Nov. 2, 2009
LOGAN, Utah -
Complete Release in PDF Format
Exhibition Game Two
Utah State (0-0) vs. Trinity Western (0-0)
Saturday, Nov. 7, 2009 7 p.m. (MT) Logan, Utah
Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270)
GAME DAY HEADLINES
Utah State will begin its 105th season of basketball against Northwest Nazarene on Friday, Oct. 30. USU has an overall record of 1,401-994 (.585).
For the past 39 years, Utah State has called the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum home and has won 81 percent of its games in the building with an impressive 453-105 (.812) record, including a 159-12 (.930) mark under head coach Stew Morrill.
Utah State returns four starters (Tyler Newbold, Jared Quayle, Tai Wesley, Pooh Williams) and seven letterwinners from last year's team that set a school record for wins as it went 30-5 overall and claimed its second-straight WAC regular season championship with a 14-2 league mark. USU also won its first-ever WAC Tournament Championship and advanced to its 18th NCAA Tournament all-time, including its sixth in the last 10 years under Morrill as it lost to Marquette, 58-57, in the first round.
Utah State returns one player from last season who was honored by the WAC in senior guard Jared Quayle (second-team all-WAC; WAC all-newcomer team). Quayle averaged 13.1 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists as a junior, while shooting 46.5 percent from the field, 38.8 percent from three-point range and 76.4 percent from the free throw line. He finished the year ranking third in the WAC in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.05), sixth in steals (1.43), sixth in assists, seventh in free throw shooting, 11th in scoring and 12th in rebounding. Quayle was also named to the WAC's all-tournament team in 2009 and received high-major honorable mention All-American honors from CollegeHoops.net.
Aggie players from the state of Utah include senior guard Jared Quayle (Perry/Box Elder HS), junior forward Nate Bendall (Salt Lake City/Skyline HS), junior guard Brian Green (Kaysville/Davis HS), junior forward Morgan Grim (Riverton/Riverton HS), junior guard Tyler Newbold (Payson/Payson HS), junior forward Tai Wesley (Provo/Provo HS), sophomore guard Jaxon Myaer (Salt Lake City/Judge Memorial HS), and freshman guard Preston Eaton (Sprinigville/Springville HS).
The eight players from the state of Utah on the 2009-10 roster are the most since the 1985-86 team also had eight. The school record for most in-state players is nine set during the 1972-73 and 1983-84 seasons.
Utah State lost three lettermen from last season, including one starter in Gary Wilkinson who was named the WAC's Player of the Year as he averaged 17.1 points and 6.8 rebounds per game, and shot 58.0 percent from the field and 82.6 percent from the free throw line.
Utah State (0-0) will play its final exhibition game of the preseason as it hosts Trinity Western on Saturday, Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. There is no television for the game and no radio broadcast due to USU's football game at Hawai'i. Fans can watch live streaming of the game via USU's web site, www.utahstateaggies.com.
ON THE AIR
Utah State basketball games are broadcast on KVNU (610 AM) and KLZX (95.9 FM) in Logan, Utah, KFAN (1320 AM) or ESPN Radio (1230 AM) in Salt Lake City and KLZX (105.3 FM) in Montpelier, Idaho, as well as on the internet at www.UtahStateAggies.com. Al Lewis serves as the play-by-play announcer while Rod Tueller serves as the analyst during home games.
ON THE INTERNET
All of Utah State's home games are available for fans to listen and watch live via the internet at www.UtahStateAggies.com. Aggie fans will also be able to follow Utah State home games through its web site via GameTracker, a program that documents each play and updates statistics. Fans can also listen to every road game live via USU's web site.
