Men's Basketball End Of Season Release
March 21, 2001
Aggies Advance To The Second Round Of NCAAs: For the first time in 31 years, Utah State advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament after defeating Ohio State 77-68 in overtime on Mar. 15 in Greensboro, N.C. The Aggies were the 12th seed in the East Region, while Ohio State was the fifth seed. USU's season then came to an end against No. 4 UCLA 75-50. Utah State had lost its last nine games in a row at the NCAA Tournament before defeating the Buckeyes. Its last win in the tournament came during the 1970 season when USU defeated UTEP (91-81) and Santa Clara (69-68) before losing to UCLA 101-79. USU is now 6-16 all-time in the NCAA Tournament.
Utah State Ties School Record For Wins: After finishing the 1999-2000 season with a school-best 28-6 record, the 2000-01 team recorded the exact same record and in the process compiled the best two year record (56-12) in school history.
Success In The Big West: Utah State has won 35 of its last 38 games in the Big West Conference over the past two seasons. Before losing at UC Irvine on Jan. 31, 2001, USU had a 26-game winning streak in the Big West which was the second-longest winning streak all-time behind UNLV which won 40 games in a row from 1990-93.
Third Most Wins In The Country: As of Mar. 20, 2001, Utah State has the thrid most wins in the country with 28. Duke has the most wins in the country with 30, while Georgia State and Stanford both have 29 wins. Utah State is the only team in the country with 28 victories on the season.
First In The Country In Points Allowed: Utah State is among the elite teams in the country when it comes to team defense this season. As of March 14, USU was first in the country in points allowed (56.8) and sixth in the country in field-goal percentage defense (38.7). Furthermore, the Aggies are seventh in the country in field-goal percentage (49.4), eighth in winning percentage (.844), sixth in scoring margin (+14.4), and 20th in three-point field-goal percentage (39.4). Utah State finished the season by allowing 57.4 points per game and limiting opponents to 39.4 percent shooting. Offensively, USU shot 48.5 percent on the season as a team, including 39.0 percent from three-point range. The Aggies finished the year with an 82.4 winning percentage and a scoring margin of +13.3.
Where The Aggie Defense Ranks All-Time: Since statistics where first keep in the 1957-58 season, the 57.4 points allowed per game are the fewest-ever at USU and the 39.4 field-goal percentage defense is the best since the 1962-63 season. It is only the seventh-time in school history that an Aggie defense has held its opponents to under 40 percent shooting.
Winning Record Versus Every Team In The Big West: Utah State is the only team in the Big West Conference that has a winning record versus every team in the league. The following is a list of USU's record versus each team in the Big West Conference. USU's Record Versus Current BWC Members:
Boise State USU leads 16-5 Cal Poly USU leads 7-0 Cal State Fullerton USU leads 31-15 Idaho USU leads 13-10 Long Beach State USU leads 24-21 Pacific USU leads 39-17 UC Irvine USU leads 24-23 UC Santa Barbara USU leads 30-21 Total USU leads 184-112 (.622)
Team Records Fall In 2000-01: For the second straight season, Utah State recorded more assists (511) than turnovers (486). Prior to last season, Utah State never had a season where it had more assists than turnovers. Those 511 assists on the season are the most ever in a single-season at Utah State. USU also set a new school record with 200 three-pointers made, breaking the old mark of 194 set last season. The Aggies had 132 blocks on the season which was the second-most ever at USU, including a school-record 11 against Pacific on Jan. 13. The 2000-01 team also tied school records for wins with 28 and games played with 34.
Aggies Keep On Winning: Utah State basketball has been on a high over the past five seasons, posting four 20-win seasons during that time. Furthermore, Utah State has won at least 25 games in three of the last four seasons. Overall, it is the 16th time in school history that USU has won 20 games in a season, and only the fourth time that USU has had back-to-back 20 win seasons.
Quickest Ever To 20 Wins: With its win over UC Irvine on Feb. 8, the 2000-01 Utah State team became the quickest team in USU history to notch 20 wins. The previous record was held by last year's team which won its 20th game on Feb. 17.
Second Best League Mark: Utah State finished the 2001 Big West season with a 13-3 record which ties the 1997-98 team for the second-best league mark ever at Utah State. The 1999-2000 team holds the school record with a perfect 16-0 record.
