Washington (18-4, 9-0) vs. Arizona (14-8, 5-4)
Thursday, February 7th @ 6:00 PM PST
McKale Memorial Center (Tucson, Arizona)
Radio: 1000AM KOMO/97.7 FM
KEY PLAYERS: WASHINGTON
Guard – David Crisp
Guard – Matisse Thybulle
Guard – Jaylen Nowell
KEY PLAYERS: ARIZONA
Guard – Brandon Randolph
The Washington Huskies Basketball team enters this contest with some big momentum after a convincing 69-55 home win over the UCLA Bruins. The Arizona Wildcats are coming off a hard-fought 95-88 overtime road loss to the Arizona State Sun Devils. The Huskies will be looking for a 10-0 conference start and remain in first place in the Pac-12 standings. With a win over the Wildcats tonight, the Huskies would extend their current winning streak to 12 games, dating back to December 21st. For Husky fans, all eyes will be on the health and status of senior forward Noah Dickerson who left the UCLA game with a sprained ankle.
ESPN MATCHUP PREDICTOR
• UW’s 9-0 start in Pac-12 play is its best since the 1952-53 season when it started 14-0 … additionally, UW was perfect in January for just the eighth time in the last 100 years (2018-19, 1952-53, 1935-36, 1933-34, 1928-29, 1923-24, 1922-23, 1921-22).
• In UW’s 11-game winning streak, the Huskies have not allowed a team to score more than 70 points … additionally opponents in that span are shooting 28.6 from 3 and being held to 61.0 points.
• Washington’s 11-game winning streak is the third longest active streak in Division I trailing Tennessee (16) and Gonzaga (12).
• Seven of UW’s nine Pac-12 wins have been by 10 points or more, its most double-digit wins in league action since the 2010-11 season.
• UW has forced double-digit turnovers in 13-straight games, including a season high 23 forced against UCLA, which was the most by an opponent since 23 against Jan. 6, 2018 at Washington State.
• Thybulle recorded back-to-back career high tying games of seven steals against USC and UCLA, he’s the only player in UW history to record back-to-back games of at least seven steals.
• Nowell was selected as one of 10 finalists for the Naismith Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award.
• Nowell is shooting 51.9 percent from the field in 22 games, its up from his 45.1 percentage a year ago … he is also shooting 45.1 percent from 3, up from 35.1 a year ago.
• Nowell is the first player since Isaiah Thomas (2010-11) to earn three Pac-12 Player of the Week Awards in the same season.
• Crisp has scored in double figures in 10-straight and is shooting 50 percent from 3 during that span (29-58).
• Thybulle’s 71 steals this season rank second at UW in single-season history … Thybulle holds the UW single-season record already at 101 set a year ago … his 3.23 steals per game also rank second nationally.
• UW has shot 50 percent or better from the field in 5 of its 9 Pac-12 games including 4 of the last 7 and is shooting 49.6 percent from the field overall in those 9 outings, which is second in the Pac-12.
• UW is holding its opponents to just 64.2 points per game, which leads the Pac-12 and is 28th nationally … 18 teams have been held to 70 points or less and UW has won 17 of those games.
• Dickerson recorded his seventh career 20 point/10 rebound game against USC with 21 and 14 … the last player to have that many 20/10 games in their career was Matthew Bryan-Amaning who had eight (2007-11).
• The Huskies scoring margin in league action of +13.1 leads the conference by over eight points as Arizona State is second at a +5.5 margin.
• In the last 20 seasons, Thybulle is one of just four players to average 2.0 blocks and 2.0 steals in a season, joining Shane Battier – Duke (1999-2000, 2000-01), Nerlens Noel – Kentucky (2012-13) and Zion Williamson – Duke (2018-19).
• Against UCLA, Thybulle’s tied Chris Welp for the longest consecutive starting streak at UW at 121 games.
• Nowell has seven 20-point scoring efforts this season, and four in the last nine games … he now has 17 on his career … Nowell is sixth in the league in scoring averaging 16.6 ppg.
• Nowell has shot at least 50 percent from the field in 28 of his 56 career games (50.0 percent) … in those 28 games, UW has a 23-5 record.
• In Pac-12 play, UW has had five different leading rebounders and five different leaders in steals as well.
• Nowell has seen an uptick in not just his scoring production (16.7 ppg) but in his assists as well as he currently leads the team with 71 (3.4 per game) which is up from an average of 2.7 a year ago.
• Thybulle is the only player in Division I averaging at least 2.1 blocks and 3.0 steals per game.
– Arizona returns home to host Washington and Washington State after a three-game road trip. Arizona has won four straight home games against Washington and has been victorious in nine of the past 10 meetings against the Huskies in Tucson.
– The Wildcats are 95-5 at home in their last 100 home games, which dates back to the 2012-13 season. Arizona’s 92-5 mark at home since the start of the 2013-14 season is tops nationally.
– Arizona has committed nine or fewer turnovers in three straight conference games for the first time since the 2013-14 season. The Wildcats have 25 total turnovers in their last three games.
– The Wildcats are averaging 11.3 turnovers per game, which is the fewest of any team in the Pac-12. Arizona has a turnover margin of +3.8, which leads the Pac-12, and is 15th-best in the country.
– Redshirt junior Dylan Smith is shooting 46 percent from 3-point range in nine conference games, which is the sixth-best mark in the league. Smith shot 29 percent from deep in 13 non-conference games this season.
– Senior point guard Justin Coleman is coming off a season-high nine assists against Arizona State. He committed just two turnovers.
– Sophomore Brandon Randolph is the only player who has started all nine conference games for the Wildcats. He has scored in double figures in 20 of 22 games this season. His scoring increase of 11.3 points per game from last season is the second-best mark of Power 5 players averaging 13 or more points per game.
– Arizona is averaging 13,657 fans per game at McKale Center, which is the top home attendance mark in the Pac-12.