LOOKING AT UTAH STATE
After posting its 10th straight 23-win season, winning its second straight WAC regular season championship, including its first-ever WAC Tournament title, and playing in its 10th straight postseason (6-NCAA, 4-NIT), Utah State will be looking to make another run at postseason play this year. Despite the loss of senior All-American forward Gary Wilkinson, who was the Player of the Year in the WAC in 2009, Utah State does return four of its top five scorers from last season including senior guard Jared Quayle and junior forward Tai Wesley. Quayle, who was named to the WAC's preseason first-team this year, averaged 13.1 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game as a junior, while shooting 46.5 percent from the field, 38.8 percent from three-point range and 76.4 percent from the free throw line. ranking third in the WAC in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.05), sixth in steals (1.43), sixth in assists, seventh in free throw shooting, 11th in scoring and 12th in rebounding. Wesley was named to the WAC's preseason second-team this fall after averaging 12.0 points and 6.0 rebounds as a sophomore. He finished the year ranking second in the WAC in field goal shooting and 11th in rebounding. Utah State also returns junior guards Tyler Newbold and Pooh Williams to the starting lineup. Newbold averaged 9.0 points and 4.2 rebounds as a sophomore and shot 43.1 percent from the field, 39.5 percent from three-point range and 76.2 percent from the free throw line. Newbold also finished the year leading the nation with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 3.96-to-1.00. Williams averaged 5.9 points and 1.9 rebounds as a sophomore and shot 46.4 percent from the field, 38.5 percent from three-point range and 68.1 percent from the free throw line. Utah State also returns three reserves from last year's team in junior forward Matt Formisano, sophomore forward Brady Jardine and sophomore guard Jaxon Myaer. Sophomore center Modou Niang is also back for USU after redshirting during the 2009 season.
UTAH STATE RETURNS PLENTY OF EXPERINCE
Utah State's four returning starters have a combined 239 games played while at Utah State including 186 starts, while its four other returnees have a total of 136 games played at USU. Furthermore, Utah State's seven returning lettermen from the 2008-09 roster are the most since the 2004-05 season when USU returned seven lettermen.
UTAH STATE IN THE DEE GLEN SMITH SPECTRUM
Utah State finished its 2008-09 regular season with a 17-0 home record, which is tied for the most wins in a single-season. It is also just the fifth time in the 39-year history of the building that an Aggie team has gone undefeated at home. Utah State is now 159-12 (.930) in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum under Coach Morrill, which includes a 84-8 (.913) record against conference opponents and a 29-3 (.906) record against WAC teams. Overall, USU is 453-105 (.812) in 39 years in the building.
AGGIES IN EXHIBITION PLAY
During the last 10 years, Utah State has gone 14-5 (.737) in exhibition games. During the 2008-09 season, USU defeated Northwest Nazarene, 73-46, and Concordia, 74-60, in exhibition games.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State head coach Stew Morrill (267-91) is the winningest coach in school history and is second all-time in games coached (358) behind the legendary E. Lowell Romney (382). Morrill is also the second-longest tenured coach at Utah State (entering 12th season) behind Romney (1920-41).
AGGIES RECEIVING PRESEASON VOTES
Utah State enters the 2009-10 season receiving votes in both polls as the Aggies garnered three votes in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll and is tied for 48th along with Cornell, Memphis, Mississippi and Southern Illinois. In the Associated Press poll, USU received two votes and is tied for 47th with Virginia Commonwealth and Western Kentucky.
UTAH STATE PICKED TO REPEAT AS WAC CHAMPIONS
Utah State's men's basketball team is picked to repeat as Western Athletic Conference champions according to both the league's coaches and media as the WAC announced its preseason polls Tuesday, Oct. 20. Utah State received eight first-place votes and 64 points in the coaches poll, while Nevada received one first-place vote and 53 points. New Mexico State received 50 points and was picked to finish third, followed by Idaho (42), Louisiana Tech (31), Fresno State (30), Boise State (23), San Jose State (19) and Hawai'i (12). In the media poll, Utah State garnered 15 first-place votes and 273 points, while Nevada was second with 269 points and 12 first-place votes. New Mexico State, who received 226 points and six first-place votes was picked third, while Idaho (193) and Boise State (145) rounded out the top five. Louisiana Tech (140) was picked sixth, followed by Fresno State (130), San Jose State (88) and Hawai'i (66). The Spartans also received one first-place vote in the media poll.