Four Aggies Named All-Conference: For the second straight year, Utah State had four players earn all-conference honors in the Big West. Senior forward Shawn Daniels became the fifth player in USU history to be named to the league's first-team in back-to-back years, joining Marcus Saxon (1997,1998), Eric Franson (1995, 1996), Greg Grant (1985, 1986), and Dean Hunger (1979, 1980). Daniels led the Big West in blocks (1.69), was second in field-goal percentage (60.5), third in rebounds (6.7), and 12th in scoring (12.1). Senior guard Bernard Rock was also named to the first-team after being an honorable mention selection last year. Rock led the league in assists (4.31), and was fifth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.56), and eighth in steals (1.24). Junior guard Tony Brown was voted to the league's second-team after being named honorable mention last year and to the all-freshmen team in 1999. Brown leads USU in scoring at 12.2 points per game which ranks 11th in the conference. He leads the conference in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.18), is second in three-point field-goal percentage (43.5), and is fourth in assists (3.38). Senior forward Curtis Bobb was named honorable mention in his first year as a starter for Utah State. He ranks sixth in the league in three-point field-goal percentage (39.5), and is 12th in the league in rebounding (4.9). Utah State was the only team in the conference to have four players named to either the first-team, second-team, or honorable mention team. Prior to last season, Utah State never had more than one player on the league's first-team, but have had two first-team players in each of the last two seasons.
Three Aggies Named To The All-Tournament Team: Utah State had three players named to the 2001 Big West Conference all-tournament team as USU won its second straight tournament championship and third in the last four years. Senior guard Bernard Rock was named the Most Valuable Player of the tournament, while senior forwards Shawn Daniels and Curtis Bobb were members of the all-tournament team. Rock scored a team-high 32 points and had 10 assists in the tournament, while Daniels scored 30 points and grabbed 25 rebounds. Bobb scored 31 points and had 18 rebounds.
Three Aggies Earn Player Of The Week Honors: Utah State had three players earn Big West Conference player of the week honors this season as Tony Brown, Cutis Bobb and Shawn Daniels won the award. Brown received the award after leading USU to a runner-up finish in the Top of the World Classis in Fairbanks, Alaska. Bobb won his after leading the Aggies to a pair of home wins over Long Beach State and Pacific, and Daniels won the award after guiding USU to two home wins over UC Irvine and Cal State Fullerton.
In The Big West Conference: Utah State finished the 2000-01 season on top of the Big West in numerous statistical categories. Utah State was first in scoring defense, first in scoring margin, first in field-goal percentage, first in field-goal percentage defense, first in rebound margin, first in blocked shots, and first in assists. In league games, USU was first in scoring defense, first in scoring margin, first in field-goal percentage, first in field-goal percentage defense, first in rebound margin, first in blocked shots, and first in assists.
Defense In The Big West Tournament: Looking at the boxscores from the three games in the Big West Tournament, it isn't hard to see why Utah State won its second consecutive tournament championship and third in the last four years. It was defense. The Aggies held all three opponents to under 50 points, marking the first time since the 1949-50 season that an Aggie team has held three straight opponents to under 50 points.
Aggies Overwhelmed The Competition: Utah State overwhelmed its comeptition at the 2001 Big West Tournament as USU limited its three opponents to 43.0 points, 33.5 field-goal percentage, and 15.8 three-point field-goal percentage. Conversely, Utah State averaged 63.7 points, shot 45.1 percent from the field, 43.2 percent from three-point range, and 74.6 percent from the free-throw line.
Best In The Big West: Utah State became the first team in the history of the Big West Conference tournament to hold three straight opponents to less than 50 points and under 40 percent shooting from the field. The 38 points allowed by USU in the championship game was also a tournament low. Utah State also owns three of the top five marks for fewest points allowed in the Big West Tournament. USU's 38 points allowed against Pacific were the second-fewest ever scored in the tournament, and its 43 points allowed against Cal State Fullerton were the fifth-fewest ever allowed. The Aggies held Pacific to 41 points in last year's tournament which were the second-fewest points ever allowed. Utah State has a six-game winning streak in the Big West Conference Tournament and has won nine of its last 10 tournament games over the past four years.
