Utah State Men's Basketball To Hold First Practice Friday
Utah State's men's basketball team will hold its first official practice of the 2012-13 season on Friday, Oct. 12 at 5 p.m. in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum as head coach Stew Morrill enters his 15th season at USU and 27th overall by welcoming 15 players to the court. Practices are closed to the public.

 
Utah State's men's basketball team will hold its first official practice of the 2012-13 season on Friday, Oct. 12 at 5 p.m. in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum as head coach Stew Morrill enters his 15th season at USU and 27th overall by welcoming 15 players to the court. Practices are closed to the public.
 
 

Oct. 9, 2012

2012-13 Utah State Men's Basketball Preseason Notes Get Acrobat Reader

LOGAN, Utah - Utah State's men's basketball team will hold its first official practice of the 2012-13 season on Friday, Oct. 12 at 5 p.m. in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum as head coach Stew Morrill enters his 15th season at USU and 27th overall by welcoming 15 players to the court. Practices are closed to the public.

Utah State returns three starters among five lettermen from last year's team that finished the season with a 21-16 record, advancing to the championship game of the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT). USU extended its current school records for consecutive 20-win seasons and postseason appearances to 13-straight in 2012 as it is one of just five schools nationally to win 21 games in each of the last 13 years along with Duke, Gonzaga, Kansas and Syracuse. Furthermore, Utah State's current run of 13-straight postseason appearances is tied for the 11th-longest active streak in the nation.

USU enters its eighth and final year in the Western Athletic Conference, as the Aggies have amassed a 178-65 (.732) overall record, including 83-27 (.755) in WAC games, going 8-6 last season, finishing fourth.

In his 14 years as the Aggies' head coach, Morrill has led USU to an incredible 345-119 (.744) record, including a 175-55 (.761) conference ledger in Big West and WAC action. While at Utah State, he has guided the Aggies to 13 straight 21-win seasons and 13 straight postseason appearances (8-NCAA, 4-NIT, 1-CIT), both of which are school records. Morrill is the winningest coach in school history and ranks first all-time in games coached (464). Morrill is also the second-longest tenured coach in school history behind E. Lowell Romney (1920-41) who spent 22 years coaching basketball.

Headlining the USU returners is junior guard Preston Medlin, who averaged 17.0 points per game to go with 4.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists per contest, and was named first-team all-WAC in 2012, marking the 13th-straight year that Utah State has had at least one player earn first-team all-conference honors. For Medlin, he was just the second sophomore in school history to earn first-team all-league honors along with Nate Harris (2004).

Medlin started all 37 games for the Aggies, setting a school record for games started and games played, and finished the season shooting 49.6 percent from the field (204-of-411), 42.8 percent from three-point range (95-of-222) and 80.1 percent at the free throw line (125-of-156). Medlin scored in double-figures 31 times, including 20-plus points 13 times, and a career-high 32 points against Idaho. He finished the year ranking second in the WAC and 16th in the nation in three-point shooting, third in the WAC and 80th in the nation in points per game, and 10th in the WAC and 75th in the nation in overall shooting. Medlin also ranked fourth in the league in free throw shooting, seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.70) and ninth in assists.

Utah State's most experienced position heading into the 2012-13 season will be at power forward as it returns two proven players here from a year ago in senior starter Kyisean Reed and sophomore reserve Ben Clifford. Reed, who is perhaps the most athletic post-player in the WAC, was named to the league's all-newcomer team a year ago as he averaged 10.0 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.1 blocked shots per game, while shooting 61.4 percent from the field (135-of-220) and 67.9 percent at the free throw line (91-of-134). He finished the season ranking first in the WAC in field goal shooting, sixth in blocked shots and 14th and rebounding, and had an eye-popping 40 dunks to also rank first in the conference.

After redshirting his first year at Utah State, Clifford played in 36 games, starting four, in 2012 and finished the season averaging 4.4 points and 3.5 rebounds, while shooting 50.9 percent from the field (58-of-114), 38.9 percent from three-point range (7-of-18) and 72.9 percent at the free throw line (35-of-48) in 16.8 minutes per outing.

In addition to Medlin and Reed, the Aggies also have a third returning starter back in junior Danny Berger, who can play both forward positions. Last season Berger sat out the first six games of the year as a potential redshirt, but then started in 25 of 31 games played. Berger netted double-digit points 10 times last season, including three of the final six games, highlighted by tying a school record with five three-pointers in a postseason game as part of his career-high tying 17 points in CollegeInsiders.com Tournament semifinal win over Oakland. Berger finished the year with a 6.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game average, while shooting 37.2 percent from the field (64-of-172) and 36.7 percent from three-point range (36-of-98) to go with a 76.9 percent free throw shooting (40-of-52).

The fifth returning Aggie letterman is sophomore center Jordan Stone, who both gained valuable playing time as a freshman last year and is expected to pick up where he left off in his progress from a season ago, as Stone saw action in 31 games. He tallied 2.1 points and 2.5 rebounds per contest, and both were solid defenders in the post for USU.

Joining Utah State's five returning lettermen are two redshirts, junior center Jarred Shaw and sophomore center Matt Lopez, as well as eight newcomers. The newcomers are evenly split of four junior college players in junior forward/guard Spencer Butterfield, junior forwards Sean Harris and Marvin Jean along with junior guard TeNale Roland, and a four-player freshman class consisting of forwards Quincy Bair and Quinn Taylor, along with guards Riley Bradshaw and Marcel Davis.

The Aggies open the 2012-13 season on Friday, Oct. 26 in an exhibition game against Grand Canyon at 7 p.m. USU will host Simon Fraser in an exhibition game on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m., before kicking off the regular-season schedule by hosting Idaho State on Saturday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. USU opens the season with four-straight home games at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.