QUAYLE AND WESLEY NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-WAC TEAMS
Senior point guard Jared Quayle and junior forward Tai Wesley were both named to the WAC's various preseason teams as Quayle was named to the first-team by both the coaches and media, while Wesley was named to the coaches second-team. The coaches preseason first-team consisted of Mac Hopson (Idaho), Armon Johnson (Nevada) Jahmar Young (New Mexico State), Quayle and Luke Babbitt of Nevada who was selected as the preseason player of the year. The second-team had Roderick Flemings (Hawai'i), Paul George (Fresno State), Kyle Gibson (Louisiana Tech), Sylvester Seay (Fresno State), and Wesley. The media's preseason all-conference team included Hopson, Johnson, Quayle and Young, while Babbitt was selected as the league's preseason player of the year and Idaho's Steffan Johnson was voted as the WAC's newcomer of the year.
QUAYLE ONLY SENIOR ON AGGIE ROSTER
Utah State has just one senior on its roster for the second straight year in guard Jared Quayle. Prior to the 2008-09 season, the last time a USU team had just one senior on its roster was during the 1999-2000 campaign in guard Troy Rolle. That team finished the season with a 28-6 record, including a perfect 16-0 mark in the Big West Conference. The 2008-09 team also did pretty well with just one senior on its roster as it went 30-5 overall and won the WAC with a 14-2 league record.
AGGIES WILL BEGIN THE SEASON ON THE ROAD
Utah State will begin the 2009-10 season on the road as it will play three straight road games to start a season for the first time since the 1981-82 team also played its first three games of the season on the road. Furthermore, each of its first three opponents played in the postseason last year as Weber State played in the National Invitational Tournament, Utah played in the NCAA Tournament and Northeastern played in the College Basketball Invitational.
AGGIES SCHEDULE LOADED WITH POSTSEASON GAMES
Of its 31 regular season games scheduled this year, Utah State will play at least 13 games against teams who participated in postseason play last year. Utah State's non-conference schedule consists of seven games against postseason teams from a year ago as the Aggies will host Brigham Young, Morehead State, Saint Mary's and Weber State, and travel to Northeastern, Utah and Weber State. BYU, who will be making its first visit to the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in four years, has played in the NCAA Tournament each of the last three seasons, while Morehead State and Utah also played in the Big Dance last season. Saint Mary's and Weber State both participated in the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) a year ago, while Northeastern participated in the College Basketball Invitational (CBI). Other postseason teams from the 2008-09 season on Utah State's schedule include Idaho, who played in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, and Boise State and Nevada who both appeared in the CBI.
THE MORRILL COACHING TREE
Utah State head coach Stew Morrill currently has five former assistants who are head coaches at the Division I level, which ranks tied for the fourth-most by any current Division I coach in college basketball. Morrill's assistants who are currently head coaches include Terry Dunn (Dartmouth), Jeff Jackson (Furman), Randy Rahe (Weber State), Blaine Taylor (Old Dominion) and Don Verlin (Idaho). Arizona State's Herb Sendek has the most assistants who are currently Division I head coaches with eight, followed by Louisville's Rick Pitino with seven and Connecticut's Jim Calhoun with six. Other coaches with five assistants as current Division I head coaches include Ben Braun of Rice, Tom Izzo of Michigan State and Jay Wright of Villanova.
DID YOU KNOW?
Utah State is one of just three teams in the nation to win at least 23 games in each of the last 10 seasons along with Gonzaga and Kansas. During the last 10 years, Utah State has averaged 25.2 wins per season.
ABOUT TRINITY WESTERN
Trinity Western University is a 157-acre campus located outside Langley, BC, Canada. Its location is 45 minutes from downtown Vancouver and an hour from the North Shore mountains. Founded in 1957, TWU is Canada's largest independent, Christian liberal arts institution, with a comprehensive total enrolment of 3,600 students and over 22,000 alumni in more than 80 countries around the world.