Aggies Dominate Big West Conference This Year: Including its three wins in the conference tournament, Utah State went 16-3 in the Big West Conference this season and USU won all 16 of those games by at least 10 points. The Aggies' average margin of victory against league opponents this year in its 16 wins was 19 points.
Solid Defense In League: For the most part, Utah State's defense in league has been simply outstanding. In its 19 games, USU held 16 of its opponents to 60 or fewer points and 13 of its 19 league opponents to below 40 percent shooting from the field. Overall, USU has held 21 of its opponents on the season to below 60 points and 20 of its opponents to below 40 percent shooting from the field.
All Or Nothing: It has been all or nothing for USU in the Big West this season as the Aggies won all 13 of its league games by at least 10 points. No other team in school history has won as many league games by double-digits.
Aggies Equal Balance: For the second straight season, Utah State had four starters that average double-figures in scoring with its fifth starter averaging 8.7 points. USU had seven different players lead the team in scoring on the season and the Aggies played at least 10 players in all 34 of its games this season. Eight of those players average at least 10 minutes per contest and the other two averaged over eight minutes a game.
How The Aggies Got To The NCAA Tournament: Utah State finished second in the Big West Conference regular season with a 13-3 record behind UC Irvine (15-1), but won the conference tournament with victories against Cal State Fullerton (74-43), Boise State (67-48), and Pacific (50-38).
Aggies And The NCAA Tournament: Utah State made its second straight trip to the NCAA Tournament and third in the last four years... It is the 14th time in school history that USU has qualified for the NCAA Tournament... Utah State made its first back-to-back NCAA Tournament trips since the 1979 and 1980 seasons... The Aggies are 6-16 all-time at the NCAA Tournament after breaking a nine-game losing streak by defeating Ohio State 77-68 in overtime in the first round of the East Region in Greensboro, N.C. ... USU played in the first NCAA Tournament back in 1939 and lost to Oklahoma 50-39 in the first round... Utah State has played in the NCAA Tournament five times since seedings started in 1980 and the Aggies were listed as the 11th seed in the west in 1980, 10th in the midwest in 1983, 10th in the midwest in 1988, 12th in the west in 1998, and 12th in the south in 2000 before earning a 12th seed in the east this year.
Coach Morrill In The NCAA Tournament: Stew Morrill guided Montana to the NCAA Tournament in 1991 and Utah State in 2000 and 2001... He lead Colorado State to the NIT in 1996 and 1998... He is 1-3 as a coach in the NCAA Tournament and 0-2 in the NIT... He has posted two 20-win seasons at each of the three schools he has coached and has won at least 20 games in four of his last five years of coaching (two at Colorado State and two at Utah State).
The Big West Conference In The NCAA Tournament: Before Utah State defeated Ohio State in the NCAA Tournament this past season, the Big West Conference had not had a team win an NCAA Tournament game since 1993 when New Mexico State beat Nebraska in the first round before losing to Cincinnati in the second round. Utah State is the first Big West school to go to consecutive NCAA Tournaments since New Mexico State went in 1993 and 1994.
Utah State Was One Of The Original Eight: Utah State was one of eight schools that participated in the first NCAA Tournament in 1939. The other teams were Oregon, Texas, Oklahoma, Villanova, Brown, Wake Forest and Ohio State. Of those eight teams, Utah State, Ohio State, Wake Forest, Texas and Oklahoma are in this year's field.
What A Group: No other group in Utah State history has had the success that this group of Aggies have had over the last two years. During that time, USU went 56-12 overall and 35-3 in the Big West Conference, both of which are USU records for a two-year span. The previous best for a two-year period at Utah State was accomplished by the 1997 and 1998 teams that went 45-17 overall and 29-8 in league play.
Long Range Bomber: Junior Tony Brown is on pace to become Utah State's all-time three-point shooter before his career is over. Brown is currently third all-time at USU in three-pointers made and attempted. The following is a breakdown of where Brown stands as of date on the USU career charts.
3-Pt. FG's Made 3-Pt. FG's Attemtped 1. Reid Newey 237 1. Jay Goodman 580 2. Jay Goodman 209 2. Reid Newey 572 3. Tony Brown 208 3. Tony Brown 514 4. Justin Jones183 4. Justin Jones408 5. Troy Rolle 112 5. Troy Rolle 304
Brown Scores 1,000 Points: Junior guard Tony Brown became the 28th player in Utah State history to score 1,000 points in a career on Feb. 17 at Long Beach State, and the first since Eric Franson accomplished the feat in 1995. Brown has 1,101 points in his career which ranks 22nd all-time at USU. Brown also surpassed the 200 assist mark this year and is now 14th all-time at USU with 239 assists. He is only the eighth player ever at Utah State to score 1,000 points and record 200 assists in a career.
