers, tied for the fewest in the past 26 seasons and the fewest in a road game in that time. Carrick (33 minutes), Jahii (36 minutes), Evan Gordon (39 minutes) and Chris Colvin (22 minutes) had zero turnovers in the tilt.
JAHII NOTES: Jahii Carson (25 points in 36 minutes and no turnovers) notched his 10th 20-point game at WSU. The only Sun Devil freshmen with more are James Harden (16 in 2007-08) and Ike Diogu (12 in 2002-03)...averaging 20 points and five assists in the past six games and is averaging 10.8 points in the second half of all games including 71-of-93 (.763) from the free throw line and 72-of-145 (.497) from the field...needs just four assists to break the school freshman mark for assists of 114 held by Bobby Thompson in 1983-84...Carson is averaging a Pac-12 best 36.5 minutes per game, the best mark by a freshman in Sun Devil history (dude with the Beard lighting up the NBA averaged 34.1 in 2007-08) and most by a Pac-12 frosh since O.J. Mayo averaged 36.9 in 2007-08.
CARRICK UPDATE: Carrick Felix is playing at a ridiculously high-level as he now has league-best five double-doubles in eight Pac-12 games...has posted a double-double in past three games with 11/11 at Washington State, 16/10 vs. USC and 23/11 vs. UCLA. The most impressive stat might be he has played 116 minutes in past three games and committed one turnover...did not commit a turnover in the 44-minute overtime 98-93 track meet vs. USC...earned his third Pac-12 Player of the Week award this year for those efforts...with his B.S., in Communications in hand he is averaging 15.7 points and 8.7 rebounds in past 18 games and has scored in double digits 19 out of 21 games on the year...has eight double-doubles in past 15 games
HALFTIME ADJUSTMENTS: The WSU win gave ASU 22 wins when it trailed at the half in Coach Sendek's seven seasons (out of 115 wins), as ASU was down 28-26 recess. The Sun Devils are 3-4 this year when they trail at the half, also beating Colorado (down 33-30 but won 65-56) and Cornell (down 25-22 but came back and won 64-53). GET MORE SHOTS AND BETTER SHOTS: ASU has cleaned up early turnover issues (15.5 first six games but 11.2 in past 15) and has outshot the opponent in nine of the past 11 games. It is averaging just 10.5 turnovers per game in its eight Pac-12 games, the best mark in the league.
CLOSE GAME WINS: ASU is 31-23 (.574) in two-possession games in the past six years, including a 3-1 mark this year. ASU beat Utah 55-54 in overtime on Jan. 2, fell at Oregon 68-65 on Jan. 14, beat USC 98-93 in overtime on Jan. 24 and then topped Washington State Thursay 63-59.
ABOUT THOSE TOS: ASU committed just four turnovers at WSU, tied for the fewest in a game in the past 26 seasons (1987-88 to the present) and it is the fewest in a road game in that time. ASU had four turnovers vs. USC on Feb. 15, 2009 (Harden vs. Mayo shootout) which is only other time it had just four turnovers under Coach Sendek. In the past 26 seasons it also had just four turnovers vs. Oregon State on March 9, 1991, and vs. Washington on March 8, 1990. Both the Washington and Oregon State games were in the Pac-10 Tournament.
BLOCK-SHYNSKI: Jordan Bachynski (who speaks Spanish fluently by the way) blocked four shots vs. Washington State and is just the sixth Pac-12 player to notch 90 blocks in a season. He is 25 blocks short of matching the Pac-12 record of 115 set by Sun Devil Mario Bennett in 1994-95. As a team ASU has 154 blocks, just 18 shy of matching school record of 172 set in 1996-97 while the Pac-12 record of 199 set by UCLA in 2010-11 is certainly within reach. In the first six seasons (197 games) of Coach Sendek's ASU tenure, ASU had nine blocks in a game four times. It has had at least nine blocks nine times this season. An overlooked block statistic for Jordan is keeping it in play. Of his 90 blocks, 55 have resulted in direct possessions for ASU. bpg). In the first 41 games of his career he shot 42-of-88 (.478) from field. In the past 33 games he is 130-211 (.616).
EVAN: Evan Gordon is averaging 16.8 points and 39.2 minutes in the past five games and is 31-of-63 (.492) from the field in that time. After starting year 7-of-34 (.206) from the three-point stripe in first six games he is 35-of-89 (.397) in past 15.
AS FIRST HALF COMES TO A CLOSE: ASU will have a winning record at the halfway mark of the Pac-12 season for just the fourth time in the past 18 seasons (5-4 in 2002-03, 2008-09 and 2009-10).
GILLING: ASU sophomore Jon Gilling in ASU's three-game win streak is averaging 9.7 rebounds, six assists and 7.7 points. He has 152 rebounds on the year (7.2 per game) after grabbing 54 all of last season.
STARTING LINEUP: ASU has started the same five in every game this year. In the two previous seasons due to injuries ASU used 23 starting lineups and used 12 last year, the most since the 2003-04 squad also used 12. No Sun Devil played in all 31 games last year.
HERB: Herb Sendek, 115-100 (.535) at ASU, is in his 20th season as a head coach in 2011-2012 and has averaged 18.6 wins. He led the NC State Wolfpack to five straight NCAA appearances from 2002-06 and is now 367-258 (.588) and was 191-132 (.591) at NC State. The 49-year-old (born Feb. 22, 1963) Pittsburgh, Pa., native is the fourth-youngest coach in the Pac-12. Only Duke posted more ACC wins (regular season and ACC Tournament) than NC State's 53 from 2002-2006. ASU has posted three 20-win seasons under Herb Sendek after having three in the previous 25 seasons.