SCOUTING TRINITY WESTERN
Trinity Western has already played two games this year as it defeated Waterloo, 68-47, and lost at British Columbia, 71-44. Senior forward Jacob Doerksen had 20 points and eight rebounds in the Spartans win against Waterloo, while junior guard Calvin Westbrook had 10 points and five rebounds in TWU's loss at British Columbia. The Spartans will play three games in the state of Utah this week as it plays at Utah Valley on Tuesday, Nov. 3, at Brigham Young on Thursday, Nov. 5, and at Utah State on Saturday, Nov. 7. The Spartans return three starters and eight lettermen from last year's team that went 20-10 overall and finished in third-place in the Canada West Universities Athletic Association with a 17-6 record. TWU also finished the year ranked 10th in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS). Among the three returning starters for Trinity Western is Doerksen who averaged 20.8 points and 10.7 rebounds per game as a junior en route to being named the CIS Player of the Year. The Spartans also return senior guard Louis Hurd who averaged 12.2 points and 2.9 assists per game, and senior forward Jason Keegstra who averaged 6.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. Trinity Western is coached by Scott Allen who is in his second season in charge of the Spartans.
RECAPPING THE NORTHWEST NAZARENE GAME
Junior forwards Nate Bendall and Tai Wesley connected on 15-of-16 field goals and combined for 34 points to lead Utah State to an easy 85-51 exhibition win against Division II Northwest Nazarene in front of 8,641 fans Friday night. Wesley, who was 8-of-9 from the field and 1-of-3 from the free throw line, finished with 17 points, three blocks, three assists, two rebounds and two steals in just 20 minutes. Bendall was a perfect 7-of-7 from the field and 3-of-3 from the charity stripe, and had 17 points and six rebounds in just 17 minutes. Freshman guard Preston Medlin added 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting, while freshman forward Tyrone White had 11 points on 3-of-6 shooting. Senior guard Jared Quayle finished the game with nine points on 3-of-6 shooting, to go along with six rebounds, four steals and three assists. Louie Beech was the only Northwest Nazarene player to score in double-figures as he had 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting. Utah State, the defending Western Athletic Conference champions, opened the game on a 12-0 run and lead by as many as 25 points in the first-half before taking a 48-26 lead into the locker room. Eight players scored for Utah State in the first-half, including 14 points by Wesley, who was 7-of-7 from the field. Medlin added nine points in the first-half as he was 4-of-4 from the field, including 1-of-1 from three-point range. Utah State shot a blistering 65.5 percent from the field (19-29) during the first 20 minutes and held Northwest Nazarene to 28.1 percent shooting (9-32). Redshirt sophomore center Modou Niang scored a layup and added the free throw after being fouled with 14:07 remaining to give Utah State its first 30-point lead of the game at 62-32. USU's largest lead came with 3:48 to play at 84-44 following a free throw by White. Utah State finished the game by shooting 60.8 percent from the field (31-51), 50.0 percent from three-point range (6-12) and 68.0 percent from the free throw line (17-25). Northwest Nazarene shot 29.0 percent overall (18-62), including 5-of-14 (.357) from behind the arc and 10-of-15 (.667) at the charity stripe. USU also had 25 assists, 15 turnovers and 13 steals in the game, while NNU had 18 turnovers and 10 steals. The Aggies also out-rebounded the Crusaders by a slim 38-36 advantage.
UTAH STATE AMONG THE BEST IN THE COUNTRY
Over the last 10 years, Utah State has been one of the best basketball programs in the country, recording a 252-78 (.764) record. Those 252 wins are the fifth-most in the country, while the 76.4 percent winning percentage is fourth-best behind Duke (.829), Kansas (.801), and Gonzaga (800). USU has also been among the top teams in the country in field goal and free throw shooting as it led the nation in both categories during the 2008 season, and led the nation in field goal shooting this year at 49.6 percent.
UTAH STATE HAS DOMINATED CONFERENCE PLAY SINCE 2000
Since joining the Western Athletic Conference prior to the 2005-06 season, Utah State has been one of the most consistent programs in the league and has the second-best record in WAC games during the last four years with a 46-18 (.719) mark. During its first four years in the league, Utah State has won two regular season championships (2008, 2009), one tournament championship (2009), and has played in the tournament championship game three times (2006, 2007, 2009).