Keep It Under 60: Utah State has been nearly unbeatable as of late when its opponents score less than 60 points in a game. Thus far this year, USU is 19-1 when its opponents score less than 60 points, and the Aggies were 12-0 last season when its opponents didn't hit 60. The last time USU lost a game when its opponent didn't score 60 points was a 56-51 loss at UC Irvine this year. Utah State is 35-2 in three years under head coach Stew Morrill when USU holds its opponents to under 60 points.
Over At The Half: Utah State had made a habit of winning games on a regular basis when leading at half-time over recent years. In fact, USU had won 39 games in a row when leading at the half before letting a 10-point half-time advantage slip away against Austin Peay State on Nov. 19, 2000. USU has however recorded a 64-2 mark when leading at half-time over its last 66 games, and is 23-1 this season when leading at the half.
Daniels Third All-Time In Blocks: Senior forward Shawn Daniels finished his career third all-time at Utah State with 117 career-blocks, trailing only Gilbert Pete (155) and Nate Wickizer (148). Daniels tied the USU single-season record with 58 blocks last season and set a new single-season record with 59 blocks this year. His career-average of 1.72 is the best per game block average in school history.
Daniels Ninth In The Country: As of March 5th, senior Shawn Daniels is ninth in the country in field-goal percentage at 58.6 percent. That mark is the second-best in the Big West. He also leads the league in blocked shots at 1.72.
Rock Ninth All-Time In Assists: Senior guard Bernard Rock finished his career ninth place all-time at Utah State with 288 career-assists. He has averaged 4.2 assists in his career which is sixth-best all-time at USU.
Back-Court Tandem: Utah State has been nearly unbeatable over the past two seasons when the back-court tandem of Bernard Rock and Tony Brown outscore its opponent's back-court. The Aggies were 39-1 over the past two seasons when Rock and Brown outscored its opponent's back-court.
Big West Tournament Recaps:
Quarterfinals: Utah State opened the game on a 7-0 run against Cal State Fullerton and never looked back as the Aggies notched its most lopsided win in tournament history 74-43. USU shot 70 percent in the first-half and held the Titans to just 27.6 percent as the Aggies went into the locker room with a 40-17 lead. Cal State Fullerton never recovered from that first-half and never got the USU lead below 20 points. In fact, Utah State extended its lead to 35 points late in the second-half before recording the 31-point win. Utah State got a great performance from its bench with 39 points, while the Aggie starters scored just 35 points. Senior Dion Bailey led the charge off the bench with a career-high 13 points, while sophomore reserve Toraino Johnson scored 11 points, and junior reserve Jeremy Vague added 10 points. Shawn Daniels was the only starter to score in double-figures for USU with 11 points to go along with nine rebounds. Utah State finished the game by shooting 53.1 percent, while Cal State Fullerton shot 30.5 percent.
Semifinals: Utah State was looking to make up for a 78-77 overtime loss to Boise State two weeks earlier. The Broncos were coming off a 25-point win over Long Beach State in the first-round and carried that momentum into the game with the Aggies as BSU quickly raced out to a eight-point lead at 15-7 in the first five minutes of the game. From there, Utah State's defense took over and held Boise to just six points over the next 10 minutes as USU went on a 22-6 run to take a 29-21 advantage. The Broncos cut the lead to three points at the half at 34-31 due to a 10-5 run over the final five minutes. USU shot 43 percent in the first-half but committed 10 turnovers. Boise State opened the second-half with a 4-0 run to take the lead at 35-34 and would later hold a 48-47 advantage with 12:01 remaining. However those 48 points would be all that the Broncos would score as Utah State held BSU scoreless for the remainder of the game and finished the contest on a 20-0 run. During that stretch, Boise State missed 16 straight shots and committed six turnovers. USU finished the game by shooting 46 percent, while Boise State shot 36.2 percent after shooting 50 percent in the first-half. Utah State had four players score in double-figures led by Curtis Bobb's 17 points and six rebounds.