Utah State men's basketball season tickets for the 2012-13 season are now on sale at the USU Ticket Office.

Ticket prices are $230 in non-priority areas and $220 in priority areas, which have Big Blue Scholarship Fund per seat commitment fees apply, ranging from $100-$900 per seat in addition to ticket cost.

Family Plans are also available for purchase at $800 (two adults and three Jr Aggies). Please be aware that there is a limit of one Family Plan per household.

Tickets can be purchased online by clicking on the "Buy Tickets" tab at www.UtahStateAggies.com, over the phone by calling 1-888-USTATE1 or (435) 797-0305, or in person at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum Ticket Office during regular hours of operation.

Fans can follow the Aggie men's basketball program at twitter.com/AggieHoops. USU fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.

2012-13 UTAH STATE MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON NOTES

* Utah State returns three starters among five lettermen from last year's team that finished the season with a 21-16 record, advancing to the championship game of the CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT). Headlining the returners is junior guard Preston Medlin, who averaged 17.0 points per game to go with 4.4 rebounds per contest, and was named first-team all-WAC in 2012, marking the 13th-straight year that Utah State has had at least one player earn first-team all-conference honors. For Medlin, he was just the second sophomore in school history to earn first-team all-league honors along with Nate Harris (2004).

* USU head coach Stew Morrill has now won at least 20 games 17 times in his career and at least 17 games 23 times. In his 14 years at USU, he has posted an amazing 345-119 (.744) record, including a 175-55 (.761) league mark and a 25-8 (.758) record in conference tournaments.

* Utah State went 17-5 at home during the 2011-12 season and set a new single-season school record for games played with 22. USU also tied the single-season school record for home wins with 17 as it has now won 17 home games in each of its last five years. In fact, prior to its current run USU had never won more than 15 home games in a single year. USU also led the WAC in attendance in 2012 averaging 8,406 fans per game, including three sellouts during the season.

* The Aggies finished the 2011-12 season ranking 24th in the nation in field goal percentage (.475), 59th in fewest turnovers per game (12.1), 66th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.11), 67th in three-point field goal percentage (.367), 80th in free throw shooting (.719) and 96th in field goal percentage defense (.415).

* As for the Western Athletic Conference, Utah State led the league in scoring defense for the fifth-straight year allowing 64.9 points per game. USU also ranked second in the WAC in field goal percentage (.475), second in field goal percentage defense (.415), third in scoring margin (+4.1), third in free throw shooting (.719), third in three-point field goal percentage (.367), third in three-point field goal percentage defense (.330), fourth in assists (13.43), fifth in rebounding margin (+0.7) and sixth in blocks (3.22).

* Despite its early exit in the WAC Tournament and fourth-place finish in the league during the regular season, Utah State's year was far from over as it accepted a bid to participate in the fourth-annual CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament (CIT), extending its postseason run to 13 straight years.

* Utah State returns one of the best overall players in the WAC at shooting guard in junior Preston Medlin who started all 37 games for the Aggies as a sophomore. Medlin, who earned first-team all-WAC honors a year ago, finished the season averaging 17.0 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game, while shooting 49.6 percent from the field, 42.8 percent from three-point range and 80.1 percent at the free throw line.

* As a sophomore, Medlin scored in double-figures 31 times, including 20-plus points 13 times, and a career-high 32 points against Idaho. He finished the year ranking second in the WAC and 16th in the nation in three-point shooting, third in the WAC and 80th in the nation in points per game, and 10th in the WAC and 75th in the nation in overall shooting. Medlin also ranked fourth in the league in free throw shooting, seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.70) and ninth in assists.

* Utah State's most experience position heading into the 2012-13 season will be at power forward as it returns two proven players here from a year ago in senior starter Kyisean Reed and sophomore reserve Ben Clifford. Reed, who is perhaps the most athletic post-player in the WAC, was named to the league's all-newcomer team a year ago as he averaged 10.0 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.1 blocked shots per game, while shooting 61.4 percent from the field and 67.9 percent at the free throw line. He finished the season ranking first in the WAC in field goal shooting, sixth in blocked shots and 14th and rebounding, and had an eye-popping 40 dunks to also rank first in the conference.

* After redshirting his first year at Utah State, Clifford played in 36 games, starting four, in 2012 and finished the season averaging 4.4 points and 3.5 rebounds, while shooting 50.9 percent from the field, 38.9 percent from three-point range and 72.9 percent at the free throw line in 16.8 minutes per outing.

* Utah State will have a newcomer starting at the point after the graduation of two-year starter Brockeith Pane, who played in 71 games during his Aggie career, and twice earned all-WAC honors. As a senior, Pane averaged 12.6 points, 4.3 assists and 3.0 rebounds per game, and scored in double-figures 27 times.

* Utah State had several statistical categories that ranked among the top 10 in school history for a single-season, including setting a record for games played with 37, bettering the previous record of 35 set four different times, including most recently during the 2009-10 season. USU also had several other categories this year that ranked among the top 10 all-time including ranking third in three-pointers attempted (566), fourth in three-pointers made (208), sixth in blocks (119), sixth in total points (2,551) and 10th in assists (497).

* The Aggies finished the 2011-12 season with some interesting trends. They were 21-7 on the season when its backcourt out-scored its opponent's backcourt; 17-2 when leading at the half; 17-2 when it committed fewer fouls than its opponents; 17-7 when it had more defensive rebounds than its opponent; 19-8 when it shot better from the field than its opponent; 17-4 when it blocked more shots than its opponent; 17-6 when it had more assists than its opponent; 15-5 when it shot better from three-point range than its opponent; and 14-7 when it out-rebounded its opponent.

-USU-
 

 

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