AGGIES LEAD THE NATION IN SHOOTING FOR SECOND STRAIGHT SEASON
Utah State shot 49.6 percent from the field during the 2008-09 season to lead the nation for the second straight year (USU shot 51.4 percent in 2008 to lead the nation). USU also led the nation in field goal shooting during the 2004-05 season as it shot 52.5 percent. Utah State is the first team to lead the nation in shooting in consecutive seasons since UCLA did it in 1996 and 1997, and just the eighth team in the history of the NCAA to accomplish the feat. George Washington is the only school to lead the nation in three straight years as it accomplished that feat from 1954-56. USU's current run of being the top shooting team in the nation in three of the last five years is the best-ever streak in the history of NCAA Division I basketball.
RANKING UTAH STATE IN THE WAC
Utah State finished the 2008-09 season ranking first in the WAC in scoring margin (+10.4), field goal shooting (.496), field goal shooting defense (.419), scoring defense (62.0), rebound margin (+6.7), and assists (16.17). USU also ranked second in free throw shooting (.740) and three-point field goal shooting (.394), and third in scoring (72.4). Individually, senior forward Gary Wilkinson ranked second in the WAC in scoring (17.1) and free throw shooting (.826), fourth in field goal shooting (.580), and sixth in rebounding (6.8), while sophomore forward Tai Wesley ranked second in the WAC in field goal shooting (.592) and 11th in rebounding (6.0). Junior guard Jared Quayle ranked third in the WAC in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.05), sixth in steals (1.43), sixth in assists (3.74), seventh in free throw shooting (.764), eighth in three-point shooting (.388), 11th in scoring (13.1), and 12th in rebounding (6.0). Sophomore guard Tyler Newbold ranked first in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.96), seventh in three-point shooting (.395) and 10th in assists (3.17), and junior guard Stavon Williams ranked fifth in three-point shooting (.426).
NEWBOLD LEADS THE NATION IN ASSIST-TO-TURNOVER RATIO
Sophomore guard Tyler Newbold finished the 2008-09 season leading the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio at 3.96-to-1.00. That ratio is also a school record, breaking the old mark of 2.38 set by Kris Clark during the 2007-08 season. Senior forward Gary Wilkinson also ranked among the nation's best in field goal shooting as he ranked 24th overall at 58.0 percent.
UTAH STATE OWNS NATIONS SECOND-LONGEST HOME WINNING STREAK
Utah State has won 34 straight home games which is the second-longest active winning streak in the nation behind Kansas who has won 41 straight at home. Those 34 straight home wins are also a school record, breaking the previous mark of 31 straight home wins set from the 2000 to 2002 seasons. Overall, USU has gone undefeated at home five times in school history and it is the first time in school history that USU has gone undefeated at home in back-to-back seasons.
UTAH STATE LEADS THE WAC WITH ALL-ACADEMIC HONOREES
Utah State had six players earn academic all-WAC honors during the 2008-09 season (Matt Formisano, Brady Jardine, Tyler Newbold, Jared Quayle, Gary Wilkinson, Stavon Williams), while the other eight teams in the league combined for 10 academic all-WAC honorees.
UTAH STATE RETURNING PLAYER NOTES
#5 Pooh Williams - Started 31 games and played in all 35 during his sophomore season... Finished the year by averaging 5.9 points, 1.9 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game, while shooting 46.4 percent from the field, 38.5 percent from three-point range and 68.1 percent from the free throw line... Played an average of 24.6 minutes per game... During league games, he averaged 6.4 points, 2.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game, while shooting 49.4 percent from the field, 46.2 percent from three-point range and 78.6 percent from the free throw line... Averaged 10.7 points, 2.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists during the WAC Tournament as he shot 52.9 percent from the field, 50.0 percent from three-point range and was a perfect 11-of-11 at the free throw line... Scored in double-figures seven times during the season, including a career-high 17 points against San Jose State at home in the regular season finale as he was 7-of-10 from the field and 3-of-5 from three-point range... Registered a career-high six rebounds at Louisiana Tech and had a career-high six assists against both Utah and SJSU at home.