Championship: Defense would be the only word that could describe the championship game as both teams shot in the mid-30s from the field. USU broke the game open late in the first-half and took a 25-15 lead into the locker room as the Aggie defense held Pacific scoreless for almost eight minutes in the opening half. Pacific cut the lead to four early in the second half but USU slowly extended its lead to 17 points late in the game before winning 50-38, which was the lowest score ever in a championship game in tournament history. Dion Bailey had another outstanding game as he led USU with a career-high 14 points off the bench to go along with four rebounds and four steals. Bernard Rock added 13 points, and Shawn Daniels just missed a double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds. The Aggies had just six assists in the game, but UOP had just four. The Tigers also committed 22 turnovers in the game as Utah State notched 10 steals.
Note: All three boxscores can be found on page 34.
NCAA Tournament Recaps:
First Round Versus Ohio State: Utah State got off to a slow start in its first-round NCAA match-up with Ohio State trailing 5-0 in the first two minutes. USU cut that lead to one at 9-8 with 14:09 remaining and took its first lead and 15-14 with 10:59 remaining in the half. The game remained tight for the rest of the period before the Buckeyes scored the final four points of the half to take a 29-24 lead into the locker room. Utah State shot just 33.3 percent in the half, while Ohio State shot 50 percent. However, the Aggies forced 11 turnovers in the opening period and committed just two to keep the game close. Senior center Dimitri Jorssen provided the offense for the Aggies with six first-half points, while guards Tony Brown and Bernard Rock each had five. Utah State opened the second-half with a 9-3 run to take a 34-32 lead. Neither team could break away from the other over the next five minutes. With 10:11 remaining in the game, Ohio State went on a 7-2 run to take a five-point lead with 7:41 remaining. It took the Aggies four minutes to widdle that lead away and USU took a two-point lead on a three-point by senior forward Curtis Bobb with 3:32 remaining. The Buckeyes responded once again and held a 60-56 advantage with 1:04 remaining. USU got its final four points of regulation from Brown on two free-throws and a fade-away jumper in the lane with 1.8 seconds remaining to send the game into overtime. Utah State took control of the game early in overtime with seven straight points from Bobb to build a 69-62 lead with 2:08 remaining. From that point on, USU hit eight-of-12 free-throws to notch the 77-68 win. Utah State shot 57.7 percent in the second-half and 75 percent in overtime to finish the game by shooting 46 percent, including 45.5 percent from three-point range. Ohio State continued its hot shooting in the second-half by making 55.6 percent of its shots, but the Buckeyes went ice cold in overtime hitting just two-of-eight shots. The Aggies had a season-low five turnovers in the game and forced OSU into 21 turnovers. Utah State had four players score in double-figures in the game led by Rock's 18 and Brown's 17 points. Bobb finished with 14 points, all of which were scored in the final 10 minutes of the game. Jorssen just missed a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds, while senior Shawn Daniels had nine points and five boards.
Second Round Versus UCLA: Things looked good for Utah State early against UCLA as the Aggies held a 9-6 lead in the first four minutes of the game. However, from that point on the Aggie offense couldn't buy a basket as UCLA went on a 18-2 run over the next 13 minutes. During that stretch, USU missed 22 straight shots. The Aggies cut the lead to seven but trailed by 11 at 30-19 at the half. Utah State shot just 18.2 percent in the first-half. USU made one final run at the Bruins in the second-half and got the game to within four points at 36-32 with 13:28 remaining and trailed by only five points with 10:30 remaining, but that would be as close as USU would get. UCLA went on a 20-4 run over the next five minutes to put the game away. USU finished the game by shooting a season-low 28.3 percent while UCLA shot 55.4 percent. Daniels led USU with 11 points and six rebounds, while Bobb had seven points and nine rebounds.
Note: Both boxscores can be found on page 35.