#15 Modou Niang - Received a medical redshirt after breaking his hand against Howard on Dec. 29... Prior to his injury he had appeared in eight games for an average of 9.3 minutes per contest... His best game of the season was at home against Cal Poly as he scored a career-high eight points on 4-of-5 shooting and added a career-high six rebounds in just 13 minutes... Played a season-high 16 minutes against Howard and had six points and four rebounds before suffering his season-ending injury... Finished the year by averaging 2.6 points and 2.6 rebounds per game, while shooting 66.7 percent from the field (8-12) and 45.5 percent from the free throw line (5-11)... Also had four blocks, four assists and two dunks.
#21 Jared Quayle - Earned second-team all-WAC honors as well as being named to the league's all-newcomer team as a junior as he finished the year by averaging 13.1 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game, while shooting 46.5 percent from the field, 38.8 percent from three-point range and 76.4 percent from the free throw line... Was named a high major honorable mention All-American by CollegeHoops.net and to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-District 6 second-team... Finished the year ranking third in the WAC in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.05), sixth in steals (1.43), sixth in assists, seventh in free throw shooting, eighth in three-point shooting, 11th in scoring and 12th in rebounding... His assist-to-turnover ratio (2.05) ranks eighth all-time at USU for a single-season and was 56th in the nation... Was the fourth-best rebounding point guard in the nation... Started 33 games in his first year at Utah State and averaged 30.2 minutes per game (1,057) to rank third on the team and 19th all-time at USU... Scored in double-figures 25 times during the season, including 24 times in his last 28 games... Had five 20-point outings during the season including a season-high 24 points against Wyoming in the championship game of the Duel in the Desert hosted by Utah State... Posted three double-doubles during the season including 17 points and a season-high 11 rebounds against Howard in the first game of the Duel in the Desert... Also had 10 rebounds to go along with his career-high 24 points against Wyoming and had 15 points and 10 rebounds at Nevada in the championship game of the WAC Tournament... Was named the Most Valuable Player of the Duel in the Desert as he posted two double-doubles during the three-day tournament and averaged 18.7 points, 9.0 rebounds and 4.7 assists... Had 18 points, eight rebounds and four assists against Marquette in the first round of the 2009 NCAA Tournament as he was 7-of-13 from the field and 4-of-8 from three-point range... Was named to the WAC's all-tournament team as he averaged 13.3 points, 8.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game... Was Utah State's top assist man 14 times during the season, and its leading scorer and rebounder eight times... An academic all-WAC selection.
#22 Brady Jardine - Sat out the first 11 games of the season as a potential redshirt before seeing his first collegiate action against Houston Baptist on Dec. 30... Played in 22 games during the season and averaged 7.7 minutes per contest... Finished the year by averaging 1.8 points and 2.9 rebounds per game, while shooting 34.1 percent from the field and 48.0 percent from the free throw line... Had 11 blocks during the season to finish tied for third on the team... Also had 30 offensive rebounds in limited playing time, which was the fifth-most on the team... Averaged 2.0 points and 3.5 rebounds in league games... Had his best game of the season at Hawai'i as he scored five points and recorded a season-high 10 rebounds... Also had nine rebounds at home against New Mexico State... Scored a season-high seven points against Cal State Bakersfield as he was 2-of-3 from the field and 3-of-3 from the free throw line... His season-high in blocks was three at home against Hawai'i... Had three dunks and took three charges during the season... An academic all-WAC honoree.
#24 Tyler Newbold - Started all 35 games at shooting guard as a sophomore and led the team in minutes played with 1,134 (32.4 mpg), which ranks sixth all-time in school history for a single-season... Averaged 9.0 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game, while shooting 43.1 percent from the field, 39.5 percent from three-point range and 76.2 percent from the free throw line... Finished the year with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 3.96-to-1.00, which led the nation and ranked first all-time at Utah State... Also ranked seventh in the WAC in three-point shooting and 10th in assists per game... Led the team with 60 made thee-pointers and was tied for the team lead in three-point attempts (152)... Had 111 assists during the season, to rank second on the team, to go along with just 28 turnovers... Scored in double-figures 14 times during the season, including a career-high 21 points against UC Irvine as he was 8-of-11 from the field and 3-of-4 from behind the arc... Recorded a career-high nine rebounds against Brigham Young and Hawai'i at home, and had a career-high eight assists at New Mexico State... Made a 12-foot baseline jumper with just over three seconds to play to defeat New Mexico State, 71-70, in the semifinals of the 2009 WAC Tournament... Finished the year second on the team with six charges taken to go along with two dunks... Led the team in assists 13 times and rebounding four times... An academic all-WAC selection.