Aggies Among The Best In The Country Over The Last Two Years: Utah State is among some select company over the past two seasons with one of the best records in the country. USU is 56-12 over the past two seasons for a winning percentage of .824. Over the past two years only 12 teams have won 50 plus games, and USU's 56 is tied with Stanford for the fourth most wins in the country. The following is a list of which teams have won at least 50 games over the past two seasons
Team Wins 1. Duke 60 2. Iowa State 57 3. Michigan State 58 4. UTAH STATE 56 Stanford 56 6. Tulsa 54 Cincinnati 54 8. Oklahoma 53 9. Gonzaga 52 Arizona 52 11. Syracuse 51 12. Hofstra 50
Daniels Named To The NABC District 14 Second Team: Senior forward Shawn Daniels was named to the NABC (National Association of Basketball Coaches) District 14 second-team on March 2. Daniels is USU's second leading scorer (12.1) and the teams leading rebounder (6.7). Daniels joined Oregon's Bryan Bracey, Santa Clara's Brian Jones, Gonzaga's Dan Dickau, and Oregon State's Deandre Tanner. The 150 student-athletes selected by NABC, from 15 districts, are now eligible for the NABC/Chevrolet Division I All-American Team to be announced at the conclusion of the 2001 NCAA men's basketball season.
Daniels Named Mid-Major All-America: Shawn Daniels was named to the College Insider.Com Mid-Major All-America team on Mar. 7. The team consists of 20 players in the country from Mid-Major University's.
Daniels Named Big West Conference Defensive Player Of The Year: Along with being a two-time all-Big West first-team selection, senior forward Shawn Daniels was also named the league's defensive player of the year after leading the league in blocked shots (1.72) and finishing third in rebounding (6.8). Daniels was also among the league leaders in field-goal percentage (58.6) and points scored (11.9).
Close Losses: Of Utah State's five losses on the season, four have come by a combined total of 12 points. Two of those losses were in overtime (Austin Peay and Boise State), one was by two points (BYU), and the other five points (UCI).
Versus Top-25 Teams: Utah State finished the season with a 1-1 record against teams ranked in the Top-25 on the season. The Aggies defeated No. 22 Utah 58-57 on Dec. 6 in Logan and lost to No. 18 UCLA 75-50 in the second-round of the NCAA Tournament. Ohio State was raned 26th in the country when USU defeated the Buckeyes 77-68 in overtime in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
Perfect Record At Home: The 2000-01 team became just the third team in school history to go undefeated at home on the season as the Aggies were a perfect 15-0. The only other two teams to go undefeated at home over the course of a season where the 1997-98 team that went 15-0 and the 1973-74 team that went 14-0 at home. Its 15 win at home on the year tied the 1999-2000 and 1997-98 teams for most wins at home in a single-season with 15.
23-Game Home Court Winning Streak: Utah State has won its last 23 games at home dating back to Jan. 8, 2000. USU's last loss at home was a 82-73 decision to BYU. USU has won 35 of its last 36 games at home. That 23-game winning streak at home is the fourth longest streak in the country. Michigan State leads the country with a 45 game winning streak at home, while Iowa State has won 36 in a row. Detroit is third with 31 wins, followed by Utah State with 23.
22-Game Home Court Winning Streak In League: In league play, Utah State has won its last 22 home games and 41 of its last 42. Over the past two seasons, USU has won 15 of its 16 league games by at least 10 points. The only time USU did not defeat a league opponent at home by 10 or more points over the last two seasons was when the Aggies beat Pacific by nine in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum on Feb. 17, 2000.
Home Sweet Home: Utah State has had tremendous success at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum since the building was opened for the 1970-71 season. In its first 30 years, USU has had only one losing season at home, with a 3-8 record during the 1981-82 year. All-time, Utah State is 337-96 (.778) at home. Over the past five seasons, the Aggies have compiled an incredible 68-3 (.958) record at home.
Morrill Comfortable At Home: Utah State head coach Stew Morrill is very comfortable at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, and his record would confirm that fact. Since becoming USU's head coach prior to the 1998-99 season, Coach Morrill is 42-3 (.933) at home.
12-Game Winning Streak In 2001: Utah State had a season-high 12-game winning streak from Dec. 20 to Jan. 31 which was ties for the third-longest winning streak in school history. The 1999-2000 team holds the school record with a 19-game winning streak, while the 1974-75 team won 13 games in a row. The 1959-60 team won 12 games in a row as did this years team.
Best Start In School History: After its 71-48 win at UC Santa Barbara on Feb. 15, USU improved to 22-3 on the year which was the best start to a season in school history breaking the old mark of 21-3 set by the 1959-60 team.