#25 Jaxon Myaer - Started the first six games of the year at the point and played in 32 during the season... Finished the year by averaging 3.6 points and 1.0 assists per game, while shooting 44.4 percent from the field, 39.0 percent from three-point range and 76.5 percent from the free throw line... His 23 made three-pointers ranked fourth on the team, as did his 59 three-point attempts... Had a solid start to the season as he scored five points and had a season-high five assists in his first-ever collegiate game against Montana State-Northern... He then scored in double-figures in his next two games at UC Santa Barbara and at home against Weber State as he had 11 points against the Gauchos and a season-high 13 points against the Wildcats... Versus UC Santa Barbara, he was 4-of-8 from the field and 3-of-5 from three-point range... Tied his season-high with five assists at home against UC Irvine... Had a season-high four rebounds in the regular season finale at home against San Jose State... Played a season-high 33 minutes against Weber State and played 20-plus minutes in seven of his first eight games of the season.
#42 Tai Wesley - Started all 35 games for Utah State as a sophomore and finished the season averaging 12.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game, while shooting 59.2 percent from the field and 68.4 percent from three-point range... Earned NABC All-District 6 second-team honors... Ranked second in the WAC in field goal shooting and was 11th in rebounding... Scored in double-figures 26 times during the year, including two 20-point games... Had a season-high 26 points and a career-high five steals against Boise State at home as he was 9-of-12 from the field and 7-of-12 from the free throw line... Also posted four double-doubles during the season including 14 points and a career-high tying 11 rebounds at Nevada in the championship game of the WAC Tournament... Was named to the WAC's all-tournament team as he averaged 10.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game... Was one assist shy of recording just the fourth triple-double in school history at home against Weber State as he finished the game with 14 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists... Named to the USU hosted Duel in the Desert all-tournament team as he averaged 15.3 points and 6.3 rebounds per game... Was USU's top rebounder 14 times, its top scorer eight times and its top assist man six times during the season... Led the team for the second year in a row with 11 charges taken to go along with five dunks.
#44 Matt Formisano - Appeared in 34 games off the bench as a sophomore and averaged 3.2 points and 2.2 rebounds in 12.8 minutes per game... Shot 48.0 percent from the field and 63.2 percent from the free throw line... Scored a career-high 10 points against Houston Baptist in the second game of the 2008 Duel in the Desert, hosted by USU... Was 4-of-6 from the field against HBU and added four rebounds, one block and one steal in the game... Recorded a career-high six rebounds in three separate games during the season against Cal Poly, at Utah Valley and at Boise State... Played a season-high 23 minutes against Cal Poly and finished the game with eight points and six rebounds as he was 4-of-6 from the field... Scored the game-winning basket at UC Santa Barbara with three seconds left on an offensive rebound... Took two charges and had one dunk during the season... Earned academic all-WAC honors.
UTAH STATE TRADITION
Over the last 10 years, Utah State has averaged 25.2 wins and is one of just three schools in the nation to win at least 23 games in each of those seasons joining Gonzaga and Kansas.
Over the past 10 years, Utah State has won five regular season conference championships and five tournament championships.
Utah State has advanced to 10 straight postseason appearances, which is a school record, going to the NCAA Tournament in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006 and 2009, and to the National Invitation Tournament in 2002, 2004, 2007 and 2008.
Over the last 10 years, Utah State has gone 21-5 (.808) in conference postseason tournaments and has advanced to the championship game eight times.
The Aggies have won 23-plus games in each of the last 10 seasons, which is a school record, bettering the old mark of three straight 20-win seasons from 1962-64.
During the 2008-09 season, Utah State set a school record for wins with its 30-5 record and advanced to postseason play for the 27th time.
During the 2008-09 season, Utah State led the nation in field goal shooting at 49.6 percent. It was the second straight year that USU has led the nation in field goal shooting and the third time in the last five years, which is the best five-year stretch in the history of the NCAA.
Over the past nine seasons, Utah State has gone 252-78 overall and 130-38 in conference play. Those 252 wins are the sixth-most in the country over that time period, while its 76.4 percent winning percentage is the fourth-best in the country.
The 1999-2000 team set a then school record with 28 wins and went a perfect 19-0 in the Big West Conference, marking only the third time in league history a team has gone undefeated.
The 2000-01 team tied the school record for wins at the time (28) and recorded Utah State's first NCAA Tournament win in 31 years with a 77-68 overtime victory against Ohio State.
From 2000-2001, Utah State won 26-straight Big West games, which is the fourth-longest winning streak in the history of the conference.
Over the last 10 years, Utah State has recorded 10 of the 12 winningest seasons in school history.
Over the past 10 years, Utah State has had four All-American selections, 16 first-team all-conference selections, 27 all-conference selections (first and second team) and 34 conference player of the week honorees, not to mention Coach Morrill being named the league's Coach of the Year on three separate occasions (2000, 2002, 2009).
HEAD COACH Stew Morrill
In 23 seasons as a collegiate head coach and 11 years at Utah State, Stew Morrill has taken the Aggie Basketball program to unprecedented heights leading it to an incredible 267-91 (.746) record, including a 138-46 (.750) conference mark in the Big West and WAC. Morrill became the winningest coach in school history on Jan. 17, 2008 in the Aggies' 82-78 win against Boise State, passing E. Lowell Romney (1920-41) who won 225 games in 22 seasons. In his first 11 years at USU, Morrill has guided the Aggies to 10 straight 23-win seasons and 10 straight postseason appearances (NCAA-6, NIT-4), both of which are school records. Morrill has also led Utah State to the fourth-best winning percentage in the nation during the last 10 years at 76.4 percent with an overall record of 252-78. Against conference opponents, Utah State has a 159-52 record with five regular season league championships and five tournament titles during that time, including appearances in its league's tournament championship game eight times in the last 10 years. Under Morrill, Utah State has notched 10 of the top 12 seasons in school history during the last 10 years as the Aggies set a school record with 28 wins during the 2000 season, tied that record with 28 wins during the 2001 season, and set a new school record with 30 wins in 2009. During the 2008-09 season, Morrill guided Utah State to its second straight Western Athletic Conference regular season championship and its first WAC Tournament title. The 2008-09 Aggie basketball team also led the nation in field goal shooting at 49.6 percent, marking the second straight year and the third time in the last last five years that USU has led the nation in that category. For the 10th straight year, USU had at least one player earn first-team all-league accolades as Gary Wilkinson was named the WAC Player of the Year in 2009, while Jaycee Carroll was named the league's MVP in 2008. Overall, Morrill has coached 11 first-team all-league players at Utah State who have won the award a total of 16 times. Morrill has also taken full advantage of the home court at USU, the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. In Morrill's 11 years, USU is an amazing 159-12 (.930) at home, which includes an 84-8 (.913) record in league play. As for Morrill, he has won 20 or more games on 14 different occasions during his career, and he has won at least 17 games 20 times. Overall, Morrill ranks 23rd in the nation among active coaches and 96th all-time with his 485 career wins, while his career winning percentage of 67.9 percent ranks 28th among active coaches and 100th all-time. He is also one of 27 active coaches with 400 career wins at the Division I level and one of just 13 active coaches to notch at least 14 20-win seasons. His current streak of 10 straight 20-win seasons ranks ninth among active coaches and is tied for the 13th-longest streak ever at the Division I level. Morrill has also been named Coach of the Year (2000 BWC, 2002 BWC, 2009 WAC) three times in his 11 years at USU, along with winning the Big Sky award while the head coach at Montana in 1991. His overall coaching record is 485-229 (.679).